SEMrush vs. Ahrefs is a popular question in every blogger’s mind. SEMrush, being an all-rounder tool, provides everything you want in SEO or content management. It provides you complete insights into how your strategy is working out, along with the latest keywords ranking your website.
Ahrefs is a popular tool in the SEO industry, and it provides a lot of essentials for tracking your competitors’ backlinks. Semrush is another powerful link-building tool that has been dominating this space for some years now.
Both have their features and specifications, but which one should you be using? In this article, we’ll compare both the tools to get an edge over your competitor’s Ahrefs or Semrush review.
This article is for people confused about which SEO tool they should buy/subscribe to among Semrush or Ahrefs. Let’s start our comparison of these two powerful tools.
In this article, I’ll review, one by one, every feature of both SEO tools Ahrefs and Semrush.
Semrush is an all-in-one SEO platform providing all the tools needed to get your website to rank on top of Google. You can get advanced analytics, real-time tracking, and much more.
Many different tools are included in the package. Some of which include keyword research, backlink analysis, content marketing, rank tracker, etc. Below are all Semrush and Ahrefs tools that can be used in SEO.
- SEMrush has the most extensive database of search engines all over the world. It contains data on 90 million domains and 18 million users with 15 years of historical data.
- SEMrush Keyword Research Tool shows the difficulty score and calculates other essential metrics such as monthly traffic, AdWords competition, CPC, and search volume.
- Competitor Comparison Tool allows you to compare your website or URL against up to 5 competitors simultaneously.
- SEMrush will let you quickly discover all the keywords related to your brand by giving them an appropriate “branded” tag.
- SEMrush will show you a total percentage of keywords found on the first page of Google results for all search engines, including the ones from countries where SEMrush has no databases yet.
- You can easily access your saved projects anytime from anywhere using the desktop, tablet, or phone because SEMrush has an app available on Android and iOS platforms.
- SEMrush allows tracking of organic traffic, keyword data, and landing page data.
- SEMrush will check it for plagiarism, SEO compliance issues, and keyword cannibalization to help you stay on the right track while working on your online business strategy.
- Semrush detects low-quality links, duplicate or missing tags, as well as other optimization flaws so you can resolve them before Google starts penalizing your website for being toxic to its users.
- To know your competitors’ SEO efforts, SEMrush provides a simple but very effective competitor analysis.
- Semrush keyword magic tool helps you to find the best keywords for your topic.
- The tool is unable to give exact ranking positions for your website or keyword research.
- While Semrush may have the best backlink data, it’s also the most expensive tool because you need a subscription that costs up to $499 per month just for premium features.
Well-known for being one of the best SEO tools out there today, Ahrefs has been actively providing its users with various metrics regarding backlinks since 2011. They have over 30 billion web pages indexed, along with information from 80 million domains worldwide.
Currently, Semrush and Ahrefs have more than 1 million users worldwide who get the full version of the tool. Their database is updated daily with fresh new data.
Ahrefs has many features intended to make it easy for users to monitor their site’s rankings on various search engines, get insights into how others are using backlinks to increase their rankings, and much more.
- Using Ahrefs, you can track your backlink profile, analyze keywords, run content & competitor analysis, and much more all within one tool.
- Site Explorer feature (URL rating) allows you to see what your competitors are up to by giving you an overview of their site’s authority and top pages and social shares/followers, etc.
- Ahrefs URL rating feature is high-speed at crawling websites.
- Ahrefs’ backlink checker is capable of quickly crawling and indexing billions of web pages. This saves you a tonne of time instead of analyzing thousands of links manually using Excel or Google Docs, which usually takes days or even weeks.
- With the Site Explorer + SERP overlay, you get more than just a backlink checker with Ahrefs.
- The Site Explorer + PPC data overlay feature allows searchers to find out what pages on their competitor’s websites generate the most organic traffic and how much they’re spending on Google Adwords (PPC).
- Not much traffic to your websites
- Analytics is not as accurate.
- More expensive than most competitors
- The high price tag for the agency license
- On-Page SEO Analysis is not very accurate.
- Their “Best by links” feature doesn’t return relevant information to most small business owners.
- Ahrefs has an expensive monthly plan (very few features), and then you must pay extra for each additional report.
Now, I will compare both SEO tools’ features step by step and one by one. First, I will articulate briefly about Semrush and then Ahrefs. After that, you can understand what better suits you.
To better understand your SEO efforts, you need to know which sites are linking back to your website. If you want to do SEO right, then the number of backlinks is essential. Semrush can give you quality insights into who’s linking to your site and what link-building strategies work best for your website.
