14 Link Building Tools That You Should Be Using This Year

Are You Using Blacklisted Backlinks? Check Now

Arming yourself with the right link building tools will make it easier for you to build links.

The tools you choose will make it easier to execute your link building strategies of choice.

So I want to show you the best free and premium link building tools that you should be using to build better backlinks for your websites.

The Best Link Building Tools On The Market

There are tons of link building tools available on the market.

But not all tools are of equal quality. Over the years, some tools have continued to evolve and become the go-to tools of the trade.

So I’m about to show you the best paid AND free link building tools.

My Favourite Link Building Tool

My favourite link building tool isn’t really a tool.

The truth is that link building takes a lot of time, effort and technical ability – even if you have the right tools for the job.

So if you want to avoid the headache of link building entirely, you can just hire one of these link building services to do it for you

The best service though is LinksThatRank.

links that rank link building service

LinksThatRank has a reputation for building links that improve rankings and increase traffic:

link building results

They take quality control so seriously they even built a blacklist database that contains over 60,000 blacklisted domains.

Free Link Building Tools

Link building doesn’t need to be expensive.

If you haven’t got a massive budget for your tools, I’ve got you covered. These are the best free link building tools to use.

1. Link Building Strategy Builder

Ready to leverage your competitors link building strategy for free?

My Link Building Strategy Template automatically analyses your competitor’s backlink profiles and shows you their best backlinks:

link building strategy template

It then tells you which backlinks are most important to focus on stealing first.

Pretty cool, right?

You don’t have to go to all the trouble and spend hours building a link building strategy. Just download my Link Building Strategy Template and you’ll get a customised link building strategy in minutes.

2. The Backlink Blacklist

The Backlink Blacklist is a free tool that will help you to make sure you are not building links from sites you should be avoiding.

backlink blacklist

Just copy and paste your backlinks into the blacklist tool and see if any of them are blacklisted instantly.

On the results page, it will tell you precisely why a site is blacklisted…

blacklist results page

And you can click on any of the reasons to see a screenshot of the evidence, for example, if it was sold publically on Fiverr or via a cold outreach email.

Bonus: You can also use this tool if you bought expired domains and want to check their links aren’t blacklisted and hurting their backlink profile.

3. Open Link Profiler

Open Link Profiler is a powerful free link analysis tool that provides in-depth insights.

Just head over to their website and search for any domain:

Open Link Profiler

The tool will crawl the site and show you all the data you need to determine the strength of their backlink profile such as:

  • The total of backlinks
  • The total of referring domains
  • The domain rank

And much more!

Open Link Profiler

Not only that, but Open Link Profiler will show you the complete breakdown of:

  • The website’s backlinks
  • The quality of those links
  • Where each link is coming from

Open Link Profiler Screenshot2

And if you scroll down, you get to see all the websites that have actually linked to the domain you analyzed- which can help you find great link building opportunities.

Open Link Profiler Screenshot

In other words, Open Link Profiler is a great free SEO tool that allows you to do some serious backlink research quickly and easily.

4. Backlink Checker From Seobility

The free backlink checker from Seobility is another powerful analysis tool that provides in-depth insights not only about your backlink profile but also about your competitors’.

To use it, just head over to the Seobility website and click on “Backlink Checker” (or click on the image below directly).

This will redirect you to the right page:

Seobility Backlink Checker Tool

Then, just paste the URL or domain you want to check inside the tool and click on “Check Backlinks”.

It’s important to note that:

  • If you choose to check an URL – it will show you the backlinks of the specific page you analysed.
  • If you choose to check a domain – it will give you the entire backlink profile for the domain analysed.

Seobility Backlink Checker Results 1

For each check, it will give you:

  • The total of backlinks
  • The number of referring domains
  • The domain rating
  • The percentages of Follow / No follow backlinks

….For the URL or domain checked.

On top of that, it will give you a complete top backlinks report that you can export for free as CVS or PDF.

