3 Best Desktop Backlink Checking Tools

SMS Text

Last week I published an overview of web-based backlink checking tools that are great for anchor text analysis. In the post comments Avi offered me an idea to review available desktop solutions.

I’ve been sitting the whole day downloading, installing, testing and uninstalling applications and in the end narrowed my list to only 3 tools I found really useful (most of the tools I came across either didn’t work or focused on rather outdated and now mostly useless features like reciprocal links checking and monitoring). Apart from other helpful options all three I chose are great for the following:

  • they fetch backlink anchor text;
  • they check for “link type” (e.g. direct, nofollow, etc);
  • they allow for powerful sorting options necessary to arrive at valuable conclusions.

1. Seobook BackLink Analyzer is a great free (Windows-only) application that has a number of useful options:

  • backlinking TLD;
  • backlink anchor text;
  • linked page URL;
  • backlinking site IP address;
  • linking page outbound links;
  • backlinking domain Dmoz and Yahoo directory presence;
  • backlink nofollow flag.

It also has a handy export feature, and offers overall backlink summary, link summary per IP address and keyword-in-anchor-text summary. One more promising option I haven’t tested effectively include reciprocal link check.

Seobook backlink Analyzer

2. SEO SpyGlass – another impressive (paid) application (available for Windows, Linux, and Mac OS X) that offers an exhaustive backlinking report:

  • backlinking page Google PR;
  • backlinking page title;
  • reciprocal link presence;
  • link anchor text;
  • linked page URL;
  • backlink page outbound and total links;
  • backlink domain IP address;
  • backlinking site Alexa rank;
  • backlinking domain Dmoz and Yahoo directory mentions;

You can also save the project and enjoy a range of analysis options: anchor text, PageRank distribution, etc.

SEO SpyGlass

3. BackLinks Master (Windows-only app) looks neat but I had some problems to get it running. The good news is that it’s free and has a number of good features:

  • you can view all links or links sorted by domain;
  • it will also check the anchor text and link type.

BackLinks Master

Ann Smarty
Ann Smarty is the blogger and community manager at Internet Marketing Ninjas. Ann's expertise in blogging and tools serve as a base for her writing, tutorials and her guest blogging project, MyBlogGuest.com.
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  • http://www.parksinta.com ParkSinta

    I tried Seobook one and cleverstats and i didn´t work, i´ve tried software from both companies and went fine, i guess it´s just a bug.

  • http://www.seohighrank.com SEOHighrank

    Yes all are the great tool.

  • http://www.ginside.com/ Jonathan Dingman

    How about more apps for OS X? Seems like a good majority of these are just for Windows….

    com’n, who uses Windows these days…

  • http://www.lens.com Nick

    linkdiagnosis.com is a pretty helpful tool when you need some quick info. Although their exporting option isn’t really up to par. 😐

  • http://promediacorp.com avi

    excellent post! doing a backlink analysis on a site with many IBL’s using a web based solution can be painful. I’ve been using awall’s backlink analyzer for years- thanks for finding some others for me to play with.

  • http://online-traction.com john coffey

    Another great post Ann, thanks. Was wondering if you have listed them in order of your preference?

    Another vote here for Mac friendly apps.

  • http://www.infatex.com Mikhail Tuknov

    I really like SEO SpyGlass!

  • http://www.nickmarketing.com Ken Nickless

    Thanks for the post. Have you seen the SEOQUAKE toollbar? You can check internal and external links plus much more.

  • http://www.pagetrafficblog.com Navneet

    SEOSpyglass is good. It works well on both Mac and Windows. However what it not does is:

    1. Do not allow the data to be exported to csv or xls even in the Professional edition ($87) I discovered it the hard way (bought it!) and this is very irritating .
    2. Duplicate links though suppose not to exist/analysed, do show up.

    Another good tool is SEOElite though I am yet to review either of these on my Blog.

  • http://www.seosmarty.com/ Ann Smarty

    @Ken, yes, I’ve mentioned SEOquake several times in my other posts.

    @Navneet, thank you for sharing your experience… Still I didn’t understand what the problem with exporting to csv was…

  • http://www.pagetrafficblog.com Navneet Kaushal


    The problem with Professional Edition is that you simply are not allowed to export data to an xls or csv. At times we need it to be sent to the client or to the SEO Analyst for better insight into competition and we can’t do it.

    Imagine paying $180 extra just for exporting to xls or csv! I wonder whats the use of $87 Professional Edition at all?

  • http://www.netpaths.net/seo CVOS the man

    Interesting, but more difficult to use than http://www.digitalpoint.com/tools/keywords

  • http://www.wildmanproduction.com Wildman

    This one’s alright on the cross platform side… http://www.advancedlinkmanager.com not as impressive as their flagship product, though…

  • http://www.link-assistant.com/seo-spyglass/ Seeker

    Navneet, you’re NOT right 🙂

    Of course you CAN export all the data from SEO SpyGlass in the Professional version, and you can do it very quickly and easily – please see how you can do it in the SpyGlass’s online help:

  • http://www.link-assistant.com/seo-spyglass/ Seeker

    2 Navneet: BTW, I also tried SEOElite, and it returns many times less data than SEO SpyGlass (not all backlinks + much less details for each link). I’d better say it does more harm than good ’cause by displaying just a portion of links it offers a wrong link building strategy for you.

