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Bye Bye Yahoo Site Explorer

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by PotPieGirl on November 23, 2011 · 40 comments

It’s official – no more Yahoo Site Explorer. Which means, no more checking backlinks via Yahoo. So now what? How do you plan to continue monitoring your back links or the back links of your competition?

Yahoo Site Explorer – RIP

Now, when you go to check backlinks via Yahoo, you are met with this message screen:

Yep, it’s gone. RIP Yahoo Site Explorer… thanks for the memories and a big thanks for the hours of my life I now just might get BACK since I won’t be spending hours pouring over your data anymore.

Sure, the data was pretty useful to a point. I knew that at least Yahoo found my links and could get hints as to where others are getting their links. But none of that data from Yahoo meant that GOOGLE cared or counted any of those links.

Was Yahoo Site Explorer a time-suck? Just something that became a nasty habit for all of us?

Or – are we really all in need of a NEW back link analysis habit?

Where do YOU plan to get your back link information from now?

Sure, Google Webmaster tools offers us info about the links to our sites, but we all know that Google will never give us the big picture of what they find and count.

And they sure won’t tell us squat about our competition, right?

So now what? What are your plans?


hagar November 23, 2011 at 9:21 pm

yeah, I noticed about six months or so ago, that they’d quit updating things… thnk Andrew Hansen was the first one I noticed commenting on it, in HIS blog. There are still “new” info products coming out, that tell you to use Yahoo Site Explorer to check your backlinks with.
Far as I know, there are no other free “detail” tools for backlinks… but am WAY willing to be proven wrong (grin)

Charley November 23, 2011 at 9:58 pm

I’m currently using open site explorer and I’ll continue using it. The only downside of open site explorer is the monthly updates. Yahoo site explorer updates more frequently.

Brenda Roscow November 24, 2011 at 4:58 am

I noticed today on my tool bar that instead of Yahoo SE, there is a Blekko icon instead. Do you know what the relationship between Yahoo and Blekko is?

Lovely Embuscado November 24, 2011 at 6:28 am

Oh, I see. That’s why when I tried it yesterday, it didn’t work.

I received an email from you re your own backlink checker. It’s great!

Thanks for that, PotPieGirl. :)

Happy Thanksgiving!

Ayala November 24, 2011 at 8:19 am

YSE was such a great tool for me, and we all know that seo quake gets its data from YSE. I use ahrefs.com now though..

SEO Wien November 24, 2011 at 9:14 am


The backlink checkers that I use include:

BacklinkTest http://backlinktest.com/?lang=en
Open site Explorer http://www.opensiteexplorer.org/
Majestic SEO https://www.majesticseo.com/ (you need to register for free)
x4d http://www.x4d.de/backlinkchecker/ (German language – but easy to use)

All of these deliver useful results, though not as detailed as Yahoo did :-(
MajesticSEO and OSE have paid versions that deliver much more detail

Marlene Ariss November 24, 2011 at 11:24 am

Hi, Jennifer,

I am at long last realising that I should be concentrating more on backlinks

This is because some of the pages on my sites appear on page 1 of google, position 1 sometimes, although sales are not resulting from this.

I have been told to look at Yahoo SE quite recently, so it helps to be told now that this is ‘dead and gone’.

Can you tell me where I can find your own backlink checker, please, Jennifer?

I will be so grateful.

Kind regards,
Marlene Ariss

Paul November 24, 2011 at 11:52 am

I use majestic SEO instead of YSE. I guess this tool is much more accurate than yahoo site explorer…

Jim November 24, 2011 at 4:25 pm

Here’s the URL of the backlink checker Jennifer sent out: http://www.jaaxy.com/

Alternatively, you could also try the free version of ahrefs.com and use the XL/CSV export option to download all the data.

Jon November 24, 2011 at 4:40 pm

Will be interesting to see if the merge into Bing produces an alternative checker.

http://www.backlinkwatch.com gives reasonable results and I’ve used it occasionally to check my own sites but it would be very time consuming to check competitors.

The tool I miss most is the Google link wheel.

