best link building tools

7+ Best Link Building Tools & Software In 2023 (Including free options) 

Link building is an essential strategy in your SEO playbook. It can improve your business in terms of online visibility, organic traffic, and search ranking. However, you need the best tools to build a high-quality link profile. In this article, I will give you the 7 best link-building tools to streamline your efforts and give you a competitive advantage. 

By the way, stick to the end. As a bonus, I will give you some free link-building tools that bring leverage to your link-building game!  

What are the 7 best link-building tools in 2023?

Here are my top picks for the best link-building tools in 2023. 

1. Semrush

Semrush is my go-to tool when it comes to link building. With an extensive database of keywords and websites, Semrush can help you quickly and efficiently identify link-building opportunities. 

Moreover, the tool has a clean and easy-to-use interface, perfect for beginners. Semrush offers various beneficial features, including keyword research, an on-page SEO checker, a position tracker, and a content optimization tool.  

Key benefits

Backlink Gap: You can analyze your competitor’s backlink profiles and identify link-building opportunities. You will see which websites link to your competition instead of your website. You can target these websites with your link-building campaigns and have a better chance of securing backlinks.

Link Building Tool: This tool is designed to help you build backlinks at scale. You can identify link-building opportunities based on your target keywords. Then, you can set up an outreach campaign and monitor your results.


Semrush's monthly options
Semrush's annual plans

Semrush offers three pricing options with a 14-day free trial.

  • Pro: $129.95 per month for the monthly subscription or $108.33 per month for the annual subscription. 

  • Guru: $249.95 per month for the monthly subscription or $208.33 per month for the yearly subscription. 

  • Business: $499.95 per month for the monthly subscription or $416.66 per month for the annual subscription. 

What I like about Semrush

  • Semrush is intuitive and easy to use. 

  • The platform offers a large database of different websites. 

  • The software provides all link-building features, including finding link opportunities, sending outreach, and tracking results. 

2. Serpstat

Serpstat is another powerhouse in the link-building game. It garners appreciation not only for its comprehensive analytics and SEO tools but also for its robust features that empower link-building campaigns. 

This tool is a goldmine for digital marketers and SEO professionals, providing detailed information on backlinks, keyword research, and competitor analysis. With Serpstat, you can tap into opportunities, discover potential backlink sources, and streamline link-building efforts. 

Its human-friendly interface and comprehensive features make it easy to understand and immensely effective, solidifying its position as one of the best link-building software.

Key benefits

Comprehensive data: The Serpstat dashboard provides basic information like the number of backlinks, referring domains, and follow & no follow backlink percentage. 

Visualization tool: Serpstat also allows you to visualize the number of new and old referring domains over time. 

Top pages report: This report gives you the high-performing pages that generate backlinks for your competitors. This could give you more inspiration to create content that attracts backlinks. 


Serpstat's monthly plans
Serpstat's annual plans

You have four different pricing options to choose from:

  • Individual: $59/month for the monthly subscription and $50/month for the annual subscription. 

  • Team: $119/month for the monthly subscription and $100/month for the annual subscription. 

  • Agency: $470/month for the monthly subscription and $410/month for the annual subscription. 

  • Custom plan: A custom plan. Contact the sales team to learn more.  

You have one week to try the software for free! What are you waiting for? Give Serpstat a try today!

What I like about Serpstat

  • Serpstat has a comprehensive toolkit for link prospecting. 

  • Comprehensive reports for data analysis. 

3. BuzzSumo

BuzzSumo is an excellent link prospecting tool. It helps you to uncover potential link opportunities, identify the most popular content in your niche, and quickly build a list of influencers who can share your content.

The platform has the best filtering options among all the options in the market. BuzzSumo makes creating content that other people want to link to easily. 

Key benefits 

Domain tracking: You can use BuzzSumo to track domains that link to your competitors. BuzzSumo helps you export this information into Excel files that you can use in your outreach campaigns. 

Alerts: You can set up alerts so that BuzzSumo will notify you when your website gets a backlink. 

Identify authors: You can find content that gets a lot of shares and their authors. Then, reach out to them to share yours. This process helps you attract a lot of backlinks. 

Identify backlinks: You can go one step further by finding all the websites that share this content. Then, create a better piece of content and reach out and ask them to share. 


BuzzSumo's monthly plans
BuzzSumo's annual plans

The software has four pricing packages:

  • Content Creation: $199/month for the monthly subscription and $159/month for the annual subscription. 

  • PR & Comms: $299/month for the monthly subscription and $239/month for the yearly subscription. 

  • Suite: $499/month for the monthly subscription and $399/month for the annual subscription. 

  • Enterprise: $999/month for the monthly subscription. This plan does not have a yearly subscription. 

BuzzSumo allows you to try the software free for 30 days or 50 searches, whichever comes first. You have plenty of time and free credits to use. Give it a try and see if it fits you. 