Seobility Backlink Checker Results 2

You can do up to 3 checks a day for free.

If you want to check more URLs or domains, you’ll have to sign up for a free Seobility account. This will allow you to check up to 1,000 subpages.

Not bad, right?

Looking for a backlink checker? Take a look at the case study to find out which tool is the best backlink checker.

5. SEO Auto Linker

Do you run a WordPress website?

SEO Auto Linker is about to become your new best internal link building friend.

seo auto linker

This awesome plugin automatically links words and phrases in your blog posts to other relevant posts and pages on your website. It makes internal linking a breeze and ensures you get the SEO benefit of a strong internal linking strategy.

The best part? It’s simple to use.

Just add in your URL and the keywords you want to target for that URL:

seo auto linker setup

SEO Auto Linker automatically inserts internal links to that URL anytime you use any of those keywords. It’s as easy as that.

You can even level up your affiliate game by inserting your affiliate links in too!

The plugin hasn’t been updated in years but still works well. It provides you with everything you need to execute an effective internal link building strategy – for free.

6. Wiki Grabber

Wikipedia is one of the most authoritative websites in the world.

It has been the go-to source of information for millions of people for years. That makes Wikipedia links some of the most powerful links available.

Wiki Grabber is a great tool to do Wikipedia link building easily.

Here’s how it works:

Let’s say you are writing a blog about Bitcoin. Go to Wiki Grabber and search for that topic:

wiki grabber

It will bring up a list of all the relevant Wikipedia pages that either has a:

  • Dead link – The link is now broken
  • Citation missing – There needs to be a citation placed.

citation needed

Now you just need to sift through all of the pages and see if there is a suitable place to put a link to your content. That’s it!

Wiki Grabber does all of the heavy liftings for you and makes it easy to acquire strong backlinks from Wikipedia.

As an added bonus…

Wikipedia gets tons of traffic every month. Getting placed on a relevant Wikipedia page is a great way to increase website traffic.

Make sure you check out my Wikipedia link building tutorial to learn how to get more links from Wikipedia.

7. Hunter.io

To increase your link building success rates, you need to contact the right person when you do outreach.

You don’t just want to email a website’s generic email address such as [email protected]. This is how you end up with a lot of rejections and often no responses at all.

That’s where Hunter.io comes in.


Hunter.io is an email address lookup tool. But it isn’t like the other email address lookup tools you’ll find online. It gives you direct access to real people’s emails using advanced verification to provide insane accuracy.

All you have to do is enter the domain of the website you want to contact.

hunter io search

It searches the internet to find all the email addresses connected to that domain for you. It will even show you the sources it used to find those email addresses.

emails found

Hunter.io will make your link building so much easier and more scalable. It’s the best tool to use to ensure your outreach emails are actually reaching the right people.

On the free plan, you get 25 email address searches per month.

8. Scraper

Scraper will save you hours trying to find prospects for your link building campaigns.

scraper chrome extension

This powerful Chrome extension can extract almost any information you need from any page with just a few clicks.

There are many ways that I leverage Scraper for link building, including finding contact information for free.

But the best use case for Scraper is to find quality link building prospects. Here’s how:

Let’s say I want to connect with other blog owners and build links for my SEO blog. First, I would find a relevant blog post like this one on Backlinko.

example blog post

Now if you scroll to the bottom you will see that it has 374 comments.

This is a popular blog on a popular website, so most of these comments will likely link back to personal websites, business websites or SEO blogs.

Highlight the link, right-click and select scrape similar.

scrape simillar

This automatically selects all of the links in the comment section.

scraped links

Now just export them to a Google sheet and you have a list of relevant websites you can do outreach to. Easy.


Want to build high-quality links from big news sites?

It doesn’t get much better than Haro.

Haro Link Building Tool

HARO stands for Help A Reporter Out.

Journalists need expert sources that they can quote in their news articles. Simply put the HARO platform connects journalists with sources.

