12 Link-Building Tools for Marketers in 2024

12 Link-Building Tools for Marketers in 2024
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Building quality links to your content is no small feat. From prospecting to outreach to follow-ups, there are just too many things to keep track of.
Fortunately, link-building tools can optimize parts of this process or automate them entirely.
In this post, we’ll explore the 12 best link-building tools marketers should look into in 2024.
This section features the Swiss army knives of link-building, i.e., tools capable of prospecting and outreach. By incorporating any of them into your workflow, you can focus on more important things, like content creation.
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Smartlinks is an innovative link-building tool that lets you build quality links via:
a) Link Insertions: This feature finds relevant link opportunities for your existing content and converts them without any prospecting and outreach.
To leverage it, you must first register your site on Smartlinks(it’s free!), then add your content, and send link requests to relevant prospects(identified by the tool).
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If a prospect agrees to your request, the system will deduct Karma Points equal to its DR from your account. Conversely, if you accept a link request from another site, the system will add Karma Points equal to its DR to your account.
b) Guest Posting: This feature connects you directly to publishers so you can apply for guest posting opportunities(without filling in any forms or blogger outreach). It also lets you request link insertions in outgoing posts from other websites.
Again, to access this feature, you must sign up for Smartlinks. Then, navigate to the Guest Posts option in the left-side menu to find relevant opportunities.
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Note that Smartlinks also gives you access to an exclusive link-building community that hosts well-known brands like Mailmodo, Narrato, Writesonic, and Bettermode and shares regular marketing and link-building insights.
If this sounds like something you’d be interested in, sign up for Smartlinks.
Key Features
  • Zero-outreach link insertions
  • Zero-outreach guest posting
  • A point-based system for tracking transactions
  • Access to Smartlinks Slack community
  • Obtains backlinks from relevant sites without outreach
  • Connects you directly to publishers for guest posting(and inserting links in outgoing posts from other sites)
  • Fantastic support for users on the Slack community
  • The point-based system ensures transparency in all transactions
  • You need a positive Karma point balance to send backlink requests
  • You can only build links to sites already in the ecosystem

Ideal For

Content marketers looking to accelerate their outreach efforts

2. Pitchbox

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Pitchbox is a comprehensive tool that helps with every stage of link-building. Its core functionalities include:
  • Link Prospecting: Pitchbox helps you find publishers in your niche and analyze their domains using Ahrefs, Majestic, Moz, SEMRush, and LinkResearchTools.
  • Outreach and Follow-ups: With Pitchbox, you can personalize outreach emails, schedule follow-ups, and manage everything from one inbox.
  • In-depth Reports and Analytics: You can use this tool to monitor outreach campaigns, generate white-label reports, and analyze your team's performance.
Pitchbox also offers an email client with built-in SEO features and a CRM (customer relationship management tool) for link builders.
Key Features
  • Full-stack prospecting for link builders
  • Customizable outreach and follow-ups
  • ROI-driven reports and analytics
  • SEO email client (with Ahrefs, Moz, SEMRush, Majestic, and LinkResearchTools integrations)
  • CRM for link builders
  • Has a rich database and multiple campaigns to select from like Blogger Outreach, Roundups, Guest Posting, Broken Backlinks, etc.
  • The ‘Pipeline’ feature provides an overview of each backlink opportunity
  • You can assign tasks to your team members
  • The shared inbox lacks some simple features, such as marking emails as unread
  • The price is a major barrier for most link builders

Ideal For

Well-funded link-building teams that want to outreach at scale
Pitchbox has the following plans:
  • Professional ($495/month)
  • Enterprise ($1350/month)
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3. SEMrush

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Like Ahrefs, Semrush excels at backlink analysis, auditing, and prospecting. But it isn’t limited to these capabilities.
SEMrush goes a step further and integrates all these features into a neat outreach tool that lets you:
  • Compile a list of relevant link prospects
  • Contact site owners from your Gmail account
  • Customize in-built email templates for your link-building strategy
  • Track lost and broken links and contact link partners to fix them
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SEMrush also offers a bulk analysis tool that can analyze up to 200 competitors simultaneously.
Key Features
  • Backlink analytics
  • Backlink audit tool
  • Backlink gap analysis
  • Bulk analysis tool
  • Outreach tool
  • In-depth site audit reports with clear suggestions
  • An outreach tool for converting prospects into backlinks
  • Content tools for on-page optimization
  • Although it’s more affordable than Ahrefs, its pricing is still high
  • Categorization of “warnings,” “errors,” and “issues” in site audits can be a bit confusing
  • Overwhelming user experience due to a cluttered UI

Ideal For

SEOs and marketers seeking holistic link-building solutions
SEMrush offers three plans(with a 7-day trial):
  • Pro ($129.95/month)
  • Guru ($249.95/month)
  • Business ($499.95/month)
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P.S.: You can also sign up for a free account with limited features.
This section features tools for backlink prospecting, analysis, and tracking. They’re great for finding link opportunities, monitoring your link profile, and analyzing your competitor’s site. If you’ve figured out outreach, you may only need one of them to accelerate your results.

