SEO - Search Engine Optimization

Do We Still Need to Disavow in the Era of Penguin 4.0?

Last Updated: April 8, 2017

Posted by MarieHaynesIt has now been six months since the launch of Penguin 4.0. In my opinion, Penguin 4.0 was awesome. It took ages for Google to release this update, but when they did, it was much more fair than previous versions of Penguin. Previous versions of Penguin would cause entire sites to be suppressed if the algorithm thought that you’d engaged in manipulative link building. Even if a site did a thorough link cleanup, the suppression would remain present until Google re-ran the Penguin algorithm and recognized your cleanup efforts. It was not uncommon to see situations like this: I saw many businesses that had looooooong periods of time of suppression — even years! According to Google spokesperson Gary Illyes, the new version of Penguin that was released in September of 2016 no longer suppresses sites: Now, instead of causing a sitewide demotion when Penguin detects spam, they’ll simply devalue that spam so that it can’t help improve a site’s rankings. I’m guessing that it took a lot of brainpower to figure out how to do this. Google now has enough trust in their ability to find and devalue spam that they are comfortable removing the punitive aspect of Penguin. That’s impressive. This change brings up a question that I am asked several times a week now: If Penguin is able to devalue spam, is there any reason to disavow links any more? I’ve been asked this enough times now that I figured it was a good idea to write an article on my answer to this question. A brief refresher: What is the disavow tool?The disavow tool was given to us in October of 2012. You can use it by uploading a file to Google that contains a list of either URLs or domains. Then, as Google crawls the web, if they come across a URL or domain that is in your disavow file, they won’t use links from that page in their calculations of PageRank for your site. Those links also won’t be used by the Penguin algorithm when it decides whether your site has been involved in webspam. For sites that were affected by Penguin in the past, the disavow tool was an integral part of getting the suppression lifted off the site. It was essentially a way of saying to Google, “Hey… in the past we made some bad links to our site. But we don’t want you to use those links in your calculations.” Ideally, it would be best to remove bad links from the web, but that’s not always possible. The disavow tool was, in my opinion, super important for any site that was hit by Penguin. For more in-depth information on using…

Source: Do We Still Need to Disavow in the Era of Penguin 4.0?

About the author / 

S K Routray

S K Routray is a computer science graduate and Co founder at Gracioustech.com. He worked as a Online Marketing lead at many MNC Companies. He has passion for writing on SEO techniques, Social Media Marketing and digital marketing techniques. If he wasn’t an online marketer, he'd take his love for food and become a great chef cum hotel entrepreneur. Join NAS Writers team to write for NAS.

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