The Website Marketing Company Step-By-Step Guide to Link Pruning

Staff writer: Brjden Crewe

Date: 7.17.2012


With low quality links taking the blame, a Penguin attack could have possibly dropped your website marketing company pages down the pecking order. In order to get back into the good graces of Google, you’ll need a smart action plan in place. In this article you’ll get a better understanding of Google’s efforts against over-optimization and how to clear your site from any future resulting penalties.

The quality and number of inbound links to a page or site from a website marketing company is a big factor in the Google ranking algorithm. Increasing the number of links to a site which uses anchor text optimization for keyword relevance is seen as a signal of increased relevance, which is one of several indications of the quality of a link which includes the authority level related to the relevance of a link or the linking page.

In order to improve a site’s search rankings, many marketers and website marketing companies have found that increasing the number of inbound links to a domain results in a boost in rankings. Ploys and schemes aimed at trying to take advantage of these behaviors by the usage of tactics which artificially pump up inbound link counts are seen as a manipulation of the ranking process. Google then aims at neutralizing or even penalizing the rankings of sites from a website marketing company thought to have manipulative intent.

Website marketing companies that were affected by this saw instant traffic drops as a result of penalties at the end of April this year when Google confirmed its algorithm changes. Google also offered a form for those persons or sites believed to have been targeted unfairly with penalties. Google has stated that some false positives could have possibly been caught in the filter but remain firm on sending a strong message against manipulative tactics.

Gather Backlinks Inventory

Understanding the state of your backlinks profile is your first order of business. The second is to obtain the most complete inventory possible while using your choice of tools which are available in bunches and can provide a list of inbound links to a website.

Google Webmaster Tools has improved the comprehensiveness of its backlinks report within the last several months. The backlinks reported by Google Webmaster Tools follows more historical outlooks than the current one being used. The backlinks reported by Google Webmaster Tools (GWT) include links that have been removed by the system, instead of reporting the most up-to-date backlink profiles. Majestic SEO generally offers two different backlink reports: a fresh index and a historical index which support these claims.

The backlinks in Google Webmaster Tools resembles Majestic SEO’s historical index than Majestic SEO’s fresh index in their reports. If you use Google Webmaster Tools for your link pruning projects, you must be aware that there can possibly be a few inaccuracies in the GWT backlinks report so try not to spin your wheels when going after any backlinks that may not exist anymore.

Create and Maintain Link Pruning Records

Compile a list of incoming links that includes the following column headers:

Link Information

  • Target URL: The page on your site the link points to
  • Source URL: The origin point of the inbound link
  • Source Rank: Any designation of the quality of a link that’s based on the authority of the linking page and the relevance to your website. This may be PageRank, MozRank, aCRank, Alexa Traffic Rank, or any other scoring scale
  • Source Date (Crawl): The date to which the information was collected
  • Anchor Text: The text which was used as an anchor for the link
  • Image Link: Check if the link is an image
  • ALT Text: Descriptive text if the link is an image
  • Nofollow: Check if a nofollow attribute is on the link
  • Redirect: Check if a redirect occurs as part of the link
  • Frame: Check if the link is contained in a frame

By learning and understanding the art of link pruning, companies can combat Penguin attacks more effectively.

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