4. Ahrefs

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Ahrefs is one of the best link-building tools for backlink analysis and prospecting. It enables you to:
  • Reverse engineer backlinks on a competitor's site
  • Find resource pages (listicles) to be featured on
  • Reclaim and regain backlinks removed by other websites
That’s not all, though. You can also use Ahrefs to find broken links on a website(as shown in the image below) that you can replace with your own content. Or identify the most linked pages on a site to build a strategy around them.
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Key Features
  • Site audit
  • Site explorer
  • Content explorer
  • Keyword explorer
  • Rank tracker
  • Most SEOs already subscribe to Ahrefs, which makes the link-building features an added benefit.
  • Ahrefs’s backlink data is pretty accurate — their backlink index has over 3 trillion live backlinks.
  • They have one of the most exhaustive self-serve knowledge bases online
  • Ahrefs only helps with link analysis and prospecting
  • It has a steep learning curve, especially if you’re new to SEO
  • It can be pretty expensive for small websites

Ideal For

Marketers looking for a keyword-research tool with link-building capabilities
Ahrefs offers the following plans:
  • Lite ($99/month)
  • Standard ($199/month)
  • Advanced ($399/month)
  • Enterprise ($999/month)
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5. Linkody

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Linkody doesn't help with outreach-heavy parts of link building. Instead, it tracks your previous efforts and helps secure links you’ve already built.
Linkody is also quite handy for gauging the health of your link profile. It shows you how your backlinks are distributed across various metrics(learn more about critical metrics here) and how they compare to your competitor’s links.
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What’s more, Linkody has backlink analysis capabilities like Ahrefs. That means you can analyze your competitors’ backlinks and plan outreach accordingly. Finally, it also has a disavow tool to rid your website of toxic links.
Key Features
  • 24/7 link monitoring
  • Link Visualizer to locate links on a page
  • Disavow tool
  • Backlink analysis
  • PDF Whitelabel reports (to share with your clients)
  • Multi-user support
  • Has intuitive reporting capabilities
  • Comes with Google Analytics and Ahrefs integrations
  • Financially feasible for small websites (base subscription starts at $14.90/month)
  • It doesn’t have a steep learning curve
  • It’s more of a link analysis and monitoring platform – doesn’t help with outreach
  • The UI looks a bit dated

Ideal For

Marketers who want a lightweight tool for backlink analysis and link monitoring
Linkody offers a 30-day trial that doesn’t require a credit card. Its monthly plans are as follows:
  • Webmaster ($14.90/month)
  • Advanced ($24.90/month)
  • Pro ($49.90/month)
  • Agency ($99.90/month)
  • Agency XL ($153.90/month)
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6. Majestic

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Majestic helps you understand the link profile of any URL. It conveys this information through proprietary metrics, such as:
  • Trust flow (represents the quality of links that point to a website)
  • Citation flow (represents the number of links that point to a website)
  • Topical trust flow (reflects the topic relevancy of a web page)
Like Ahrefs, Majestic has keyword research tools to inform your content strategy. It also has link analysis capabilities that let you analyze backlink numbers for up to 400 URLs at a time.
You can also use Majestic to find backlink opportunities on competitor websites and look for reciprocal links between two sites.
All in all, Majestic is a solid SEO solution that arms you with reliable information. However, like some other tools on this list, it doesn’t make outreach any easier.
Key Features
  • Bulk backlink checker
  • Site explorer
  • Keyword generator
  • Flow metrics (trust, citation, topical trust)
  • Link Context (to discover and audit backlinks)
  • Majestic Campaigns (to track your favorite websites)
  • Can double up as a keyword research tool
  • Majestic’s crawler is among the best on the internet, making the data they provide quite reliable
  • Proprietary metrics like trust and citation flow help you understand a website’s backlink data on a deeper level
  • Sometimes, Majestic is slow to load.
  • The UI/UX looks pretty dated
  • The price is a bit steep for what’s on offer