  • http://www.pagetrafficblog.com Navneet Kaushal

    Yes SEO spyglass has some good features, however the best ones are under enterprise edition which costs a lot!

    If you ask me for value for money, I will give SEO spyglass 2 out 5. This is keeping in mind the free tools as well as some other paid software out in the market.

    If it was for under $125 it would have been a great tool but an enterprise version for $287, when even the Iphone is going to cost $199 is little too much 🙂

    Nevertheless it still is a good product.

  • http://www.marketingreviewonline.com/the-affiliate-conspiracy-review-part-1/ Mayank – Affaliate Conspiracy Review

    Any one used WebCEO? They have a free version that can submit to directories and get SERP rankings.

  • http://www.link-assistant.com/seo-spyglass/ Seeker

    Navneet, as far as I understand, in SEO tools you want features that are used by SEO companies only (and useless for those webmasters/site owners who optimize their own sites), but don’t want to pay even $287 for them?

    LOL. We all know that a couple of reports provided by SEO SpyGlass/WebCEO/etc will bring you MUCH more than those two hundreds bucks – or do I miss anyhting?

    Anyway, it’s up to you: if you prefer to spend more time and save some money insted of paying first, and earning more then – it’s your decision, I can’t blame you. Everyone has his own point of view, and that’s really great IMO 😉

  • http://www.pioneerwebsites.com.au pr

    Online analysers are slow?
    So wait for it… It’s worth the wait.
    SEOPro is free and thorough. Checks nofollow, link text, homepage pr, links count, and is sortable.
    Also exports to csv.

  • http://paolonutinimusic.com paolo nutini

    how do you tell if the link is nofollow? great article

  • http://www.martinvaresio.com.ar martin

    very, very good!

  • http://www.pauladalesio.com.ar paula

    tuis is importan programm!

  • http://www.martinvaresio.com.ar/dragones.html martin

    this is excelent and dragones programm!

  • http://www.posicionamientoweb.cl posicionamiento web

    brilliant, is the tool that was walking looking long ago, I will use all of them, thank you very much.

  • http://www.search24online.com Search24online Affordable SEO Services

    Can I export a excel report? Is there such kind of web based tool where I can export a report?

  • http://www.virtualhomes.com Fred Doleac

    I have used the free versions of most of the tools available. I am going to purchase Spyglass as it seems to provide the most benefits.

  • http://blogdeformacion.tenur.es Formacionparaempresas

    Excelent for SEO. Thanks

  • http://farmacia-morlan.com Klorane

    Thak you for you help. These tools are very important to go on with SEO.

  • http://www.dineroenred.es ganar dinero

    Very good for seo.

  • http://www.forocamping.com Guia de Camping

    I have tried the program Seobook BackLink Analyzer and the truth is that it is very good, and it that is free. Great article.

    Guia de Camping

  • http://www.martinvaresio.com.ar Orfebre Martin

    Very good!

  • http://www.cueros-pym.com.ar Mauricio

    Very nice!

  • http://www.prowebdirect.co.uk/ london

    Nice tool for search engine links

  • http://www.martinvaresio.com.ar/dragones.html Orfebre Martin

    Excelente y los dragones…?

  • http://rentlasvegasrentals.com/ Jillian@LasVegasNVRentals

    I tried those but I find myself coming back to SEO Elite for my backlink check.

  • http://www.rewebsitemarketing.com Marketing Steve

    I’ve used SEO Elite for years and have used SEO SpyGlass for about a year. Both are very good tools. However, the 1,000 link max-limit on SEO Elite is a problem, especially in this day and age when competitive websites have compiled link profiles of 10,000+ links.

    If a site has less than 1,000 IBLs, I prefer to use SEO Elite. However, if it has more, I use SEO SpyGlass.

  • http://www.gasmerlin.com decoracion de interiores

    1. Seobook BackLink Analyzer is a great free (Windows-only) application that has a lot of useful options

    I thik so

  • http://twitter.com/DigitalOrchard Digital Orchard

    Thanks Ann. Informative post.

  • http://www.booglam.com beauty

    good suggestions thank you

  • http://www.seoproficient.com/ christoalnz

    The best software on the net i believe is seo Quake and yes its free… you can easily see your inbound and out bound links for yourself and your competition… great tool!!

  • http://www.Online-Grocery-Stores.net JLee Jones

    I use SEO elite and may soon upgrade on spyglass have you heard of 30 minute back links. What's your opinion

  • http://www.Online-Grocery-Stores.net JLee Jones

    I use SEO elite and may soon upgrade on spyglass have you heard of 30 minute back links. What's your opinion

  • Karthik

    What about screamingfrog and Xenu? Did you try them?

  • http://www.deelsoft.com Rick

    Hi, All these are useful tools for backlinking. I tried SEO Spy Glass, and its really good one, got more info.


  • http://www.alendu.com Nuxe

    Hi, Seobook BackLink Analyzer is discontinued. What about open site explorer?