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Ahrefs vs SEMrush vs Moz What's the Best Tool for You?

SEO Tool Comparison via databox

Image Credit: Databox

We’ll compare these digital marketing tools based on their functions; specifically, five of these core functions.

  1. Keyword Research
  2. Technical SEO and Site Audit
  3. Backlinks Analysis
  4. Rank Tracking
  5. Pricing and Value

Here’s what we found.

Ahrefs vs SEMrush vs Moz: Keyword Research

Keyword research lays the groundwork for any successful SEO campaign, and all three tools offer robust capabilities in this area:


Ahrefs' keyword research powers come from its massive database of over 10 billion keywords and an incredibly user-friendly interface. The Keyword Explorer allows you to analyze keyword ideas in granular detail, including:

  • Search Volume Data: See the exact monthly search volumes for keywords across different countries.
  • Keyword Difficulty Score: Get insight into how competitive a keyword is to rank for.
    Click Data: Estimate the amount of organic traffic you could get by ranking for a keyword.
  • Parent Topic Analysis: Quickly identify relevant sub-topics and question-based keywords to target. The depth of this data can help SEOs assess possible cannibalization between SEO and PPC.

But Ahrefs doesn't stop there. Its Organic Keywords report is a game-changer, reverse-engineering your competitor's top keywords they rank for organically. This data is gold for uncovering keyword opportunities you may have missed, in particular when it comes to conducting a local SEO audit of your site.


Like Ahrefs, you can get a list of your competitor’s keywords and also get a list of keyword ideas when you search for a specific keyword. You’d get the keyword search volume, CPC distributions, and more. Unlike Ahrefs, though, SEMrush gives a more robust report per keyword.

  • Keyword Magic Tool: More than just a basic keyword generator, this tool provides sophisticated keyword suggestions, search intent insights, and SERP analysis.
  • Keyword Difficulty & Competitive Metrics: Understand exactly how hard it will be to rank for a keyword based on advanced competing pages and backlink analysis.
  • Keyword Grouping & Organization: Easily organize keywords into lists, campaigns, and reports for streamlined analysis. This feature will continue to improve over time as data scientists get more comfortable with topic cluster SEO.
  • Keyword Tracking: Monitor your keyword ranking performance over time across multiple locations and devices. SEMrush makes it super simple to analyze data for SERP features. This can be particularly valuable for webmasters evaluating their Google local pack visibility.

Where SEMrush particularly shines is providing a panoramic view of a keyword's overall opportunity, from search volumes and intent to competitive landscape and potential traffic value.


While not as comprehensive as Ahrefs or SEMrush, Moz still provides a solid and straightforward set of keyword research capabilities:

  • Keyword Suggestion Tool: Get keyword ideas based on relevance, search volume, and other key metrics.
  • Difficulty & Opportunity Scores: Analyze how difficult it would be to rank for a keyword based on link metrics.
  • Localized & Global Volumes: See search volumes at the city, regional, or international level.
  • Keyword Prioritization: Moz's tools help you identify which keywords present the best opportunity to tackle first, even keywords that produce zero clicks.

Moz is best suited for those looking for an approachable yet data-driven way to research keywords based on their own website's authority and their competitor's online presence.

Keyword Research Winner and Why

SEMrush is the best keyword research tool. You’d find more deep keyword analysis with the SEMrush tool. It analyzes by competitor keywords, specific SERP keywords, and paid keyword search performance.

SEO tools ranking

Ahrefs Vs SEMrush Vs Moz: Technical SEO and Site Audit

Next, let’s find out which tool helps you spot technical site issues and opportunities that impact SEO.


When you run your site through Ahrefs, it shows you issue your website might have around its internal page, performance, HTML, and other factors. So you’d expect to see crawled pages that might have issues like

  • Noindex follow page
  • 3XX redirects
  • 404 pages
  • Redirect chains
  • Noindex pages
  • 4XX pages

You’ll also get a performance breakdown, including page speed. Meta tag issues like

  • Length of the meta descriptions
  • Presence or absence of meta descriptions
  • Use of header tags
  • Length of title tags

Ahrefs also dives deep into site structure and more.


SEMrush also gives you a robust site audit. So you’ll get an overview of your website’s SEO-friendliness.This tool also helps you spot technical issues like

  • Page crawl errors
  • Broken links
  • Robots.txt issues
  • HTTP status code errors

It also gives you an internal links redistribution report for your site. Apart from spotting errors, SEMrush also gives you details on what to start working on right away.


Moz has quite a lot in common with Ahrefs. It shows you issues, and then you’d have to fix them by yourself. While it spots these issues well, it doesn’t seem to leave any recommendations on what to do.

