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Google Disavow Tool: How to Know Which Links to Disavow

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Google has announced a new tool that allows you to disavow links. This tool is powerful and as we all know power brings in loads of responsibilities too. Oh, that was Uncle Ben’s advice to Peter Parker! Although these heavy-duty and profound words are from a movie, they are true and real. The ability to disavow certain links could mean more power and responsibility in your hands.

Google could as well be handing out a live dynamite telling you to think twice before pulling the pin! Without trying to make you more anxious than absolutely necessary, let’s get down to knowing all about disavowing tool. 

What is Google’s new tool to disavow links?

Google’s new disavow tool enables you to disavow unnatural links pointing at your site. Links, used to generate a link to a page, is something Google uses to gather search results. Google checks the links between pages to get an idea about the page’s reputation, relevance and importance. This relevance forms the basis for rewarding PageRanks. Rewarding PageRank is one of the 200 ways in which ranking of a page is determined. But, most often, people are aware of PageRanks than about other forms of assessment. So, PageRank often becomes a target for spammers. This is the main reason why Google is constantly fighting the linkspam war with periodic algorithms.

How does this new tool work?

If your website has been the target for link spamming, you must have come across a message about ‘unnatural links’ pointing in the Webmaster Tools. This notification message is sent by Google as a part their efforts at making linking between websites happen naturally. When Google comes across link exchanges, paid links, and other link schemes and methods that go against its quality ethics and guidelines, Google sends out notifications to your site. Google advices you to remove as many unnatural, below quality and spam links from your sites as possible. By removing these links, you are in fact pointing out to Google and other search engines that you are serious about link spamming issue. You, indirectly, prevent Google from taking action because of bad back links to your site. Yet, there are times when you are unable to remove all the unnatural back links. You notice that there are still few back links that appear problematic. That is when Google’s new tool to disavow links comes in to the picture.

How to Know Which Links to Disavow?

This is the question we are trying to find answers to and trust me; there is no monosyllable answer to this question. The first question you have to consider before disavowing links with abandon is action or inaction. Being proactive is fine but when Google has not penalized your site then disavowing links blindly doesn’t sound like a sensible decision. On the flip side, not taking action even after knowing that there are potential unnatural links is not right either. So, for now you have to move with caution.

Received Bad Link Notification:

When you have received bad link warnings from Google’s Webmaster Tools, you can be sure that that are certain suspicious links to your site that needs to be taken care of. You could choose to disavow them. Presently, the notification from Google is the direct and only signal from Google about issues with your link profile.

  • Manually Penalized: If you have been penalized manually and you have reasons to suspect the presence of bad links to your site, then you might be well off if you disavow these links.
  • Reconsideration Denied by Google: There are times when Google just doesn’t consider reconsidering. You have been trying to remove bad links but without success, Google simply doesn’t sympathize with you in these situations. When you are unable to remove few bad links, you could try disavowing them.
  • Victim of Negative SEO: I sometimes wonder if negative SEO truly exists. But if you think you are a victim of negative SEO tactics, then disavowal is your latest weapon. As a victim you assume that someone has been trying to create bad links to your website which you are unable to remove.
  • Penguin Cost you Dearly: Understanding the working of Penguin update is tricky and tedious. Nevertheless, we do know that Penguin has been targeting those sites that use excessive unnatural anchor text and other strategies to build links. The best option you have to counter Penguin attack is by disavowing links that appear suspicious.

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