Is the Disavow a win for SEO, or should Google simply “not count” bad links pointing at your site?
@seoJesseo: Not sure if it’s a win.. not enough data to prove effectiveness of disavow. Nice that they make effort I guess. Seems like disavow doesn’t prove much to Google seeing as how they need to see much more effort in resubmission requests.
@Sonray: Disavow is a win; takes the power away from the spammer sites. It will be interesting to see how the data Goog has collected via disavow will be used in this next update.
@BradyDCallahan: I think it’s a win. Gives SEOs a chance to prove they care about what’s best for user. Not a big win though. Just a tool.
@Ravenjeremy: It’s a double edged sword. The truth is the sheisty links shouldn’t have been built in the first place.
@RyanJones: I think they should just not count them. even with penalties, there’s so little cases disavow is needed.
@CountXero: “Disavow” is a win & a great first step to this issue. Google would ignore if it were more confident in the algo.
@Tony_DWM: Win for client sites. Shows Google intent to clear up link profile, esp as the importance of Authorship grows
In the past year, have you actively worked to remove links? Worked with Clients who have?
@seoJesseo: Yes, very much so. Spent many hours removing links and petitioning webmasters to remove links (the latter with little success).
@BradyDCallahan: Yes. About to do more of it too. Past black-hat SEO links that needed removal.
@CountXero: Absolutely. Worked with clients who have. We generally “teach a man to fish” with our #SEO work.
@ty_kilgore: Yes, have spend some time working to remove links. Mainly collecting the list and emailing web masters.
@Sonray: gained many new clients and cleaned up their link profiles.
@SteveWebb: Unfortunately, yes. I’ve done more link audits for clients than I care to count (ditto for disavow files).
@BrockbankJames: Worked with a small number of clients who have after being stung by previous SEOs.
@Tony_DWM: Yes & Some
@seo_george: Nope, haven’t had to, only doing in-house but good to know it’s available if needed.
@CyrusShepard: Interesting – Sounds like Link Cleanup has actually been good business for some. Unfortunate but true.
@ty_kilgore: What I found was various links on pages that were no longer managed. So nice to work on clients that haven’t had an “SEO expert”
@CountXero: We were already kind of “down that road,” pre-penguin, but there was a nice uptick afterwards.
When’s the best time to remove bad links – After a manual penalty or after a rankings drop? or ASAP?
@seoJesseo: ASAP! Stay ahead of the penalty. Resubmission has no firm timeline and one day’s dropped rankings can break a company.
@CountXero: ASAP and regularly. We teach our clients the warnings signs as part of training & to get ahead of the penalty.
@SteveWebb: If you KNOW you have bad links, remove them ASAP. Once you’re on the Penguin radar, it’s difficult to get off it.
@Sonray: Before for sure but that isn’t always an option. Even with disavow, Penguin is hard to get in front of.
@BradyDCallahan: ASAP. Just “do the right thing” + the SERPs change/vary too often.
@Tony_DWM: I’d start right after a link audit before a client comes on-board. Need to understand tho whether algo or manual has happened.
@CyrusShepard: I’ve removed links proactively as well, long before any penalty/dip in rankings.
Adding Disavow: What do you think is more important, removing links or disavowing them? Have you used the disavow?
@jerodbarlow: Always try to remove first. Disavow has got to be a last resort.
@Sonray: removing links FIRST then disavow to show goog your love and care. I’ve used the disavow.
@seoJesseo: Removing, definitely. Google has stated themselves that you must first attempt to remove all the links before using Disavow.
@BradyDCallahan: All I know is Disavow tool should be absolute final resort. And don’t pay to have links removed. #NotWorthIt
@SteveWebb: Both. If you can’t show a good faith effort on your part (by removing links), disavowals don’t have the same value.
@ravenjeremy: Also don’t always jump to the conclusion that bad links are the ONLY reason a problem can occur: Check for site errors first!
@countxero: We use both with varying levels of success. One’s a scalpel, one’s an axe.
@CyrusShepard: Sounds like removing links is way more important….
What’s more important to Google when submitting a reconsideration request: 100% accuracy or Effort shown?
@BrockbankJames: It should be effort shown but whether it is is another story!
@seoJesseo: I’d say a bit of both, but mainly effort. They want clear evidence that you understand what the wrong way to do SEO is.
@Sonray: I don’t know that 100% accuracy is achievable; a lot of these sites have been disappearing fast.
@Tony_DWM: I’d say effort, as accuracy can be hard when dealing with many links.
@CyrusShepard: My tip: Run all links found in Google Webmaster through Screaming Frog. Any that return a 404 submit to Google as “removed”
Would you use Disavow for algorithmic factors like Penguin, or ONLY for manual penalties?
@BradyDCallahan: I’d use Disavow tool for any (truly) bad link I can’t get removed via the webmaster.
How do you suppose Google uses your data from Disavow Files? Can you do negative SEO by submitting competitor sites?
@Sonray: It’s useful in each case but focus should be on client goals and needs before proceeding with disavow.
@itrogers: Unlikely to hurt unless on a massive scale. disavow is a suggestion, like rel canonical.
@CyrusShepard: Recently, I ran an experiment to Disavow every single link to my website. Will publish results soon.
What are your favorite tools for finding bad links?
@CountXero: GWMT is still my fave. I can see most of the baddies a mile a way there.
@BradyDCallahan: Lots of awesome tools that help. But ultimately, when there’s time, manually going through the link profile is my favorite.
@ttwelsh: We are testing http://www.linkdetox.com/ to see how that works. Seems to work well.
@Sonray: WT has to be where you start. Pull in data from Open Site, and push tru Screaming Frog.
@seoJesseo: As much as i love OSE, I feel ahrefs gives me a better idea of where the bad ones are.
@CyrusShepard: My favorites: GWMT, Link Detox, Re’moveem, Rmoov, aHrefs and Open Site Explorer.