Are you in a position where you need to submit link removal requests to other webmasters because you or your clients have spammy anchor text links on low quality websites? You are in the right spot. I can help you.
Scroll to the Bottom if You Just Want the Email Example
I have seen so many hilarious email templates with link removal request examples. And a lot of the advice is coming from the top SEO blogs out there, like SEOMoz (Moz), Search Engine Watch, etc. But they really have no clue about link clean-up because they run huge authority domains that don’t need to worry about bad backlinks. Oh, and they accept guest blog posts on these types of subjects that they have no clue about and publish the articles on their websites (email example towards the bottom of that article).
Watch Out: I Will Disavow Your Website in Google
The big guys suggest that you contact webmasters and warn them of Google penalties like Penguin 2.0 and that you will use the Google disavow tool against the webmaster’s site if they don’t remove the links. What a joke. Putting a website in the disavow tool doesn’t create a penalty for someone else. It basically makes it a nofollow link in the eyes of Google, so Google just doesn’t count the link. Don’t make that disavow threat, or you will look like and idiot.
Don’t always listen to these big websites. They sometimes offer great advice, but it might not be the best advice out there. I will show you the best way to request link removals without threatening other webmasters with unnecessary information.
I’ve been working in this space for awhile now, and the only person that I’ve seen do it correctly is Marie Haynes. She knows what she’s talking about. So do I.
The email examples I’ve seen from other SEOs threaten the webmaster for possible Google penalties, and they make it seem like if they don’t remove the links, then they will be penalized by Google and possibly arrested in real life for creating a link to their website (well, maybe not that last part). Do not use the threatening method. It’s awful and it will probably piss off your recipient rather than scare them into removing the link because you are actually insulting their website and work.
I recently received this email because of a newer website of mine. It is new, has no authority, I haven’t had time to build authority to it, and I got an email from someone wanting me to remove links pointing to their site. I didn’t create the links, either. The links came from automatic anchor text WordPress footer links—which they created.
Horrible. It pissed me off. I wrote a lengthy response to this person telling them how awful their link removal email was. But I removed the link anyways because I’ve been in his position and it sucks dealing with a manual penalty.
So, in response to the awful and threatening way of sending backlink removal requests, I will show you a much better way to attack this process.
Wait, what? These are evil people that have spammy links pointing to my penalized website! Surely, I must scare these webmasters so they will take time out of their day and log in to their website to find and remove links pointing to my website!
In most cases, you (or your SEO agency) has created these backlinks on the spammy websites, so don’t blame the people that host the spam websites for your penalty. You broke the rules by creating unnatural anchor text links, so don’t blame the 19-year-old kid in India that used you for ad clicks on his PR2 domain “social media” backlink link farm. You did it.
If you have the log-in info, simply log in and change the anchor text or delete the link if possible. More likely than not, you won’t be able to delete the link yourself. I will be writing more on link analysis in the future. But for now, just change the targeted anchor text to the actual company’s name if you were using Pligg “social bookmarks” or similar link farms and directories.
And a lot of the time, if your email reaches a real person, they might ask $5 or $10 to remove a link since they have to do such hard work to remove it. It’s up to you whether or not you want to pay for indiviual links to be removed.
If you know your website is in a bad directory network, you can search http://deletebacklinks.com for your domain. If your site comes up, you can pay to have a bunch of directory network links deleted for a rather small fee. It only takes about a day for them to remove links, but only if you’re listed in their network.
Link Removal Template
Finally, here is the template that I have written and used hundreds of times, which is non-threatening and helpful for the other webmaster. And I have been pretty successful at getting people to respond to this approach, but only when there’s a legitimate email address with the domain. Here it is…
I am trying to remove some backlinks pointing to my website, [INSERT YOUR URL HERE]. I would really appreciate your help in removing this link. Here is the info…
My website is linked on your website here: [LINK TO THE PAGE WHERE THE BAD LINK EXISTS]
It points to this URL on my website: [INSERT THE URL THE BAD LINK IS POINTING TO]
And it uses this anchor text: [INSERT ANCHOR TEXT HERE]
If you could please send a confirmation note letting me know that the link has been removed, I would really appreciate it. Thanks in advance! I hope to hear from you soon.
This Requires Work from You
You will need to provide the webmaster with a specific link location on their website where your link exists and also provide them with the link URL you want removed. You will also need to provide them with the anchor text you used.
My website is linked on your website here: http://www.superawfulspamnetwork.com/somuchspam
It points to this URL on my website: http://www.iamchangingmybacklinktactics-googlepleaseforgiveme.com
And it uses this anchor text: Best SEO company in the world
The more information you can provide about your link’s location, the less work you create for the other webmaster. The less work you create for them, the easier it is for them to log in and delete the link.
And you can obviously change the other text to make it fit your style. I just think it’s a much better strategy to be nice and just casually ask if they can help remove a link rather than threaten them with penalties and warnings from Google.
If you come off as mean and confrontational, you won’t have as much success with this process. Be human and be casual. And this way, you aren’t insulting or degrading their website by calling it spammy and telling them about Google penalties and telling them you will flag their website with the disavow tool (which doesn’t actually flag the site, as mentioned above).
Thanks for reading. I hope this info is helpful. Please contact me at nick @ 815seo.com or share this article online with the buttons below.