In this thread we will be talking about these tools: Ahrefs (Backlinkwatch) MajesticSEO Open site explorer Link diagnosis SEMrush and G**gle operators The problem If you know SEO for some time then you didn't forget Yahoo site explorer which was great for scraping backlinks for particular URLs (yours/competitors). After killing it we found new tools which would scrape and collect hyperlinks to their indexes and after writing your target URLs in their tools you would find backlinks pointing to your target URL. In 2009 I found a trick which disallows Yahoo spider to your website and after this process no one could find those backlinks from Yahoo site explorer but somehow I think at this time this is not that case. If you are doing white hat SEO or you work with webpages and SERPS which are estabilished and don't shuffle "hard" you can easily find major backlinks to your targeted URL (competitors or yours). BUT If you work with video marketing/fresh niches/grey and black hat niches you already found that when you insert your targeted URL into free backlink reserach tools, you will get nothing - 0 links. There are couple google operators which could help but that is not too much of help. Add your URL to google: -"URL" -intext:URL -inurl:URL Don't forget that sometimes URL with http:// or with / at the end will create different results. most of the times after these operators are processed you will get shitty statistic websites or scripted search engines or whois websites and that's it - not so helpful as you thought it should be. I think this situation is worse than ever and I can't understand if webmasters went to programming schools and started to disallow backlink tools to research their backlinks or is it that the problem is from these tools? Even paid tools are joking with me this time. What you can add about this? Some solutions for competition analysis: -Check on-site SEO and how many backlinks are there which points to your targeted URL from same website Use Screamyfrog SEO for everything related to onsite SEO, very handy. -content size and keyword density -Check PR -Check DA and TA with MOZ open site explorer -Check social signals -Is it parasite site or estabilished website 2nd phase: Create google alerts with competitor website URL, NAME to catch possible backlinks which are not shown in backlink tools What is your opinion about my thoughts? Any additions?