Categories: Crawling, indexing & ranking :

Should I use disavow tool for irrelevant links?

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Should I use disavow tool for irrelevant links? Cha Cha 88 2/28/14 7:01 PM
I've read the FAQs and searched the help center. 
My URL is: www.trine.com

Hello!  I have a client that I am helping with SEO.  After optimizing her site, her PR is 2 and we have seen positive results.  However, her backlink profile has about 50% of irrelevant links.  She use to have a gardening site about 10 years ago, and in the last several years has changed her topic to a spiritual journey site (same domain).  So a lot of her backlinks are from gardening sites, and several are pretty good edu sites.  I've been having a lot of trouble contacting the irrelevant sites to have her link removed because they are seriously out-dated or have not responded.  

So my big question is, should I use the Disavow Tool to have the gardening links removed from her site?  She does not have good backlinks pertaining to the current subject manner, so I fear if I use the disavow tool, her site will drop dramatically in rankings.  Your thoughts?

Should I use disavow tool for irrelevant links? Lysis 2/28/14 7:09 PM
It's a shame you're charging someone for such bad seo advice and sounds like you're actually hurting them.
Re: Should I use disavow tool for irrelevant links? Cha Cha 88 2/28/14 7:16 PM
Excuse me Lysis?  What exactly do you mean by giving bad seo advice?  I have only been working with her for the last 6 months and have been helping her tremendously.  Trying to clean up her backlink profile is not bad advice.  
Re: Should I use disavow tool for irrelevant links? StevieD_Web 2/28/14 7:23 PM
I guess you need some reading material.... read the best answer:





Re: Should I use disavow tool for irrelevant links? Cha Cha 88 2/28/14 8:02 PM
Hi StevieD_Web,

Thank you for directing me to the forum.  Your post on best practices for the Disavow tool and RR was very informative.  I read through the post several times and am not exactly sure where the answer to my question fits in.  My client's site was not redirected, and the irrelevant links on her site were not fungus or foreign links, they were most likely because of her efforts several years ago when her site used to be about gardening.  I believe the answer is to disavow the backlinks to the gardening site because they are irrelevant now to her current topic about spirituality.  But my fear is that her site will drop in rankings dramatically because the irrelevant links constitute about 50% of her backlink profile.  So if you could be so kind to spell it out for me, should I still use the disavow tool to remove the irrelevant backlinks even though they take up 50% of her backlink profile?  

Thanks very much for your feedback and look forward to hearing from you.
Re: Should I use disavow tool for irrelevant links? Cha Cha 88 2/28/14 8:08 PM
Lysis,

I just need to add that the Google forums are supposed to be used as a helpful, discussion tool, not for derogatory comments.  I posted the question to seek help about a topic I was not completely clear on, and your response was negative and unhelpful.  I am always seeking ways to improve what I do, and if there was a disagreement about something I said, than the adult way to approach it is to point out what you disagree with so I can make improvements.  Your comment was disappointing, hurtful and unnecessary.  
Re: Should I use disavow tool for irrelevant links? StevieD_Web 2/28/14 8:36 PM
1)  you are assuming those historical links were beneficial or remain so now.

2)  IF the links are beneficial today.... the amount of benefit is going to be minimal... remember Google uses 200++ factors to evaluate sites and links (ie PageRank) is just one of many factors

3)  Removing a minor benefit (if it even exists) is not going to harm

4)  If the site is not penalized or being demoted due to links, then the links (good/bad/otherwise) are not relevant to any discussion, so why disavow any links?

5)  Irrelevant links = one of the many classes of fungus... hence the link to the prior discussion.

6)  I would contend that Google sees these historical links as irrelevant and ignoring them.  Which means there is no benefit or harm.  Which also means the site is ranking in spite of the links.

7)  Oops, the site does have a link problem.... can anybody tell me what is wrong with this link ?

8)  See #7... there is a lot more of those hanging around and they have nothing to do with the site's past.

9)  Cleaning up the current issues before they become a big problem should be your objective.

10)  If you disavow those historical links, nothing good/bad is going to come from it.






Re: Should I use disavow tool for irrelevant links? Cheerful Charlie 2/28/14 8:43 PM
Do you want to get rid of unnatural links or unwanted links?

Unnatural links are any links which have been placed by the site owner or someone that works for them, and that includes directory links, links exchanged, forum links, anything of that nature. Google wants to see them gone anyway, so StevieDs guide is suitable for that.

If you want to get rid of unwanted links, which is possible because your client doesn't want to come up in the search results for gardening terms, you should take the same course and disavow. Disavowing is the same as telling Google to ignore those links.

You have to remember though that removing or disavowing any links means that Google will see your client's site as less authoritive, as it has less "votes" - especially if you remove/disavow links from reputable .edu pages. Expect a drop in traffic because her site will rank naturally for her keywords.

And remember, that Pagerank number is just one of the 200 signals that Google takes into account when ranking sites - and some Googlers have said it isn't updated often and it's value is low compared to other signals, so it's safe to ignore it.


Re: Should I use disavow tool for irrelevant links? StevieD_Web 2/28/14 9:12 PM
Hey Cheerful Charlie is got himself an avatar.  Congrats.


One correction

The PUBLIC PageRank Score is updated infrequently.  Several years ago Matt Cutts stated in an interview the real (internal) PR score is updated 2x/day and there is no indication that 2x (or more frequent) is not the same today.  In fact recently Matt Cutts said in a video in response to a question that Google had a version of their algorithm without taking into links (PageRank) and the results were not pretty.  So clearly Google continues to use links (PR) as part of the algorithm.

