14 Best Link Building Tools for 2023 [Free + Paid]

Aug 10, 2023 | SEO News Feeds | 0 comments

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Gaining backlinks (links to your domain from other domains) doesn’t have to take a ton of time and energy.

There are plenty of tools to help you gain more links to your website. 

Here’s our list of the best link building tools in 2023.

Semrush’s Backlink Gap tool helps you analyze your competitors’ backlink profiles so you can identify link building opportunities.

It will show you which websites are linking to your competition but not to your website. You can then target these websites with your link building campaigns and have a better chance of securing backlinks.

Here’s how to use the Backlink Gap tool:

Open the tool, add your domain and the domains of up to four competitors, and click “Find prospects.”

The tool will then display an overview of each competitor’s backlink profile. 

Scroll down to the table and select your domain in the “Prospects for:” menu to see all the domains that link to your competitors’ websites but not to your site.

“Prospects for: nike.com” in Backlink Gap tool

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You can then sort and filter the domains by Authority Score, Semrush’s metric for measuring a domain’s overall quality and SEO performance.

This will help you identify domains that can provide valuable backlinks. To improve your visibility in search engine results. 

To start a link building outreach campaign, select the domains you want to gain links from using the checkboxes and click the “+ Start outreach”button.”

What We Like

The Backlink Gap tool allows you to easily identify which websites link to multiple competitors—these will most likely be your top link building opportunities.


You can start using Backlink Gap for free. The number of results you’ll be able to see will be limited, though.

To unlock the full version of Backlink Gap, you can opt for one of Semrush’s paid plans:

  • Pro ($129.95 per month)
  • Guru ($249.95 per month)
  • Business ($499.95 per month)

The Semrush Link Building Tool is designed to help you build backlinks at scale.

You can use it to identify link building opportunities based on your target keywords and competing websites.

From there, you can set up an email outreach campaign and monitor your results using the built-in reports.

Here’s how to use the Link Building Tool:

Open the tool, enter your domain, and click “Start Link Building.”

search for "nike.com" in Link Building Tool

Then, follow the configuration instructions on entering your top competitors and the keywords you want to improve your rankings for. 

The tool will then present you with a list of prospects for your link building campaign. Which you can see in the “Prospects” tab.

“Prospects” tab for "nike.com" in Link Building Tool

From here, you can review prospects by URL Type (a classification that helps you understand the domain), Authority Score, and Rating (a quality score that’s based on more than 50 factors). And add the ones you want to prioritize to your “In Progress” list.

You can then contact specific prospects by clicking the “Contact” button directly in your “In Progress” list.

contact your prospects from the “In Progress” list in Link Building Tool

What We Like

Usually, you’d need multiple tools to find link building opportunities, set up outreach campaigns, and track your results. The Link Building Tool gives you access to all these features in one central location. 


You can use the Link Building Tool for free for one project. If you want to use it for multiple projects, you’ll need to opt for one of Semrush’s paid plans.

  • Pro ($129.95 per month)
  • Guru ($249.95 per month)
  • Business ($499.95 per month)

Semrush’s paid plans page showing prices for Pro, Guru and Business plan

3. Hunter

Hunter is an all-in-one email outreach platform you can use to set up and manage your link building outreach campaigns.

Its core products include:

  • Email Finder: Helps you find the email address of any prospect. All you need to do is enter their name and website domain.
  • Email Verifier: Prevents email bounces by checking whether the email addresses on your list are valid.
  • Domain Search: Reveals the email addresses associated with any website. This can be helpful if you’re not exactly sure who you should be contacting at a target website.
  • Campaigns: Handles cold email outreach with automated follow-ups, personalization, custom sending schedules, and more.

Hunter’s email finder

Hunter also offers a Chrome extension you can use to find email addresses behind the websites you’re browsing. 

And there’s a Google Sheets add-on that can be quite handy if you typically build prospect lists in Google Sheets.