Here’s how it works:

  1. You sign up as a “source”.
  2. Next, you’ll need to add your expertise subjects.
  3. Then journalists will ask questions or ask for a comment on the platform.
  4. You then log in and answer the question or provide a comment to the journalist.

If they like your reply they will take it and use it in their article. As a reward, they will link to your website when they quote you.

It’s as simple as that!

HARO is one of the easiest ways to acquire high-authority backlinks from well-known news sites.

Pro Link Building Tools

Ready for the big-hitting tools?

These are the 4 best paid link building tools money can buy.

1. Ahrefs

Ahrefs is my favourite link-building tool.

They have a complete link building tool suite designed for serious pros.

ahrefs link building tool

Ahrefs also has the world’s largest index of live backlinks, which makes it such a powerful tool. Their index has almost:

  • 400 billion live pages
  • 26.6 trillion internal backlinks
  • 3.4 trillion external links

ahrefs backlink data base

That’s a lot of data. And every 24 hours Ahrefsbot crawls and updates the data on about 420 million pages.

Ahrefs provides the most comprehensive data of any available link building software.

These are some of Ahrefs top features:

Mention Monitoring

Mention monitoring allows you to set up alerts to be notified whenever your brand or website is mentioned online.

ahrefs setup mentions

Then you just reach out to the website that mentioned you and ask for a link. This is the easiest way to build links.

Mention monitoring can also be applied directly to your competitors. You can even go as far as to set up monitoring so that when a competitor receives a new backlink on a specific URL – you are notified.

This allows you to quickly swoop in and potentially steal the link for yourself.

These powerful features are unique to Ahrefs and enable you to build links without any hard work from your part.

Analyse Your Competitors

What about a competitor analysis?

Because Ahrefs has the biggest backlink index, it’s easy to get an accurate comparison of your backlink profile against any of your competitors.

This means you can see exactly how you stack up and work out what you need to do to outrank your competitors.

backlinko best by links

You can even go a step further and reverse engineer your competitors’ link building strategy.

Once you have uncovered all of their backlinks, you can contact each of the websites that link to your competitors and get them to link to you as well.

Whatever link building strategies you like to use, Ahrefs makes it easier and faster to execute them.

Ahrefs isn’t just a link building tool. It is an all-in-one SEO tool with tons of features you can use. And the best part is that Ahrefs is relatively easy to use, even for beginners.

Want to learn how to take advantage of Ahrefs? Take a look at my full Ahrefs review and discover all of the other cool things you can do with it.

2. Semrush

Before Ahrefs came along, there was Semrush.

(Check out my Ahrefs vs Semrush blog post to see which tool performs the best).

Semrush is another all-in-one SEO tool that has great link building features.

semrush SEO tool

But where Semrush really shines is data analysis. Semrush has a lot of powerful reports that provide really deep insights into your link building campaigns.

This makes it an excellent tool for those that love sifting through data to find unique opportunities.

Looking for a comprehensive link building tool?

Semrush can handle your link building campaign end to end. It will help you-

  • Find link building opportunities
  • Analyse and vet them
  • Reach out to website owners

In theory, you can run your entire link building campaign through Semrush alone. These are my favourite link building features from Semrush:

Competitor Backlink Analysis

The Semrush backlink analysis tools are comprehensive, to say the least.

You can analyse and research any of your competitors. You’ll get a wealth of information and can easily see what you’re up against.

competitor analysis

Want to dive deeper?

You can look at any URL and see all the backlinks that point to that URL.

This is a great feature if you want to build links to a piece of content to rank for a specific keyword. Add in the URL, click Backlink Analytics and click Backlinks.

backlink analytics

You’ll be able to work out what links you need to build to get ahead of them.

Outreach Link Building Tool

Semrush allows you to do outreach from directly inside of the tool.

This is a great feature because you can do all of the analysis and immediately kick off an outreach campaign.

semrush outreach tool

Simply connect your Gmail or Google Workspace account to Semrush and start sending outreach emails directly inside the tool. You can even take advantage of the link building templates they have.

