October 6, 2022

How to Remove Bad Backlinks from Websites

Learn How to Remove Bad Backlinks from Websites in this article!

If you want your website to rank higher on Google then a key aspect you should focus on is increasing your domain authority by removing any bad backlinks from your website.

how to remove bad backlinks

Do you want to boost your ranking on Google? Of course, you do. And you probably know that backlinks are the backbone of a solid SEO strategy. However, this method only works if the links are from an authentic and authoritative source. 

You don’t want to ruin your hard-earned traffic with spammy links.

So, it’s vital to distinguish between the quality links from the bad. And in this article, you’ll learn how to spot the bad backlinks and remove them. Keep reading.

What Makes Backlinks Bad?

Google rewards authoritative sites by ranking them at the top of search queries. The search engine knows that a site qualifies for that benefit through the number of quality secondary websites linking back to the primary website. The links should be natural, relevant, and original. 

If not, Google will penalize you through policing software like Google Penguin. And this possibility of punishment can make crafty competitors try to bring down a top-performing website by creating many low-quality backlinks. So you want to protect your spot at the top. 

Punishment also occurs when web admins create low-grade links to influence Google to improve site ranking. This approach might work over a few weeks or months, but Google’s spam filter will get you. And you don’t want your traffic to drop. 

Therefore, inspecting for and removing low-quality links connecting your website is essential. So, be wary of the following kinds of backlinks.

Types of Bad Backlinks to Remove

Links from SEO Links Websites

Experts also refer to these websites as link networks. There are few backlinks on these sites, and they have a mixture of different types of content. This black hat strategy increases the number of backlinks using the most harmful way: poor-quality content. 

To illustrate, a dubious web admin may use one link network for his clients. Therefore, he will copy content from other pages and post blogs that link to the primary website. Often, those blogs are poorly written and don’t add any relevant information to the reader. 

You risk losing your reader’s trust when they click on cross links and don’t get more value. Furthermore, Google spiders will flag your website as low quality for getting links from those networks. So, look out for them.

Sitewide Links

These are links on each website page’s header, footer, or sidebar portions. Google Panda guidelines warn against these types of backlinks, unlike before 2012. Many websites thus experience a shadow ban because of these tactics, as they are inauthentic.

Comment Backlinks 

Website spambots work because Google can’t track them. They aren’t indexed. But you damage your ranking potential when those bots comment on your posts. You’ll recognize those agents through their generic remarks.

For example, “I like your content,” “Wow! Your work is insightful”, or “Thanks, I’ve learned something new.” This technology keeps advancing to make remarks seem more human, so vet the bots keenly.

Web Directory Links

Premium web directories specific to your niche provide excellent backlinks. The problem arises when you don’t discriminate against who provides you with the backlinks. Therefore, vet directories wisely by scrutinizing the value they provide in their blogs.

And if you’re unsure, a good way to know a trustworthy directory is to ask yourself if you would risk your reputation to endorse them.

Foreign Links 

You risk penalties if your backlinks are from a foreign country like Russia while your content serves a US-based audience. Undoubtedly, those links are unnatural. Avoid them.

Links with Over-optimized Anchor texts

Anchor texts are a group of words on which you paste your links—they guide users to click and learn more about a topic on another site. Experts recommend using a unique variation of 1-3 words as your anchor text. 

Why? Because Google will consider your website suspicious if your anchor texts use similar keywords throughout most of your backlinks. 

Now you know what to look for. Next up is…

How to Remove Bad Backlinks?

Removing bad backlinks is a tedious process you wouldn’t want to waste precious time on. So, here are some methods and tools to help you clear out the links slowing down your blog’s growth.

Step 1: Gather All Your Backlinks

This step helps you know the source of your backlinks and sort out the high-quality ones from the bad ones. It’s wise to use a tool allowing you to download all this information in a CSV file. 

For example, Google Counsel is a valuable resource. 

After registering your website to Google Analytics, open the Google Counsel website, tap on “Search Traffic,” then “Links to Your Site.” The platform will redirect you to another prompt, where you’ll click on “More” from the “Who Links the Most” section. Finally, click on “Download more sample links” to get your data.

Step 2: Inspect for Bad Backlinks

Google Counsel only shows you the links to your site. The tricky part is deciding whether each link is from a valuable source, unique, and relevant to your topic. Eliminate the ones that aren’t. Professionals recommend using tools that help you know sites with low domain strength.

The Google search engine can also help you know whether a website is facing a penalty by searching for its index map. Check that factor by inputting the words’ site:domainname.com’ on the search bar. 

If you don’t find the website on the page, know that Google is punishing it, and you don’t want it as your backlink source.

Step 3: Contact Website Owners to Eliminate Backlinks 

Use software that gives you the contact information for the web admins running the bad backlinks. This step helps you plan your outreach. These people would typically be your tech person at the company or your web designer.

The method may or may not work. But try it and make work easier for the site owners by providing links to the content you want to optimize. Be polite and patient, as some webmasters may take time to reply to your requests. 

Sometimes you won’t get a reply, but you can send a follow-up email after two weeks. Also, monitor the progress; if there’s no change, do this.

Step 5: The Last Resort: Disavow Bad Backlinks

Upload your bad backlink list on the Google Disavow tool in a spreadsheet format. The software will ensure that the links you’ve provided aren’t part of your backlinks. And this step increases your chances of ranking higher by maintaining only the valuable links.

Note that it’s essential to use this technique only if the other methods fail. You risk diminishing your website’s traffic for a long time. Why? Because Google will detect that you’ve lost your authority after you remove some bad backlinks. Prepare for the dip.

disavow bad backlinks
Recap: Removing Bad Backlinks from Websites

Removing bad backlinks isn’t as complicated as you might think. Learn to identify the substandard links and use the right tools to ease this elimination process. And you’ll be on your way to gaining more readers in no time. 

Thanks for reading our article on How to Remove Bad Backlinks. We believe this is a primary service most digital marketing agencies are lacking with their Search Engine Optimization services. This truly helps increase your domain authority and overall keyword rankings across the board.

Your small business cannot hope to grow without a strong online presence, which is why a website is vital to help give your customers what they want.

From communication to social proof, marketing and promotion, your website is a core part of your business and is no longer just a ‘nice to have’. 

Feel free to browse our Momentum Monday Blog for more helpful articles on all things digital marketing.

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“My name is Mac and I used to work for Google. Now I help small businesses grow online and rank higher on Google”