The Google Disavow tool is a relatively new feature in the Google world of webmasters. However, the tool has the potential for great destruction if it is improperly used. Although webmasters now have the power to tell Google to ignore any links that may be weighing down on their search engine optimization efforts, the fact that no one knows exactly how Google uses this information should give you pause before you go crazy with your new privileges.

This article will discuss some of the pros and cons of using the Google Disavow tool.

Why Would You Use the Google Disavow Tool in the First Place?

First of all, there are only a few reasons that a webmaster would have to use the Google Disavow tool in the first place.

One – Google now gives bad link warnings. This is a potential reason to use the Google Disavow tool.

Although the bad link warnings that Google gives are also a relatively new feature with known bugs, they still do signal that Google has a problem with the link profile of a particular website. Assuming that Google is fixing the bugs in the system, bad link warnings are a reason to possibly begin organizing links for a Google Disavow session.

Two – If you find that your website has been penalized manually, you may have reason to use the Google Disavow tool.

Although it is difficult to determine whether you have been manually penalize in search engine rankings, this is definitely a reason to begin organizing your link profile and deleting some of those links. There are some cases in which you can tell immediately that you have been hit with some sort of penalty. If your link profile suddenly expands greatly and you find that your rankings have gone down, you should be able to pinpoint the links that are punishing your website.

Three – If you were denied reconsideration of your website by Google, you may want to use Google Disavow.

Google is quite unforgiving about any website that it has given battling warnings to. Also, if Google begins the penalize your site for low-quality links, it will continue to do so until you have either been reconsidered or you make use of the Google Disavow tool. Often, to be reconsidered, you must get rid of a vast majority of your links.

Four – If Google Penguin has hit your site hard, you may want to consider using the Google Disavow tool.

Diagnosing Google Penguin penalties can be as difficult as diagnosing a manual penalty. However, if you know that you have been building links aggressively with a great deal of anchor text that is similar, you may have been the victim of a Penguin cleanup crew.

No one is exactly sure of the update schedule of the Google Penguin program; however, this should not be a consideration in your use of disavowing bad links. As of this writing, the Google Disavow tool is only able to affect a Google Penguin punishment slightly.

Five – If you know that you have been victimized by negative search engine optimization efforts by your competitors, Google Disavow may be able to help.

Studies have shown that webmasters who think that they have been the victim of negative search engine optimization efforts usually have SEO problems of their own. However, negative search engine optimization efforts are definitely real, and you should check over your link profile to make sure that no links that you have not personally created are in there. However, double check to make sure that the source of the problem is actually what you think it is before you go disavowing every link that you have.

The Pros of Using the Google Disavow Tool

Using the Google Disavow tool can help you get rid of bad quality and low quality links that do not help your search engine optimization rankings. As long as you can organize your link profile into links that help your efforts and links that do not, you should be able to increase the efficiency of your work using the power of disavowal.

Google also looks very kindly (supposedly) upon webmasters who use its tools to clean up their profiles. Although the Google Disavow tool has a great deal of unproven potential at present, Google has always rewarded those webmasters who use its tools to follow the rules of engagement in the long term. However, there are those who feel that this is just another trap Google is setting to figure out who is using fishy tactics.

The Cons of Using the Google Disavow Tool

Because there can be so many reasons for a manual punishment or a downgrade in the page rank of your website, that links may not actually be your problem. However, because of the powerful and finalizing nature of the new tool, many webmasters have already done themselves great harm by not fully assessing their own SEO problems. In short, they are attributing other problems with their search engine optimization efforts to bad links and deleting years of hard work in one fell swoop.

The Google Disavow tool has also not been fully rendered into the entire scope of Google search engine optimization. For instance, if you simply disavow all links below a certain page rank, you do your page more harm than good. The problem here is that most low quality links, no matter how low quality they are, still help your search engine optimization rankings. Take note: The Google Disavow tool is far from a magic wand that you can use in isolation to completely refigure your link profile.

There is also the problem of submitting too many links for disavowal at once. This is actually a strategy that could come back to haunt your website. Even though you might be getting rid of bad links, you are also making your website a target because Google thinks that you should not have had that many bad links in the first place. Be very careful about using the Google Disavow in bulk like this, because actions like that could come back to haunt you in the very near future.