Deane November 24, 2011 at 4:55 pm

Between Market Samurai and Majestic SEO I think I’m covered. But neither are as quick to use as just clicking that Yahoo Site Explorer button on my tool bar. Site Explorer will be missed :(.

Josh November 24, 2011 at 7:02 pm

We made the transition over the majesticseo.com(paid service). Site Explorer only ever provided about 1/3 of the number of backlinks as what Majestic offers in their reports. The only downside is, it takes a little longer to run your searches and the information isn’t a “simple” to go through as SE.

SE was one of those services that provided us with a quick way of analyzing competition, which was great, but at the same time brought a bit of laziness out in all of us.

I guess now we all just need to step it up a little. ;-)

Dennis November 25, 2011 at 8:48 am

Google Webmasters Tools now showing more links than before. So I guess I will be relying on it from now on. It doesn’t hurt if we’ll try the Bing Webmasters Tools. YSE’s features will be transfered to Bing so I guess Bing will not be bad after all huh?

California Divorce Mediation Los Angeles November 25, 2011 at 10:30 am

Sorry to see this tool go after all these years! Its been a great resource and hopefully the version in Bing can cut it.
Best regards

Andrew Wheeler

GV - GetRichMatrix November 25, 2011 at 3:36 pm

I’m using Traffic Travis to check who’s back linking. I think they use MajesticSEO on the back-end. However, even there I see it’s not really accurate.

I for instance found a way to get back links from .gov and .edu sites (dofollow) and they have been up for a couple of months. Google knows about them (I guess) because my rankings have exploded, but Traffic Travis (and thus MajesticSEO) still doesn’t show them.



Hemorroides Tratamiento November 25, 2011 at 3:40 pm

what a big pity! Site explorer was the best seo analysis engine so far! :(

Nick Heuer November 26, 2011 at 2:29 am

There are two incredible tools out there that are both free to use(one has a paid version, but the free version works great too).
The first is called SEO spyglass. You have to download this on to your computer, but when you do it works pretty good.
The latter, and definitely the fastest and easiest tool out there(I think it is better than yahoo site explorer ever was), is at ahrefs.com.
You just have to sign up for a free account then your good to go.
The best thing about ahrefs.com is when you put in the URL you want to check, you get back an almost instant report, and then you can click a tab called ahrefs and it will show all the anchor texts that URL is using. Very useful for doing a competition analysis.
Definitely checkout Ahrefs.com.

hagar November 26, 2011 at 2:34 am

guy that goes by “simple spencer” put up a blog post about this; here’s the link:
I asked around, and a lot of folks are liking that open site explorer, although the monthly updates kinda ruin your timing on split testing (grin).
The local SEO guys seem to be using MajesticSEO’s paid version mostly, altho a couple mentioned open site as well.
Me, until you put up this post, I’d never really thought about it (blush)

Genevieve November 26, 2011 at 2:38 am

I’ve tried a few tools, although I don’t know how they compare to YSE because I’ve never really used it extensively. One tool I stumbled across a few days ago is Domain-Pop at http://www.domain-pop.com/. The link numbers look lower because I don’t think it counts the same URL twice, and that’s what Google wants–diversity, right? It also shows other relevant info like domain age, Alexa rank, etc., which is useful for competition analysis. In the meantime, I’ll look around at other backlink services with a Google search and test them–see who comes up with the most backlinks and relevant info. Otherwise, if/when I can afford it, I might have to go paid.

Jason from Start Producing Wealth November 26, 2011 at 3:17 am

I always noticed a huge discrepancy between Google’s tools and YSE, so I never really trusted it too much anyway. No big loss, although competition analysis will be more difficult now. C’est la vie. My plan now is to just create the *best* site compared to my competition and hopefully beat them eventually.

Jay November 26, 2011 at 3:40 am

I am sorry to see Yahoo site explorer go they have been around forever.

I like to use Mikes keyword tools you can check your backlinks, see how your keywords are ranking in Google etc..

There are a few good alternatives just Google it.

