Video Blog: How To Conduct A Link Audit - Part 4
"This is the fourth and final part of our video series on how to conduct link audit. In the last part we spoke about how to analyse your data, now we're going to be moving on to actually using that data. So if you were looking at back links to help with your new SEO strategy, either looking at your competitors back links or your own back links, you should now have enough information to help put together a full strategy including obviously on page work, that should take you forward over the next few months, hopefully increasing rankings, traffic and conversions through your website.
If on the other hand you are analysing your own back links, because you had a penalty from Google, the next thing to do is actually to get removing links. So using the data you've analysed, you should now have a clear idea of which links need to be removed. The very first thing to do is to set up your assets so you can show to Google whats been done and actually prove that you've done the work. So we recommend setting up a Google Docs spreadsheet and also a G mail account, so you can show who exactly you've contacted and keep track of your progress.
Once that's all set up, then you actually need to locate the details for the sites that are linking to you. The first place to look is "who is", then social media contacts, contact page on site. Also ask your client who their previous SEO agencies were, sometimes they might have private link networks, you might be able to contact old agencies and get links removed that way.
Once you've got your contact details, then you actually need to start contacting the sites and ask for the links to be removed. Make sure your polite, when these people put the links up, they weren't doing anything wrong, they were asked to put them up in good faith, so we need to be very polite in asking to have them taken down, otherwise they might just refuse to do so, we need these people on our side. Once you've contacted them, if you hear back from them, great, organise getting those links removed. If you don't hear back from them follow up with them a couple of times, they might just of missed your email, they might just of not had time to reply, so its very important that you follow up and you show Google that you haven't just made one attempt and left it at that.
Once that's all done, for any sites where you couldn't find contact details or you couldn't get the links removed, you need to organise those into a disavow file. There's a lot of information online about how to format your disavow file correctly, its very important that its done in the correct format, because it wont actually be ready by someone at Google, its all processed by one of their computers, so its important that its in the correct format so it can be properly understood.
Once your disavow file is up and online in your webmaster tools account, the next thing to do is actually submit your reconsideration. This will be read by someone at Google, so make sure its polite, make sure it asks for a reconsideration, make sure it asks for the penalty to be lifted and also its good practice to give a bit of information just detailing what internal practices you've changed, such that the people from Google are confident that your not just going to get your penalty lifted and start the whole process again putting up bad links.
After your reconsideration's been sent off, it will probably be around two to three weeks before Google gets back to you, they have a large volume of requests to get through so just be patient. When you do hear back, hopefully your penalty will be lifted and you'll be free to continue with your SEO. However if your penalty is still in place, if the people at Google still feel like you've got work to be done, unfortunately you've got to go back to square one, start analysing the links that are remaining, work out what more is left to be done and then progress through the process and get those links removed and go for reconsideration again.
So that concludes this four part video series, thank you for watching, make sure you subscribe to receive more SEO related videos."