Semrush is a great tool to add to your link building arsenal. They also have a massive amount of other powerful SEO features you can use.

Want to learn more about Semrush? Take a look at my full Semrush review.

3. Pitchbox

Pitchbox is the best outreach tool that you can get.

After using hundreds of link building and outreach tools nothing comes close to what it offers. If you really want to build links at scale Pitchbox is the tool to do it.


Pitchbox has a ton of unique features that will save you time and money.

The tool can help you…

  • Quickly find niche relevant bloggers, publishers and influencers
  • Build fully customisable and personalised link outreach campaigns
  • Create a completely automated link building process that allows you to predict how many backlinks you will get
  • Make data-driven decisions as Pitchbox helps you understand your efficiency at each stage of the link building process

But the biggest benefit of Pitchbox?

This tool automates a lot of tasks you would usually have to hire staff to do.

Almost every major link building service and SEO agency use Pitchbox. There isn’t an outreach tool that even comes close.

4. Majestic

Majestic specialises in link analysis.

It is a popular link building tool that helps you dive deeper into link building than any other tool available.

majestic seo link building tools

Majestic claims to have the biggest backlink index in the world, but from my own individual testing of Ahrefs vs Majestic – Ahrefs comes out on top (3 times in a row).

Unlike Ahrefs and Semrush, Majestic isn’t an all-in-one SEO tool. It’s 100% focused on backlinks. They have created a software tool that offers unique features you won’t find anywhere else.

Site Explorer Analysis

Majestic has a lot of different analysis metrics to measure the authority and quality of any website. They take this to the extreme, offering 8 different analysis metrics:

  1. Trust Flow
  2. Citation Flow
  3. Topical Trust Flow
  4. External Backlinks
  5. Referring Domains
  6. Referring IP Addresses
  7. Crawled URLs
  8. Indexed URLs

majestic link metrics

Without a doubt, you get a clear idea of how powerful and rankable any domain you want to research is. This includes both your website and any competitors you are checking out.

You can get an in-depth look into anyone’s backlink profile and identify individual high-value links. With Majestic, it’s also very easy to put together a list of competitor links you can target for your own link building campaigns.

Backlink Topic Analysis

This is a really cool feature that I haven’t seen in any other link-building tool.

You can look at a competitor’s backlink profile and see what types of websites are linked to them. Majestic will categorise each website and give you a breakdown of where your links come from.

backlink topic analysis

Google probably uses your backlinks to figure out what your website is about.

They also use links to decide your website’s overall trust and authority. It makes sense that you typically want more backlinks from relevant websites in your industry.

The topic analysis feature allows you to:

  1. Compare yourself against your competitors
  2. See if you have a similar topical backlink profile

5. MailShake

If you don’t have the budget for Pitchbox…

Mailshake is a much more budget friendly but long winded option:


Mailskake is an outreach tool that takes the pain out of cold outreach link building.

It’s easier to connect with prospects by:

  • Sending personalised cold emails at scale
  • Create full email out sequences that send based on specific actions
  • Manage everything from one simple dashboard

… which makes it perfect if you are looking for a cost-effective tool to launch large link building campaigns that generate results.

You can also track all the important metrics such as clicks, replies, opens and much more!

What Are Link Building Tools?

Link building tools help you to find and then acquire the highest quality backlinks for your website. Typically they help you find and prospects thousands of opportunities quickly, whilst also making the acquisition process simple as well.

SEO Tools

They make it easier to:

  1. Find link opportunities
  2. Execute different link building strategies

It would be impossible to build high-quality links at scale without link building tools.

Professional SEOs have a link building tool stack that allows them to predictably and consistently acquire quality links.

Why You Should Use Link Building Tools

Link building tools offer a lot of benefits.

Without them, it would be impossible to build quality links consistently. Here are 4 reasons to get a solid link building tool stack for your next campaign.

To Help You Build Powerful Backlinks Quickly

Good link building is all about quality.