Ideal For

Link builders and marketers looking to become more data-driven with Majestic's flow metrics
Majestic offers three plans:
  • Lite ($49.99/month)
  • Pro ($99.99/month)
  • Full API ($399.99/month)
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7. SE Ranking

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If you’re in the market for a link prospecting and tracking tool, look no further. SE Ranking has everything you're looking for, plus more - at a price you can afford and in a user-friendly interface that lets you:
  • See a complete list of links and referring domains(with key metrics)
  • View the most linked pages on a site to build a strategy around them
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The tool also has a monitoring feature that runs regular check-ups on your backlinks and notifies you of any changes via email.
Key Features
  • Keyword rank tracker
  • On-page SEO checker
  • Website Audit
  • Competitor analysis tool
  • Backlink checker
  • Local marketing tool
  • Backlink tracking tool
  • Easy to use
  • Affordable
  • Provides specific and actionable advice in site audits
  • Runs regular scans on your links to monitor changes
  • The backlink checker may be outdated sometimes
  • It doesn’t have outreach tools

Ideal For

Those seeking an affordable SEO tool with link-prospecting and tracking features
SE Ranking offers a 14-day trial that requires billing information. Its monthly plans are as follows:
  • Essential ($55/month)
  • Pro ($109/month)
  • Business ($239/month)
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Outreach Tools

The following tools help you identify relevant contacts and reach out to them for link-building opportunities. All of them (except HARO) have built-in templates for outreach. Some of them also have sequence builders for cold emailing and follow-ups. If you are looking for ways to optimize or automate outreach, take a look at them.

8. Respona

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Respona is an all-in-one outreach platform that connects you to the right people for a backlink opportunity. It helps you:
  • Find outreach opportunities for your site(using Ahrefs, SEMrush, and Moz integrations)
  • Create and customize email drip sequences
  • Identify the right contact for each opportunity
  • Personalize your pitches using AI
Additionally, it comes with outreach templates to help you kickstart a campaign in minutes.
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Key Features
  • Relationship management
  • Campaign analytics
  • AI-powered personalization for outreach emails
  • Integrations with Hunter.io, Ahrefs, RocketReach, and Semrush
  • Easy-to-use dashboard with all metrics in one place
  • The shared inbox enables teams to collaborate on opportunities
  • Respona’s in-built templates summarise articles and fetch podcast snippets to help personalize your pitches
  • There aren’t enough credits in the starter plan
  • Real-time email verification can be slow, especially when working on large campaigns
  • The "Get Contacts" feature fails to retrieve email addresses for some opportunities

Ideal For

Organisations with a dedicated link-building team and budget
Respona offers two plans:
  • Starter ($197/month)
  • Unlimited ($399/month)
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9. Hunter.io

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Hunter helps you find and verify people’s email addresses and contact them for a backlink opportunity. It has three features for identifying contact details, including:
  • Domain Search: Uses company name or website to track the best person for an opportunity.
  • Email Finder: Finds the email address of a backlink prospect. All you need to do is enter their full name and the domain they’re associated with.
  • Email Verifier: Validates email addresses to prevent email bounces.
Hunter also has a ‘Campaigns’ feature to personalize, review, and share cold emails at scale. It can also track email click and open rates and recipients who engage with your emails.
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Key Features
  • Domain Search (and Bulk Domain Search)
  • Email Finder (and Bulk Email Finder)
  • Email Verifier (and Bulk Email verifier)
  • Campaigns (for cold email outreach at scale)
  • Native CRM integrations
  • Automates the most tedious aspects of outreach
  • Can find and verify contact details in bulk
  • Can be used for free (with certain limitations, of course)
  • Doesn’t retrieve email addresses for every site
  • Returns incorrect or outdated email addresses sometimes
  • Isn’t intuitive enough for new users

Ideal For

Marketers who want an all-in-one outreach platform
You can sign up for Hunter for free with your work email address. Or, opt for any of these paid plans:
  • Starter ($49/month)
  • Growth ($149/month)
  • Business ($499/month)
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10. Buzzstream

