Search Engine Optimization

How Monitoring Backlinks Can Maximize Your Search Ranking

Melissa Rodriguez
Published on Jul 27, 2015

How Monitoring Backlinks Can Maximize Your Search Ranking

Have your rankings tanked recently? Worried that someone built bad backlinks to your website? Read this blog to learn the importance of monitoring backlinks!

Your website’s online health is crucial to optimizing for search ranking. Many webmasters, do-it-yourselfers, agencies, and even organizations forget that websites can be considered sick in the eyes of a search engine.

Backlinks can be crucial for improving organic traffic.

The whole idea of building a website is to make it a safe experience for a user to trust as a good source of information.
So it’s vital to check not just the on-page-seo, but the offsite-seo too! It’s not uncommon for your competitor to hire a hacker or unethical SEO firm that engages in black-hat-seo tactics against you.

In this article, we’ll look at these points and show you how to protect yourself from this danger. As a dominant Search Engine Optimization company, we know first hand the value of monitoring and ensuring that everything is up to speed on the backend.

Black Hat SEOs, Hackers, Know That You’re Not Monitoring Your Back Links

In the game of SEO, you’re always up against strong competition. You can say the Internet is still a wild, wild, west; yes it really is!

There are no real laws or police that would enforce such malicious acts as building bad backlinks to your website.

This means you need to monitor your backlinks every month, so that you don’t fall victim to these brutal attacks. There are a few tools that you can use to monitor such activity.

Here at Pacific54, a professional web marketing company, we use the famous AHREFS and Majestic SEO. Both of these tools give you the ability to spot new link building trends to your site that are unsafe.

monitoring backlinks with ahrefs

Bad Backlinks To Watch Out For, Bad Backlink Tactics To Spot

Have your rankings tanked recently? Worried that someone built bad backlinks to your website?
Monitoring your backlinks is an important form of preventive maintenance for your website!
When you’re combing through the latest backlinks from either Majestic SEO or Ahrefs, one thing that you need to look out for are links that fall into these categories:

Common Bad Backlink Strategies

    • Large Amount Of Backlinks: This is the first sign of trouble!
      • A Blackhat SEO and hacker will build a ton of backlinks to your website in a sudden period of time to hose your hard work. Post, March 2012 with the Google Penguin Algorithm which is against websites that have over optimized; basically built way too many backlinks too fast!
      • This is why it’s important to check your links almost daily. There are some tools you can build that will send you alerts as they get detected.
    • Site Wide Links: These are going to be links that are placed in a footer or sidebar of a website. Because of the way sites are built dynamically using global sidebars and footers, they will appear on every page of the website.
      • This is very dangerous and a great way to get beat up by Google Panda Algorithm. Black Hat SEOs and hackers know this and will build links like this on harmful and or non-content relative website.
      • In fact, Black Hat SEOs and hackers will do this on very large websites. Sometimes, they will do it on websites that can look legit, so you don’t spot it. This is a great way for hackers to show Google that your site is spamming. However, the point here is you want to watch out for any site-wide links that link to your domain!
    • Foreign Domains: These type of links will come from a website in a different country. These sites themselves are a hot box and break every white-hat-seo rule.
      • Having links from these websites are very dangerous and will also be on numerous pages within the website.
      • If you see any links randomly from another country, you want to take note of them for the soon to come disavow, we’ll get into that one later.
    • Exact Anchor Text KeywordsThis is another element you want to look at in your backlink profile. While this can seem harmless it’s not Google Penguin friendly and can get your site in hot water.
      • Exact match anchor terms should almost never be used and if so only a few times. A Black Hat SEO will use this link building tatic to their advantage and if you see a lot of anchor text using terms relative to your niche and exact matches, add the domain to your disavow list.
    • Non-Relevant Exact Match Anchor Text KeywordsOkay, this is not too different from the exact match anchor text tatic above, but this anchor text is even worse. Sometimes you’ll find Black Hat SEOs and hackers using irrelevant anchor text, but have the link going to key pages of your website.
      • This is a violation of the Google Panda algorithm.
      • It’s false advertising and there’s currently not a way for googlebot to spot this error or “intent”.
    • Porn, Penis Enlargement, Sex BacklinksLast, is the ultimate danger! Anything related to adult activities and pills. These niches are built on blackhat because of how much search traffic there is. Many of the webmasters, seo companies, and companies have to resort to spam to sell their products due to high competition.
      • However, a hacker and Black Hat SEO will build sitewide links and random links in bunches to these websites.
      • You want to make sure you find these sites and ban the entire domain.

So Now What? How To Report Bad Links To Google:

In order to protect your website, as mentioned above, you’ll need to "disavow" those bad backlinks.
A disavow is a technique that white-hat-seos, webmasters, or a do-it-yourselfer can accomplish. Just upload a text-flat-file to Google that list domains you think to be harmful to your domain.

If you’ve submitted this in the proper format, a success message will be displayed upon uploading it. Of course, if you’re a newbie or not very savvy with how to make disavow list, continue reading below:

After you’ve gathered an export/report of the bad backlinks or if you haven't done this, then you want to follow a disavow excel sheet example to understand how to slice and dice your data and get the proper format for your text file that you’ll upload to Google.

Disavow backlinks

Disavowing links is simple with Google's easy-to-use feature.

It will take about a month or two to see the full effect of your disavow.

How Will I Know If My Disavow Worked

The first place you should see it is in your overall organic ranking movement.

If not then several months later you’ll see a downward trend on your Ahref’s or Majestic SEO dashboard.

However, you can now see the importance of making sure you monitor this daily, monthly, and or weekly. Chances are if you were hit, then you're being targeted every day!
So stay on top of monitoring and building your disavow to Google!

Don’t Have Time To Monitor Backlinks Everyday or Are You Overwhelmed? Our Miami SEO Team Can Help You Monitor and Disavow

After reading this article, if you're overwhelmed, don’t think you’ll have time to do this service each day, week, and month or not maybe you’re not very technical with spreadsheets to prepare a routine disavow; Pacific54 offers a Bad Backlink Disavow Service where we are consistently monitoring backlinks for our clients and ensure each month that we disavow any new trends.
Contact us today for a complete audit of your backlinks and a FREE Consult!

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