Technical SEO Winner and Why

SEMrush wins on technical SEO. Beyond giving you updates on the technical issues that need your attention, SEMrush tells you how to take action. It also helps you find technical SEO opportunities to explore. For example, SEMrush shows you how to improve your internal link distribution.

SEO tools ranking backlinks

Ahrefs Vs SEMrush Vs Moz: Backlinks Analysis

Which of these tools work best for your link building and analysis needs?


Ahrefs beats the competition in its user experience. It shows you everything you need to see about your backlinks game, without overwhelming you. Naturally, you’d see features like

  • Referring domains
  • Anchors
  • Referring IPs
  • New, lost, and broken backlinks
  • TLDs

And the rest.


SEMrush seems to be investing a lot into their backlinks indexing. Some users have reported seeing more number of links indexed with SEMresh than Ahrefs.However, SEMrush doesn’t have the clutter-free interface that Ahrefs presents. This tool requires you to click more things to get your data out.


Moz lets you do everything. You can analyze your current link profile, track your link building effort, and discover link building opportunities.

Backlinks Tracking Winner and Why

These tools tie on backlink analysis. They all have unique strengths. So if you must do a thorough link building job, you should consider using all three tools.More than just unique advantages, these tools have similar features that give relatively the same level of accuracy. However, if you MUST choose one, that’ll be Ahrefs.

Ahrefs Vs SEMrush Vs Moz: Rank Tracking

All three tools have rank tracking features. Let’s compare them.


Ahrefs works much like you other rank tracking tools in the market. You’d put in your keywords, and the tool shows you where you rank on the search engines for those keywords.Users consider Ahrefs rank tracking to be highly accurate. It provides reports from 170 countries. More recently, this tool has improved the depth of rank reporting you get.


You can also enter your keywords and get your ranking report with SEMrush. Like Ahrefs, SEMrush boasts of high rank-tracker accuracy.But there’s more. SEMrush also features a metric it calls “Visibility.” The metric measures how often you rank for that keyword over time. More so, SEMrush updates its keyword ranking database daily.


Moz provides a highly accurate keyword tracking as well. The tool lets you monitor your local and national search volumes.You can track keywords on major search engines in over 200 countries. Like SEMrush, Moz gives you visibility data for your keyword ranking.

Rank Tracking Winner and Why

Moz wins here. If you want to keep an eye on your daily ranking, SEMrush is the better tool. But to monitor your keyword ranking by device, region, and local SEO, you’ll choose Moz.Albeit, Ahrefs’s UX is more simplified compared to SEMrush. If you don’t need such granular keyword tracking, this is the tool to use.

SEO tools ranking cost

Ahrefs Vs SEMrush Vs Moz: Pricing and Value

The tool that will give you the most value for your money will depend on what matches your needs the most.If you build links most of the time, then you want to focus on Ahrefs.Do you spend most of your time managing PPC and ad campaigns? You’ll love SEMrush.Moz is best for keywords research, and rank tracking reports.


Ahrefs’s pricing plan ranges from $99 to more than $999. If you’re justs starting in SEO, you can make do with the $99 plan. However, if you use most of the features of this tool regularly, then you should consider the higher-tier plans.You can test-drive Ahrefs for a week for just $1.


SEMrush has a similar pricing structure as Ahrefs. This tool’s price ranges from $99 to $399 monthly billing. It also provides enterprising billing if you need it.


Moz Pro pricing also starts from $99 and goes up to $599 for their premium plan. As with other tools, these are monthly plans. You can cut down on your monthly cost if you’ll use these tools all year by using their annual plans.

Pricing Winner and Why

SEMrush wins here because you get more than just an SEO tool. This is significant as SEO gets challenging by the day. It gives you PPC marketing features all for the same price as its competitors.Again, if you don’t do PPC, then you should consider other tools instead.

Verdict: Ahrefs Vs SEMrush Vs Moz - What’s the Best Tool?

As you’ve seen from the comparisons, these are all great tools. However, each is better at something more than the other. So if you must stick with one tool out of these tools, it’s obvious to see that the winner will be SEMrush.Yet, you don’t want to judge based on the number of wins a tool has in this comparison. Consider your needs first; let it dictate what you’ll use.

This article was written by Tulip Turner

Tulip is a Content and Inbound Marketing expert at Snewscms. Over the years, she has helped dozens of businesses in defining their content strategy. She believes that creativity doesn’t inspire customers anymore. A true story when recited well, is enough to build a connect.Twitter - @snewscmssFacebook - @snewscmsSearch engine optimization is a fierce battlefield, and having the right tools in your arsenal can make all the difference between victory and defeat. In this ultimate showdown, we pit three of the most popular SEO tools against each other – SEMrush, Ahrefs, and Moz – to determine which one reigns supreme.

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