It gives you all the data needed to make informed decisions about your next move in link building. With this tool, there is no reason why your competitors should be ranking above you with their websites getting more links than yours.
Using the Semrush Backlinks Analytics tool, you can find what backlinks your website is losing and what it’s raining. Semrush backlink features tell you profound insights about your backlinks, like it shows you new and lost backlinks, new and lost referring domains, and top anchors.
The Semrush backlink tool doesn’t stop here. It also gives your data from what country your website is getting backlinks. Semrush shows graphs according to the authority of referring domains. You can see other unique Semrush backlink features on the Semrush website.
Ahrefs backlinks tool presents robust data related to your website. You can find the number of backlinks your website gains, referring pages, referring domains, linked domains, and anchor and target URLs.
With Ahrefs backlink tool, find who’s linking to your competition and analyze how they’re getting links to create a strategy for your website.
The Ahrefs Backlink checker gives you details about who is linking to your sites, the anchor texts used in these links, where these links are located within websites (headers or footers), and more.
- As you see, both Semrush and Ahrefs gives you all data related to backlinks, including;
- Do follow and no follow data
- Number of backlinks
- Top anchors
- Referring domains authority details
- Number of new and lost backlinks data
- Linked domains data
However, according to my recommendations, Semrush gives more and better data compared to Ahrefs. Semrush shows country-based data while Ahrefs doesn’t. Similarly, Semrush data presentation is far better than Ahrefs.
Semrush SERP tracker tool shows you the top organic keywords for any website. It will also show you their CPC, number of impressions, and average ranking position, as well as a graph that allows you to check how they have been performing over time quickly.
All these features are very useful in helping make quick decisions about your SEO campaign. Keywords: Domain Research, Google Ranking, and SERP Tracker.
Semrush domain overview tool provides the data about your competitors that can be a significant part of beating them. Knowing your competitor gives you a chance to understand how they are getting traffic.
With Semrush’s competitive positioning map you can analyze your ranking position.
The Ahrefs Site Explorer tool gives you valuable data about referring domains and backlinks pointing to your website. You can use it after cloning websites because if any discrepancies are detected while you are cloning websites, it may be helpful.
Ahrefs, a site explorer tool, provides you the complete insight into backlinks, organic keywords, and traffic which helps you get an idea about your website data.
Both Ahrefs and Semrush domain overview tools provide the best data according to their algorithm. However, according to my personal experience with both tools, Semrush provides detailed data
Semrush gives complete data in the shape of graphs and images, while Ahrefs only provides numbers. This is where I feel the Semrush domain overview tool works better than Ahrefs.
Competitor research is a very crucial part of any digital marketing. You can also do competitor analysis with Semrush, especially if you have a hard time coming up with ideas on what to do next when doing SEO.
This tool helps provide valuable insights into what strategies your competitors are using to rank higher than you are. Semrush competitor research tool gives a complete list of competitors according to their similarities with your website.
Not only this, Semrush has a separate dedicated Competitor research tool that provides maximum data about your competitors.
SEMrush provides its users with a list of competitors performing well in the industry, so if you want to improve your ranking in SERPs, then use SEMrush to gain insights about your top competitors.
With Semrush competitive research tool you can take the content ideas from your competitor’s site.
With Ahrefs Competition Analysis tool, run a report on your competition to get an idea of who links to them, find out how often they publish content, their most linked pages, and where these links are located within websites (headers or footers), etc.
Ahrefs does not provide as much data or competitor analytics; however, it shows competing domains and pages.
In the above screenshots, you can see how both Semrush and Ahrefs tools are providing competitive data. However, Semrush provides more in-depth and brief data related to you, competitors. Ahrefs have only two tools for competitive research that are:
- Competing Domains
- Competing Pages
Semrush has multiple tools for competitor research. For just competitor research, Semrush provides:
- Domain Overview
- Traffic analytics
- Organic research
- Keyword gap
- Content gap
Compared with Ahrefs, Semrush provides you with more tools for competitor research to get a high edge on your competition.
Semrush on-page SEO checker is an effective tool for checking on-page SEO. It is a tool that shows you your website’s SEO status after a few clicks.
The Semrush on-page SEO checker helps to optimize your website in many ways. It can help you analyze referral traffic, spot broken links and redirects, check the loading speed of the landing pages, discover development problems and errors, etc.
Semrush on-page SEO checker provides detailed information about all critical on-page SEO elements such as titles and meta descriptions for each page of your site that it analyzes by default, including header tags (H1, H2, etc.), various font sizes, metadata details (description length, keywords density) and images alt attributes.