What I like about BuzzSumo

  • BuzzSumo offers a powerful discovery toolkit that you can use to create ideas for your content marketing strategies. 

  • The platform has a deep competitive analysis. You can use this feature to study your competitors to identify gaps in their content or new link-building opportunities. 

  • The app covers various content types, from blog posts to video and social content. 

4. Citation Labs

Citation Labs is one of the leaders in link building. It provides tools to help you identify backlinks, create content, and track your progress.

The company created two tools for link-building purposes, each sold separately. They are Link Prospector and Broken Link Builder. Each tool has unique features that can help you achieve link-building success. Now, let’s find out how Citation Labs can help you. 

Key benefits

As I mentioned earlier, Citation Labs has two separate tools: 

Link Prospector: As the name suggests, this tool helps find link-building opportunities. These include sponsorship opportunities, link addition opportunities, people who can review your products or services, and more. 

Broken Link Builder: This tool helps you analyze your backlink profile and fix broken links. If someone is linking to an old page, you can suggest an alternative page to link to or create a redirect to a new page. This way, you save all the link juice from other websites and take a lot of effort to acquire backlinks. 


Link Prospector's pricing plans

Link Prospector offers four different pricing options: 

  • Pay-as-you-go: a FREE plan. You can pay $5 for each extra credit that you use.  

  • Consultant: $47/month. This plan offers 20 monthly credits and $2.35 for each extra credit you use. 

  • Agency: $127/month. This plan offers 75 monthly credits, and you can pay $1.69 for an extra credit. 

  • Enterprise: $497/month. This plan offers 500 monthly credits, and you can pay $0.99 for each extra credit.

Broken Link Building's pricing plans

The Broken Link Building tool has three pricing packages

  • Starter: $67/month. This plan offers 15 credits per month. 

  • Pro: $277/month. You can use up to 65 credits per month. 

  • Agency: $1000/month. You can allow up to 305 credits per month.

Citation Labs also offers a 30-day refund policy. You can try the tools for one month. And, FOR ANY REASON, if you don’t like it, you are guaranteed to get your money back. 

What I like about Citation Labs

  • Citation Labs provides two separate tools for different purposes. Each tool only does one task, but it does very well. 

  • The Broken Link Building tool saves you a lot of time identifying broken links, especially if you have a lot of content on your site.  

5. Ninja Outreach

Ninja Outreach is an excellent outreach software that any SEO needs. You can find influencers in any niche and contact them for link-building opportunities. The tool offers a great way to gain quality backlinks from authoritative sources.

The software also provides additional influencer marketing features that specialized link-building tools need to provide. 

With over 100 million influencers from different platforms (TikTok, Youtube, Instagram, etc…..), Ninja Outreach allows you to level up your link-building strategy. 

Key benefits

Find Instagram and Twitter influencers: The platform allows you to find Instagram and Twitter influencers within your niche. You can reach out to them for potential content collaboration and backlink opportunities. 

Send outreach at scale: Ninja Outreach allows you to send bulk email campaigns easily. You can save your prospects’ information, choose an email template, and hit SEND. Ninja Outreach will take care of the rest, including follow-ups. 

Link Building Software: Ninja Outreach gives you access to many blogs and websites within your niche. You can send them emails and maintain the relationships using Ninja Outreach’s CRM software. You can also track various metrics (reply rates, bounce rate, etc…) to see the success of your campaign. 


Ninja Outreach's monthly plans
Ninja Outreach's annual plans

Ninja Outreach has three pricing options

  • Flex: $389/month for the monthly subscription or $155/month for the annual subscription.

  • Silver: $589/month for the monthly subscription or $255/month for the annual subscription. 

  • Silver Plus: $849/month for the monthly subscription or $459/month for the annual subscription.

You can also try the software free for 7 days and update to a paid plan if it fits you. I recommend going for the annual plan as you can save 60% compared to the monthly option. 

What I like about Ninja Outreach

  • The tool has an intuitive and easy-to-navigate user interface. 

  • Ninja Outreach offers a comprehensive database of prospects. 

  • You can easily manage and track your campaign’s success with their email marketing tools. 

  • You can maintain good relationships with your prospects with the CRM software. 

6. Mailfloss

Mailfloss is an email verification tool that you need for any outreach campaign. To succeed with your outreach, you need to send your crafted messages to the correct recipients. 

The last thing you want is to spend 10-15 minutes on an email that ends up in the spam folder or is never sent to the correct recipients.  

Thus, you need to verify your emails. Verifying prospects’ information ensures your target audience receives your emails, and you can improve your reply rate. 

Key benefits

  • Integrate with various email providers: Mailfloss works with 35 popular email service providers, and they are adding more. It takes care of everything for you. You only need a few clicks and 60 seconds to set it up.  

