Are You Using Blacklisted Backlinks? Check Now
If you want to unlock actionable SEO data for your website, look no further.
Ahrefs Webmaster Tools is 100% free and gives you access to all of their awesome data, for every single website you own.
Why is this important?
Because data like that allows you to make intelligent decisions to grow your search traffic.
I am also going to show you 7 actionable ways to use Ahrefs Webmaster Tools later.
But first, let’s take a look at what it actually does.
What Will I Learn?
What Is Ahrefs Webmaster Tools?
Ahrefs Webmaster Tools gives you access to important SEO data for every single one of your websites free of charge.
You’ll be able to find what keywords your website ranks for, download your backlinks and audit your sites without spending anything.
Historically this data has only been available to paid Ahrefs subscribers ($99/mo+) so this is a huge step forward as Ahrefs make that data available to all website owners.
The only catch:
Is that you can only view data for websites you own, but even so – you get free access to TONS of actionable data as shown in my full Ahrefs review and Ahrefsbot blog post.
What Do You Get Exactly?
This is where it gets interesting because the free Ahrefs Webmaster Tools plan gives you access to two of their most powerful tools-
Let’s take a closer look:
Site Explorer Tool
The Ahrefs Site Explorer tool gives you everything you need to explore your sites search performance in one place.
You can get a complete overview of-
- The keywords you rank for along with their search volumes and difficulties
- Your backlink profile, the number of links pointing to you and from where
- How the number of organic keywords you rank for has grown or shrunk
I’m going to be showing you 7 actionable ways to use Ahrefs Webmaster Tools later.
For now, all you need to know is that the Site Explorer tool is usually the start point of any task you want to complete in Ahrefs Webmaster Tools.
It’s where you come to understand how your site is performing and where it needs improving.
Site Audit Tool
The free site audit tool will scan your site for 100+ common SEO problems weekly or monthly and generates a handy report.
It also gives you an overall “health score” so you can get a snapshot look at your sites overall performance without doing a full SEO audit.
As you can see, Ahrefs breaks down each issue it finds:
And it keeps track on your progress of fixing those issues every time the audit runs.
If you need help fixing any of the issues it finds, just click on it to learn more-
And that’s what makes the Site Audit tool great!
It doesn’t just show you what the issue is, it also tells you how to fix it.
7x Ways To Use Ahrefs Webmaster Tools
One of the biggest problems with Ahrefs Webmaster Tools is it’s almost too good!
You get access to a lot of data and new tools at the same time, so it can be hard to figure out how to actually use it to grow.
So I’m going to show you 7 ways you can use Ahrefs Webmaster Tools to grow your search traffic-
#1 – Monitor Your Sites Health
The site audit tool will help monitor your site for SEO problems, but what does the “health score” really mean?
In essence, this is the percentage of pages crawled that don’t have any errors.
So if you see a declining health score as you see above, you must pay attention.
Ahrefs sorts issues into three categories depending on how severe the issue is:
All you have to do is work your way down the list and fix the errors it finds.
#2 – View All Of The Keywords You Rank For
In just a couple of clicks, you can see all of the keywords you are currently ranking for along with tons of other useful data like:
- Their estimated monthly search volume
- The keywords ranking difficulty
- The monthly traffic it brings
- And the position you currently rank
This means we can easily find areas to improve on.
I was ranking in position number 4 for the term “rank math vs yoast“–
That is despite not mentioning the term or making that comparison in my content.
So I decided to add this section:
And once Google had reindexed everything…
…I jumped into the featured snippet position shortly after-
As you can see:
Ahrefs Webmaster Tools makes it easy to identify opportunities like that for you to act on.
#3 – Download All Of Your Backlinks
Ahrefs is the best backlink checker period.
It allows you to see who is linking to you, which page they are linking to, the anchor text used and the strength of the link.
You can use this report to-
- Ask sites to update anchor texts to something more preferable
- Use it as a basis to open the door of conversation
- Find backlinks to disavow if you have a penalty (learn how to disavow backlinks)
- Finds link from forums that might be open to sponsorship
- Monitor new links or links that are lost
You can use any of the filters at the top to dissect your link profile how you want.
For example if you’re dealing with a negative SEO attack-
It’s easy to filter all the links that were created using whacky anchors with the anchor filter.
#4 – Content Gap Analysis
Imagine being able to find all the keywords your competitors are ranking for…
…but you’re not.
Well, this is precisely what the content gap analysis report does!
It finds all the keywords competitors are ranking for, that you should be ranking for too-
Above you can see a list of keywords that Ahrefs ranks for, that I don’t. Which means I could create website content that will rank easily and close “the content gap”.