Semrush on-page SEO benchmarking tool provides you with data according to SERPs. With this tool, you can analyze your current pages’ content and optimize the content, keeping in mind your competitor.
Semrush on-page SEO tools help you to optimize your pages with all SEO tips. With this tool, you can see what pages are not SEO optimized.
Start your free trial for on-page SEO analysis tools to know how optimized a page is for specific keywords. The plugin will tell you if there are chances to rank higher based on current blog post content & metadata optimization/structure. You can also compare multiple URLs or web page URLs.
Ahrefs on-page SEO checker tool can give you an analysis of your website’s link profile as well as a list of all the linking root domains. It will provide information such as referring domains, backlinks’ quality, value, and other metrics that help make informed decisions about your website’s health.
The key features of the Ahrefs on-page checker include:
- Checking title tags (by writing any keyword)
- Checking meta description ( by writing any keyword)
- Checking Meta keywords ( either by entering your keyword or leaving it empty to use the default word for checking )
- Information about the H1 tag and its value
- Information about alt text and its value
- Information about the number of links, links quality, referring domains as well as backlink sources
- Information about link velocity
- Information about page size
- Information about mobile usability
- Information about site-wide links
All you need to do is enter your website’s URL, write the keyword(s) related to your site, and hit ‘search.’ The results will be displayed upon completing the search process. If you want to check on-page SEO at scale, paid plans provide more optimization features with unlimited websites.
There are features where the user can enter specific page URLs or keyword phrases to get in-depth analysis results. One can also analyze historical data for up to 5 years with an on-page SEO checker version of Ahrefs.
If you wish your website to be ranked high on Google results pages, there is nothing better than Ahrefs and Semrush tools. These companies provide world-class support concerning tools related to on-page SEO, keyword research, content creation, and many other things, which will be seen in the upcoming paragraphs.
There’s no way to deny that these two companies are providing their different data based on popularity and domain level. There are many differences in both these services, but they have in common the high quality of data provided by them.
However, Semrush provides more detailed data in terms of each page that is not SEO-optimized. In the same line, Semrush also tells you what type of content you must have on your page to compete with other websites.
This is Semrush data which helps users to find where they are making mistakes. Not only this, but Semrush also provides you suggestions on how you can make it better.
Rank tracking is one of the most vital tools when SEO, especially if you are running an online business. Semrush can tell you where your website is ranking for specific keywords, but it will also show you the average position of your website. You can also see how other websites are ranking, allowing you to develop better SEO strategies.
With the position tracking tool, you can track the position of each keyword of your website, and Semrush will give you the complete data related to those keywords.
Not only for your website, but you can also find your competitor’s position with Semrush position tracking. It gives you a quick overview of how competitive it is to rank for specific keywords or phrases and how much organic traffic there is for each keyword so you can prioritize which ones to focus on.
Ahrefs doesn’t have any dedicated position tracking tool, but with the help of organic keywords, you can check what keywords are ranking in SERPs. With the help of Ahrefs organic keywords, you can find the number of web pages indexed for a given keyword located on various pages across the domain.
With The help of organic keyword tools, you can identify what content should be optimized for your website to rank higher and what search trend information was most influential concerning your website’s rankings in Google’s index over time.
Both tools have their specifications, but in terms of position tracking, Semrush has a dedicated Position Tracking tool that makes it easy to find your ranking keywords. Semrush also gives you deep research data to help you rank higher.
Every site has its own unique set of problems that need fixing. Semrush can help you find these problems and provide solutions on how to fix them to improve your rankings further and increase traffic flow to your site.
By knowing what exactly makes up a high SERP, you will be able to make much better decisions than someone undertaking an SEO campaign without using this tool.
This tool helps you check all the errors on your site, so if there is any broken link or an error in the code of your website, then this tool will help you fix them.
Semrush site audit tools are designed to help every problem on stage. With the site audit tool you can check:
- Crawlability of your website
- Your website performance
- How many websites are interlinked with your site
- Your website content quality and ideas
In short, the Semrush Site Audit tool provides you with the complete site audit without moving to any other site.
Site Audit is probably one of Ahrefs most important tools because it allows users to track backlinks pointing at their website, so you know who’s linking to your webpages and what kind of anchor texts are being used for each one.
The tool will also show users any problematic backlinks, such as those that might get you penalized by Google’s algorithm, and provide insights about how many pages on your site don’t have any external backlinks pointing to them.
With Ahrefs this feature, you can monitor the backlinks to your site and find out which ones are outdated or broken. You’ll also get information about redirected pages, duplicate content issues, and more.
