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    Is the disavow tool no longer in use?


    What's everyone thoughts on the recent rumblings from the universe regards the disavow tool now being ignored? I've read they now devalue links to your site that are poor instead of demoting your page or site.
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    If they haven't, they ought to. It was completely ridiculous in the first place..

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    • ClickyB agrees
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    Mueller and Illyes have been pretty insistent that the disavow tool is still useful and important. No one else at Google has contradicted those statements - though I do understand why people are skeptical of what those two say.

    I, too, have heard that Penguin now devalues incoming links. I've also heard that the manual actions team may hand out "stronger" manual actions to sites that are doing crappy linkbuilding. So the implication seems to be that the Penguin penalization process, if penalties still exist, is less automated now. There is more human involvement.

    Mueller and Illyes have described the disavow tool as a way for you to "help Google help you." I have no evidence to support this, but I suspect that the disavow tool has become a signal of intent. If you are disavowing the same links that Penguin is devaluing, Google may read that as "I didn't make these links and I don't want them" instead of "I'm building crappy links and trying to do it faster than Penguin can devalue them."

    More on this topic: Penguin 4.0 and spammy links

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    • ClickyB agrees
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    Cheers Mark. I think the best approach to take would be to still disavow links for sure.

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    It is VERY difficult to figure out what Mueller and Illyes are saying sometimes. This back-and-forth "yes but no, no but yes" stuff is really weird to me: Google Clarifies When It Is Safe to Remove URLs from Disavow Files

    For whatever reason, I don't think we'll be getting a straightforward answer from either of them about this...at least, not for a while

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    • ClickyB agrees
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    I agree (with everyone)

    The disavow tool is still there and working and - whilst I too think it sucked from day 1 (why oh why did you not just keep devaluing them google), it does seem as usual that google is being uber-ambiguous

    First they devalued them... Then they stopped that and started penalising for them (unless disavowed) instead... Now they devalue them again, but you still might get penalised if you fail to disavow them!
    ClickyB
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    I believe Google is doing it this way so you won't have a clue what links are good or bad so people will stop link building and let it happen naturally. Good orginal content is the main ingredient for good ranking along with a diverse back link profile (speaking anchor text)
    Last edited by Test-ok; Nov 1st, 2016 at 06:42 PM.
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    Here's a Tweet exchange with Gary Illyes:

    Originally Posted by Johsn Patterson
    Looks like negative SEO is still a thing? @methode recommends using disavow file when threatened. https://www.seroundtable.com/google-...seo-23665.html
    Originally Posted by Gary Illyes (@methode)
    No, we recommend it in case you're worrying about nSEO. If you have better things to do, as you should, then don't use it
    "nSEO" is short-hand for negative SEO. Check out more at Search Engine Roundtable: https://www.seroundtable.com/google-...ime-23691.html

    It's kinda what I've been thinking disavow files might still be used for...but it sounds like they're a lot less important than I thought. Sounds like Illyes is implying it's just something you can keep up for peace of mind...but not having one isn't a big deal. Or maybe I'm reading that wrong.

    Comments on this post

    • DirectHits agrees

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