SEMrush vs Moz: Which Pro SEO Tool Is Better?

semrush vs moz

Today, two powerful SEO tools come head-to-head as SEMrush takes on Moz Pro. Both of these products are more than capable of providing you data to take your site or online business to the next level.

But which one should you choose?

On the surface, you’d think that both tools provide the same service. And for the most part, you’d be correct. But take a peek under the hood and you’ll find differences that could put one over the other.

That’s why you should take the time to research both SEMrush and Moz so you can determine for yourself which pro SEO tool is better for what you want to accomplish.

With all of that said, let’s compare SEMrush to Moz and see how they fare.

What Is SEMrush?

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SEMrush is a comprehensive all-in-one online marketing tool that aims to maximize your site’s chances of ranking higher in the search engine result pages or SERPs.

When you enter a domain and start the analysis, SEMrush looks for issues to fix and opportunities you could exploit. And not only does it help you figure out what’s wrong with your site, but you can also use it to see what your competitor is up to these days.

SEMrush has five major features with each one having subfeatures that perform a specific function. 

Organic Research

SEMrush lets you check your site to see how it’s performing with regard to organic research. It’s regarded as one of the tool’s most important features especially if your whole objective is to improve your on-page SEO.

Just what kind of information can you dig up with SEMrush’s organic research?

For starters, you could perform a site audit. This gives you a better idea of how healthy your site is overall. And to make it simpler to interpret, SEMrush gives your site a score based on various factors that SEMrush breaks down for you.

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SEMrush will issue warnings if it finds and suggests actions for you to take.

This serves as a great starting point especially for those who are new to using SEO tools.

You can also perform content and domain analysis.

Keyword Research

What keywords you use to optimize your site also plays a role in how well your site performs in search rankings. And with SEMrush, you can adjust your keyword planning strategy by finding better keyword opportunities using its keyword planner.

For instance, the Keyword Magic Tool lets you enter a seed keyword and the tool will generate a bunch of keywords that you may not have considered before.

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Then there’s the Keyword Difficulty tool that shows how competitive a keyword is so you can determine which ones are worth trying out.

The Keyword Gap tool compares your keywords with your competitors and helps you track which ones rank higher or lower in the SERPs.

Link Building

Of course, you also have to consider the status of your link building efforts. And SEMrush has the tools to help you find sources that link back to your domain.

Backlink Analytics lets you enter a URL or domain and conducts an online search for resources that link back to your pages. 

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If you enter your competitor’s domain, it will show you a list of pages that link back to them instead. This is useful for situations wherein you’re looking for link building opportunities. 

Another SEMrush backlink feature is its Backlink Audit tool. It finds spammy backlinks that cause your SERP ranking to go down. This feature makes it easier to report and disavow bad links.

There’s another feature called Backlink Gap that works like the aforementioned Keyword Gap tool. Only this time, it looks at your competitor’s backlinks and lets you find links that help your competitors rank higher in search engines.

Content Marketing

Content also plays a role in SEO. And without a content analysis tool, you might not be able to maximize its full potential.

So what features does SEMrush have that opens the door for better content?

One is Topic Research. It’s a feature that lets you enter a keyword and then shows you topics that your competitors wrote about the keyword you provided.

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If you’ve used Buzzsumo before, it works in a similar manner.

There are other content-related features like the SEO Writing Assistant which makes sure your posts have the ideal number of words, have a great readability rating, and include the right keywords.   

Social Media

There’s no denying that social media plays a crucial role in SEO. It indirectly affects page views and helps you connect with people who could end up becoming sources for high-quality backlinks by featuring your works on their blogs.

SEMrush creates social media opportunities through some of its features.

The Social Media Tracker tool lets you monitor your social media activity from one location. It can also keep track of your competitor’s social media presence.

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You can even use it to plot your social media calendar and automatically post them.

And with Brand Monitoring, you can see what people say when they mention your brand.

What Is Moz Pro?

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Moz Pro is the flagship product of Moz, a highly respected SaaS company that centers around search engine optimization.

But despite the brand’s popularity, its competitors—namely SEMrush and Ahrefs—seem to be the go-to choice now for most online marketers.

While you may take that as a negative sign, there’s still plenty of reasons why you might want to stick with Moz Pro for your SEO needs.

