The internet is becoming more competitive by the day. As such, if you are looking to get ahead with your new website, you will want to take a trip to the past and look at some of the popular websites in your industry, and what made them successful.
A platform that makes this possible is Wayback Machine. However, even Wayback Machine may not always work the way you want it to, so you might be interested in finding alternatives.
This article will help you.
What is Wayback Machine?
Why is it so popular?
The answer is simple. The average life expectancy for a web page is 100 days before it is modified or deleted, so people who are interested in seeking archived web information to evaluate their rival businesses and create better strategies use the Wayback Machine.
Let’s face it, without web tools like the Wayback Machine, we will not be able to see indexed website histories, explore how they were created and functioned, and years of history will be lost to time.
Because of it, you can access digital content that is no longer available on the source website.
Best Wayback Machine Alternatives
In the digital age we’re living in, nothing is cast in stone; not even a web resource as old as the Wayback Machine. So, what happens the day archive.org doesn’t work anymore?
Even if that day never comes, Wayback Machine isn’t exactly the ultimate web pages archive.
You may not find all the pages you’re looking for with Wayback Machine since you cannot capture pages daily or even completely.
These shortcomings and others make it necessary for other options.
Here are the 15 best Wayback Machine alternative sites in 2021.
Stillio is best known to be able to capture website screenshots regularly. So, it catches screenshots at periodic intervals like hourly, daily, weekly, monthly, or any custom interval you deem fit.
One area where Stillio comes out ahead of Wayback Machine is in the control its user get over their website indicators such as SEO rankings, ads validation, compliance, and more.
Also, Wayback Machine does not properly interpret images and HTML, which sometimes leaves its results messy, but Stillio does both consistently.
At a quick glance, both tools look very similar, especially because they allow you to see past versions of a single page, but there’s a lot of room between them.
For starters, Stillio acquires PNG shots of web pages, which means you will see the content accurately. That means there will be no distortion in the texts, images, graphs, and the other components of the web page.
You will find many broken pages and incomplete graphics whenever you call up such pages.
Stillio accommodates remote storage, so you can capture pages offline and sync them to your Google Drive or other cloud providers.
It also gives you unfettered control over your screenshots. You can take mobile screenshots of your page and edit the dimension to your taste.
Stillio’s interface is as good as it gets, yet, you reserve the right to customize screenshot titles for better readability.
That’s not all Stillio brings to the table. With this Wayback Machine alternative, you have yourself an easier way to check on your competitors.
The tool does not require you to visit your competitors’ sites daily. Once you login into your dashboard, you will be all caught up.
You can also integrate Google SERP into your dashboard to get insights on search results, rankings, and ads.
Stillio is subscription-based.
- Snap Shot – $29/month
- Hot Shot – $79/month
- Big Shot – $199/month
- Top Shot – $299/month
These plans let you set up a free account and explore Stillio for 14 days.
Just like Wayback Machine, Archive.today is a free archive site that has a sophisticated database and index process.
It is becoming increasingly popular, which is not surprising because it is very easy to use and search.
The website stores snapshots of on-demand pages and can retrieve one page at a time as long as it is less than 50MB. It leaves the duplicate pages online even if the originals are removed and creates a short link to the new pages.
One of the best things about Archive.today is that it keeps two different copies of a web page’s snap. The first one usually includes live links contained in the original web pages, while the other is a static picture of the page.
That’s just scratching the surface of what you can use the archive website for.
Archive.today has a drag and drop bookmarklet button that allows you to easily navigate to any page and create a snapshot with a simple click.
Once you have clicked on the button, the web tool will open up a new page and initiate the saving process immediately.
Like Wayback Machine, Archive.today has a URL finder, but one key difference about it is that its text searching feature is powered by Google and Yandex. This means that Whenever Google comes up with no result, it automatically switches to Yandex.
Archive.today does not entertain robots.txt files that have caused lots of data to be lost in Wayback Machine.
Archive.today is free to use, but they accept donations.
3. Domain Tools
Domain Tools’ website is a web resource that can be used to find out the historical ownership of a website. It is popularly used to dig up information that is no longer accessible on the internet.
It was founded by renowned Domaine and entrepreneur, Jay Westerday.
Where Wayback Machine is a focused website, Domain Tools houses two websites – Screenshots and Whois, and features the simplest way to access historical data on the internet.
One of its best features is that it allows you to look up any site’s screenshot history. This means that you will be able to view how much any website’s design has changed over the years.