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Buzzstream helps you identify and add prospects to your list, send personalized messages (using built-in templates), and track your campaign’s progress.
Its content promotion feature lets you build influencer lists(with social metrics and recent posts) and pitch your ideas to them.
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It also has a digital PR feature that lets you build a list of bloggers and journalists and track conversations with them.
Key Features
  • Prospect research
  • In-built templates for outreach
  • Relationship management
  • Campaign analytics
  • Easy to navigate UI
  • Provides detailed analytics on outreach efforts, including open and click-through rates
  • Integrations with popular CRMs
  • Merging contacts from different projects can be difficult
  • Like most outreach tools, prospecting may not always be accurate
  • It can lag during heavy use

Ideal For

Marketers who want an affordable alternative to Pitchbox
Buzzstream offers a 14-day trial that requires billing information. Its monthly plans are as follows:
  • Starter ($24/month)
  • Growth ($124/month)
  • Professional ($299/month)
  • Custom ($999/month)
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11. HARO

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HARO, or Help a Reporter Out, connects journalists with experts who can share valuable insights in exchange for a backlink.
To build links with HARO, you must sign up as a source and choose your area of expertise.
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HARO will then share relevant requests with you thrice every day. All you need to do is respond to queries you’re qualified to address.
However, to increase your chances, you must:
  • Respond to relevant requests on time
  • Craft a compelling response highlighting your expertise
  • Respond to at least 5-10 queries each day
While this may seem like a lot of work, it can also earn you a backlink from Forbes or The New York Times, which would otherwise cost you $1,000-$2,000.
Key Features
  • Response tracking (HARO tracks all your pitches)
  • Personalized alerts (for new queries)
  • Email-based customer support
  • Access to high-quality backlinks
  • Pitching to requests is pretty straightforward
  • HARO offers plenty of opportunities in the free plan
  • The UI looks a bit dated
  • HARO link-building doesn’t work for every niche
  • Even when it works, HARO link-building isn’t quick
P.S.:  Want to accelerate your outreach efforts and build quality links in record time?

Ideal For

Content marketers looking to build high-DA links (i.e. everyone )
HARO offers its basic plan for free. Its paid plans are as follows:
  • Standard ($19/month)
  • Advanced ($49/month)
  • Premium ($149/month)
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12. Postaga

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Postaga is an all-in-one outreach platform that helps you build personalized cold email campaigns using AI-powered tools. Its Content Hub and Campaign Generator are great for:
  • Finding backlink opportunities based on your campaign type
  • Analyzing content for key info to include in your emails
  • Finding your POC’s(point of contact) contact information
  • Combining key details about your POC and your content to create personalized emails
One of Postaga’s best features is the Email Automator, which creates a sequence and sends automatic follow-ups, in case a contact hasn’t replied to your email.
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Key Features
  • Support for 12 campaign types including Skyscraper Technique, guest posting, link reclamations, and resource page link-building.
  • Automatic email personalization
  • AI-based outreach assistant
  • Automatic sequence creation and follow-ups
  • Automates link-building outreach
  • Extremely easy to use
  • You can launch a campaign in minutes with its setup wizard
  • You can only add one account to the Pro tier
  • Slightly more expensive than tools like Hunter.io

Ideal For

Anyone looking to automate their outreach
Postaga offers a 14-day trial that doesn't require a credit card. Its monthly plans are as follows:
  • Pro ($99/month)
  • Agency ($299/month)
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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

A link-building tool identifies backlink opportunities for your site, determines the right people to contact, executes an outreach campaign, and tracks its results regularly. Depending on its capabilities, it may perform all these functions or just a few of them.
When selecting a link-building tool, consider these factors:
  • Features: An ideal link-building tool should cover all your needs, whether it’s prospecting, outreach, or follow-ups. That said, if you only want to optimize some of these processes, you’re better off with a specialized tool.
  • Pricing: Factor in your budget, needs, and business scale when choosing a link-building tool. Remember, you don’t HAVE to use a paid tool at first. You can choose a free tool(or take a trial), and then upgrade accordingly.
  • Ease of use: Link-building tools can be complex, so choose one that’s easy to navigate and use. If possible, take a trial to get a sense of the UI. Also, prioritize tools that come with comprehensive user guides and tutorials.
  • Customer support: Customer support can make or break your experience with a tool, so make sure you look into it carefully.  Also, ensure you have access to a help center to assist you with the initial setup and DIY troubleshooting.

Written by

 Divya Mathur
Divya Mathur

Senior Content marketer at Smartlinks.ai and Smarttask.io. Passionate about B2B SaaS and Artificial Intelligence. I’ve been in the content space for over 6 years and have first-hand experience in how On-Page and Off-Page SEO affect a site's traffic. These articles enable me to share my learnings and help you achieve better search results.