What would you say if your competitors deleted 39% of the backlinks that point to your website? Sadly, this seems to be possible and it is not too difficult. If you don’t want to lose your rankings, you have to keep track of your backlinks.
How your competitors can delete your backlinks
A blogger found out that it was very easy to get backlinks removed. He sent link removal messages from a newly created Gmail account stating that he was working on behalf of a client. The results were surprising:
- 4% of the recipients requested money to remove the link (between $2 and $2000).
- 4% asked for proof that the sender of the message was really working for the linked company.
- 39% of the recipients deleted the backlink to the website without further questions.
Remember that this was not a link removal message from an official company website. The link removal requests were sent from a Gmail address and the sender only claimed that he worked for the linked company.
How to delete the backlinks of any website in three easy steps
The numbers above indicate that it is extremely easy to remove the backlinks of a website:
- Get a free email address with a nice name, for example firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Create a link removal message with an officially sounding text. Mention the words “Google”, “penalty” and maybe “Matt Cutts”.
- Send this message to all websites that link to the website.
Just to be sure: do not do this! We just want to illustrate how easy it is to get backlinks removed.
How to protect your backlinks
- As it is very easy for your competitors to remove your backlinks, you have to monitor your backlinks to make sure that they are not deleted.
- Fortunately, there are tools that can help you to do this. For example, the backlink manager in SEOprofiler automatically monitors the backlinks to your site.
- If a link that points to your site gets removed (or if it gets the nofollow attribute) the links will be marked in red (or yellow).
- It’s sad that Google’s Penguin update has resulted in a link removal craziness that makes the above scenario possible. If you want to get lasting results, you have to do the following:
- Use safe SEO methods that play by the rules. By using these methods, you make sure that your website gets high rankings that last.
- Monitor your rankings and your backlinks to make sure that your competitors don’t manipulate your rankings.