Pros: We were wondering how can we achieve great performance for us and our customers in online marketing area. After discovering semrush our expectations were met. We did find all those marketing channels to be explored, used and to be able to add value. All those spreadsheets and data really caught my add when displayed as charts diagrams. We now know where to spend our marketing budget, were our competition is spending theirs and what to do.
Many businesses use Google’s massive Display Network to improve their search advertising. So, the SEMrush Display Advertising feature is another great addition since it gives you information regarding other companies using the display network. You’ll also find out which are the most successful display ads leveraged by the competition. By analyzing leaders in your niche it allows you to tweak your own images, ad headlines, call to action and ad copy amongst other things. You can also see how many ad impressions they received and if it had any conversion potential. Finally, the other important aspect of the feature is being able to compare media banners with text only advertisements to see what is working better for the competition.
In this article, I will discuss about this SEM tool that can be used to research competitors’ keywords – SEMrush, which I have used in many projects. Writing is no more about just putting up what your readers love but also about searching and finding what readers have been searching and putting them into post, so, that it can drive relevant traffic from search engine. Or, putting it the other way, using these keywords, you can drive highly relevant traffic through ads in search engine.
Depending on the plan, you are only allowed up to 100 domain searches a day. If you purchase their top tier plan you only get double of that. Sometimes it can take you several days to do certain types of research. This can start to get a little bothersome as we work with several clients and all of them need to use this software to make sure everyone is getting the best work that we have to offer.
Social media is by far one of the best ways for a business to engage with their target audience and consequently create brand awareness. The Social Media Tracker tool by SEMRush affirms the need for companies to use social media but turbocharges their effort. The tool provides information on things like the top performing posts by competitors so that businesses can see what they have done correctly to engage with people then compare that with their own engagement. This type of comparison is invaluable since it allows companies to hone their social media campaign based on what’s working for the competition.
Pros: I own a small ecommerce business so analytics is critical for our success. I've tried a few other SEO services in the past but nothing beats SemRush in terms of features and accessibility. While other services' interfaces are clunky and hard to understand, SemRush lays everything out on their page in an easy-to-use format. The features are incredible, especially the Site Audit, which compares your keyword goals to the content that is already on your site and gives you tips on how you can rank higher for your chosen keywords. Even more incredibly, they provide "SEO templates" which makes content creation easy and friendly. It's nice to have such an easy platform for writing excellent-quality articles that converst. When you're only using Google Analytics, there's still a ton of information about your content and backlinks that you're not really seeing. SemRush makes this information available to you.

Hi Anil, both are great SEO tools I would say because I’ve been using both of them for a long time now. SEMrush offers even more incredible features and their databases are even bigger and regularly get updated when compared to Ahrefs. But as you said, Ahrefs is equally good and I really like their keyword analysis data to be precise when compared to any other tool.


Pros: SEMrush is a very effective tool for SEO. It has a simplistic approach and it allows users to see all the relevant data of any websites. It has a very detailed keyword analysis tool that can show many related keywords, traffic data and competitors. The backlink analysis tool is another great feature of this app. I can see all the websites that are linking to mine, their countries and IP addresses, their anchor texts and if the links are follow or nofollow.
Faizan, since you have a new blog, so you should go for least competitive keywords. You can use SEMrush Keyword difficulty (KD) metrics while doing keyword research for your niche. Don’t target keywords that has more than 50 KD and monthly search volume should not be more than 500-600. Please let me know in case you have any additional question for me.
Thanks so much for offering this helpful tool. It is very useful. In case you want feedback, I think it would be great if you could please also consider including another column to display the linked page (i.e., the actual page that the backlink goes to on the domain). When selecting “All pages on this domain” it is difficult to know which page each backlink is going to on the domain. Thanks for your consideration.
The only weakness and something we’ve mentioned above briefly is its somewhat limited backlinks database. The backlink monitoring tool and others aren’t able to grasp the entirety of most link building campaigns. Many backlinks go unreported. While the new hook up with Majestic’s database does improve things slightly, it still isn’t as good as the competition. So, some work needs to be done to enhance backlink audit results. Though this is in no way, a deal breaker especially compared against the backdrop of solid reporting and insights.

Cons: The only thing about all the data provided is that its an estimate - so they are not accurate - although they give you a magnitude or direction - they are far from accurate to be used as a benchmark. There are a lot of alternatives for SEO like Moz - which are more easier to use & bring in thought leadership in the industry. There are a lot more things that can be better like the reports can be more intuitive, it's really slow at times, missing data on various sections, etc - can be a handicap at times.
Setting up the SEO Writing Assistant is pretty easy and is available at present only for the Google Chrome browser and WordPress. It is compatible with Google Docs which is a good start. To begin with, you need to head over to the download page, log-in (if you don’t have an account one will need to be created), choose to install the browser plugin and activate it post installation.

