Google introduces disavow function
When it comes to defining the internet, it can be hard to know where to start – with constant changes and evolution, it has almost become a life force unto itself.
Even the way we access the internet has changed in leaps and bounds in relatively recent times, from the dial-up connections of the mid-1990s to high-speed fibre optic broadband, 3G and 4G technology and smartphones that perform more smoothly than the highest-spec computer available in the 1980s.
As a result, search engines must keep up with changes – as the old adage goes, "adapt or die". And with that, Google has followed Bing's lead and developed its own disavow function.
Such a tool is designed so that if someone else who you have no control over starts posting your URL all over the back alleys of the internet, you can tell Google that you had nothing to do with it and the search engine won't punish you in the rankings.
There are two reasons why you might want to use this tool, according to Dan Petrovic of Dejan SEO – preventative and remedial. The former refers to specifying links that have the potential to harm your website before you are affected, while the latter refers to finding and reporting links that may have affected your site's ranking due to search quality issues.
Google is very specific about how this tool should be used, stating: "This is an advanced feature and should only be used with caution. If used incorrectly, this feature can potentially harm your site's performance in Google's search result."
Of course, there are many things you can control about your search performance too, including a comprehensive content strategy. Custom content allows you to set your own editorial agenda – and by using a planned strategy, you can optimise your site for search and produce information that can easily be shared and promoted on social media sites, as well as via email.
Posted by Tim Wright