Online Innovation March 14th, 2013
Now that Google has built a gateway that allows webmasters to “clear things up” when it comes to shady links and black-hat link building practices, “all is fair in love and war” right? Wrong. The release of the new Google Disavow Tool has raised many questions by webmasters and SEOs on whether or not this tool really does protect you and help you get in Google’s good graces.
The idea of the Disavow tool is genius. A tool that allows you to communicate to Google what links you don’t want pointing to your site. A way for you to essentially clean up your websites link profile and prevent your site from receiving any future link penalties at the hands of Google.
But is that what the Disavow tool really does? Many SEOs and one SEO company in particular have raised suspicion by pointing out that Google may be using the Disavow Tool as an “Intelligence Tool” for locating and penalizing bad link neighbourhoods. And it’s with this suspicion in mind that I want to present to you 3 important tips before using the new tool from Google.
Many webmasters are using the Disavow Tool freely without any real reason whatsoever other than being overcautious. Don’t be overcautious. Unless you have reason to believe your site has already been penalized by bad links or worse, has received a message from Google inside Google Webmaster Tools, don’t move forward with using the Disavow tool. If you do you most likely will hurt your site more than helping it.
Take some time and go through the entire list of items in the Google Webmaster Guidelines document. Highlight any items that your site may be violating and work to fix those first. Many times sites get penalized or risk penalties for other reasons besides links such as malware or duplicate content issues.
This tasks will really rely on you being as “objective” as you can. Try to stay away from your “subjective” opinion on this as it will more times than not give you a false representation of the true quality of your backlinks. Mine out any links that truly can be labeled as “bad” or “spammy.” This shorter list of links is a better list to send to Google rather than the bigger list you probably originally intended to send.
Use the Google Disavow Tool with much caution. Because you can never be too suspicious when it comes to Google’s true intentions.