One of the ways to promote a site is to place external links to it from other resources, which is necessary to achieve high results in search results. Yury Sukach, head of the SEO-Studio analytics department, spoke about how to check external links to a site and why to do it.

Tracking the backlinks of competitors can provide a lot of useful information about the promoted keywords and the chosen promotion strategy, and for your own site, it will allow you to evaluate the quality of the work of the agency that you entrusted with working on your site. To search for backlinks, there are various services, both paid and free. Some of them have their own bases of sites and pages on the network, others monitor those who have this base. Depending on the service used, data on backlinks may differ, since the selection of all services is different, as well as the relevance of the databases.

Google Webmaster Tools

1To use the Google Webmaster Dashboard, you must add your site to it and verify ownership of it. This tool allows you to get a lot of useful information about the site. These are crawl errors, and duplicated meta tags, and many other things that you should definitely use when working on site optimization, including backlinks. You can view them in the “Website Links” section, the tool will show links located on resources indexed by Google. You can also see from which sites and which pages external resources most often link to. However, this information is available only for your own site, it will not work to track a competitor in this way.


2Similar to the tool from Google, you can use the Yandex webmaster panel only to analyze your own resource. Viewing a list of sites linking to a specific page or section of a resource is available in the “External Links” section. For a detailed analysis, it is better to download the links as an archive, there are often more of them than in the service panel itself. The service is used for the same purposes as Google Webmaster Tools.


3An important difference between Solomono and previous services is the ability to check any site, for this it is not necessary to confirm ownership of it. Solomono has a free mode that allows you to get a fairly large, but still limited, amount of data and a paid one that allows you to get all the information. The interface is extremely simple. We type the site address on the main page and get to the page with summary information. For each section, you can get detailed data and download them in Excel format. The main advantages of the service are a convenient intuitive interface and a large database.

Majestic SEO

4Unlike Solomono, it provides quite a bit of information in the free mode, but has rich functionality in the paid version, which costs from 29.99 to 250 pounds per month. The service has a rich database, it stores search history, allows you to view link growth graphs, compare growth dynamics graphs for several sites, and many filters that you can use to make convenient selections. One of the main advantages of Majestic SEO is a convenient API, thanks to which you can use this service in your own software developments.

Open Site Explorer

5A popular website analysis tool. With it, you can conduct a detailed analysis of backlinks. Link anchors and donor parameters are available in the report, including social signals (the number of likes, tweets and +1). The service runs on its own server, and currently has a database of 44 billion subscribers. pages. The disadvantages of Open Site Explorer include a small amount of data available in free mode, a high price for advanced functionality and not an ideal base in the Russian-speaking segment of the Internet – Solomono or Majestic SEO, in most cases, can provide more complete information. The main target audience of the service is SEO specialists in Europe and the USA.


6This service is free. When collecting external links, data on anchors, the number of external links on the page and the TCI of the referring resource are displayed, the visibility of any site in Yandex and Google is available, and there are other data. To check the links to the site, you need to go to the “SEO – External Links” item. Unfortunately, downloading data in Excel format is not yet available, which would simplify the work.

CS Yazzle

7This program is designed to collect external links to any site, it is convenient to use it to view the link profile of competitors. But Yazzle has other features as well, such as checking for backlinks. To check external links in the “Tools” tab, go to the item “Links – Backlink Checker”. The program is not expensive and easy to use. Among the above services, everyone can find those that suit him in terms of functionality and interface.

When working on sites in SEO-Studio, we always use Google Webmaster Tools, we often connect Yandex.Webmaster as well. To analyze competitors in manual mode, we use Solomono or Yazzle, and to get information in automatic mode, we use Majestic SEO. Understanding these tools will not be difficult, but the benefits of the information received cannot be overestimated. Use, analyze and take high positions in search engine results with any algorithms.


(update 2022)

8 At the current moment (2022), as in the last more than 5 years, we use Ahrefs as the main tool for analyzing backlinks.

The service also allows you to maintain projects for which TOP positions are tracked, automatic site audits are carried out.

When analyzing sites, traffic forecasting with Ahrefs will be useful. Traffic figures are as close to real as possible, which is extremely useful when analyzing competitors.