Darren Stewart
June 7, 2023

Screamingfrog vs SEMRush vs AHREFS

A quick comparison of Screaming Frog, AHREFS and SEMRush as some of the most popular SEO tools.

Screaming Frog, AHREFS and SEMRush are some of the most popular SEO tools around used by B2B digital marketing teams. In this brief article we will outline what each of these tools offer, the pros and cons and the rough cost of each. These tools do evolve overtime so we wont go into every feature but we will cover the main aspects of each tool.

Some SEO experts and digital marketing professionals will use all 3 of these tools as part of their marketing tech stack but that can be quite costly and fairly overwhelming.

1. Screaming Frog

The Screaming Frog SEO Spider is a website crawler that helps you improve onsite SEO by auditing for common SEO issues. Download & crawl 500 URLs for free, or buy a licence to remove the limit & access advanced features.

- Website crawling and analysis
- Technical SEO auditing
- On-page SEO analysis
- Visualisation of website structure
- Link analysis
- Data export and integration

Cost: The pricing for Screaming Frog is based on an annual license. The cost ranges from approximately $180 to $500+ depending on the license type (Lite or Standard) and the size of the website being crawled.

- Comprehensive website crawling and technical SEO analysis
- Great for in-depth analysis of on-page and link-related SEO factors
- Provides detailed website structure visualisation
- Offers data export for further analysis and integration

- Requires software installation (not web-based)
- Steeper learning curve compared to some other SEO tools
- Limited keyword research and competitive analysis capabilities

2. Ahrefs

Ahrefs is a comprehensive SEO (Search Engine Optimization) toolset and marketing platform used by professionals and businesses to improve their online visibility, track competitors, and optimize their websites for search engines. It provides a wide range of features and data to help with keyword research, backlink analysis, content marketing, site auditing, and more.

Site Explorer by Ahrefs: Competitive Analysis Tool For SEO
A screenshot of AHREFs

Main Features:
- Backlink analysis
- Keyword research
- Site audit
- Competitive analysis
- Content explorer
- Rank tracking

Cost: Ahrefs offers several subscription plans starting at around $99 per month for the Lite plan, going up to higher-priced plans based on the level of features and access needed.

- Extensive backlink analysis and competitive research capabilities
- Robust keyword research and tracking features
- Comprehensive site audit for technical SEO analysis
- User-friendly interface and intuitive navigation

- Higher price point compared to some other SEO tools
- Limited in terms of social media analysis and reporting
- Rank tracking updates may have a slight delay

3. SEMrush

SEMrush is an all-in-one online marketing platform that offers a suite of tools and features to help businesses and professionals improve their online visibility, conduct competitive analysis, and optimize their digital marketing efforts. It provides valuable insights and data for search engine optimization (SEO), pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, content marketing, social media marketing, and more.

Semrush Monthly Numbers
A screenshot of SEMrush

- Site audit
- Backlink analysis
- Keyword research
- Competitive analysis
- Content marketing tools
- Social media tracking
- PPC (Pay-Per-Click) research

Cost: SEMrush offers various subscription plans ranging from approximately $99.95 to $399.95 per month, depending on the plan (Pro, Guru, Business) and the level of features required.

- Comprehensive suite of SEO tools covering multiple aspects of online marketing
- Strong keyword research and competitive analysis capabilities
- Robust site audit for technical SEO analysis
- Extensive social media tracking and PPC research features

- Can be overwhelming for beginners due to the sheer amount of features
- Higher pricing compared to some other SEO tools
- Some advanced features may require additional add-ons or higher-tier plans

It's important to note that the pricing, features, and pros/cons mentioned above are based on general observations and may be subject to change as these tools evolve and update their offerings.


From our experience SEMRush is a great SEO tool that has a great website crawler like Screaming Frog and a lot of feature overlap with AHREFs. SEMRush is a bit more intuitive to use. Screaming Frog is a technical SEO and on-site SEO tool if you really want to get into the weeds so we would only recommend this tool if SEO is the large majority of your job role.

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