  • Cleaning preferences: Mailfloss can automatically clean the email lists for you, preventing it from going stale. You can also choose how hard you want to floss your list, depending on how clean you want your emails to be. 

  • Options with invalid emails: You can choose what you want to do with invalid emails. You can fix typos, unsubscribe, or delete it. 

  • Reporting and analytics: You can review results manually and see detailed analytics and stats for your link-building campaign. 


Mailfloss's pricing plans

Mailfloss offers three pricing options. You can also try the software for free in 7 days and update to a paid plan if you like. 

  • Lite: $25/month. This plan offers 10000 credits/month. 

  • Business: $57/month. You can verify up to 25000 emails per month. 

  • Pro: $200/month. If you are more aggressive with your outreach, this plan can help you get things done. It allows up to 125000 credits per month. 

What I like about Mailfloss

  • Mailfloss’s automatic cleaning features save you time and effort managing an email list. 

  • Mailfloss offers excellent customer support that will solve any problem you have. 

  • The platform is easy to use and learn.

7. Postaga

Postaga is an AI link-building outreach platform that will lift your SEO game. It helps you run personalized outreach campaigns.

The software also uses the power of machine learning to analyze your site and suggests some campaigns that could benefit your website. 

With many automation features, Postaga is the best automated link-building tool for any busy SEO. 

Key benefits

AI Assistant: Postaga helps you find contact information quickly and efficiently. You don’t have to waste your time hopping on multiple tabs to find a single email from a prospect. 

Opportunity Finder: This feature lets you find prospects for your target websites. It also adds relevant contact information for your reference. You can also set up email sequences and follow-ups to improve reply rates. 

Campaign Generator: Postaga analyzes your site and proposes outreach campaigns that suit you. This tool gives you more options when building backlinks for your site. 


Postaga's monthly options
Postaga's annual options

The platform has two different pricing plans

  • Pro: $99/month for the monthly option and $84/month for the annual option. 

  • Agency: $299/month for the monthly option and $250/month for the annual option. 

All plans start with a 14-day free trial, so you can use this robust AI tool risk-free!

What I like about Postaga

  • The platform suggests many great outreach ideas to add to your link-building machine. 

  • The software has a lot of supporting resources, which is helpful for beginners to learn. 

  • Postaga offers excellent customer support. They will help you solve any problem you have. FAST!

What are link-building tools?

Link-building tools collect link-building opportunities for your website and provide you with an interface to run outreach campaigns to acquire links.

There are two main types of link-building software:  

  • Link research: You can use these tools to find potential link-building opportunities. They provide a list of websites you can target for links based on your keyword or competitor research. Semrush and Serpstat are two great examples. 

  • Prospecting and outreach:  Prospecting and outreach platforms help you organize your prospects, manage email campaigns, track link-building efforts, and analyze the success of your campaign. Mailfloss, Buzzmo, and Ninja Outreach will assist you well in this task.

Why do you need link-building tools?

If you haven’t used link-building software before, I highly recommend using them. They are beneficial for several reasons. 

Build powerful backlinks faster

Building links can be time-consuming. However, link-building tools can speed up the process. 

These platforms help you find high-quality link prospects faster and more accurately than manual searching. They also automate the link-building outreach, allowing you to send personalized emails to multiple prospects at once, thus saving you significant time and effort.

Improve your rankings quickly

Link builders not only simplify the link-building process but also have a positive impact on your website’s ranking. 

Ahrefs has a study indicating a direct correlation between the total number of backlinks and a site’s organic traffic. The more high-quality backlinks you have, the better your site’s visibility in search engine results. 

Furthermore, having diverse backlinks from numerous domains indicates to search engines that your content is valuable and authoritative. Hence, using link builders can help to improve your rankings rapidly. 

A survey by Backlinko found that the top-ranking pages on Google have an average of 3.8 times more backlinks than those in positions 2-10. Clearly, to compete at the highest level of SEO, you need support to get your backlinks faster. 

How to choose the best link-building tool for your website

When choosing the best link-building tool for your website, several important factors must be considered. These criteria can help you find the tool that best fits your needs and aids you in climbing the search engine rankings. 


Look at the features each tool offers. A solid link-building tool should have at least one of these features:

  • Competitor analysis: The ability to analyze your competitors’ backlink profiles can help you identify potential link-building strategies.

  • Link prospecting: A promising tool should assist in finding relevant and high-quality websites for potential link placements based on your niche, authority, and content relevance.

  • Outreach and relationship management: A great link-building solution should assist you in outreach campaigns, tracking responses, and nurturing relationships with website owners are crucial for successful link-building. After all, link-building is all about building relationships with real people. 


Consider your budget. I have provided you with various options, from free to premium. Remember, the most expensive option isn’t always the best. Assess each tool’s capabilities and cost to ensure you get value for your money. 

