How Manual penalty or Disavow link works – from ex-Googler’s (don’t miss)

Recently at BrightonSEO 2013 last week, audience got the opportunity to ask several key questions to the below ex-Google employee’s:

Fili Wiese – Founder: Blackpixels

Jonas Weber – Consultant at webhelps!

Alfredo Pulvirenti – SEO TL @ StepStone Group


Though many of the questions were generic but some were very key questions & answers considering the recent Google Algorithmic updates like penguin and Panda. I have highlighted them below in a bulleted list:


Question: How does Google Webmaster Disavow tool works?

  • Google are not doing anything currently with the data they collecting, unlikely to do anything soon.
  • Use top level domain to disavow link rather than absolute url and Google also show  in the Google webmaster tool.  You can update the disavow link daily.
  • Disavow even those links which has been removed as they may reappear at a later stage.
  • It is wise to send a reconsideration request after some days of submitting the reconsideration request.


Question: How does Manual Penalty on a website works?

  • Website is reviewed Multiple times by several individuals before a manual penalty is applied.
  • Google only takes a look at the 10{9e4d90363301d728e593e350f1fca4618c445eae51a043106bb72ce067a31bb8} of your back-link profile while reviewing any website for manual penalty.
  • If you are hit by a manual penalty (as confirmed by Google in webmaster tool) then its worth remove the unnatural link rather then just change the anchor text.


Question: Does Google webmaster tool shows all backlinks considered by Google for a given website?

  • Google Webmaster Tools only shows about 10{9e4d90363301d728e593e350f1fca4618c445eae51a043106bb72ce067a31bb8} of your back links, it is not an exhaustive list of all your back links.


Question: Best ways to build backlinks?

  • Build links from those websites which can help you get traffic, avoid building links only for search engines.
  • You should not associate your brand to low level blogs/directories.
  • When using guest posts, use your brand name for linking rather than keywords.


Question: What content you should have on your website?

  • Rather than focusing on keywords, you should focus on creating content that solves your customers problems.


Question: How is social media important for rankings?

  • Social media probably counts for only 1{9e4d90363301d728e593e350f1fca4618c445eae51a043106bb72ce067a31bb8} towards your rankings.
  • Focus more on how social is changing search priorities, not only how it will change rankings.
  • Start now so you have an advantage for if and when they do start using/increase social signals for search.


If you have any further queries, get in touch with us or in the comment section below.

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