Last updated on August 28th, 2012 at 09:37 pm
Anyone who’s been exposed to search engine optimization (SEO) will definitely say that links play a BIG, if not the biggest, part in it. If you think about SEO as the elections, what would it take to win in it…the answer: VOTES.
SEO (BACKLINKS) = ELECTIONS (VOTES)
Backlinks are incoming links to your website. It’s simple really…you vote for a candidate that you fully support or find most interesting. Similarly, you link to websites (or anything for that matter) that you think gives great value. As an SEO specialist, backlinks are one of the things you strive for in order to outrank your competitors.
Here’s where it gets juicy…what if, one day, you find out that your backlinks have suddenly vanished into thin air or have undergone a “nofollow” transformation? (Nofollow links don’t give out “link juice” or “link love” which is used by Google for their PageRank system.) Well, one developer by the name of Daniel Damian has done the tough part of solving this problem through his backlink monitoring tool at MonitorBacklinks. Let’s check it out:
As soon as you successfully login, you end up at your dashboard. It shows the links that are currently being monitored. From here you can check the status of your links, the number of links being monitored, anchor text used, and other pertinent information. There is also the option of editing links should you choose to do so. If you want to add more links, all you have to do is click the “Add link” button which takes you to this form:
From here you can choose to add backlinks in 3 ways:
The old-fashioned way: Manually
- Add two website links: where the link will be coming from and where the link will points to.
- You can also choose to add other details such as tags and personal notes.
- You will also notice that the form automatically generates an error if the URL entered does not conform to the standard needed.
- Alternative to Yahoo Site Explorer
- You can choose to find your backlinks through the backlink checker tool and add links from the results returned.
- Aside from the usual information which you can also see on your dashboard, you’ll be able to see the type of domain backlinks returned (TEXT or NOFOLLOW).
- There is also a nifty option to monitor all the domain backlinks returned with just a push of a button.
Import Links (via a comma-delimited file [CSV])
- If you have a CSV file with all the backlinks (from and to) listed neatly on the first two columns, this tool can import them to your dashboard in a jiffy.
- You’ll notice that I intentionally stated the wrong URLs for the last two links just to test out the error-checking capability of this feature. As it turns out, the errors were not checked by the system. This is something that needs to be fixed ASAP (Daniel, are you reading this?)
- If you want to check out the HTTP Status Code of your website and the links found on it, Monitor Backlinks has solved this as well by creating a tool just for this. This is very useful because it shows which links are still good and those that can no longer be found.
- For added convenience and efficiency, there is a changelog where you can track the changes you’ve made. Trust me if you’re swamped with so many tasks each day, you will need this.
- Yet another convenient and efficient tool developed by Daniel is the Backlink Bookmarklet tool. This allows you to easily add links to monitor straight from your web browser. All you have to do is add the ‘Backlinks Bookmarklet’ link to your Bookmark Toolbar, highlight the link/s that you want monitored and click on the bookmark you’ve just added and voila.
Room for Improvement
- Social signals visibility
- Grammatical errors can be found throughout the website
- Too much marketing (so many badges or “link to this” stuff)
Overall, it’s a neat and efficient tool to monitor your backlinks, plain and simple. It doesn’t deal with a lot of SEO information unlike other backlink tools out there but it gets the job done. Having to manually check your backlinks’ status is a pain in the ass. This tool prevents that kind of pain from ever happening as it updates you regarding any changes via email. How simple is that?
You tell me.
Try it out!