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Disavow links that harm your website

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Disavow links that harm your website

Today we are going to explain why you should disavow links or eliminate those URLs that reach our website from pages of dubious quality and that only annoy us and seriously harm our SEO score.

Just as a link to our website from a quality page would improve our page rank thanks to link equity, a bad link can really annoy us.

Why are dodgy web links bad for the positioning or SEO of our website? Very simple, because ‘tell me who you hang out with and I’ll tell you what you’re like, the very natural psychology of humans is embraced by AI and it keeps improving.

But… why would a harmful page link to me, Spam or something like that? If I haven’t done anything??? Well, this is how it is, the world is not as fair as we expect it to be.

Well, it is difficult for you to realize that you have incoming backlinks of questionable quality if you do not investigate them. For this, we can use programs like Moz, Semrush or Search Console.

Table of contents

When should we use the disavow file?

Whenever we have links that we consider malicious, we can use this tool to disavow them, however, it is more than recommended that we try to remove them directly from the web. To do this, it is advisable to talk to the owners of the websites that have these links and ask them to remove them, and if they cannot, enter them in the disavow file.

It is important to keep in mind that this tool is vital to use when we have a significant volume of malicious links or that have nothing to do with the theme of our site, for 1 or 2 links it is not worth it, since Google will not take them into account unless you have received a manual link purchase penalty.

Think that Google only recommends using this tool in two cases, the first is if we have a manual action for creating artificial links (Penalty) and the second option is if we consider that we can have it, either because we have bought links or because that we have link schemes that violate Google’s quality guidelines.

Recommendations to take into account when making disavow links

  • Be very careful with the analysis of the web, once we disavow it, it will be very expensive to repair it if we have made a mistake. To corroborate that a website is really harmful.
  • Caution with the disavowal of specific pages or entire web with the use of ‘domain:’
  • If we have previously uploaded an article, we can download it in CSV and copy it to notepad and add the new pages found, so we always work on it and know what we are doing.
  • That a page has a low DA and PA does not mean that it necessarily has to be something horrible full of Spam, so you have to look at more factors and have a little common sense.

How should we use Google’s disavow tool?

To create a disavow file and notify Google, we just have to do the following steps:

1. Analyze what links we will insert in the disavow file.

The first thing we must do is carefully analyze the quality of the links, to determine which are good, and which are bad, we must bear in mind that incorrectly selecting the links can cause us to lose positioning since we are losing Link Juice to distribute. Of course, once you have bad links, try contacting the domain owner to let them know you want to remove these links.

2. Creation of a list of links to disavow.

We must create a text file that includes the list of these links. The format of the file that will contain these links is simple and is as follows:

Include a URL or domain that you are disavowing on each line. Note that you can’t deauthorize entire folders.
To disavow a domain or subdomain, prefix it with the value “domain:” so that it reads, for example, domain: example.com.
The file must be a UTF‑8 or 7-bit ASCII encoded text file, which means do not use Microsoft Word-style text editors.
The file name must end in .txt.
You can leave comments by putting the # sign at the beginning of the line so that Google ignores them.

3. Upload the disavow file to Google Search Console

  1. Go to Google Search Console’s Disavow Link Tools Page
  2. Select the website you want to disallow links on.
  3. Select Disavow Links.
  4. Click Choose File and select the disavow file you created.
  5. It may take a few weeks for us to process the information you’ve uploaded. The list will be integrated into our index as we crawl your site again and process the pages we see.

Keep in mind that unauthorized links will still appear in the Google Search Console link report because even if Google does not take them into account, the links still exist.


Certainly, many people will think that nothing happens for a bad website that links to you and they will prefer not to get involved in these disavow issues. The same happens with countless other mini-problems in SEO, but be warned, one grain of sand ends up forming a barn.

YES, it is important to do all these little things, at least if we want to position ourselves as the best since curiosity in the small details is a big difference.

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Reference: Google Knowledge Base

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