BuzzSumo vs Ahrefs – A Buyers Comparison

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There are mountains of content and SEO tools on the market.

There are so many that it can cause a headache comparing them.

Do you know what I’m talking about?

They all have amazing features, pricing, and upgrades that make your head spin.

Two of the best are BuzzSumo and Ahrefs. I’ve used both over the years.

You don’t want to choose the wrong one, either. That will cost you precious time and money.

Likewise, you don’t want competitors inching ahead of you in the SERPs because you can’t make your mind up.

I’ve been there, as well.

That’s why I put together this BuzzSumo vs Ahrefs comparison.

It covers what separates the two, who should use each one, and all of their similarities.

Check it out.


BuzzSumo is a content marketing tool that helps marketers keep tabs on brand mentions, and competitors, and get the latest ideas for exciting topics.

It’s also trusted by some of the world’s largest brands: Ogilvy, HubSpot, BuzzFeed, etc.

After all, content marketing is tough.

Finding topics that will get shares, comments, and links isn’t easy. But BuzzSumo takes the weight off your shoulders.

Users can analyze billions of data points to improve marketing strategies and connect with influencers directly through the platform.

Let’s talk more about BuzzSumo’s features next.

BuzzSumo features

Buzzsumo is straightforward.

Some tools take months to learn because of how complex they are.

Not this one.

It has four main features that will blast your marketing game into space.

Look for yourself.

Content discovery

If you’ve ever produced content before, you’ve hit the dreaded writer’s block at some point.

You know what I’m talking about not being able to come up with ideas, becoming stressed, etc.

BuzzSumo’s content discovery feature is a solution for that.

You can browse trending topics and content to instantly get ideas and see what’s hot on the market.

Buzzsumo content discovery

This allows you to create content that has a higher chance of engagement or—better yet—going viral.

It also helps with SEO by providing high-traffic keywords, content examples, and being able to drill down into any trend or topic.

Use this information to rank for valuable keywords and produce content that’s unique.

Oh, here’s another cool part of this feature:

Buzzsumo questions


They compile questions from websites like Reddit, Quora, and Amazon so you can answer them in your content.

After all, that’s the whole point of content; it’s to help readers!

These will draw more readers to content while improving its usefulness and engagement.

Content research

BuzzSumo has a database that’s almost as big as the Earth’s population.

Users can scan billions of data points composed of articles, social posts, and more to find meaningful insights.

Buzzsumo content research

Because if you don’t know your numbers, then you don’t know your business!

Some of the data you’ll have access to includes a social engagement index, a list of top-performing content formats, and competitive benchmarks.

BuzzSumo also offers insights for Facebook to find what’s working for competitors, what posts are trending, and what elements make up the most successful posts.

I also really like their backlinking feature.

It alerts you in real-time of new backlinks so you can thank other brands and nurture a relationship with them.

Buzzsumo backlinks

This feature also helps you understand what types of content attract the most links.

Influencer outreach

Influencer marketing is stronger than Michael Tyson’s right hook.

In fact, 49% of consumers rely on recommendations by influencers.

If you want to work with influencers that grow your brand, BuzzSumo is a great choice.

Find real, not fake, influencers in the snap of a finger.

Simply type in a keyword, and you will gain access to people with large and active followings.

Buzzsumo influencers 1

…Not those who bought their Instagram followers.

You can search for influencers on Twitter, Facebook, and reach out to them directly through BuzzSumo, too.

No more jumping between Google Chrome tabs until your fingers hurt.

Brand monitoring

What are people saying about your brand?

Do they love it? Are they talking smack?

You need to know these things.

Otherwise, you’ll miss out on conversations, building relationships, and being a genuine business.

BuzzSumo makes this easy.

Buzzsumo monitoring feature

Get real-time alerts whenever your brand is mentioned on social media to study what customers say.

It also creates the opportunity to respond instantly, solving customer support issues or likewise.

But, this feature isn’t just for monitoring you.

Stay on top of competitors, individual industries, and products.

This information will put you one step ahead of everyone in your niche.

BuzzSumo pricing

Alright. How much does BuzzSumo cost?

They currently have four plans to choose from, as you can see here:

Buzzsumo pricing

Keep in mind that you will receive a discount if you choose the annual billing option.

For example, the Pro plan is regularly $99/month or $79/month when billed yearly.

The cost savings from the discount increases as you move up the plans, too.

