The last few days has seen Internet Bulletin Boards awash with comment about the latest Google initiative – the Disavow Initiative.
Now for those who haven’t spotted this. In a nutshell this is what Google Disavow is all about. First up Google hit a site with either an outright penalty in the form of a de-indexing or a 500 place drop because they feel that the site has not conformed to Google Best Practices etc. Either that or they send out a message via Webmaster Tools indicating that there might be problem issues amongst certain of the sites back links and that if they aren’t removed, the Webmaster can fill out a form and inform Google which links the Webmaster would like Google to ignore (yeah right).
Now Google Disavow has the potential of all of the last few Google Updates to be the “real deal” in terms of rewriting the Back Links Landscape totally. It will completely force a rethink at every level of SEO and Link Building.
It has to, as it has been designed purely by the Google FUD Dept to do exactly that. Spread Fear, Uncertainty and Despair right throughout the SEO and IM Community.
It will do so and succeed through the misguided panic reactions of the majority of Link Builders and SEO Practitioners who by their own ignorance will fall into the hands of Google and do their work for them.
On that ground alone it has been designed and executed to perfection with a degree of sneaky brilliance that we have not seen Google come out with for a long time.
For the past few years we’ve seen Google repeatedly shoot themselves in the foot (whilst quite often opening their mouths to change those same feet if you don’t mind me splitting several metaphors) but here they’ve executed the big one.
And executed it to perfection.
It’s not the immediate effect that is the danger, it’s not the actual act of entering in and processing the initial “disavow” Data that is going to do the damage. It will be the ramifications of how Google process all this data (and you can bet they have oodles of data processing power to eat this all up) and the incredible potential for collateral damage the like of which we have not seen for years.
Briefly for example, take the following scenario.
Site A has a Back Links Profile that involves Blue Chip content and by and large Blue Chip links from so called Blue Chip sources but in a way that looked at carefully could be construed as Link Building contrary to Google’s T&C’s in that the Links are bought and paid for despite their quality and therefore contrary to Google’s Best Practice Policies. But, due to care and attention to date have hitherto slipped under the radar.
The only problem is that these same link Sources have also been used by Site B who have been slightly less ethical/more aggressive in their Link Building with other sources and they’ve been caught up in the Google trap and been issued with a Warning Letter that tells them to remove their so called “bad links” which due to the way they acquired them they are unable to do.
The way round this is quite simple according to Google (such lovely kind fellows), simple apply the Disavow attribute/submission and Google will process the said links and discount them but they would need all the data and information on these links and their sources and origin first.
Aren’t we so lucky to have such nice wonderful friends in good old Uncle Google?
Hmnn not quite and here’s why.
Google will process the data from Site B and it will analyse ALL of the Links Landscape from Site B, of this you can be 100% GUARANTEED. It will assume that not everyone tells the truth 100% of the time (shucks) and as such will take the view that if the promoters of Site B have been so unethical as to undertake a Link Building Campaign contrary to Google’s T&C’S then surely the logic will be; what about the seemingly perfect immaculate Links coming in from the so called Blue Chip Links and hang on…….all with perfect matching Anchor Phrases and structure.
Wait a minute these couldn’t possibly be contrary to Google’s T&C’S as well could they?
Surely not? They look too good and too respectable…in fact a bit too respectable and bit too good….oh heck problem on the horizon, lets discount these Link Sources as well as they come from seeming unrelated Blogs with funnily enough…..High Page Rank?
Let’s discount the effect of all them.
Knock on effect for this is that Site A who has hitherto escaped Google’s inspection now gets their Links downgraded as a result because they share the same sources albeit unwittingly.
Looks and sounds like collateral damage to me.
Now anyone who thinks that this is all a bizarre trip and flight of unrelated Conspiracy Theory based Fantasy due to yours truly having been exposed to too much sun over the weekend better go back and analyse ALL of Google’s actions over the last few years and consider them in “the round”.
This is the Company who brought us “Personalised Search” but never told us and thereby ended the concept known as the definitive Google No1 – after all No 1 where? Which Data Centre and which territory worldwide?
This is the same Company that told us via Webmaster tools that they couldn’t provide referral data on visits from surfers when they weren’t logged into their Google Accounts due to Data Protection issues. Hang on, this is the same company that were found a few days afterwards selling this Data to premium Adwords Clients. Hmmnn so much for Data Protection?
Google Disavow is nothing more than a shameless “Snitches Charter”.
It is couched in “cyber altruism of the utmost degree” alongside such other notably inglorious chapters in their history such as when they provided Webmasters, with a button within Webmaster tools that they could use to “rat and grass up” other webmasters if they felt they were doing anything that Google ought to think suspicious.
What a lovely organisation and given last week’s stock market debacle that resulted in the world’s largest one day share price crash of $15 bn – couldn’t have happened to a nicer bunch of fellows.
Anyway the upshot to us is that this now means that Link Diversity and the Power of Press Releases now becomes even more vital and even more useful.
It’s how SEO Practitioners and Webmaster deal with the Google situation that matters and so far no one is talking about the real potential for damage because no one has thought it through properly yet.
It is in certain quarters but unlikely to be widely available for some time due to the fact that most are unaware of the potential damage.
This is our opportunity. As with all things, these situations can be dealt with as long as you understand the “situation” fully.