Both Semrush and Ahrefs site audit tool has their features to show you the best site audit results. SEMrush is great as it covers many ranking factors and provides easy access to publicity opportunities such as news, press releases, and social media.
Ahrefs is the only tool that offers reliable information on backlinks, but it doesn’t provide visibility into ad campaigns or what competitors are doing in social media channels.
So I feel the Semrush site auditing tool gives you a wide range of data to analyze your site on one page. That shows that the Semrush site audit tool is better than Ahrefs.
Semrush Market Explorer Tool is a suite of sites and services for competitive intelligence. The Market explorer tool gives you access to NITs, backlinks, keywords rankings, search visibility, advertising trends, and more. Start by going to the SEMrush homepage and selecting “Market Explorer.” On the next page, enter a URL that you want information on, and select your competitors.
The information will show up in a few seconds. You can download or save this information as an Excel or CSV file if needed; there are also additional reports available for purchase on Semrush’s website, such as the Social Media Profiles report, which summarizes something about the social media profiles of each site’s followers like their gender ratio and geographical location, etc.
Site Explorer is a web-based backlink analysis tool from Ahrefs, including searchable databases of every link on the internet.
Site Explorer analyses up to 3 trillion records and displays them in a user-friendly interface that makes site clearance as easy as point and clicks. Site Explorer features real-time updates on index freshness, unsubscription performance, social influence monitoring, domain age tracking, and more.
Ahrefs Site Explorer Tool is Ahrefs’ powerful domain name research tool. It displays the top organic keywords for any website that you may be considering. It also helps to identify potential competitors and see who’s linking to your competition.
You can compare up to 200 domains on the fly, so it’s useful for more nuanced analysis than some other tools on the market. This information can help determine more accurate keyword targets, niche ideas, and content opportunities on sites with high search prominence.
Semrush Market Explorer looks at the entire link profile to provide an unmatched level of detail, including but not limited to backlinks display linkage metrics, domain vs. root listed search volume, and displays anchor text distribution.
In other words, this tool provides information that others do not offer, such as low-quality links or site profiles pointing out where duplicate content might exist on the web.
Ahrefs doesn’t offer as much information in its Site Explorer tool; however, its organic keywords tool is excellent for more accessible recommendations like identifying keywords.
SEMrush and Ahrefs are not exactly cheap, but they offer many features that make it worth it. If you purchase their yearly plans, you will be paying $119 (SEMrush) & $99 (Ahref). Both these tools give discounts according to how much time you use them for.
Ahrefs has four different pricing plans: 99/month, $179/month, $399/month, and $999/month. I recommend newbies to pick the $99/month plan because it offers everything you need to see who’s linking to your site and how they’re using particular anchor texts.
In case you run an SEO agency, you must go for another plan because they have more extensive data.
SEMrush price goes from $119 for one month up to $499 per month.
Many people stop at the most expensive end of SEMrush’s price ranges, but there is a significant difference in features between the most expensive package and the cheapest. The three packages are designed specifically with different budgets in mind, so it can work out better to go for a cheaper plan if you have more specific needs.
Both companies have excellent support reach to their customers. You can contact their customer support via phone or email. If you use the free plan, you will only be able to contact them via email, but if you upgrade to a paid plan, you can call them as well.
As far as the response time is concerned, both companies go the extra mile to reply to your queries as soon as possible; however, we would say that Ahrefs wins here with its 24-hour response time feature.
Both platforms have mobile apps, but there are some differences between them. For example, Ahrefs includes instant alert push notifications, whereas SEMrush does not. However, both offer desktop notifications, so this isn’t necessarily a big problem.
Both services include content marketing tools with most of the packages. They’re constantly evolving, but there are some features that you can expect to see on both platforms.
SEMrush has a content explorer tool, which is great for discovering what topics are most popular with your audience. It’s not the only tool of its kind, however – Ahrefs also has something similar. Both tools include options for analyzing content performance across channels. However, SEMrush is currently ahead of Ahrefs when crawling video sites like YouTube and Vimeo.
After considering almost all major topics of these tools, I regret saying that Ahrefs is not a complete alternative for SEMrush because they both have different specializations and, therefore, cannot be compared directly to each other.
For example, our research tells us that while Ahrefs is good at conducting backlink analysis and keyword research tools, SEMrush performs better when monitoring social media performance and managing project-based SEO activities.
In short, we can say that these two best backlink checker tools can’t be compared to each other; however, if you are still confused about which one to use, we would recommend using SEMrush since it has got lots of features that Ahrefs doesn’t provide.