In sum, the plans they offer are:

  • Pro ($99/month): 1-5 users, 5 projects, 5 alerts, 5,000 mentions, content reports, domain reports, unlimited searches, and 1 year of historical data.
  • Plus ($179/month): All of the Pro features plus the question analyzer, top author search, and increased limits.
  • Large ($299/month): All of the Plus features along with Facebook analyzer, advanced trending filters, and increased limits.
  • Enterprise ($499+/month): All of the Large features plus custom users, experts, projects, trending feeds, and five years of historical data.

This means everyone from the small digital agency to Fortune 500 companies will find a plan that suits their needs.

You can upgrade at any time, as well.

Oh, oh, oh! I forgot to mention they have a free trial you can take advantage of here.


Buzzsumo trial

Sign up with your name, email, and hop into the platform.

Use this to test the waters and ensure it’s right for your company.

BuzzSumo integrations

I like the fact that BuzzSumo is barebones.

It doesn’t have a billion features that you have to study like a Harvard SAT.

Instead, it has the essentials.

This is also why they have limited integrations, which include:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • Reddit
  • Buffer
  • Hootsuite

Eric Rubb, a BuzzSumo employee, answered this question in their knowledge base.

Buzzsumo integrations

Additionally, users can connect their Twitter and create RSS feeds for monitoring alerts.

Don’t expect to plug every tool you have into BuzzSumo. It’s simply not made for that.


What are the streets saying about BuzzSumo?

And by “streets,” I mean the internet!

In particular, here’s a review from G2:

Buzzsumo review

This customer enjoyed that BuzzSumo brought many features in one convenient platform to improve their content marketing.

However, they weren’t a fan. The platform looked like it was from the 2000’s.

There’s nothing wrong with retro, in my opinion!

Buzzsumo total reviews

Overall, they have 49 five-star reviews and 20 four-star reviews on G2. The lowest is three stars.

Good stuff.

BuzzSumo pros and cons

BuzzSumo advantages
  • More price friendly compared to Ahrefs.
  • Free seven day trial to test the software.
  • Easy to use.
  • Practical and effective content marketing features.
  • Find new content ideas quickly.
  • Discover and nurture relationships with influencers.
BuzzSumo disadvantages
  • Lack of SEO data which is commonly used for content marketing.
  • Lack of integrations.
  • No YouTube or Instagram influencer analysis.


If there’s one tool that’s known to be a beast in SEO, it’s Ahrefs.

There’s not a single thing SEO-related that you can’t do with their platform.

Want to perform broken backlink building campaigns? No problem.

Want to find keywords nobody is using? They got you.

And the list goes on.

Let’s go over what Ahrefs has to offer compared to BuzzSumo.

Ahrefs features

These are the main features of Ahrefs you can look forward to using to skyrocket content and SEO performance.

Site explorer

Do you know what’s going on in every nook and cranny of your website?

You should.

Otherwise, your SEO efforts are a shot in the dark.

That’s why the site explorer feature is priceless for search marketers.

Site explorer Ahrefs

While BuzzSumo offered a backlink analysis, Ahrefs goes 100x more in-depth on a website’s profile.

It displays:

  • Organic traffic research: View what keywords are generating the most traffic for you or your competitors.
  • Backlinks: Find which sites link to you or a competitor to improve link-building campaigns.
  • Paid traffic research: Discover how paid traffic is being used by competitors and where it’s being funneled. Similarly, analyze your paid advertising performance for improvements.

The site explorer also includes keyword rankings, top pages, and competing domains.

Like BuzzSumo, the site explorer’s “Pages” section finds the most shared and engaging content.

Ahrefs top pages

Keywords explorer

Keyword research is the backbone of good SEO.

Targeting the wrong keywords will result in traffic going nowhere.

All of that hard work for nothing!

Instead, Ahrefs provides thousands of quality keyword suggestions along with their metrics like keyword difficulty.

Ahrefs keyword suggestions

In fact, their database has over seven billion keywords and growing!

They also support 171 countries, so you can find keywords for any language.

Unlike other SEO tools, Ahrefs considers Google, Bing, YouTube, Amazon, and other search engines no matter your keyword needs.

Gain access to unique metrics like return rate, clicks per search, and others that most tools don’t offer.

BuzzSumo doesn’t do any of this, so if you need an in-depth SEO tool, Ahrefs takes the cake in this department.

Site audit

Publishing content, building links, polishing on-page SEO.

These are some of the daily tasks for digital marketers.

That means you need to audit these strategies and their ROI on a regular basis.

While you could get your hands dirty, like doing an oil change on a car, why not let a tool do the hard work?

Ahrefs site audit feature helps marketers see under the hood of their website instantly to get a top-down view of performance.

