There was a talk recently on whether it is possible to speed up the Disavow processing time.
Google representative John Muller said that it is recommended to use Domain Directive as much as possible, so instead of using URLs, you should be disavowing the whole domain when it’s possible.
While that recommendation may be useful to some extent (Don’t disavow useful / trusted domains though!) it’s not exactly speeding up the processing time. It may be saving your personal time on creating the Disavow process but that shouldn’t be read as speeding up how Google is processing the document.
Jim explains the Disavow process in much detail in the video. Here’s the recap:
Let’s say you disavowed some of pages / sites linking to you, what happens?Let's say you disavowed some of pages / sites linking to you, what happens?Click To Tweet
If you find a backlink to your site from spammysite.com/spammypage.html, usually what we do is we put in our Disavow document domain:spammysite.com
(If you have a spammy link from Harvard, you probably want to Disavow one page only, so if you get a good link from harvard.edu, it won’t block them)
One thing many people are missing is that if you put anything is the Disavow file, nothing really happens then.
Here’s how it works: Google crawls the web again, comes across that spammysite.com/spammypage.html, come across the link you disavowed and only THEN they stop counting it (They will in a sense treat it as a nofollow link).
So you are waiting for Google to crawl that page again. So when you submit a Disavow document, it’s not those disavowed links immediately go into equation and Google stops counting those links.
Now imagine that that spammysite.com/spammypage.html got thrown out of index for being spammy…
That means: Google will NEVER return to it!
Let’s say you have an algorithmic penalty, you uploaded the Disavow document and you wait to untrip the filter to get ranked again. But Google didn’t return to a third of the pages in your Disavow.. What do I do?
The sad truth is, there’s no easy / whitehat way to get Google return to spammy pages. You could build some spammy backlinks to those spammy pages to get Google return and start counting your Disavow. Other then that, there’s no good solution…
Now the question is…
If Google bot goes to the home page of the domain you disavowed, will it discount the link to your site on a subpage they have already thrown out…
Think about this way: If you didn’t disavow that link, but instead it’s now removed or nofollow… Will Google know unless they visit that page and see your link is NO LONGER there?
That’s the same with the Disavow…
So by Disavowing on a root domain level:
- You save your own time compiling the document
- You make sure you disavowed ALL the pages from a site that links to your sitewide…
There’s one more thing to mention here:
On average, half of the links that Google shows in Google Webmaster Tools, do NOT exist any more!Half of the links that Google shows in Google Webmaster Tools, do NOT exist any more!Click To Tweet
Half of the links you see in Google Webmaster Tools will be either dead pages (404), nofollow or even removed.
So you should always sort the links that do not exist any more and live links that need to be analyzed (for some of them to go in the Disavow document).
Here’s a free tool that can help you with that: Disavow Google Backlinks Check for Disavow link Analysis
- The first thing it does is breaking down the list of backlinks into 1 URL per domain
- Then it sorts the list into live and dead links
Now, to an important takeaway:
Preventive / preemptive backlink monitoring and Disavow
Don’t wait for the penalty to come because you’ll wait for ages for Google to revisit your link profile and untrip your filter.
Analyze your links regularly and throw the worst / most suspicious ones into the Disavow to get rid of them earlier.
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Watch the whole video here: How to disavow bad links: Is there a way to make the process faster?