I was an early user of products like Market Samurai and the Google keyword tool back when they both actually told you something useful. This isn't exactly like the early days of SEO, but it's close. You can search keywords and actually return quality, actionable data that you can use in your AdWords campaigns, on-site SEO, and Social Media optimization.


The depth of your articles impresses and amazes me. I love all the specific examples and tool recommendations. You discuss the importance of backlinks. How important is it to use a tool to list you on directories (Yext, Moz Local, Synup or JJUMP)? Will Google penalize you for listing on unimportant directories? Is it better to avoid these tools and get backlinks one at a time and avoid all but a few key directories?

The dashboard is an easy way to get an overall picture of our ranking, backlinks, and organic traffic. And as a small company looking to drive brand awareness through search, their keyword exploration tools are essential to our SEO strategy. It's also a pretty straightforward tool to use, so can you jump right in and get a lot of benefits straight away.
Awesome tool. I like the SEMrush’s PPC tools best as it helps you to spy on your competitors’ Ads and you can find the ones that are working and you can reverse engineer and make your own that are similar saving you time and money of testing which Ads work. As a whole i think this is a great tool that all IM should have as it can really help you improve your site ranking and thus improve traffic and profits.

In addition to the core tools that are part of SEMrush’s main package, the company has over the years introduced a few separate tools addressing various aspects of content optimization. Some of these tools are still in beta while others are not. Also, they require a separate subscription apart from the main SEMrush suite. Though currently they are free if you’re already part of the SEMrush ecosystem and using their tools. But some things could change later on depending on how well these serve users and what additional features are added.


Ankit, you have very nicely explained the difference between SEO and SEM. I understood them to be part of it each other, but never gave it a proper thought. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a technique that helps raise up our (search) rank bring more traffic to our website. While Search Engine Marketing (SEM) is a larger concept that includes SEO as well. Internet Ads are an important component of SEM.

Any SEO specialist worth his salt knows the importance of backlinks. No SEO campaign can be complete without good quality do-follow and no-follow backlinks from forums, blogs, news websites, etc. within the niche. The Backlinks Report provided by SEMRush provides thorough information regarding geolocation, rank authority and the number of incoming links. These links are seen as votes in favor of your website’s relevance to the subject or niche, in addition to being voted up for credibility and trustworthiness.
Top Referring Content – This displays the most popular page that links to your target website. They determine the popularity of the page through the number of social shares it has. You can use this to help your SEO campaign by knowing which page/website has a decent social media following, and you can partner with them for more link opportunities to improve your backlink profile.
The Lost Links tab has the same interface as the New Links report does. For your own domain you might want to consider tracking your own links in something like Raven or Buzzstream but this tool does report dropped links down to the day. Combine that with their crawling preferences (better links = quicker attention) and you can spot drops of substance quickly.
I like the keyword position tracker and the site auditing with the competitor comparisons. It's really useful to see where my website is with a side-by-side comparison with our competition in regards to specific keywords we're targeting. The site auditing tool helps to identify issues with the website that can easily be fixed in order to get a better grade and be more relevant on search engines.
the interface is quite nice. i like the feature that they can group all the things into a project, show the backlinks from each site and update sent to email in daily basis, sometimes it is quite busy that you cannot login and check all the metrics. Also, the competitors spending on ad is a good reference to see how and what have they done. And how we can react with them, like pay more to beat them or what. By the way, the backlink tool is very nice that we can remove toxic links linking to our site to prevent lowered ranking
Backlink Geolocation: Do you have any idea how to know where the backlinks are coming from to your website geographically speaking? SEMRush’s Backlinks tool provides you with geo distribution widgets like pie charts, graphs and a world map that will give you the answer to this question. It is invaluable information for anyone doing local SEO. The data is sorted by IP address, the number of links from each IP, the way they are distributed by country and top-level domains.
There are other parts of SEO which you should pay attention to after your audit to make sure you stay competitive. After all, the technical foundation isn't the end of the road for SEO success. It's important to pay attention to your competition's SEO activity, keep an eye on the newest search engine best practices, and maintain local SEO best practices if your business depends on customers visiting a physical address. All of these are elements of a successful SEO strategy and should be corollary to your audit and ongoing SEO maintenance.
After auditing your site this tool gives you suggestions where your site needs changes. It gives full details about how many external backlinks your website has and you can make more backlinks by see your competitor site backlinks details. This tool also helps to find which keywords are helpful for our website & which keywords give organic traffic.
Another function included in the backlink profile section is the data for Referring Domains. Basically speaking, it shows you the number of websites that are linking to the domain you’ve inputted in the search bar. So, in this instance, I’m using seo-hacker.com as the target website/URL, and the number of referring domains is shown with the corresponding details you will ever need:
SEMrush Advertising feature helps in achieving the maximum ROI from your PPC campaigns. SEMrush gives you valuable data on your competitors’ PPC campaigns, like keywords, budget, campaign activities, and so on. Using these data, you can improve your own campaign and get the maximum ROI possible out of it. This not only helps you avoid certain mistakes, it also saves your time and cost. You cease from burning money in a campaign that gives no or least return.