Below are just some of the features this tool has to offer.


When you log into Moz Pro for the first time, you’ll be asked to set up a campaign. This process will let Moz know which site to keep track of. For this to work, you’ll have to give Moz access to your Google Analytics data.

After setting up your campaign, Moz will provide you key information about your domain including its Domain Authority (DA), Moz’s own site rating metric.

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While DA is a proprietary metric and it’s based on Moz’s interpretation, it’s one of the widely accepted metrics in the industry used to illustrate site quality. 


Another neat feature that Moz has is the ability to see all your keywords and their current ranking in the SERPs.

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The nice thing about it is that when you add your competitors in Moz Pro, you can see how well you’re performing against them for the keyword you entered. This will give you a better assessment as to how well you’re performing altogether.

Moz will also tell you what keywords you’re ranking for but haven’t tracked just yet. This makes sure you don’t miss out on other keyword opportunities.

Page Optimization

Page Optimization—as the name implies—lets you see just how optimized your pages are for search engines.

Once you enter a URL, Moz checks it for on-page factors like metadata, keyword location, and other factors.

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You’re also provided a score to make it easier to understand how optimized the page really is. The higher your score, the more optimized the page.

Site Crawl

Site Crawl works the same was as Page Optimization. Only this time, Moz checks your entire domain for possible errors. 

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You could even say that Site Crawl is way more extensive as far as finding issues is concerned. It detects redirected pages, long page titles, missing page descriptions, duplicate pages, and other issues you may not even be aware that you’re facing.


And what SEO tool would be complete without a way to check backlinks. The Moz Pro’s Link feature gives you an idea of just how many backlinks you have and the quality of each one.

It even shows how many links you’ve lost over time.

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It also lets you see how many of these links are do-follow versus no-follow, which ones have the bigger Page Authority (PA), what are the most commonly used anchor texts, and other useful data.

And again, you can use the same feature to go over your competition. You’ll see what their link building strategy is and react accordingly.

If you suspect that you’re getting more spammy links than usual, you can confirm your suspicions using the Spam Score feature. This grades your backlinks so you know which links you have to disavow.

The Link Intersect feature easily shows you which backlinks your competitor managed to acquire. Moz then compares this to your list of backlinks. 

If your competitor has backlinks that you don’t, Moz will show you which domains you’d want to acquire or avoid — depending on your strategy.

Those who would like to acquire these missing backlinks could use Link Tracking to convert the Link Intersect report into a to-do list. It makes it easier to track which domains you’d like to earn backlinks from. It seamlessly tracks your whole progress.

Keyword Research

If you’re in the hunt for new keywords to capitalize on, then Moz has your back. 

The Keyword Research tool just might be Moz Pro’s greatest strength. You can perform traditional keyword research or competitor keyword research.

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When you enter a keyword, Moz provides valuable information to help you decide which keywords to pursue. You get the monthly volume, keyword difficulties, organic CTR, and more.

The Organic CTR metric, in particular, is interesting because it lets you know the click percentage of that keyword in the SERPs. Meaning if your page ranks for that term, you have an idea of how many people would eventually click on your link.

But the results can get even more granular than that.

You can sort the results by priority using the Keyword Explorer’s Priority value. Toggling this on would give you a list of high-value, organic CTR and low priority. This combination makes it possible to find keywords that would yield the best return but underutilized by your competitors.

And if that’s not enough, Moz can also monitor your brand’s presence online so you’re always on top of negative mentions on the web.

How Are Moz Pro and SEMrush Similar?

As you may have figured out by now, both Moz Pro and SEMrush have pretty similar features. And that is not unusual for most SEO tools since its users look for the same functionalities in general.

 Moz ProSEMrush
Site AuditMoz Pro’s Site Crawl feature gives your domain a score and a list of errors you might have to fixSEMrush comes with features that let you determine the health of your site
Keyword ResearchMoz has a powerful keyword research tool that lets you find new opportunities to exploreFeatures like the Keyword Magic Tool and the Keyword Difficulty Tool finds the best KW opportunities for your domain
Backlink AnalysisThere are backlink-related features that make link building campaigns a breezeBacklink Analytics shows you domains you could reach out to for potential link building partnerships
Page AnalysisYou can check individual pages to see if they are competitive enough for the SERPsThe On-Page SEO Checker goes over individual pages to find potential errors
Brand MonitoringYou can monitor mentions of your brand in the SERPsThere is a Brand Monitoring feature for those who’d like to keep an eye out for brand mentions online

But let’s dig a little deeper into how both tools fare when placed side by side.

