One SEO professional asked a question about link building and their disavow file.
Their question was: Over the last 15 years, they have disavowed around 11,000 links in total.
They never bought a link or did anything that was against Google’s Webmaster Guidelines, such as sharing.
The links that they disavowed were probably from hacked sites or from nonsense, auto-generated content. Since Google now claims they have better tools that don’t factor these types of hacked or spammy links into their algorithm, should they just delete their disavow file?
Is there any risk or downside to just deleting it?
John explained that from Google’s perspective, they work really hard to avoid taking any bad links into account. And they do that because they know that the disavow links tool is somewhat a niche tool, and SEOs know about it.
But, the average person running a website doesn’t even know about it. All of the links you mentioned, these are the kinds of links that any website gets over the years. And Google’s systems understand that these are not things that you’re trying to do to game the algorithms.
From Google’s perspective, if you’re really sure that there’s nothing around, like a manual action that you had to resolve with these links, John said he would just delete the disavow file and move on with life.
The one thing he recommends doing with it is making sure you download it and make a copy, so you have a record of what you deleted. Otherwise, if you’re sure these are just the normal crufty things from the internet, John recommends deleting the disavow file and moving on.
This happens at approximately the 10:20 mark in the video.