Ahrefs site audit

The audit includes information like:

  • SEO health
  • Crawling issues
  • Incoming links
  • Content quality
  • Outgoing links
  • Traffic metrics
  • Backlink data
  • And more!

If you’re the Jeff Bezos of SEO, drill deeper into any page with custom data filters.

Ahrefs site audit depth

Overall, the site audit feature gives you an overview of a company’s content and SEO health while giving technicians the tools to dig deep into any section.

Rank tracker

The higher you rank, the more traffic and leads you generate.

That means it’s very important to track rankings to ensure your efforts are paying off.

Otherwise, you’ll get lost in the SERPs.

Ahrefs rank tracker feature gives you an overview of all rankings along with individual search term breakdowns.

Ahrefs rank tracker

This displays data like average position, traffic, lost or new positions, and total search visibility.

The same data can be found for competing websites.

Use it to determine if your SEO strategies are working or if certain content is lagging behind.

Study competitors to steal keywords from under their feet, as well.

Keyword rankings are only one part of the equation, though.

That’s why Ahrefs also gives users data on:

  • Featured snippets
  • Image packs
  • Knowledge cards
  • Knowledge panels
  • And more

These findings are used to optimize content to re-gain featured snippets and similar items which ultimately boost organic clicks.

Content explorer

Last but not least, the content explorer tool on Ahrefs is similar to BuzzSumo’s content-related features.

It helps marketers discover the top-performing content in any niche to identify trends and opportunities.

Ahrefs content explorer

Ahrefs has a database of over one billion web pages with SEO and social metrics. These include:

  • Estimated search traffic
  • Referring domains
  • Domain rating
  • Traffic value
  • Number of social shares

Users can filter results with advanced operators to find low-competition topics, link-building prospects, and more.

Every piece of viral content can be further inspected for individual metrics to discover why it’s performing so well, too.

The content explorer tool is very similar to BuzzSumo, but offers more in-depth analytics, trends, and insights.

Ahrefs pricing

How much do you need to dish out for Ahrefs?

They currently offer four plans like BuzzSumo does, albeit more expensive.

Ahrefs pricing plans

These are:

  • Lite ($99/month): 1 user, 5 projects, and basic features.
  • Standard ($179/month): Lite features plus 10 projects, recent/historical site index, broken pages, weekly alerts, daily web mentions, and weekly keyword movements.
  • Advanced ($399/month): Standard features plus 3 users, 25 projects, mobile ranking, JavaScript rendering audits, and daily alerts.
  • Agency ($999/month): Advanced features plus 5 users, 100 projects, and increased limits.

The first two packages are the exact same price as BuzzSumo, but Advanced and Agency are considerably more.

Although, you are gaining access to many more features related to content and SEO. Thus, the price makes sense.

You will also receive a two-month discount if you opt for annual billing.

Ahrefs integrations

Ahrefs integrates with many more tools and platforms than BuzzSumo does.

This saves time between juggling software and creates extra functionality.

Some of their integrations include:

  1. Databox
  2. Klipfolio
  3. Reportz
  4. Pitchbox
  5. DashThis
  6. Clearlogin
  7. Rank Ranger
  8. Tray
  9. Pipeliner CRM
  10. Okta

There is also the Ahrefs API to use for building applications using Ahrefs data if you wish.

Ahrefs reviews

What are customers saying about Ahrefs?

Since I looked at G2 for BuzzSumo, I’ll use that again.

Ahrefs total reviews

They have an impressive 185 five-star reviews and 44 four-star reviews.

This is considerably more than BuzzSumo’s.

Customers rave about the number of features, insights, and power Ahrefs offers.

However, the one common complaint is pricing. It will make your piggy bank shed some tears.

Ahrefs advantages
  • The most comprehensive SEO tool on the market.
  • Massively ind-eth content, keyword, and backlink reports.
  • Detailed filters and features for expert search marketers.
  • Practical and effective content marketing features.
  • Find new content ideas quickly.
  • Discover and nurture relationships with influencers.
  • Much more integrations.
Ahrefs disadvantages
  • No free trial.
  • Very complex tool which will take longer to learn and adopt by teams.
  • The last two plans are much more expensive than BuzzSumo.

Wrapping up this Buzzsumo vs Ahrefs review

BuzzSumo and Ahrefs are incredible tools.

BuzzSumo excels in affordability, content discovery, and content research.

Content marketers who don’t require massive amounts of SEO data will find it much more suitable.

On the flip-side, SEO geeks who want to know every fine detail about search performance will want to invest in Ahrefs.

It provides biblical amounts of information through its site, content, and keyword audit reports.

You can learn more about SEO and marketing in my online courses.

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