The Custard Blog

Words of wisdom from our team of online marketing experts

Why Google Took So Long Announcing Link Disavow Tool

2012; the year of Her Majesty The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, the year of the London Olympics and the first time the England football team have had no pressure of winning a major tournament such as the Euros.  These are all momentous occasions that everyone is talking about.

If you are from the SEO World, conversation about 2012 has been much different.  Over 150 Google updates, Pandas and Penguins have been released, Negative SEO has been proven and another hard push on personalised search and Google+.

So what has been a happy, positive year so far for the Muggles we live with, for SEOs it has been a frustrating, negative year so far, but all that “could” be coming to and end in the next few months.

Webmasters have been crying out for sometime for Google to release a tool that allows them to disassociate themselves and their websites, from links within their backlink profiles, should they not be the ones responsible for building them in the first place. Finally, it seems that their dreams may come true as Matt Cutts at SMX (Search Marketing Expo) in Seattle has announced that there could be a possibility that Google would look to introduce a “link disavow” button in Webmaster Tools.

Brilliant!! Amazing!! But wait, why has Google taken so long to announce this feature? Why has Google decided that now is the time to announce it and why is it going to take another couple of months to sort out?

I think the main answer is that, even though Google want to show willing and offer some compensation for the fact they have allowed Negative SEO to have an effect on a number of websites, they still want us to make an active effort in cleaning up back link profiles ourselves and not taking the easy way out and submitting them to a disavow tool.  There were 700,000 webmaster tools messages sent out in January and February  related to unnatural linking so it would seem a bit of a backwards step.

It’s been a turbulent time of late, but are things starting to settle down? Honestly, I have no idea! Every time it looks like it, another wild animal seems to get let loose on our SERPs. All I know is that, your online marketing campaigns need to be future proof, if you are going to be embarrassed showing a link to a client then don’t build it, if you do build it thinking, “It will be fine!” then you will be hoping Google release their disavow tool sooner rather than later.


  • hometipster

    Nice article Matt. Let’s face it since the release of Panda last year it has caused havoc with many small businesses, including mine. I can tell you that we have taken the laissez faire approach and are now concentrating more on quality content rather than worrying about our SEO ranking, which seem to appear and disappear at random. One thing I have found is that the Social Networks work far better for us, in terms of people spending longer on site and sharing content, while those visit from Google appear fleeting visits.

    No doubt the mystery and misery will continue with the hundreds of planned updates Google has in store.

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