Since Penguin was released by Google and all the following updates, there has started a new industry in web marketing – backlink removals. Removing bad backlinks is a long and very tedious process. Here are just the basic steps you need to go through to get links removed:
- collect the biggest list of backlinks to your site as possible
- decide which links are the bad backlinks
- collect contact information of all the sites
- contact all webmasters – hope they respond and remove the link
Right after SEOs realized this is going to be an issue, we had some services popping out of nowhere like mushrooms after the rain. Now that I got a chance to test some of them out here are my conclusions.
Assuming you have the budget to spend there are a few programs that can make life (a lot) easier.
- deletebacklinks.com- Remove Unwanted BacklinksDelete backlinks is a very cheap service – it costs between $0.15 – $0.99 per link, depending on the number of links you need or want to remove. Delete Backlinks also promises that the entire process will take only 24 hours.
- Very fast
- Only directories they work with
- rmoov.com- We help get your backlinks cleaned uprmoov does not do the link removing for you but helps you manage the process. You will need to give it the list of links you would like to remove, then it will go fetch contact details from ICANN(if you are asking who or what ICANN is let’s say it is a fancy name for whois – this very inaccurate but good enough for our purpose). Now that you have all (or most) of the contact details (many times the information on ICANN is not to accurate and sometimes the webmaster used a proxy service to hide the details then you got nothing) you can use the rmoov email template or create your own to send out to webmasters. For the email template you have two options:
- A nice letter hoping the webmaster will be helpful
- If the webmaster does not seem to be answering or is giving you trouble removing the link you can use the lawyer template that includes all the lawyer details hoping that the email will scare the webmaster and he will be a little more cooperative.
Each email that goes out has a link at the bottom which a webmaster could click on that will register in the system that the links on his sites were removed. This way he does not need to email you back. You can also provide your email configurations and the emails will be sent from your email address.
Pricing: there are 4 different plans from a free account up to $249 a month
- You have full control over the links you decide to remove
- Packages for smaller sites
- Easy export of data
- Can’t edit website details without stopping the campaign
- Website is not user friendly – it took a long time to figure out where I need to go for each function.
- Need to put all the link sorting
- Pull contact information only from ICANN although you can add a second mail if you have one.
- removeem.com- Professional Backlink Removal Toolremove’em has two different programs – self-service and a full service option. I did not use the full service, so all I can report on is that it is $10-$20 for each link removed with a $1000 set up fee.The self-service provides you with a system to help run and track the process similar to rmoov, just much more powerful. Don’t worry the price is accordingly $249 per domain.remove’em pulls backlink data from multiple sources and detects the bad links, only the bad links are served to you for removal tracking. After the bad link list is created remove’em starts spidering the sites to find contact information, email or form.remove’em presents you with an easy to use interface for you to contact all the websites. The interface shows the anchor text of the link and what are the different contact options you have. For email address a pop up box opens and you can choose one of three templates of emails to send, the system will track the number of emails sent to each website. If the only option is a contact form then there is a link directly to the form and you can fill out the all the information needed. When finishing you will need to update the system manually that you sent an email.It is also very easy to remove sites you think are not in the bad link category.
- Detects the bad links for you
- Uses multiple sources for getting backlinks
- Easy interface for slicing and dicing the data
- Easy export of data
- If bad link is in the good link category hard to find
- Expensive especially for small sites
- Manually fill in contact forms and update system
Protip: For the user to get around filling out each contact forms manually use Autofill Forms plugin for Firefox to automate the process.
- linkdelete.com- Remove Bad BacklinksLinkdelete takes full charge of the process – all you need to do is register and they do the rest. This includes collecting all the links from all major tools, analyzing the links and deciding which are the bad ones and trying to remove them. The pricing is based on the number of domains and requests Linkdelete sends out (if a webmaster does not answer the first request you will pay for the second as well) starting at $57 to $157 per month until you decide the process is over. I must add that I did not try out this service myself.
- No headache for you
- No control over the process
Start with deletebacklinks.com a cheap and fast way to get rid of many directory links.
Then it depends if you need help deciding which links are bad and should be removed you need to choose between removeem.com and linkdelete.com.
linkdelete.com – if you don’t want to be bothered
removeem.com – more control over the process
If you want full control over the process then rmoov.com could help but if you want to contact webmasters in any different way besides the information they have on ICANN then it won’t be very helpful, even though you still can insert contact information manually and have the system send out all the emails.
Update October 17 2012
More paid tools that will help with the link removing process are
Next to each url that links to you there is an email address or a link to the contact page to make it easy for you to contact all the webmasters.
Link Detox claims that if 75% of your links are toxic or suspicious you will get an unnatural link email from Google.
You can find the rules that link detox uses to determine what toxic and suspicious links are.
unpengu.in – Unpenguin goal is to help people recover their websites quickly by streamlining the process of identifying problematic backlinks that may have been subject to penalties by Google.
unpenguin developed a system that takes links from mozscape and Ahrefs and comperes it to the list of links in Google WMT. In return to all this data they will give you a list of links you got to remove.
As of today I have applied for an invitation to test the beta but have not received one yet. Hope to update soon…
Good luck removing your bad backlinks!
A big thank you to Mark Ginsberg for editing the post.