If you’re in the business of selling products or services online, it’s important to know about toxic backlinks and how they can affect your website’s ranking. For businesses online, where the competition is fierce, it’s important to be aware of these backlinks and take steps to protect your website. Here’s what you need to know about toxic backlinks and how they can affect your website ranking.
Toxic backlinks are links from low-quality websites that can actually harm your website’s ranking and reputation. These links can come from spammy websites, link farms, or other sites with low authority. A toxic backlink is typically a link that is not relevant to your website or industry or a link that comes from a suspect source.
Toxic backlinks can hurt your website in many ways. First, they can cause your website to be penalised by Google. Google may devalue or even remove your website from its search results if it deems that your site has too many toxic backlinks. This will negatively impact your website’s traffic and ranking. In addition, toxic backlinks can also damage your website’s authority. If potential customers see that your site is linked to spammy or low-quality websites, they may be less likely to do business with you. This is why it’s so important to be aware of the types of links that are pointing to your site.
The best way to protect your website from toxic backlinks is to monitor the types of links that are pointing to your site. There are a few ways to do this. First, you can use Google Search Console to see which websites are linking to yours. Second, there are various back-link monitoring tools available, allowing you to keep a close eye on all links to your website. If you find any questionable links, you can disavow them using Google’s disavow tool. This will advise Google to ignore those links when they are first discovered. By monitoring the links pointing to your site, you can help protect your website from toxic backlinks, and any possible negative impact that could occur.
For brands and businesses online, it’s important to be aware of toxic backlinks and take steps to protect your website and keep your website ranking well. Toxic backlinks can hurt your website in a number of ways, including causing your site to be penalised by Google or damaging your site’s reputation. The best way to protect your website from toxic backlinks is to monitor the types of links that are pointing to your site using tools like Google Search Console or Moz’s Link Explorer. If you find any questionable links, you can disavow them using Google’s disavow tool. By monitoring the links pointing to your site, you can help protect your website from toxic backlinks.
Being involved in Technical SEO, we monitor many URLs online and help brands and businesses improve their rankings. Over the past year, we have noticed a huge increase in toxic backlinks. Certain brands that were once ranking on page one have suddenly been knocked back several pages, some much further!
For example, in the beauty industry the term ‘retinol cream’ delivers 14,300,000 results and has a huge volume behind it, and of course, is a term that most brands in the beauty industry are probably working on. Of course, Google will honour the website/s that it deems to have the best content and user experience and be the most authoritative with a back-link structure that appears to be the most organic. With that said, as our audit tool shows, some websites seem to use techniques that most SEO experts would frown upon and deem too risky. Yet, they achieve page one, when the rest of us fear what would happen if we adopted a similar strategy.
It appears that there are people being employed to build toxic back-links to their competitors in order to cause harm to their website’s reputation, sometimes in bulk. In one website specifically, we found that 27% of their links were deemed toxic, and they had no idea how they got there, or who built them.
In some instances, there are crawlers and scrapers that will scour the web and automatically list your website on theirs. These are easily detected and can be removed by emailing the website owner or simply disavowing via Google’s Disavow Tool. It seems to be a regular occurrence with many brands reporting sudden rank drops and a decline in sales. It actually happened to us in early 2022, with over 300 links placed, pointing to our main website. We don’t have that many competitors, but it was nice to find out who carried out the attack and learn that they value their position enough to take such a vicious move.
It’s a huge shame that people feel threatened, but some seem to feel that they “own the space”. It’s a term we hear all too often, not just in the digital marketing space but in other industries in general.
There is a huge market, not one brand can “own it” or deal with every single person who needs a specific product or service, and such tactics are just unnecessary. Anyone engaging in such activity, can and will be traced, and brought to justice.
If you feel this could have happened to you, please do get in touch.