James Hussey November 26, 2011 at 4:37 am

There are a few I use:

Market Samurai uses MajesticSEO, and it’s fine enough for my needs. Benefit is the PR checking, anchor text checks, no monthly fee. It only digs up to 1000 links though…

SEO Spyglass has a free version and it rocks the planet for link-checking. More affordable than most alternatives and it gives a LOT of information. I was using that in preference to YSE anyhow. It’s my personal fave of the bunch. http://link-assistant.com

Link Diagnosis at http://www.linkdiagnosis.com/ uses OSE and works in a pinch.

Finally, SECockpit by Shane Melaugh (sp?)…that also uses OSE but it has a premium OSE functionality for an affordable price (more affordable than OSE I believe for internet marketers). Problem is it’s a monthly fee, but that’s pretty standard now…

Eddie November 26, 2011 at 4:53 am

I have used SeoQuake for a long time, but they also use Yahoo for the backlinks.Wonder if they come up with a news way to check back links, because I love using it.
seospyglass and ahrefs.com are also tools I use and they provide some good information.
I wonder if there is a tool that provides us with the “real” information??
Google will never give away all it s backlinks, so we just have to guess, what ever tool we use, if it is accurate.
I guess that the ranking in the search engines, is the best tool to find out if you made enough back links

Easiest Way To Make Money Online November 26, 2011 at 5:06 am

I’m going to miss the SeoQuake tool bar, since they use YSE. Majestic will work just fine for my needs, it just won’t as convenient.


Jonathan Swain November 26, 2011 at 1:19 pm

Open Site Explorer from SEO Moz is a particularly useful tool and offers a wealth of useful info as well as backlink data. You can also view details of anchor text distribution and other useful stats. As mentioned above blekko is also pretty good and you can search for backlinks using the /inbound command after the URL you want to check

yegeta November 26, 2011 at 1:32 pm

Yea, Last time I was trying to look my site back link using Yahoo Explorer.
Now it is already gone!
Is there any trusted site that can do this? please suggest


Meg Jones November 26, 2011 at 5:44 pm

I’ve been using open site explorer, and will continue to do so. I had not spent much time with Yahoo site explorer. I’m glad, because it’s sure a pain to have to switch gears. This line of work certainly keeps you on your toes, with the parameters constantly being in flux.

David November 26, 2011 at 8:14 pm

Hello Pot Pie Girl!
I just received an email from you about this Yahoo backlink thing. I could be way off here, however, I use my Alexa toolbar to check the links going to any site I land on.

It tells me how many incoming links I have, and gives me a complete listing of those sites as well.

For example, you have 588 links coming into this site right this minute. Your Alexa ranking in the U.S. is 10,000 something, and about 18,000 and some odd numbers worldwide!

WOW GIRL! Your doing pretty darn good! Which brings me to my next issue, you had a link in the email you sent me for The Wealthy Affiliate University, and Pot Pie Girl, I have decided to take you up on that offer!

Thank you for all you do, for all of the great information you create for us! It is a breath of fresh air to find solid factual freshly written content, and on a regular basis!

Sorry about that, I guess that was a tongue twister. I mean that though, from my heart! I left a comment on your site a while back, I am pretty new at this, and I guess I shot my ignorant mouth off a bit about Google and the Panda!

I meant no harm, or disrespect, I hope my purchase will help smooth that wrinkle out, even though you probably never noticed it, and it was not directed at you anyway!

Take care Pot Pie Girl, I hope you had a blessed Thanksgiving Day, and I wish you much more success online, and offline!

Respectfully Submitted,
David aka. The Relentless1

James Hussey November 27, 2011 at 3:28 am

David – those numbers from the Alexa toolbar are the Alexa Ranking, they have nothing to do with a backlink count.

If you go to Alexa.com and find their “Top Sites” list, you’ll see that Google is #1, with an Alexa of 1 I think or something like it. Obviously not their # of backlinks (just to illustrate).

It’s a ranking system from 1 being the top site, to xxxx being the bottom of the dogpile. So PotPieGirl.com is around 18k Alexa, meaning the estimated traffic according to Alexa puts her site at #18k in the world.