You can use the tool to compare 3 competitors-
The content gap tool is great for finding those hidden gems you might have overlooked.
And if your site has a similar Domain Rating to your competitors, you can generally assume they are easy to rank as well.
But if you are not sure who your competitors are…
#5 – View Competing Domains & Pages
Ahrefs Webmaster Tools includes 2 reports that allow you to see precisely which domains and URLs you’re competing against.
Running these reports might surprise you because your primary search competitors are not usually who you expect.
But knowing who they are is essential, especially when using the content gap tool to sniff out new opportunities.
#6 – Page Level Performance
Ahrefs also makes it easy to review how individual pages on your website are performing.
You can dig down into the number of links it has and how that has grown over time-
And then you can drill down even further than that into things like the various anchor texts that are being used-
Along with how many keywords it’s ranking for and more specifically, which keywords it’s ranking for-
Sometimes we start to rank for keywords without knowing.
But Ahrefs Webmaster Tools let us identify them easily to act accordingly.
#7 – Find Quick Win SEO Opportunities
My quick win SEO process is one of my favourite processes to increase search traffic.
Essentially we just find all the keywords that are ranking between positions 2-19, then make specific changes to increase search traffic.
Ahrefs makes it easy to find these opportunities using the keyword filters-
And all these keywords just need a little push to get them to the finishing line.
Once you have that data, you just need to download my free quick win SEO tool which generates the specific strategy you need to increase search traffic.
The tool also comes alongside a series of videos that talks you through the process step by step including featured snippet theft, internal linking optimization and more.
Ahrefs Webmaster Tools vs Google Search Console
You might be wondering what does Ahrefs Webmaster Tools do that Google Search Console doesn’t?
And that is a great question!
So here is a closer look at Ahrefs Webmaster Tools vs Google Search Console-
|Ahrefs Webmaster Tools||Google Search Console|
|Monitoring SEO issues||100+||Limited|
|How to fix issues||Detailed||Limited|
|How many links does it show?||All known links||1,000|
|Broken link data (internal & external)||Yes||No|
|SEO metrics (domain & page level)||Yes||No|
|Shows link types (nofollow, ugc etc)||Yes||No|
|Organic Search Traffic & Keywords|
|How many keywords are shown||All known keywords||1,000|
|SEO metrics (pages & keywords)||Yes||No|
|SERP snapshot with competitor data||Yes||No|
Now I’m not saying you should replace Google Search Console because there is huge value in 1st party data.
But Ahrefs Webmaster Tools is undoubtedly the perfect complement that allows you to make intelligent decisions to grow your search traffic.
Plus they are both absolutely free so what’s not to love!
Wrapping It Up
I’m very happy to see that Ahrefs Webmaster Tools gives everyone free access to actionable SEO data for websites they own.
Let’s face it:
Although I think the full version of Ahrefs is worth every dollar and then some, it is quite expensive if you’re just starting out.
But now Ahrefs has liberated your SEO data…
…you can start to grow your search traffic without spending a penny.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is Aherfs Webmaster Tool?
Aherfs Webmaster Tool is an SEO tool designed to help you improve your site’s SEO performance while helping you get more traffic from search.
Is Aherfs Tool free?
Yes, the Aherfs Webmaster Tool is a free tool created to help you improve your website’s SEO performance. Like every other free tool out there it has its limits so if you want to get access to more features, you’ll have to go for the paid version.
Matt, thanks for this post. I’m going to study it with a fine tooth comb. Lot’s of good info here. I didn’t know that there was a free version of ahrefs so I’m running it right now and it’s running in the background. I can’t wait to see the results. Thanks
Glad you learned something here! Cheers, Scott!
Some people are complaining that allow ahref access your google console is of a disadvantage what do you think?
Hey! GSC connection is optional, it’ss not a requirement to be able to use the tool so for me it’s not a problem at all!
Everyone is free to choose whether they want to connect it or not.
Great article and glad to know of this great tool for beginners like me.
No problem, Isaac – Wish you well!
Good news but why free? If something is free it isn’t really free is usually the saying right. Do they use or sell the data they have access to? Did someone look into this?
Hey Elias – No, they don’t sell your data.
However, like any other free tool, it has its limits.
And if you want to overcome those limits, you’ll need the paid version ;)
thank you so much for information!
Thanks for this
Thanks for this article. Very usefull! I love Ahrefs and this tool is free and cool.
I couldn’t agree more! ;)
Thanks for notifying us Matthew. I’m on too many lists for my own good, but no one including Ahrefs has mentioned it.