What We Like

The fact that Hunter offers so many different ways to uncover prospects’ email addresses is a huge plus. We’ve also found the Email Finder to be very accurate.


Hunter offers a limited free plan. And the following paid plans:

  • Starter ($49 per month)
  • Growth ($149 per month)
  • Business ($499 per month)

Hunter’s plans page showing prices from Starter, Growth and Business plans

4. BuzzStream

BuzzStream’s outreach platform is designed for PR teams that are looking to automate and scale their outreach efforts.

You can use it to identify link building prospects. And find their contact details. 

BuzzStream can even build a list of prospects for you. All you need to do is input a list of search queries. BuzzStream will then find relevant websites and identify the right people to contact at each website.

BuzzStream’s discovered contacts section

Once you have a list of prospects you’d like to contact about backlink opportunities, you can use the email outreach feature (shown below) to send personalized emails to each prospect. Plus, an option to set up automated follow-up emails to increase the chances of getting a response.

BuzzStream’s email outreach feature

BuzzStream also offers detailed reporting to help you review team performance, understand which emails and subject lines are performing the best, and see campaign progress at a glance.

What We Like

BuzzStream lets you turn a list of URLs into a prospect list. And the search filters allow you to pinpoint decent prospects.


BuzzStream offers a free 14-day trial you can use to see if the software is the right fit for your needs. Plans include:

  • Starter ($24 per month)
  • Growth ($124 per month)
  • Professional ($299 per month)
  • Custom (starts at $999 per month)

BuzzStream’s pricing page showing prices for Starter, Growth, Professional and Custom plans

5. BuzzSumo

BuzzSumo is a brand monitoring and content discovery tool that includes a number of handy features for link builders.

First, you can use it to uncover and track domains that link to your competitors. 

BuzzSumo’s dashboard with results for "nike.com"

BuzzSumo lets you export these domains to a spreadsheet to use in your own link building outreach campaigns.

There’s also the option to set up alerts to notify you as soon as a website links to one of your competitors.

BuzzSumo’s "Create an alert" page

Finally, you can use BuzzSumo to track your own backlinks and get alerted when you get a new backlink.

What We Like

BuzzSumo allows you to uncover backlink opportunities by creating alerts for your competitors’ writers and content marketers. To get notified every time they’re listed as an author on a guest post.

This will help you find guest posting (and link building) opportunities for your own website more easily.


BuzzSumo has a number of paid plans:

  • Basic ($119 per month)
  • Content Creation ($249 per month)
  • PR & Comms ($249 per month)
  • Suite ($499 per month)
  • Enterprise ($999 per month)

All plans come with a free 30-day trial.

BuzzSumo’s pricing page showing prices for Basic, Content Creation, PR & Comms, Suite and Enterprise plans

6. Help a Reporter Out

Help a Reporter Out (HARO) isn’t a traditional link building software. It’s a platform that connects journalists with sources who can share their expertise on a particular topic. 

But it’s often used by sources who want to secure backlinks in various publications.

Both big and small media outlets use the platform. Some of the most popular ones are The New York Times, Fox News, and Mashable.

Sources receive three HARO emails every day, Monday to Friday. And each email contains a list of requests from journalists looking for sources who can share insights for an article.

Like this:

an example of HARO’s query looking for quotes from an AI/Robotic surgery expert for a story

All you need to do to respond to a source request is send a reply (called a pitch) to the provided email address. 

If a journalist decides to use your response, they’ll include it in their article as a quote (or quotes). And they’ll typically include a link to your website.

What We Like

The large number of daily source requests means you’re likely to find backlink opportunities every day—all you need to do is consistently send replies.


HARO offers their Basic plan for free. Paid plans include:

  • Standard ($19 per month)
  • Advanced ($49 per month)
  • Premium ($149 per month)

HARO’s pricing page showing prices for Standard, Advanced and Premium plans

7. Help a B2B Writer

Help a B2B Writer is similar to HARO. Except it’s aimed at content marketers instead of journalists. 

