15 min

Let's see if we are a good fit. Schedule a time to chat that works best for you

Secrets of the Google disavow tool

Secrets of the Google disavow tool

The connection of water and disavow tool

Have you ever tried to live a day without drinking water? If you did, you know it’s no good. The lack of water makes you feel sick, and that’s how your website will feel if you don’t use the disavow tool.

First, let’s understand what the disavow tool is. It’s the act of telling search engines that there are certain links that you don’t want to be indexed during the crawling process. This is the best way to help you improve your SEO.

There were dark times when business owners were buying links to add to their backlink profile so they could get more traffic. But the “More backlinks – More traffic” times have passed. Now you must have only high-quality backlinks in order to perform high in Google search results.

What backlinks do?

Good backlinks raise your Domain Authority and Page Authority. These links increase your visibility in search engines which helps you have a higher ranking. What do you think bad backlinks do to your site? YES, the opposite. They ruin your SEO and harm your ranking.

Although there are certain algorithms like Google’s Penguin 4.0 that automatically identify spam links, it may not always wprl perfectly. There are spammy or low quality links that slip away.

This is one of the reasons why you should have the disavow tool in your backlink strategy. But you must not be too drastic. This means disavowing a link must be your “last cry of salvation” as disavowing a link is telling Google that certain links harm your site. And this is a serious action.

It’s highly recommended that you contact the site owner and ask them to remove your link. Nearly every site has a Contact / About us section where you can find their e-mail. It’s up to you how to tell them to remove your link. Only when the owner doesn’t reply or contact you back you must use the disavow tool.

Another reason to disavow a link is the irrelevance between your site and the backlink. If you are a marketing agency there’s no benefit if one of your backlinks is in an astronomy site. Always remember: backlinks must not be in completely different sphere from your site.

What to do with the backlinks?

You can use Majestic, SEMrush Backlink Audit, Ahrefs or Moz’s Open Site Explorer to check what websites link to you. Depends which one you like most.

It’s preferable you check every backlink you think harms your site manually. But if you have too many backlinks it may be a pretty hard mission to complete. In this case you can use the Google Webmaster tool and download both good and bad backlinks. After downloading you can use a link analysis tool to separate the bad ones.

You can have these backlinks copied and save the information as a text file with the .txt extension.

All helping tools are wonderful, but they say “It’s better to see it once than to hear about it a thousand times.” So once you have the list of unwanted backlinks take your time and visit each. For example, TLDs like .click or .xyz are very likely to be spammy or low-quality sites. You can also pay attention to the domain backlinks have. If you see www.bigpig.com it probably has nothing to do with your marketing agency.

A spam filter in Google Analytics is also a helpful tool for your site. As you guessed it filters spam links. But it doesn’t always act perfectly, so your site needs to be checked manually from time to time.

After completing all these actions, you can use the disavow tool.

Just disavow it!

It may seem funny but disavowing links is the easiest part of all this. It’s more difficult to find the right bad backlinks and ask to remove them than the disavowing process itself. After making sure you have the right list, go straight to the Disavow tool, select the site you want and click “Disavow links.”

Before the final disavow you’ll see a warning which reminds you that the disavow tool is an advanced feature and must be used with caution. You can ignore it if you realize the role and importance of this very essential tool.

After submitting your request Google will disavow the links in a few days.


Not drinking water for a day or a week will not kill you, but will definitely harm your health. You can strengthen your SEO and get more traffic with this magic tool. DON’T forget that manual removal is more preferable. Disavow when there is no other way of getting rid of the bad backlinks.

This process may seem very complicated and funky. But once you do it you won’t be afraid any longer.


You might also be interested