Don’t know how many of your keywords are currently ranking at the top of Google search results? Or are you finding it hard to track all your keyword positions? If yes, SEMrush can help you track all of your keywords. It creates a list of all the keywords at one place and helps you check their positions whenever you logged into the SEMrush pro account.
The My Reports tool also enables the creation of custom reports complete with your business’s logo, annotations, comments, and other features. All of the custom report features exist to highlight and clarify your findings, structure, etc. You can also use pre-defined templates which makes it possible for anyone in your team to create a report and even schedule its creation.
Ahrefs is a worthy tool, although I feel they should give new users a free trial instead of the $7 for 7 days trial, which is hardly enough trial period to adequately track a competitor’s website. For individuals/freelancers in the SEO digital space, the subscription pricing is quite high when you’re just starting, but once your clients start to see the benefits, it will be worth it as you get more business. Otherwise, there’s little I found to dislike about Ahrefs.
The other star feature of the Domain Vs. Domain tool is it provides you with a detailed report on the competitors’ domains. You can see all the common keywords their domains are associated with and compare their website’s position for each keyword to your own. This allows you to get some insight into what is working for the competition and mimic their success by optimizing your ad strategy and content marketing.

SEMrush’s Marketing Calendar is a work in progress. It isn’t the most powerful tool which will make it worth a purchase yet. Though if you’re already part of the SEMrush ecosystem, this is free for you to use. But it is only useful if you’re managing multiple campaigns. Plus it falls short in the sense that it does not prompt you about approaching deadlines, and events which would be a useful feature in a future update.
Brian, I’m going through Step 3, which is referring to the one version of the website. I found a very good free tool (https://varvy.com/tools/redirects/) to recommend. It checks on the redirect and gives you a visual number of hops. More hops mean more delay. For example, if I use your manual method to check on https://uprenew.com, all looks good. However, if I use the tool and check, I realize there is an unnecessary 1 hop/delay, whereby I can fix it. Hope this helps. : )
If you are doing competitive analysis for clients or prospects this tool is a must have tool. The API interface is a great way to enhance links to other evaluation tools, but that part is probably is not for technically faint of heart. The site audits are fairly easy to use and exploit, for top level insights and seem to have a much greater depth of capability than I have taken advantage of just yet. Site audits are helpful for evaluating key clients, and provides on-going regular emails as to how each site is doing.
Brian is the founder of MeiggsMedia and has a love for digital marketing, entrepreneurship, and personal finance. Brian has been quoted in several online publications, including Yahoo! Finance, NASDAQ, MSN, AOL, Discover, GOBankingRates, Student Loan Hero and more. When not helping others reach their goals, Brian can be found at the gym, traveling, exploring Washington DC, or helping bloggers, entrepreneurs, and small businesses succeed at MeiggsMedia.
Pros: SEMRush is a full-fledged powerhouse for SEO building strategy and SEO audits. It's pretty beefy, so I would only recommend it if you have the time and patience for SEO, as the software gives a ton of outlets in looking up actionable items for your SEO Strategy. The first thing that I really liked with SEMRush was the initial SEO audit of my site -- I was able to see what's good and what's bad about my SEO, and the quick errors or warnings for title headers and ideas for gaining more traffic was awesome. Moving on, I found their analytics just as good as Google Analytics, showing me where my traffic is coming from and where I can improve my paid search positions. I haven't used the Social or Content aspects of SEMRush but social listening looks to be baked in well and integrated nicely. If you're in the market for seeing how your organic and paid search traffic plays a part, and then strategizing in how to improve your overall position against organic search and then your competitors, I'd recommend SEMRush.
AHREFS is certainly a great tool for bloggers and internet marketers. You have explained every functionality in great detail. I liked the link intersection part. It provides ou with a great opportunity to get backlinks from sites which are usually linking to your competitors. Further, its adds to the fact that these types of backlinks would be easier to get as compared to the ones that we search manually for any website. Plus, these would be niche specific too!
It is also an excellent tool for anyone searching for relevant long-tail keywords that apply to their business. Long-tail keywords help to create more opportunities for ad campaigns, copy, content, and anchor text which boosts SERPs. All of the best keywords that you’re interested in targeting can be combined into one list for easy later reference that way you have all the required data on hand when needed. 
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