Yahoo! have just announced that will be shutting down their much loved Yahoo! Site Explorer tool later this year as they finalise the merger of Bing and Yahoo! organic results.
Personally, I find it disappointing to see the end for site explorer which has been one of my most frequently used link checking tools for ineedhits.com and our clients. It always seemed to have one of the most comprehensive sources of link data across the web and allows you to run an unlimited number of queries.
Here’s what Yahoo! had to say about the shutdown,
In an August 2010 blog post, we said we would continue Site Explorer with a focus on new features for webmaster community, even after the transition to Microsoft platforms is complete. We listened to your feedback, and along with the team from Bing Webmaster Center looked jointly at the roadmap for the webmaster tools. Having two webmaster portals for a single source for organic results does not add enough value. Once organic results are transitioned to Bing in all the markets, we plan to shut down Yahoo! Site Explorer and Microsoft’s Webmaster Tools will be the source for Bing and Yahoo! webmaster site and analytics data.
For those of you (like me) who use this tool frequently, the good news is that there are still plenty of other link data tools we can use. Below are some of the more popular ones.
- Google Webmaster Tools
Google’s “Links to Your site” area allows you to drill down to a page level to see the inbound links and it also provides a ranking of the top “Anchor Text” for the links pointing to your website (helps to see if your SEO efforts are on target for the right keywords)
- Link Diagnosis
Link diagnosis is a free link checking tool which requires a browser plugin to analyse links to your website. While I’ve found it doesn’t find the same number of links as Google or Yahoo it does include extra information such as PageRank, anchor text and link strength which make it a handy tool.
- Open Site Explorer
Open Site Explorer offers an advanced set of link data including top linking domains, anchor text distribution and overall scores for your page and domain authority. The only downside is that you’ll need to pay to access full functionality of this tool.
- Majestic SEO
Majestic Site Explorer is another comprehensive link analysis tool that always seems to find the highest number of external backlinks for any site that I check. They’ll also provide a handy overview of your backlink history over time.
While there are many more link checking tools available, this should give you enough insight to continue after Yahoo! site explorer is finally laid to rest.