Posted 22 September, 2011 by in Screaming Frog SEO Spider

How To Use The Screaming Frog SEO Spider Tool To Audit Backlinks

For those of you that like to keep an eye on your backlinks and check to see if they are still where they should be, it can be a laborious task. Perhaps you have a list of links from directories, articles or sources which need to be checked that they are still in place from time to time. How can you be sure they are where they should be?

Well, it’s easy to use the SEO Spider to help do this! (Please note, the custom search feature outlined below is only available to licenced users). Here is a quick guide to show how this can be done:

  • Step 1 – List Your URLs

Get the full list of URLs you want to check in a single txt or CSV file. Make sure you use the full URL (including http://) of the page that should contains the backlink to your site. Save this list as a .txt or .csv.

  • Step 2 – Open The SEO Spider!

Go ahead and open up the SEO Spider tool!

  • Step 3 – Upload The URL List

On the top toolbar, click ‘mode’ and select ‘list’. Next, click ‘select file’ and browse to where you saved your txt or csv of URLs in Step 1. Click open. The file reader will tell you how many URLs it found in the file you uploaded. If it was “0”, go back and take another look at the list of URLs and check they are all formatted OK.

Check out our user guide for more information on ‘list mode‘.

  • Step 4 – Configure The Custom Source Code Filter

Back up on the navigation, click on “configuration” and then “custom”. In the custom filter configuration window you have several options available and I’m sure you’ll figure out what works best for you, however, my preference would be to select “Does Not Contain” in the filter 1 dropdown, then enter your website URL in the text input field.

Please see our user guide for more information about the custom source code search feature.

  • Step 5 – Prepare & Crawl

Click the Custom Tab. Select your chosen filter from the Filter drop down on the left. Click Start.

  • Step 6 – Review

In the example I set out above, hopefully the output will be blank which means that all the backlink locations do contain my site link, however, if some are listed, such as in my example below, you can can chase up why your link is no longer present.

I hope this is useful. Now it’s your turn, what different ways do you use the SEO spider?