Ahrefs Webmaster Tools
Recently Ahrefs introduced a brand new tool called Ahrefs Webmaster Tools or AWT. It’s a completely free SEO tool that allows you to get deep and actionable insights on any website you own.
So if you own a website and want to improve your SEO without dropping a dime, then you can read the article.
For many years, Google has provided data on websites you own through Google Search Console.
And while it’s a great tool to get insights on things like impressions and clicks to your site, it leaves a lot to be desired.
It checks for a handful of SEO issues, but not many. Plus, there’s limited advice on how to fix those issues.
You can see some backlinks and keywords, but not all of them. And without having all your data at your disposal, it’s tough to make sound data-driven decisions to improve your SEO. So Ahrefs created AWT to fill that gap.
What is Ahrefs Webmaster Tools, or AWT for Short?
You can think of AWT as Google Search Console, except made by Ahrefs.
With AWT, Ahrefs basically opens up access to Site Audit and Site Explorer, but only for websites that a user owns.
So there are actually no new features in AWT, Ahrefs just making some parts of Ahrefs available for free.
When Ahrefs finalized the idea of AWT, Ahrefs thought about people who have their own websites but don’t have access to a professional SEO tool for whatever reason.
The whole purpose of AWT is to give these people a way to optimize their websites when they’re in that really painful not-fun-at-all early stages where they don’t make money from their online ventures yet.
Features of Ahrefs Webmaster Tools or AWtools?
- It’s Completely Free of Cost
- You can Audit your website (Free)
- Check your all backlinks profile (Free)
- See your keyword position
- Monitor your SEO health
- You can now have as many verified websites as you want.
- Checking a verified website in Site Explorer won’t use up your plan allowance until you hit your “per project” limits first.
- Everyone can get an extra 5,000 crawl credits per verified website to run site audits.
- Lite users can now see the top 100 keyword rankings for their verified websites in Site Explorer.
- JS rendering is available for Lite plans.
How to Verify Your Website in Ahrefs Webmaster Tools?
Ahrefs Webmaster Tools will give you a holistic view of how your website is performing in search.
And more than just “knowing how you’re doing,” Ahrefs provide actionable insights, tips, and strategies right within our toolset so you can actually get tangible results.
So let me take you on a tour of what you’ll get and I’ll share some use cases you can use immediately to analyze and optimize your site for search.
- So first, go to ahrefs.com/awt and sign up for a free Webmaster Tools account.
- After you’ve signed up, you’ll need to verify your website.
- So I’ll do that by logging in with Google Search Console since it’s the fastest method.
- Next, you’ll need to choose the websites you want to verify with AWT.
- And it’s important to note that the tool will only work for websites that are verified.
- As for the settings, I’ll choose to run the first audit now, schedule weekly audits, and I’ll touch on the value of this in a bit, and I’ll also choose to crawl external links.
- Let’s import the site and your audit should begin.
There Are Two Parts of Ahrefs Webmaster Tools
In the Ahrefs Webmaster Tools, there are mainly two parts of this tool, they are…
- Site Audit
- Site Explorer
Let’s Look to Website Audit Tool Called Site Audit
Site Audit allows you to scan for over 100 issues that could potentially be hurting your website’s performance in search.
Where you can see the website’s Health Score, a breakdown of the top issues we found on a site, and the number of URLs that have the issue.
Now, since some of the issues may be foreign to you, Ahrefs also provide details on what the issues are, and how to fix them.
Fix the Website Issue
Now, let’s take look at a workflow of fixing one of the issues.
For example, you’ll see that there are 124 pages on your website that link to a broken page.
So to see these pages, just click the number, and right away, you can see all URLs that link to both internal and external broken pages.
Then it’s just a matter of removing or replacing those links on your site.
Customize the Columns
Now, a great thing about this tool is that you can customize the columns in any way you want.
Just click Manage columns, find data you want to add, drag and drop it to the position you want, click Apply, and now you’ll see your customized table which you can easily export.
Fix Ton of Website Issues
Now, if your site has a ton of issues, then you might want to work on the issues by category.
That’s why Ahrefs created some convenient reports you can access here in the sidebar.
For example, if you want to see on-page issues, click that in the sidebar and you now have a nice summarized report on things like word counts, title tags, and meta descriptions.
You can also click on the Issues tab to see an itemized list of issues which are labeled by importance, so you can prioritize appropriately.
Now, Ahrefs only scratched the surface with what you can do with the website audit tool in AWT. But there are actually quite a few advanced features.