You only want to build high-quality links from high authority websites.

Without the help of a quality link building tool, it would take forever to find high-quality sites that you can build powerful links from.

Link building tools speed up the process of finding great link opportunities and allow you to filter the results so you are only ever placing high-quality links.

To Generate More Quality Traffic & Leads

Link building isn’t only about improving rankings.

You can leverage link building to get links from websites that already have traffic.

For example, if you can place a link on a popular, well-known website, you will likely get tons of referral traffic.

referral traffic

People do click on in-content links.

You can use link building tools to find websites that already have good traffic.

Then you can target those websites not only for the external links but also to generate more referral traffic.

To Improve Your Rankings Faster

Low quality and spammy links won’t help your SEO.

And in the worst case, they can even lead to you getting a Google penalty.

Google Penalty Illustration

Link building tools help you improve your rankings faster by:

  1. Avoiding bad backlinks
  2. Building good backlinks

There are lots of link building strategies you can leverage with any of the popular link building tools.

This allows you to acquire the right links to increase your rankings in the SERPs.

To Save Tons Of Time With Automated Processes

When you get it down to fine art, link building can be an automated process with predictable results.

Here’s what I mean:

I asked my link building team to track how long it took to acquire a link using different link building methods. These were the results:

link building win rates

The reason they are able to build links so quickly is that we have designed streamlined processes built around the tools we use.

We are constantly using the automated features with our link building to cut down the time it takes to build a link.

Link building tools combined with well-thought-out processes are the secret to building high-quality links at scale!

A Warning About Link Building Tools

There are tons of link building tools out there…

But not all link building tools are worth it. Here are a few things to keep in mind when using link-building tools.

Avoid Black-Hat Link Building Tools

Black-hat link building tools use risky or outdated strategies to get more links.

Avoid these at all costs.

While they might seem attractive because they’re easy to use, they can land you in a world of trouble down the road.

You might even see short term gains. But in the long-run, you can attract harsh Google penalties. And take it from me, Google penalty recovery is hard work.

Google penalty example

It just isn’t worth the risk.

Avoid Link Building Tools That Don’t Respect Google “Good Practices”

The truth is…

All link building is against Google’s policies.

Building links is against Google guidelines

But some tools take it a step further and leverage unethical methods to build links. These tools at best are unethical and at worst – borderline illegal.

Don’t go searching for sketchy tools. Stick to well-known tools with teams behind them that have a very good understanding of Google’s guidelines and policies.

This helps you stay out of hot water.

GROWTH ALERT: Sign up for my FREE link building training.

Wrapping It Up

So there you have it.

The best free and paid link building tools to help you get the job done.

My favourite link building tools on the list are the backlink blacklist, Ahrefs and Semrush.

Are there any of your favourite tools that I missed?

I love to play with new software and tools, so let me know in the comments and I’ll check them out.

Don’t forget to download my free Link Building Strategy Template.

This is the fastest way to put together a complete link building strategy and it’s the exact tool we use with our clients.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is link building tools?

A link-building tool is a tool that has been designed to help you find high quality backlink opportunities in your niche.

What is a link building strategy?

A link building strategy is simply a process that you can use to consistently build links. Your link building strategy should consist of a way to find potential link opportunities and a method for reaching out to website owners to build the link.

What is the best link building strategy?

The best link building strategy is replicating your competitor’s backlinks. You need to do a competitor backlink analysis and get a complete list of all your competitors’ links. Then you can start doing outreach. This works well because if a website links to your competitor, they’re also likely to link to you.

How do you do link building in 2022?

The best way to do link building in 2022 is to use a proven link building strategy that consistently gets results. The top link building strategies for 2022 are:

  1. Strategic guest blogging
  2. Replicate your competitor’s backlinks
  3. Broken link building
  4. Niche edits
  5. Appearing on podcasts
  6. Crowdfunded link building
  7. Event link building
  8. Publish high-quality content consistently