But it works the same. You register as a source to get daily emails with source requests.

an example of Help a B2B Writer’s query looking for sales experts to explain how startups can set up their sales teams

Help a B2B Writer lets you choose specific categories you’re an expert on (e.g., sales, marketing, ecommerce, etc.). To ensure you only get relevant requests in your inbox.

And it’s focused on B2B writers and sources. So, it’s not a great option if you’re looking to build backlinks for a B2C website.

Note: Help a B2B Writer is clear that they can’t promise you’ll receive a link when your quote is used. It depends on the publication’s rules. 

What We Like

From our experience, replies get turned into quotes and published in just a few days. Which is a lot faster compared to HARO.


Free link building tools are rare, but Help a B2B Writer is one of them. There are no paid plans.

Raven Tools offers a suite of tools for website auditing, link building, and reporting.

When it comes to link building, two tools stand out: the Backlink Explorer and the Link Manager.

You can use the Backlink Explorer to analyze any domain’s link profile. To examine your competitors’ backlink profiles and uncover potential link building opportunities.

Raven Tools’s Backlink Explorerentering "nike.com" domain in Backlink Explorer

The Link Manager lets you find, store, and organize link building opportunities. 

You can use it to track new and lost links, categorize your backlinks for easier reporting, and export all the data. So you can use it with other tools.

"Link Options" section in Link Manager

What We Like

The ability to add notes to each link opportunity in Link Manager comes in handy when you’re dealing with a large list.


Raven Tools offers the following plans:

  • Small Biz ($49 per month)
  • Start ($109 per month)
  • Grow ($199 per month)
  • Thrive ($299 per month)
  • Lead ($479 per month)

All plans come with a free seven-day trial.

Raven Tools’s pricing page showing prices for Small Biz, Start, Grow, Thrive and Lead plans

9. Postaga

Postaga is an AI-powered link building outreach platform. You can use it to run personalized outreach campaigns and track results.

Postaga can also analyze your website and recommend campaigns you should run to build more backlinks. 

And it has built-in templates for common types of link building campaigns. Such as messages focused on contributing a guest post, gaining mentions, being a podcast guest, and more.

Postaga’s "Choose a campaign type" page

The Opportunity Finder feature discovers which people you should contact at your target websites. And automatically provides their contact information.

Then, you can set up custom email sequences. And include automated follow-ups to improve reply rates.

set up custom email sequences in Postaga

What We Like

Postaga’s AI assistant can quickly find information relevant to each prospect. To speed up the process of personalizing emails.


Postaga offers a free 14-day trial. Plans include:

  • Pro ($99 per month)
  • Agency ($299 per month)

Postaga’s pricing page showing prices and features for Pro and Agency plans

10. Pitchbox

Pitchbox is an all-in-one backlink tool for both in-house SEOs and agencies.

It offers 20 ways to find prospects. Built-in templates for popular link building strategies such as broken link building and resource page outreach help you launch campaigns quickly.

You can also import your own prospects by importing a .CSV file and create campaigns based on existing relationships.

Pitchbox stores details about your link building prospects. Including emails, tasks, notes, and more.

You can use it to set up email outreach sequences for link building and automate follow-ups. The software also offers an inbox for you to review and respond to all the replies you get.

a screenshot of an inbox in Pitchbox

Finally, you can take advantage of Pitchbox’s detailed reports. To get insights into campaign performance and identify which link building tactics perform better than others.

a page showing Pitchbox’s detailed reports

What We Like

The built-in campaign templates for the most popular link building tactics help speed up outreach.


Pitchbox offers two plans:

  • Professional ($550 per month)
  • Enterprise ($1,500 per month)

Pitchbox’s pricing page showing features and prices for Professional and Enterprise plans

11. Respona

Respona is a link building outreach platform aimed at agencies and B2B software as a service (SaaS) companies. 

