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How to Fix a Bad Backlink Profile & Resurrect Rankings

Fix BacklinksBacklinks are one of the foundations of a websites ability to have good traffic and a successful SEO strategy.

If your site (or your client's site) isn't getting the traffic it should, or you feel like the SEO strategy is not producing desired results, then the problem could be over-optimized or damaging backlinks.

Fortunately, nowadays there are plenty of tools available to help pinpoint which links are damaging to a site's SEO indexation and fix its backlink profile to get back in Google's good graces. Below are a steps you can take to Fix a bad backlink profile and resurrect rankings.

1. Scan & Assess the Backlink Profile

The first step towards fixing a negative backlink profile is to figure out which links are affecting the website's ranking. For this, you need to access Google's Webmaster Tools and download the desired website's backlink report as well as scan the domain with tools found at sites like Moz.com to get the last three reports, at least.

Then, you will need to compile all the information as neatly as possible in a way that will be easy for you to go through and pinpoint anomalies, because that is what you will be doing next. Once you have all the information, you will be looking at these specific aspects – anchor text ratio, IP Diversity, DoFollow / No NoFollow links, neighborhood and domain authority.

2. Evaluate Anchor Text Ratio & IP Diversity

Anchor text ratio is probably the most important aspect in this analysis. If the websites feature search keywords more heavily than the brand name they are trying to promote, that is an obvious problem.

IP Diversity is also quite easy to understand. A website should not have many backlinks from related domains, as Google takes it as a sign of the use of a network, which is against the rules. If your site has domains from the same IP linking to it, that might be a problem.

3. DoFollow vs. NoFollow

A vast majority of DoFollow links is usually a sign of spamming, something which Google certainly does not take kindly to. A healthy dose – about 20% - of NoFollow links will do wonders to a website's ranking. A good balance offers the best backlinks for SEO.

4. Check for Spammy Backlink Sources

Neighborhood is all about shared hosting and which websites are associated with your own. If you find that the site you're trying to restore shares their host with spam sites or others which have a bad SEO profile, then a host move is certainly in order. To check the website's neighborhood, you can visit Majestic.com.

5. Determine Referring Domain Authority

Finally, you will need to check the domain authority of your back linked websites, because their authority status – or lack thereof – might be hurting your own. There is more than one way to check this, but you will need to do each individually, even when using the resources from Moz.com.

Now you have all the clues to figure out if backlinks are the reason your or your client's efforts aren't producing results. Once all these aspects are checked and fixed diligently, there should be no reason why search engines won't index and rank the website.

If they do, however, you might have a very different problem in your hands. Before you move on though, remember to double-check and make sure the website's backlink profile is truly healthy to avoid future problems.

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