The back-tracking search algorithm (BSA) is a new heuristic algorithm. BSA has two especially important properties: it is not sensitive to the initial value and has a single control parameter. This study presents the BSA-based optimal sizing and placement of distributed generations (DGs), capacitor banks (CBs), and thyristor-controlled series compensator (TCSC) in a radial distribution system (RDS). These elements are integrated separately and simultaneously in RDS. The objective function is power loss. The BSA is executed on IEEE 33 bus RDS. The obtained results are compared to a genetic algorithm (GA) and other algorithms in the literature. The results demonstrate that the BSA is more efficient and has the potential to find optimal solutions with less power loss. In this paper, optimal placement and sizing of DGs, TCSC, and CBs in a RDS is solved simultaneously using BSA for the first time.