It has a built-in search engine you can use to find backlink opportunities based on keywords.

built-in search engine feature in Respona

The software also includes a number of templates you can use to quickly set up an outreach campaign.

a page with different templates in Respona

And Respona can help you find the right person to contact at those companies. Plus, their contact information. 

From there, you can set up email sequences and automatic follow-ups for your outreach campaigns.

There’s also a universal inbox feature that allows your entire team to collaborate on moving backlink opportunities forward.

What We Like

AI-powered personalization helps you personalize outreach emails quickly. This allows you to get better results in less time.


Respona offers a free 14-day trial you can use to test out their backlinks software. Paid plans include:

  • Starter ($99 per month)
  • Unlimited ($399 per month)

Respona’s pricing page showing prices for Starter and Unlimited plans

12. Ontolo

Ontolo helps marketers find link building opportunities. It does this by checking over 80 different sources to uncover potential backlinks.

You can even upload your own link building opportunity lists to Ontolo. And then search through them using advanced search functions to find the best opportunities.

Ontolo Dashboard

There’s also an option to export your results to a multi-tabbed, color-coded Excel spreadsheet or CSV file.

What We Like

The large number of sources and the advanced search capabilities help you find the right prospects quickly. Ontolo can also suggest search queries you should use to find even more prospects.


Ontolo offers the following plans:

  • Pro ($97 per month)
  • Agency ($297 per month)
  • Custom (individualized pricing)

Ontolo’s pricing page showing prices for Pro, Agency and Custom plans

13. Linkody

Linkody is designed to help you track your link building campaigns. It can let you know when you lose or gain backlinks.

The software is useful for analyzing your backlink profile and comparing it to your competitors’ backlink profiles. It can show you all the backlinks pointing to your website, along with the anchor text, dofollow/nofollow status, and more.

a screenshot of a dashboard in Linkody

And you can use Linkody to uncover potentially harmful backlinks. There’s also the option to generate a disavow file that you can submit to Google (but think carefully about whether it makes sense to disavow or remove bad links).

What We Like

Linkody generates detailed reports that include many important metrics. Like the total number of backlinks, social shares, and more.


Linkody offers a free 30-day trial you can use to test out the software. Plans include:

  • Webmaster ($14.90 per month)
  • Advanced ($24.90 per month)
  • Pro ($49.90 per month)
  • Agency ($99.90 per month)
  • Agency XL ($153.90 per month)

Linkody’s pricing page showing prices for Webmaster, Advanced, Pro, Agency and Agency XL plans

14. BacklinkGap

BacklinkGap is a backlink monitoring tool that helps you track new and lost backlinks.

You can also use it to analyze your backlink profile. To learn which websites link to you, what kind of anchor text (the words used for a hyperlink) they’re using, and more.

Here’s what the dashboard in the Backlink Checker tool looks like:

an example of a dashboard in the Backlink Checker

With BacklinkGap, you can quickly identify broken links. It can also help you uncover potentially harmful backlinks. 

And you have the option to add tags and notes to backlink opportunities to associate them with specific campaigns.

add tags and notes to backlink opportunities in BacklinkGap

The software also lets you generate and share reports through a link.

What We Like

BacklinkGap’s free plan is solid if you’re just looking to track your own backlinks. It allows you to discover which websites link to you, identify the types of backlinks in your link profile, and monitor the status of your backlinks.


BacklinkGap offers a limited free plan. Paid plans include:

  • Starter ($19 per month)
  • Pro ($39 per month)
  • Business ($199 per month)

BacklinkGap’s pricing page showing prices for Starter, Pro and Business plans

Consistent link building is crucial for keeping your website at the top of search engine results.

The right tools can help streamline your link building efforts and help you maintain a strong backlink profile.

Keep in mind that you don’t need a lot of different tools to see success with your link building campaigns. Semrush’s Link Building Tool has everything you need to start building links at scale and get your website to the top of search engine results.

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