The Beginner’s Guide to Screaming Frog

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Screaming Frog is a simple SEO tool that you can install on any PC, Mac or Linux machine. It can crawl specific websites and analyse them from an SEO perspective. It is totally free to use up to 500 URLs and can be upgraded with the purchase of an annual license priced at £99. Here is how to get started with the application.

How to Crawl Sites with Screaming Frog

The way you use the program is simple. Simply click the URL you want to crawl and go to options. Once there, choose the “crawl all subdomains” option. The program gives you the option to crawl JavaScript, CSS, external links and SWF so you can get a full SEO view of any site. You can choose to uncheck any of these options if you want the site to be crawled faster, or if you only want the page and text elements of a site to be checked.

You can now start the crawl and wait for the results. Please note that the speed at which sites are crawled is not only dependent on the number of options you have checked, but on the speed of your machine as well.

Next step is clicking the internal tab and filtering the results by html. Next, click export. This will give you a complete CSV chart of all the data that has been crawled sorted by each individual HTML page. This info can then be used to identify problems with certain pages and address them accordingly.

How to Perform a Link Audit

Performing link audits can be difficult because of the sheer number of links in any given website. But performing link audits is easy with Screaming Frog. All you have to do is to check the “all subdomains” option in the spider menu, but leave all other options unchecked except for links. From there, you’ll be able to choose if you want no-follow links to be crawled as well.

You can now start the crawl and wait for it to be completed. In the advanced menu section, click “all links” and wait for the report to be generated. A report in CSV will then be created of all the links, including information on their locations, anchor text, destinations, directives and other relevant data.

Get Information on Outbound Links

After having generated a link audit, you can perform various actions, such as checking how many links you have per page. Google tends to frown on pages with more than 100 links per page, so this tool is perfect if you need to correct any irregularities. You can also check if any of your pages return a 404 status code or 301 pages that link to harmful or inactive sites.


Screaming Frog is one of the best tools to conduct site audits and to check what your competition is doing from a SEO standpoint. It’s also perfect for those who want to do a full SEO analysis of their site and make the necessary modifications. In addition, it is completely free for the first 500 URLs, which makes it a brainer for any webmaster who wants to improve the SEO quality of their website.

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