Monitor Your Site
Now, one of the great things about auditing your website with AWT is that you can actually monitor changes that are happening to your site on a regular basis.
If you remember from earlier, Ahrefs set up weekly scheduled audits when Ahrefs imported their site to AWT.
And the reason Ahrefs recommend doing this is that starting from your second crawl, Ahrefs will show you changes that have been made to your site.
So you can passively monitor your site for new URLs with issues, as well as see the URLs where issues have been resolved or removed.
Now, conducting website audits is just half of what’s inside Ahrefs Webmaster Tools.
Let’s Look to Site Explorer Tool
The second part of AWT is our Site Explorer tool, which gives you a look into backlinks and searches for traffic data.
Since Ahrefs crawls the web in a similar way as Google, Ahrefs is able to collect a ton of raw data and present it in an easy-to-digest way.
In short, this tool lets you see important information like the pages that link to you, the pages they’re linking to, and SEO metrics which can help you understand the influence they might have on your pages.
In addition, Ahrefs shows you all of the keywords your website ranks for broken down by country.
Deeper Look to Your Site
Let’s take a deeper look at this tool. So starting from the Dashboard, I’ll click on our project which will bring us to the Overview Page.
On this page, you can see top-level metrics for your websites like Domain Rating, which represents the overall strength of your website’s backlink profile.
The total backlinks, total referring domains, which are unique websites that link to you, the number of keywords your site ranks for, and the estimated search traffic your website gets.
And right below that is an interactive graph of your website’s growth in referring domains.
This graph shows how fast you’re acquiring new backlinks, which is a good thing to keep an eye on.
There’s also a graph to see historical search traffic data under the Organic search tab. But keep in mind that our organic traffic data are estimations, whereas your Google Search Console or Google Analytics data will give you more precise numbers.
See Backlinks Report
Let’s head over to the Backlinks report. Here, you can see all of the pages that link to your website.
Now, instead of just showing you a URL with no context, like in Search Console, Ahrefs actually show you useful things like website and page authority metrics for the linking page, the number of referring domains it has, estimated search traffic to that page, and the context of the link, which is super convenient.
You can also use these handy filters to really drill in on the data you want to see.
For example, let’s say Ahrefs opened up an affiliate program.
Naturally, we’d need to find affiliates.
And one of the best places you can start is by looking at the websites that are already linking to you.
After all, if they’re linking to you without compensation, then they could potentially make great affiliate partners since they probably know what your product does and why it’s valuable.
Why Ahrefs Webmaster Tools for Free?
So you might be wondering why is Ahrefs all of a sudden opening free access to some of Ahrefs’ tools, while tens of thousands of SEOs are happily paying to access this data?
Well, not all websites are intended to make money, but that doesn’t mean they don’t have great content that deserves to be found.
And that’s what Ahrefs want to help us do by giving you solid data, tools, and learning materials to keep your site in good health.
So if you’ve been hesitating to get a premium Ahrefs account, then now you can sign up for AWT for free.
And if you require more data for other sites, you can always upgrade your account to get full access to all of our SEO tools.
And if you’re already an Ahrefs user, then I recommend watching our announcement video from our product updates channel which will give you the rundown of how AWT affects and benefits you.
Frequently Asked Question
Q: Can Anyone Access My Ahrefs Webmaster Tools?
Ans: Since AWT will only work for their own websites, they need to verify website ownership to be able to access Ahrefs data.
Verifying a website works the same way as it does in Site Audit right now.
And after verifying a website, they’ll be able to crawl up to 5,000 internal pages in Site Audit and use most of the reports in Site Explorer.
But let’s cut right to the part that you all want to hear the most.
Q: If I’m an Existing Ahrefs User, What’s in it for me?
First up, the number of projects that you could add to your account used to depend on your plan’s allowance.
But now, you can add an unlimited number of verified websites to your Ahrefs account.
This means that you can add even your clients’ websites as long as they give you
access to their Google Search Console data, DNS records, or files.
Secondly, because of AWT, Ahrefs releasing a new type of credit called “Per project limits.”
These only apply to verified websites.
And as an Ahrefs user, you get these credits in addition to your existing plan limits.
So now, when you plug a verified website into Site Explorer, you won’t use up your regular the plan’s a monthly allowance, at least until you hit your “per project” limits first.
And for Site Audit, all Ahrefs users can get additional 5,000 free monthly crawl credits for each of your verified websites.