What is Disavow Tool in SEO? How is it useful in removing irrelevant backlinks of any website

by | SEO

Disavow Tool in SEO is useful to disassociate specific backlinks from your website.

Here are the steps to effectively use the Disavow Tool:

Identify Potentially Harmful Backlinks: The first step is to identify the backlinks that you believe are harmful or spammy. This can be done by conducting a backlink analysis using various SEO tools. Look for backlinks from low-quality websites, irrelevant sources, or those that violate Google’s guidelines.

Attempt Manual Removal: Before resorting to the Disavow Tool, try to remove the harmful backlinks manually. Contact the website owners or webmasters of those sites and request them to remove the links. Keep a record of your communication for reference.

Prepare the Disavow File: Create a text file (e.g., “disavow.txt”) where you will list the URLs or domains of the backlinks you want to disavow. Each entry should be on a separate line. You have the option to disavow either the entire domain (using “domain:example.com”) or specific URLs (using “http://example.com/page”).

Format the Disavow File Correctly: It’s important to follow the correct formatting guidelines to ensure the Disavow Tool interprets your file accurately.

    1. Create a Text File: Make a new text file that you’ll upload to Google. It should have a .txt file extension.
    2. Format of the Link File: Each line in the file should contain one URL or domain that you want to disavow. To disavow a domain or subdomain, add “domain:” before it (e.g., domain:example.com).
    3. File Requirements: The text file should be encoded in UTF-8 or 7-bit ASCII. It should have a maximum size of 2MB and 100,000 lines, including blank lines and comment lines. You can add comments by starting a line with the # symbol, and Google will ignore those lines.
    4. URL Length Limit: Each URL should not exceed 2,048 characters.

Submit the Disavow File:

  1. Go to the disavow links tool page https://search.google.com/search-console/disavow-links
  2. From the property list, select the specific property (website) to which the list will apply. If there is an existing list for this property, you’ll see a summary of the disavowed pages and domains Uploading a new list will replace the existing one for this property.
  3. Click the button to upload your list.
  4. Follow the instructions to choose the disavow file from your local computer.
  5. If there are any errors in the file, you will receive a list of the errors immediately. In this case, your old list will not be replaced. You can fix the errors in your new list and try uploading it again.
  6. If the upload is successful, it may take a few weeks for Google to incorporate your list into the index. This is because Google needs to recrawl the web and reprocess the pages based on the updated information in the disavow list.
  7. By following these steps, you can upload your list of pages or domains to disavow using the Disavow Links tool provided by Google.


Monitor the Results: After submitting the disavow file, Google will process the information, but it may take some time for the changes to take effect. Monitor your website’s performance and search rankings regularly to assess the impact of the disavowed links.

Remember, the Disavow Tool should be used with caution and as a last resort. Only disavow backlinks that are genuinely harmful or violate Google’s guidelines. It’s crucial to maintain a healthy backlink profile by focusing on acquiring high-quality, relevant backlinks through ethical SEO practices.

Regularly review and update your disavow file as new harmful backlinks are identified or as you successfully remove unwanted links manually. Regularly monitoring your backlink profile and using the Disavow Tool appropriately can help improve your website’s search performance and protect it from the negative impact of harmful backlinks.