Feeds

Google releases 'Disavow links' tool to fix SEO spam

Use with care Google warns

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

Google has used the PubCon conference in Las Vegas to release a "Disavow Links" tool, allowing webmasters dump links into their site that are hurting search rankings.

"Most people should not need to use this," said Matt Cutts, head of webspam at Google. "We build our algorithms such that in most cases we handle things just fine. It's also an advanced tool, so be careful."

The new tool is designed for websites that have already been warned by Google that they have "unnatural" links pointing to their site, typically content farms for SEO gamers. These have most likely come from people either deliberately or accidentally hiring bad SEO firms that try and game the Chocolate Factory's search ranking systems.

As a first course of action, Cutts recommends contacting these sites to get the links removed manually. But with the new tool, a simple text file can be used to ask Google to ignore the link to a specific site, and any related domains as well.

But this tool comes at a price. If you get it wrong and ask to disavow a link, realize you've made a mistake, and try and get the link reinstated, Google will be doing extensive checks on the validity of the claim, so it may be a number of weeks before the link returns, if it ever does.

Cutt recommends using the “Links to Your Site” feature in Webmaster Tools to spot links that could be hurting search rankings and trying to sort out the problem internally before running to Google. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
So, Apple won't sell cheap kit? Prepare the iOS garden wall WRECKING BALL
It can throw the low cost race if it looks to the cloud
Time Warner Cable customers SQUEAL as US network goes offline
A rude awakening: North Americans greeted with outage drama
We need less U.S. in our WWW – Euro digital chief Steelie Neelie
EC moves to shift status quo at Internet Governance Forum
Google has spaffed more cash on lobbying this year than Big Cable
Don't worry, it'll be cheaper when they use drones
EE fails to apologise for HUGE T-Mobile outage that hit Brits on Friday
Customer: 'Please change your name to occasionally somewhere'
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?