Similarity #1: Site Audit

You can’t go wrong with either tool as both can crawl your site and look for problem areas that need addressing.

And honestly, both tools do an admirable job finding issues like missing metadata and duplicate pages. 

When either Moz Pro or SEMrush finds issues, it will list them all down and show you what actions you need to take to fix them.

Similarity #2: Keyword Research

Many SEO specialists look for SEO tools specifically for the ability to find keywords they can use for their campaigns.

Luckily, both SEMrush and Moz Pro have this feature. Not only that, but they are both really good at finding keyword opportunities. 

Let’s take a look at SEMrush. Its Keyword Magic Tool lets you discover multiple keywords based on a seed word you enter. In simpler terms, you can generate tens to hundreds of keywords from one term.

This is great especially if you are just starting out and you’re not really sure what keywords to target within your industry.

But Moz Pro can do the same.

When you enter a keyword in Moz Pro, you’ll not only get a list of keywords to work with but also a breakdown of every keyword. You’ll have a great idea of how hard those keywords are to rank. 

The Organic CTR percentage lets you know how many people click on pages that rank for that keyword. This is great because it lets you know what keywords are worth investing in.

You can use both Moz Pro and SEMrush to determine what keywords your competitor is trying to rank for.

Similarity #3: Backlink Analysis

If you plan on launching a link building campaign, then here’s even more good news. Both SEMrush and Moz Pro have features that find you the best backlink opportunities out there.

You can enter your competition’s domain and see what backlinks they received. You can then cross-check it with your list to find domains you haven’t worked with before.

Both tools can also help you assess your own backlinks.

In SEMrush’s case, this feature is called Backlink Analysis. It will tell you the total number of backlinks you have, what kind of backlinks they are (text, image, etc.), if these are do-follow or no-follow links, what domain extension the linking party has, what country the backlink came from, and what anchor text the author used.

For Moz Pro, this feature is called Link Research. It scores the referring domain using its own Domain Authority metric and gives you most of the same information as Backlink Analysis. 

Similarity #4: Page Analysis

Not only can both tools do site-wide audits, but they can both do page-level audits as well.

Over at SEMrush, this feature is called On-Page SEO Checker. The nice thing about this feature is that it walks users through the process. This makes it ideal for those who may not have extensive knowledge with regards to on-page SEO.

Moz’s Page Optimization feature not only scores your page based on on-page factors but also on keyword usage and distribution. The score you receive is a good benchmark on what you can improve on that particular page.

Similarity #5: Brand Monitoring

Brand monitoring is just one of those factors that SEOs tend to forget when coming up with an SEO strategy. It does have an impact because if there are too many negative reviews online, then the chances of users clicking on your links go down drastically.

Normally, you’d need an entire team if you want to manage your brand’s mentions online. But not everyone has the resources for that.

But if you subscribe to SEMrush or Moz Pro, one person can manage brand mentions with ease. And you can do so from one location. This saves you time and money.

How Are SEMrush and Moz Pro Different?

Despite their similarities, both brands do have their differences. And these could be the reasons why you end up choosing one over the other.

Let’s look at some of their major differences.

Difference #1: Pricing

The entry-level plans for both SEMrush and Moz Pro are almost the same. Moz Pro’s Standard plan is $99/month. 

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Meanwhile, SEMrush’s Pro plan is $99.95/month.

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But as you go up, that’s where you see the difference in the pricing structure. Because Moz Pro offers more plans, there’s a bigger chance that you’ll find one that’s right for your business.

However, you also have to consider what comes with the plan.

For example:

SEO agencies need to ability to send scheduled reports. With SEMrush, scheduled reports are limited to five for the Pro plan. Moz Pro lets you create unlimited schedule reports no matter what plan you select.

Difference #2: Free Trial

Having the freedom to test an SEO tool is important. How else can you know what to expect after you subscribe?

