Analyzing Competitor Backlinks

Competitor backlinks refer to any links pointing back to websites or web pages owned by competitors, and an analysis of them can provide invaluable insight into their link-building strategies as well as identify areas for improvement within your link-building strategy. Select the best high authority backlinks.

Backlinks from relevant sites are crucial to increasing organic search rankings. With Ahrefs, you can discover which domains are linking back to your competitors and conduct an outreach campaign explicitly designed for them.


One of the critical aspects of competitor backlink analysis is identifying keywords. Doing this will allow you to discover which are most frequently searched among your competitor audiences and can give ideas for new keyword research. For instance, if many of your competitor’s top-ranked pages cover one topic, it might be beneficial for your website also to include material on that topic in order to reach that same audience and drive additional traffic.

Competitor backlink analysis allows you to identify keywords not yet targeted by your competitors and focus your efforts there in order to compete more effectively with them.

To conduct a competitor backlink analysis with Ahrefs Site Explorer, enter any domain or URL and select the Backlinks report. This will show all of their backlinks, including a number of referring domains and indexed pages. Alternatively, search for specific pages within Ahrefs to analyze their backlinks; this will give a list of links with anchor text used frequently and other data pertinent to it, allowing you to identify which words may be being used as anchor text within link texts and provide insight as to whether competitors may be using any gray methods or using other means when building link networks.

Page-Level Competitors

As domain-level competitors battle for digital dominance, page-level competitors focus more specifically on one topic or keyword. Knowing your competitors at this level can help you prioritize your efforts more effectively.

Page-level competitors can be identified using Ahrefs or Moz’s link explorer to search your homepage for keywords relating to competitors or those with nofollow and do-follow links that link back only to them – these domains could serve as targets for outreach campaigns.

SEMrush makes it easy to quickly identify page-level backlinks of competitors by running a “Backlink Gap” report. This tool identifies any gaps between you and top competitors and highlights opportunities for improvement – use this report as a starting point to devise strategies to catch up quickly.

Ahrefs offers another method for finding page-level competitors by using its Link Intersect tool. This identifies domains that link to multiple of your competitors but not you, giving you an idea of any missed out links that might have come your way. Alternatively, search your competitors’ websites for pages frequently linked to and use that data to understand which content resonates most strongly with their audience and identify critical factors within your content strategy that can replicate its success.

Domain-Level Competitors

Examining your competitors’ backlinks is essential for identifying opportunities to enhance your rankings and requires an effective strategy and set of tactics tailored specifically for this analysis. While many free tools exist, paid ones provide more comprehensive data and insights.

Domain-level competitors are websites that compete directly with you on a larger scale by targeting similar keywords across their entire website, while page-level competitors differ more in that they may only target one keyword and rank well for it. Recognizing these two types of competitors can provide insight into your competitor’s SEO strategy.

Examining a domain-level competitor’s backlink profile can reveal opportunities to strengthen your backlink strategy. For example, if your competitor’s backlink profile includes directory links from low-quality sites, reaching out and asking them to remove them may help. Likewise, uncovering topics covered by competitors but not by you provides insight into creating relevant and new content that attracts links.

An additional tactic for improving backlink profiles is tracking the number of broken links on competitor websites. A tool like Ahrefs Site Explorer makes this task simple by providing you with a list of nofollow or broken image links on competitors’ sites; taking down these broken links may increase traffic to your backlink profile and improve rankings as a whole.

Link Building

Backlinks from respected domains serve as a form of validation, signaling that content on a website is valuable and thus warranting higher search engine ranking. Analyzing competitor backlinks can reveal how these approval stamps were obtained by competitors, creating opportunities for link building.

Referring domains provide one indicator of the quality and quantity of a competitor’s backlink profile. A healthy backlink profile includes both dofollow and nofollow links as well as various link types like directory links, guest posts, brand mentions, etc. By studying what kinds of backlinks their competitor possesses, they can devise strategies to secure similar backlinks themselves.

Analyzing your competitors’ link profiles can reveal new avenues for reaching out to industry influencers and gaining backlinks from specific websites. By studying which types of content garner backlinks from particular sites, companies can ensure they’re reaching the appropriate audiences with requests for links.

Analysis of your competitor’s link data can also give you fresh ideas for content creation efforts. If specific topics, formats, or approaches prove effective for them, then they likely resonate with audiences similar to those you serve; taking note of these successful tactics could help create successful content marketing strategies on your website and drive visitors there more quickly.

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