The Whois aspect of Domain Tools is also very useful. It helps you with valuable information about the owner of a website. There you will be able to get the date the domain was registered, hosting details, and the IP history.
Domain Tools excels in other areas where the Wayback Machine doesn’t. For example, it takes an accurate snapshot of exactly how a page looks just before the updates are made.
The Wayback Machine can hardly show this to visitors, instead, it presents the actual content of the web page.
Domain Tools sells at $99 per month or an annual charge of $995.
Pagefreezer is a web and social media archiving platform that makes archiving easy using cloud-based technology.
It is an ideal solution for both small and large scale businesses and can be applied in a variety of industries such as finance, education, retail, telecom, and even government.
Companies use Pagefreezer to protect their web and social media content permanently, but more importantly, in greater quality.
It is one of the easiest platforms to use and you can access all your archives from a single portal.
Since it can archive multiple contents without the need for multiple accounts, once you log in, you will find all of your sites, blog, and social media content archived in one place. It doesn’t get simpler than that.
Despite the fact that Pagefreezer is easy to set up and navigate, it fully authenticates stored materials using digital signatures and timestamps to ensure compliance with FRE and FRCP.
One way Pagefreezer is similar to Wayback Machine is that it uses crawling technology like Google cache. So, it fully automates your archiving process without requiring any installation.
This guarantees that not only is your content safe, it can easily be delivered to an auditor if the need arises.
Pagefreezer is a subscription-based application that costs $99 per month.
WebCite is an on-demand archive website that is designed to preserve web pages permanently.
It is mostly used by authors, editors and publishers, and academic scholars to ensure that educationally important materials and references are available for future use.
WebCite avails these references with detailed snapshots which is one of its key differences with Wayback Machine.
WebCite accommodates content in many formats such as Html web pages, CSS driven pages, pdf files, and images. One thing it does not do is web crawling.
A typical WebCite reference is usually made up of the traditional elements of a reference such as the name of the author, title of the article, the original URL, and the WebCite URL.
WebCite comes in two formats: Opaque and Transparent. You can add the Opaque format to a cited URL while the latter replaces such URL. So opaque URLs can only be used in instances where the original URL is still present.
You can archive single cited web pages and manually introduce a citation to the document or upload the content to the WebCite server and let the software go through the manuscript and replace all the old URL with links that will be permanently archived on the website.
Materials are easily accessible for readers on Cite. You can access archive content directly from the link provided by the WebCite publisher.
WebCite is free to use.
Resurrect Pages leverages archive.org and other web pages to bring dead pages back to life, hence the name.
With this archiving tool, you will be able to view content from deleted pages and broken links as if on the original page. So you can look for older versions of a competitor’s website and also access content from Google cache, WebCite, internet archive, etc.
One thing to note about this archiving tool is that unlike Wayback Machine, Resurrect Pages is a Firefox add-on that is only compatible with Firefox. So internet users that are not comfortable with the processes of Firefox are cut off from using Resurrect Pages.
Also, the quality and accuracy of this tool are determined by the archive it harnesses, so it is difficult to judge Resurrect Pages on its own merit.
Resurrect Pages is free to use.
Yubnub is an archive tool that is best known for accessing business-related information on the web.
It has a simple interface and is just as easy to use for finding details about a website that is relevant to the business.
Yubnub works similarly to a search engine site. If you can find anything on Google, you sure can use this tool.
To find information about a website, you will simply enter the URL on the search bar and hit the enter button. The information usually takes seconds to surface and then you will have all the business-related information of the URL you entered.
One area where Yubnub differs from Wayback Machine is that Yubnub allows users to develop and use commands that are linked to web pages and services.
Yubnub is free to use.
If you are looking for a Wayback Machine alternative that will give you the complete information of a website, then you will want to check out iTools.
Unlike Wayback Machine, iTools is not an ordinary website repository, it also doubles as a website analyzer. This means that you can use it to generate insights into a website such as traffic volume, ratings, contact information, and much more.
It is worthy to state that iTools provides this data through the help of the Alexa tool.
Using iTools means that you can use a single solution for repository and analytics. You can also be sure to find all the common website analytics tools that you need.
iTools is not entirely easy on the eyes. In fact, if you are a first time user, the website will perplex you. But once you have gotten the hang of it, you will enjoy using it.
While it may not be the most sophisticated archive tool in this lineup, iTools is a great alternative to the Wayback Machine if you want a tool that gives you insight into web pages beyond their screenshots and codes.
iTools is free to use.