All it really means, though, is that for every 1 person visiting here with the Alexa toolbar, Alexa assigns 500 or so estimated visits for that visit (they know that not everyone has the Alexa toolbar so they estimate).

Hopefully that clears it up. It’s got nothing to do with a backlink count.

David November 26, 2011 at 11:42 pm

Hi Pot Pie Girl!
I left you a comment earlier but I forgot to mention this resource I use.

There is a new search engine on the internet. I’m not sure how long they have been around, however, I do know that they have the top computer experts in the field.

http://seoengine.com is a great tool. I have used one of their packages called an SEO Pass and they crawl your site just like Google, and the information they supply you with is nothing short of incredible!

They crawl your site down to the pixel. They told me things about my sites overall health that I would have never found.

Fact is 99% of the websites on the internet are suffering with link flow problems that we cannot detect ourselves.

Sure, you could get a real savvy SEO consultant to figure this stuff out, but the time it would take would not be cost effective. This is a search engine that uses similar algorithms to Google, what better way of checking your sites SEO then by the same system that your trying to optimize for!

I have left you the link just in case you had not seen it, which would surprise me knowing you!

Take care, thanks for your loyalty to your subscribers!

P.S. I am going to use your link to join Wealthy Affiliate University!

Thanks again!

Katherine Allen November 27, 2011 at 5:11 am

It sucks that they shut it down. I plan to use open site explorer from seomoz. But they dont have the same amount of link data :(

David November 27, 2011 at 9:07 pm

Hello Pot Pie Girl,
Please do not post this comment! I just wanted you to explain this to me one last time?

You and your visitors tell me I am wrong thinking Alexa will tell you anything about backlinks to your site, however, my toolbar has a link that shows me sites linking into your site, the heading is site reputation?

I thought backlinks were link votes, which speaks to your reputation, the links shown below are from my Alexa toolbar page, and they are from places like Warrior Forum etc.

That isn’t a backlink? If not, what exactly would you call a link pointing back to your site from another site? It even states on the page that these sites linking to yours (588) was the count for this site.
Also, I just checked my site, and the exact same data for my site, show Digg, several other sites of mine, and even your site, as being one of the links pointing to my site?

I am really confused here because if those aren’t backlinks Pot Pie Girl, what are they?

Gosh, I’m embarrassed, I feel so terribly stupid! I have been trying to teach myself for a whole year, I;m only 56, am I just to old to start this?
Below are some of the sites linking to yours, so they would not be backlinks? WOW! I’m in trouble!
ask.reference.com/related/google instant?qsrc=2892&l=dir&o=1060
search-results.com/web?q=google instant&qsrc=6&o=100000020&l=dis

Local Online Marketing November 29, 2011 at 4:40 am

I use Traffic Travis and several other software. ost of these have switched over to the SEOMOZ api.

It’s very important to have some indicator of backlink growth and backlink authority.

Ryan December 2, 2011 at 10:38 pm

I still can’t believe they did this, that was my favorite link checking tool. It was updated fast and it was extremely accurate. I checked my Bing Webmaster Tools account and their backlink tracker isn’t even close to what YSE was. Sigh.

John December 3, 2011 at 3:13 am

Site explorer and Yahoo Finance were my only real reasons to use Yahoo (other than occasional checks to see if the search didn’t stink anymore, but it usually did [years ago it seemed to do some types of searches better than Google]). I guess they decided it wasn’t profitable for Site Explorer to exist. Seems foolish to me, but they have shown such foresight in other matters [oh wait, no they haven't]…

Lee Bahamonde December 4, 2011 at 9:13 pm

I’m already missing Site Explorer. Not only was it convenient but it was FAST. All the backlinks were just “there” – no waiting to download. I’m sure I’ll find something else to take it’s place, but nothing as easy to use, yet.

Tarrytown Dentist December 5, 2011 at 5:25 am

Yahoo updates’ gone too. Don’t know what’s happening to yahoo.

Henry December 7, 2011 at 11:06 pm

If yahoo site explorer is dead, backlinkwatch.com is there.

Property Investment Near Mumbai December 22, 2011 at 10:29 am

Unable to update yahoo webmaster too, because of this.

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