Need to Get Rid of Some Bad Backlinks?

Removing bad linksThe question in SEO for the better part of this year – post Panda/Penguin updates – has been how to easily clean up my link profile? Or perhaps how to deal with someone doing negative SEO to me? Well there’s good news, yesterday Google announced an update to their webmaster tool set – the disavow link function.

Just don’t worry too much about the fact that Bing did this several months ago and received overwhelming indifference…

How to Use the Disavow Link Tool

Webmaster Tools removing bad linksFirst you need to go to the special disavow link page within webmaster tools, the tool hasnot been distributed into the main interface yet. Once you are there, you will need to sign into your account.

  • Choose the property you would like to disavow links for from the drop down.
  • If you don’t see the site on the list you will need to register the site with your webmaster tools account. You can do that easily with Analytics. If you need help sharing analytics see this video.
  • Read the warning message and consider it (I will address the warning more later).
  • Click the “Disavow Links” button.
  • You will be prompted to select a text file in which you have a list of links you wish to disavow.

See the following example from

text file for removing links
  • Once uploaded, click the accept button and submit the request.

What to consider before disavowing ANY links

Google has encouraged users to actually not use the tool. Matt Cutts said that the impact could be much greater than you would imagine. He especially discourages people from disavowing any internal links as it can really hurt your website.

Additionally, based upon past experience, the weight that this tool carries will be somewhat minimal for now. However once the tool has been finalized the impact of a link removal will become much more significant, for better or worse.

Watch Matt’s full address in the following video

If you are having issues with your backlink profile and need help, please contact us today. Let our SEO experts help you through the online marketing realm.

photo credit: Darwin Bell via photopin cc

Jamie Bates
Online Marketing Director