9. Time Travel
The Time Travel archive tool lets you travel back in time to see how a website looked at a specific time.
Built using the archive.today API, this solution is easy to use and can be leveraged as an enhanced internet archive product.
It allows you to choose any web archive of your choice so you will be taken care of if you have a preference.
Unlike Wayback Machine, Time Travel lets you view web pages with complex visualizations. So you can access archived sites with components beyond text, stylesheets, and images.
Time Travel is not Stillio, but if you are looking for a solution to search and view previous site versions, then it will make a good choice.
Time Travel is free to use.
Alexa needs no introduction. After all, it is only one of the most popular competitive research tools you will find in the market.
As part of Amazon.com, Alexa can be used to retrieve website history and other information that are crucial for competitive analysis.
Its main selling point is that you can use it to find information on keyword research and site performance.
Alexa helps to provide insights about previous visits, duration of visits, and frequency.
While it may seem that Alexa is becoming a bit of a relic with time, it still offers more features than Wayback Machine does.
For example, the Wayback Machine cannot provide traffic indices like Alexa.
In fact, one of the features Alexa is most popular for is its traffic rank. Certainly, you must have heard the reference ‘Alexa Ranking.’
Although this feature may not be of high value in terms of accuracy, a lot of businesses still have faith in it.
Alexa may not be the most traditional archive site, but it’s still my pick as the best Wayback Machine alternative that provides insight on a website to perform competitive analysis.
For this feature, Alexa is subscription-based.
- Advanced – $149 per month
- Agency – $299 per month
The Advanced and Agency plans do pretty much the same thing. The difference is in the access and the duration of their free trial.
The Advanced plan offers a 14-day free trial and allows access for only one website and a single user.
On the other hand, the Agency plan gives access to up to 35 sites and 20 users. Plus it’s free for a whole month.
MirrorWeb claims to be the top Wayback Machine alternative for the finance industry.
The web tool monitors and keeps records of websites for the sake of compliance and eDiscovery. So if you run a financial service and do not want to be found wanting by the SEC and other regulating bodies, then you may want to look into this tool.
One of its top features is that it preserves archived web pages to look exactly the same when they are called up later. This way you have a tool that comfortably searches and compares content for you for eDiscovery and the possible event of litigation.
Another feature of MirrorWeb that Wayback Machine does not possess is that in addition to web capturing, it also stores social media channel data.
MirrorWeb is a subscription-based app and costs $200 per month.
CacheView is a convenient Wayback Alternative that grants users access to web page archives from Google Cache, internet archive, and the Coral Content Distribution Network in a single platform. So if your preference is a tool that archives websites from different sources all at once, then this is for you.
Its three-dimensional index is not the only thing that makes it different from the Wayback Machine.
It has a Chrome app that lets you read the cache folder of a Google Chrome browser and presents all the files that are in the cache.
The cache files usually contain useful information such as URL, type of content, server name, server response, etc. and this makes it easier for you to copy and extract files you want to analyze.
CacheView is free to use.
This one is a bit similar to Wayback Machine in terms of keeping records of copies of your website. But more than that, it also provides tools for peripheral services such as email, text, and social media content.
The best part is that you can manage all this from one dashboard.
One of the drawbacks of this solution is that it only captures screenshots and not the full version of the website. So you may find some pieces of the archived site missing if you want to view them later.
MessageWatcher is subscription-based. Its pricing starts at $300 per month and will cost more if you are in the habit of exporting large amounts of data.
ChangeTower is a Wayback Machine alternative that monitors your website in real-time.
It shares a few similarities with Wayback Machine, but one huge difference between the two is that the ChangeTower gives you a notification whenever there is a change to your site and creates snapshots of the modified pages immediately.
Just like MessageWatcher, ChangeTower only captures the snapshot of the page rather than the full website, which does not make it the best choice for compliance purposes.
ChangeTower is subscription-based and costs $299 per month.
Smarsh may be the last on our lineup, but it is definitely not the least.
Just like a couple of Wayback Machine alternatives already mentioned above, Smarsh offers web and social media monitoring from one dashboard.
Like Wayback Machine, it is not suitable for archiving sites that contain large amounts of dynamic content. However, it is one of the best supervision tools you will find for emails, text, and other collaboration platforms.
Smarsh pricing varies according to required services but it starts at $10 per user per month.
Keep in mind that the right platform depends on your specific need and while some of the aforementioned tools contain more options than the others, they all pass for good old-fashion Wayback Machine alternatives in 2021.