A great way to set themselves apart from the competition who aren’t sitting still and getting better as more time passes.
Any idea if Ahrefs are still seriously pursuing launching their own search engine? I would imagine this is a great way for them to get more data just like Google did with Analytics and Search Console.
That’s a good question! At the moment I don’t have any update to give you about that…
Certainly a wealth of tools and features for free.
Hi Matthew, thanks for sharing this awesome resource. Ahrefs pricing plans have always be out of reach for a small business like mine so it was a huge surprise to see the FREE Web Masters Tools. I’m already using the results to great effect.
Enjoy the tools, Stuart!
nice article behalf on Seo strategy …Thanks
please suggest me about my website health score..!! and what should we do for better result.
Read this: https://www.matthewwoodward.co.uk/seo/on-page/seo-audit/
Many thanks for that information. I love AHREFS and use it extensively at work for reviewing potential link building partners. I will now use the free version fo my personal projects too. The big thing missing on free is their excellent rank tracking :-(
Yes, but we can’t have it all! ;)
what a piece of writting, I came here for the 1st time and found the amazing super dooper content here to change my mind.
Welcome to my blog Mohib – Let me know if you have any questions!
Awesome post. Fully loaded with lots of information. Thanks a lot for sharing.
No worries Naina – Enjoy the free tools!
Sushant here. I am your big fan. You are adding a lot of value in my blogging journey.
Great post as expected. Thank you so much.
Thank you, Sushant! Keep it up!
This came just in time. I was trying to work out whether to ditch Ahrefs all together because of the cost. With screaming frog and netpeak spider I figured that the cost for Ahrefs was becoming unnecessary. Glad to see that they have thought about having a freemium version which may just keep a few of us on the program
Well, hope you’ve changed your mind now… Enjoy the free tools!
Brilliant I Hope
I really needed this. Without this or Moz it takes too long to use 6 Softwares to do what 1 can do. Thanks for the info and I want to say your blog makes most look like crap.
No problem & thank you for the compliment ;)
Thanks for sharing this free tool.
My pleasure! Always happy to share good news!
Thanks for this amazing update. Whenever I come to your website, I get surprise. Thanks.
Glad to hear that!
Thank you Matthew, I never thought Ahrefs have this free component until i received your email.
Ahrefs is a very powerful tool and making it free is a win for me.
Ahrefs, Ubersuggest and Google search console will hopefully make me win my seo game.
I am just starting out though. Hopefully with the help of the 3tools, my ranking will improve.
Thanks a lot for giving us this free gift (telling us about the free ahrefs).
Let me go fill the form that accompanied my email so that i will get insight into how to get good rankings
It will definitely help you with your SEO, Nelson, so enjoy!
Thats completely Awesome
Thanks Matthew Wood Ward
Thanks for sharing!
This Ahrefs webmaster tool looks very promising. I guess soon Ahrefs is planning to launch its search engine. I just started and testing their webmaster tool. Thanks for this detailed article.
Great! What do you think of the tools?
voluntarily consecration your website data to ahrefs!
This is amazing and very much beneficial update by Ahref. It is going to big change and best feature for every website owner.
Thanks for sharing such a helpful and detailed information on how to use Ahref webmaster tool.
Always happy to share good news!
Enjoy the tools, Archana.
Wow, I can’t believe they’re giving that much of their product away for free. As a current paying customer I’m tempted to cancel and just use the free version. But they’ve sweetened the Lite Plan just enough to keep me on board.
I couldn’t believe it neither but it’s true!
Very clever strategy, isn’t it ?
Thank you, sir Mathew. That was an awesome review of this great Ahref tool.
And even pleasant is that I’m the first to comment here having seen your email 1 minute ago.
Even though it’s my first time, thanks for your lessons as they’ve helped me deeply to mastering and growing in the art of blogging and SEO.
As for this Ahref tool, I think it’s a great fit for beginners, and for those that had doubts to use Ahref, this detailed tool will pull them to signing up for the premium version.
Once again. Thank for the review.
I don’t usually leave a comment because other first me a lot. But today, I’m happy I’m the first if only I am. Lol
Have a blessed day sir. I will come back for more and also share with my blogging community and Twitter.
Thank you for your kind comment – I really appreciated it!
And congrats on being the first! ;)
I couldn’t agree more! :)
Great Matthew for help. Really good and usefull all the information you give us in your post
Thanks – Hope it helps
This is great news. I can’t wait to deep dive into AHRef’s detailed reports and find out how to grow my search traffic.
Thanks for sharing!
My pleasure! Take care!