Yes, it is safe to ignore the public score, if for no other reasons than

A) It was out of date when it was published.... and for all we know it could be several weeks or even months out of date when it was published, see B for reasons why.

B) to keep the Google algorithm from being cooked by others, it is highly possible that the public PR score is intentionally not correct (or even grossly out of date).


Re: Should I use disavow tool for irrelevant links? Cha Cha 88 2/28/14 9:36 PM
Hello StevieD_Web,

Thank you for elaborating and for taking the time to look deeper into the issue.  Her site has not been penalized so there is no need for a RR and now I see the disavow tool is also unnecessary for this situation.  I guess I assumed that the irrelevant links were workings against her SERPs, but it appears that since her site is ranking, Google is not placing much value towards the historical/irrelevant links.  

And regards to point #7, I'm going to say the link problem is because the backlink is pointing to a non-existent page (404 error)?


Re: Should I use disavow tool for irrelevant links? Corruption Private 2/28/14 9:40 PM
I am wondering why the change in the site at all. You could have had 2 sites working together. Spiritualism and gardening sites can help each other.
The spiritual site could mention things like herbs, sacred plants and other things, with links to the relevant gardening site's pages on growing them. Things like that.
As long as both sites used noFollow links between them, they would have both flourished. Instead you tried to graft one onto the other, and it's not working.
Re: Should I use disavow tool for irrelevant links? Cha Cha 88 2/28/14 9:45 PM
Hi Cheerful Charlie!

I actually do not see her site ranking for gardening or garden net, and I definitely do not want her to drop in rankings, especially when she is in dire need of more 'votes.'  So I have made the decision not to use the disavow tool as it seems it would hurt her site with little to no benefits in return.  StevieD_web pointed out a good point in that I should tend to her current links that have link problems associated with it.  

Thank you guys for your feedback.  I truly appreciate you guys weighing in and has helped tremendously with the next directives.

Cheers!
Re: Should I use disavow tool for irrelevant links? Cha Cha 88 2/28/14 9:49 PM
Hello Corruption Private-The change in topics was a decision made by the site owner many years ago before I came on board to help. 
(unknown) 2/28/14 10:03 PM <This message has been deleted.>
Re: Should I use disavow tool for irrelevant links? StevieD_Web 2/28/14 10:06 PM
>And regards to point #7, I'm going to say the link problem is because the backlink is pointing to a non-existent page (404 error)?

I STAND CORRECTED.

I did not realize the link was hitting a 404 response, I just looked at the source of the link.

If the link is hitting a 404 response (page is gone) then from Google's perspective the link does not exist.  All is good.

That said, if the link was hitting a real page, the link in question appears to be a paid article marketing link and it either needs to be nofollowed OR preferably just removed.  I always vote for remove as it prevents problems down the road that might not happen. 

Re: Should I use disavow tool for irrelevant links? JohnMu 2/28/14 11:14 PM
Just to be completely clear on this: you do not need to disavow links that are from sites on other topics. This tool is really only meant for situations where there are problematic, unnatural, PageRank-passing links that you can't have removed. 

Cheers
John
Re: Should I use disavow tool for irrelevant links? VenuGopal K 3/4/14 4:35 AM
If you want to remove the bad links from the following categories

Low PR, Low Page Authority, Low Domain Authority, PHP Link Directories, Less traffic from the websites, etc.,

First collect all the backlinks from Webmeup and check the links below PR 3, Page Authority Less than 30, DA 30, PHP Link Directories, Directories. Separate the list in Excel. and sent the removal requests to website admin. If they are responding , It's Good.

If they are not responding collect all the information(e-mails) and send the request to Google Webmaster Like Reconsideration Request.  After approving Reconsider Request for disavow . then you can Use the Disavow Tool.

Hope you understood
Re: Should I use disavow tool for irrelevant links? VenuGopal K 3/4/14 4:48 AM
you are having just 29 Dofollow Backlinks .

Suggestion:

Don't use the Disavow Tool to your Own Website.

Focus on the Social Media(FB, Twitter, Google+) Promotions, Forums and Classifieds.


Re: Should I use disavow tool for irrelevant links? JohnMu 3/4/14 4:50 AM
Hey VenuGopal K,

That's a really bad idea. Disavowing links just because they fall low on some arbitrary metric doesn't make sense. 

Cheers
John
Re: Should I use disavow tool for irrelevant links? Gaieus 3/4/14 9:03 AM
So forum and article spamming is okay, you are saying? 
Let me guess; you  give these suggestions for a living, too, don't you?
This message has been hidden because it was flagged for abuse.
Re: Should I use disavow tool for irrelevant links? Ben Griffiths 3/6/14 3:12 AM
Hi Ozair,

If you want to help out in the forum that's fine but no spamming mmkay?
Re: Should I use disavow tool for irrelevant links? Ozair Traffic 3/6/14 3:37 AM
Yes! I can help ya.
(unknown) 3/6/14 6:35 AM <This message has been deleted.>
Re: Should I use disavow tool for irrelevant links? BKDZ 3/6/14 6:43 AM
Hey John, 
My question is that my site has .org links from chamber of commerce business listing websites, all these links are do-follow links, Is it okay or do i make them no-follow?
Hope to get your reply,
Thanks
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