User interface

Don’t underestimate the importance of a user-friendly interface. A complex or unintuitive interface tool can slow down your link-building process. Look for solutions with clean, straightforward designs that make it easy for you to navigate and complete your tasks efficiently. 

Customer support

Lastly, evaluate the level of customer support provided. Good customer service is essential, especially if you’re new to link building. Responsive support can address your concerns quickly and help you get the most out of the software. 

Link building tools to avoid at all cost

Black-hat link building tools

If you have heard of black-hat link-building tools on the Internet, you should avoid them at all costs. 

Firstly, these tools often use unethical methods to generate links, such as spammy comments, link farming, and hidden links. Such methods are frowned upon by search engines and can lead to penalties, including the de-indexing of your site. 

Additionally, the links obtained through black-hat tools are typically low-quality and do not offer any real value to your users. Rather than helping, they can harm your website’s reputation and decrease its ranking in search engine results. 

Ultimately, sustainable SEO and link building are about creating valuable, high-quality content that naturally attracts links, not about taking shortcuts with shady tools.

Link building tools that don’t respect Google “Good practices”

While taking shortcuts with tools that don’t adhere to Google’s “Good Practices” might be tempting, doing so can harm your website’s performance and reputation. Google’s algorithms are increasingly sophisticated, and it loves to reward sites that provide genuine, valuable content to users. 

For example, tools that engage in keyword stuffing – the practice of overloading content with specific keywords to manipulate rankings – directly violate Google’s guidelines. This can lead to penalties, including a drop in rankings or even removal from search results altogether. 

Similarly, tools that facilitate purchased links or link exchanges may seem like a quick and easy way to boost your site’s visibility. Still, these practices are also against Google’s “Good Practices”. Google’s algorithms can detect these inorganic links and may penalize your site accordingly. 

There is no shortcut to building a high-quality website with good SEO. It requires time, effort, and a commitment to creating valuable content that earns links organically. The risks associated with using tools that don’t respect Google’s “Good Practices” far outweigh potential short-term gains.

Bonus: Free Link Building Tools

1. Google

Most people never consider using Google when building backlinks, but it’s one of the best ways to find link prospects. It has the largest index of web pages on Earth and the most popular search algorithm. If you know how to use it effectively, you can easily find thousands of relevant link prospects at NO COST.

My favorite way to use Google and find link prospects is by searching for relevant sites with the “write for us” pages. Let’s say you are in the email marketing niche. You can type “email marketing write for us” in the Google search. Here’s the list of potential prospects that you can contact. Since they already have a “write for us” page, they will likely accept your guest posts. 


HARO home page

HARO (Helps a Reporter Out) is an online service that connects journalists with industry experts. Journalists often need expert advice for their articles. Here’s how HARO works: 

  • First, a journalist will submit a request for a question to HARO. 

  • Next, HARO will send out three emails daily to all its subscribers. 

  • Finally, subscribers reply to these emails in exchange for media coverage (usually backlinks from a media site). 

For example, I recently got a HARO request from Forbes asking how to establish an executive presence at work. If you are a great business leader, you can answer this quote and get a link from Forbes (DR: 94). 

HARO query example


In conclusion, effective link-building remains a vital strategy for enhancing your online presence. I have provided you with several different tools, both free and paid, that you can use for your link-building strategy. Each offers unique ways to establish and cultivate valuable backlinks. Leveraging these tools can be the key to elevating your business in the digital landscape. 

Remember, the link-building journey is about quality, relevance, and patience. With these tools in your arsenal, you are well-prepared to take your business to the next level.


Does link building still work?

Yes, link-building is still a major ranking factor in 2023. The quantity and quality of links pointing to a website can determine its ranking on search engine results pages. The more high-quality links your website has, the higher your rankings are likely to be. 

Which backlinks should be avoided?

There are several types of backlinks that I recommend you should avoid. These backlinks are often spammy and not trusted. Google can detect that and penalize you. 

  • Links from spammy sites: These links come from websites related to adults, casinos, or other inappropriate niches for most of your readers. 

  • Bulk paid links from low-quality websites: I often saw these services on freelance websites like Fiverr and Upwork. They sell 5 to 10 backlinks for about $25-$50. Don’t waste your money on them. Most of these links are low-quality and not even relevant to your content. 

  • Link from the press release: Google has officially indicated that it doesn’t like press release links. So avoid these links if they don’t add value to your content.  

  • Blog comments link: These links are not good quality. Google loves contextual links. So, getting a link from an article’s content is your best bet. 

  • Links from irrelevant websites: Relevancy is a significant factor when acquiring backlinks. For example, if your article is about fishing but the article linked to you is about running shoes. How can Google trust that you are an expert in the fish niche? Also, this linking scheme looks very sketchy. 

(Featured Image Source)

Mac Li

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