Both SEMrush and Moz Pro have free trial options. However, SEMrush will only let you test it out for 7 days. That pales in comparison to Moz Pro’s 30-day free trial.

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Being able to test drive Moz Pro for longer gives users a chance to realize how it can help them achieve their SEO goals.

Difference #3: Local SEO

To be fair, both Moz Pro and SEMrush have local SEO features. And if we’re being honest, Moz Local is fantastic. Which is why it’s a shame that it’s being sold as a separate product.

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But with SEMrush, you get this feature outright through the On-Page SEO Checker. You just have to set it up by selecting a target location.

Difference #4: Keyword Tracking

Moz Pro will only track 300 keywords in its base plan while SEMrush tracks up to 500 keywords. Considering that both their base plans cost $99, SEMrush gives you more bang for your buck if keyword tracking is what’s most important to you.

What’s Better About SEMrush?

What makes SEMrush really stand out? If you’re leaning toward this fantastic SEO tool, here are a few features that might make the decision that much easier.

Focus on Content

SEMrush has features that make it easier to produce SEO content. Not only do you get to do topic research based on your target locale, but you also see what kind of posts your competitor publishes based on your target term.

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It even shows you how popular a topic currently is so you don’t accidentally publish a post that has a relatively small chance of gaining traction.

SEMrush can even produce recommendations for your content based on your top ten rivals on Google.

Paid Ad Tracking

SEMrush’s Paid Ad Tracking gives you more information about a keyword and lets you explore possible product listing ad opportunities down the road. If this is something you’re interested in, you can’t ignore this feature.

User-Friendly Interface

This could boil down to user preference but in our opinion, SEMrush has a better interface especially for people who have never experienced using an SEO tool before.

What’s Better About Moz Pro?

Moz Pro has its own set of advantages that are worth mentioning. Here are Moz’s strengths.


Mozbar is a Google Chrome extension that anyone can use for free. However, paying subscribers get to unlock the restrictions set in place for free users.

Once installed, you can check a site’s DA and PA score with a click of a button. No need to enter the site on Moz Pro.

Data Presentation

As far as how these tools present their data, we’d have to give Moz Pro the win albeit only by a hair. We found that Moz presents its data better. New users shouldn’t have a hard time understanding what the numbers and graphs mean for their site.

You can also immediately tell what you need to do in order to improve your numbers which is important.

Keyword Explorer Tool

SEMrush does a great job finding you keywords to target. However, the kind of keyword data that Moz Pro churns out is spectacular.

The Keyword Explorer Tool just might be Moz’s biggest asset.

Being able to see a keyword’s monthly search volume, keyword difficulty, organic CTR, and priority will enable you to make informed decisions on which keywords to prioritize and which ones you should simply let go.

You can even compare keywords with your competitors from within the tool. You can analyze a single site or compare multiple sites at the same time.

User Access

Both SEMrush and Moz’s base plans only allow one user to access the account. But on Moz’s bigger plans, that number increases. The Large plan ($249/month) lets three users use the same account while the Premium plan raises that number to five.

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SEMrush lets you raise the number of users for an additional $200/month (for every user). 

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This can end up being costly especially for those who are on a tight budget.

Who Should Get SEMrush and Why?

Those who would like the better all-around solution should get SEMrush. Not only can it do the same SEO tasks that Moz Pro can, but there are also additional features here that can help you publish better posts like its Topic Research feature.

Its organic research capabilities will be more than enough to handle your on-page optimization needs and its also capable of finding backlink opportunities based on your competitors.

SEMrush can even help with local SEO. So if you’re looking for an SEO tool for boosting your site and you just happened to be a local business, SEMrush is your best bet. It will help you rank in local markets much better.

It’s a well-rounded tool that would do wonders for your SEO campaign.

For the price, you can’t ask for anything more.

Who Should Get Moz Pro and Why?

Moz Pro’s biggest advantage is its amazing Keyword Research capabilities. So if that’s your main priority, we highly suggest that you go with Moz Pro.

And Moz is no slouch in the other departments as well. It can do on-page optimization just as well as SEMrush so you’re not really losing out on much.

And because it offers more plans, you can find a price range that’s suitable for your business. If you go for one of its higher plans, you even get more user access which is huge considering SEMrush requires you to pay $200 per user.