How to Find and Disavow Harmful Backlinks in Google Search Console

This article was updated on October 31, 2019.

howtodisavowThe possibility of your website being affected by negative SEO techniques still shows its ugly face in our competitive online world. Website owners see the value in increasing their search engine visibility, and not all of them go about it in ways that are ethical. The analytics gurus at Alexa blog describe the issue in detail in the article, “Negative SEO is Real.” The main sources of harm come from link farms, spammy links, scraped content that is duplicated across the web, fake reviews, hacked websites, and malware attacks.

Our SEO team has seen each of these problems across the hundreds of SEO projects we have managed. One of the most prominent problems we see regularly is harmful and spammy backlinks. A quality backlink monitoring tool such as Majestic.com, SEMRush.com, or Ahrefs.com should be in every site owner’s toolbox. The following steps were created to help you identify these links and to signal to Google not to penalize your site when these backlinks appear.

  1. Explore the backlinks and create a .txt file of all the domains you wish to disavow.
    • Go to Majestic.com and search for your domain in the main Site Explorer Results search field. Use the Historic Index for the most comprehensive results.Majestic Site Explorer
    • Select the Ref Domains tab to get a list of the referring domains.
    • Click on the number listed in the Backlinks column to reveal the top ten links from each suspicious website. A root domain with a Trust Flow score of zero and a high Citation Flow score is sign that a site may be harmful.
    • Visit a few links to determine if they appear to be from a site created for the sole purpose of creating backlinks, i.e. a spammy website.
    • If the site is spammy, create a .txt file in MS Notepad or a similar plain text editor. Add the domain on the top line preceded by “domain,” such as domain:crimsonnight.net
    • Continue until all spammy domains are listed. Put each domain on its own line.
    • Save the file using this naming convention: disavow2019-10-31.txt
    • Log into your Google Search Console account.
    • Visit: https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/disavow-links-main. Select the domain from which you want to disavow links and click “DISAVOW LINKS.”

Google Disavow LinksRead the note from Google:

This is an advanced feature and should only be used with caution. If used incorrectly, this feature can potentially harm your site’s performance in Google’s search results. We recommend that you only disavow backlinks if you believe that there are a considerable number of spammy, artificial, or low-quality links pointing to your site, and if you are confident that the links are causing issues for you.

    • Click “Disavow Links.”
  1. Choose the file that contains the list of links you want to disavow. Click “Submit” and then click “Done.”
  2. Navigate back to the Google Search Console dashboard, click “Sitemaps” on the left side of the page, select the website URL, and resubmit the XML sitemap in the “Add a new sitemap” field. Click “SUBMIT.”
    Google Search Console - Add a New Sitemap
  3. Done!

Note: Google references a single .txt file when indexing a website, so any future domains that need to be disavowed should be added to the list of already disavowed domains, saved as a new .txt file, and uploaded again, which will replace the file that was previously created.

Feel free to contact us if you have a question about a link you may want to disavow or if you would prefer to have our SEO team evaluate your backlink profile for the presence of harmful backlinks.

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How to Add a Manager to a Google My Business Account

This article was updated on September 28, 2019.

Google-My-BusinessCreating and/or verifying a Google My Business account is one of the most important things a local business can do to show up in Google organically. A Google My Business listing is required for a business to show up on Google Maps. If your business is incorporated you may already have a listing in Google My Business. In this case, claiming and verifying the listing is your first step to optimizing it.

Once the Google My Business listing has been claimed, one or more page managers can be added to the account. A page manager might be needed to add graphics, including a logo and banner image.

Whoever claimed the Google My Business listing will need to be the one to log in and add the page manager to the account. These steps will guide you through the process.

  1. Go to google.com and sign into your Google account at the top right corner of the page.
    Google account sign in icons
  2. Click the Google apps icon. Then choose the My Business icon.Google account icons
  3. If you manage more than one business, the Manage locations page will open.
  4. Click on the name of the business.
    Manage locations
    Fiza Studio GMB
  5. Your Google My Business home page will open. (If you only manage one business on Google, you will not need to navigate through the Manage locations page.)
  6. Scroll down on the left-hand side and click “Users.”Google My Business add users panel
  7. The Manage permissions window will open. Click the “Invite new users” icon in the top right corner.Manage Permissions GMB
  8. In the popup window, add the email address of the new manager. It should be an email account that is connected to Google. Select “Manager” in the drop-down menu and click “Invite.”Add New Users GMB
  9. Done!

Clients often want me to take care of this process for them. In this case, they give me their email address and password to log into their Google account to complete the task.

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How to Add an Ads Manager to Your Twitter Account

This article was updated on 8/30/2019.

Twitter logo + manager drawing

Your organic Twitter account can be a very viable way to reach people with the information you want them to know. A Twitter Ads account allows you to use Promoted Tweet campaigns that do even more to target very specific audiences or followers of other relevant Twitter pages. If you would like to add a Twitter Ads Manager to help you set up and monitor your campaigns, it is a fairly simple process. Here’s how.

To give a new Ads Manager access to your Twitter Ads account,

  1. Log into your Twitter Ads account here: https://ads.twitter.com/. If you are already logged into Twitter, you will be logged into Twitter Ads when you navigate to this URL.
  2. If you work with more than one advertising account, select the account to which you would like to add an Ads Manager.
  3. In the top right-hand corner, click the drop-down menu under your account name and select “Edit access to account.”Twitter Ads account drop down menu
  4. The Edit access to account window will open. Click the “Add access” button on the right-hand side.Twitter Ads account Add access and Edit access buttons
  5. Enter the new account manager’s name or Twitter handle in the text field. Select the contact when it appears.
  6. Just to the right of the text field, choose the level of access. The “Ad manager” level will grant full access to modify campaigns and view data, but not to add or remove users or change settings. “Account administrator” includes the permission to change users and settings, create Twitter cards, and create tracking pixels to measure website conversions.Twitter Ads account permissions list
  7. Click “Save changes.”
  8. Done!

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How to Add an Ads Manager to Your Facebook Page

This article was published on 8/14/2014. It was updated on 7/10/2016 and 6/25/2019. 

facebook-ads-logo, small

If you are a Business Manager Admin of one or more Facebook pages, you may want to add others to take on administrative roles. Delegating a task to someone you trust can be an important step in both time management and business development. Here is how to add an Ads Manager to a Facebook page:

  1. Log into your Ads Manager Account: https://www.facebook.com/ads/manager/account_settings. The Ad Account Setup page will appear.
  2. If you manage multiple business pages, use the drop-down menu on the left side of the page at the top to choose the correct business page.
  3. On the right side of the page below the Attribution information, you will see the Ad Account Roles box. Click “Add People.”

Facebook Ad Account Roles - Add People

The Add People To This Ad Account window will open.

Add People to This Account Window - Facebook Ads for a Business page

  1. Enter the name of the Facebook friend to whom you want to assign a role. From the drop-down menu, choose the role you are assigning.

Add People to This Account Window with Facebook friend's name selected- Facebook Ads for a Business page

An Ad Account Advertiser can see and edit ads as well as set up new ads using the payment method that is associated with the account. An Ad Account Admin can not only do those tasks but can also edit the method of payment for ads and manage admin permissions. An Ad Account Analyst can only view ad performance and could not help to manage the account.

  1. Once the correct person and ad management role have been selected, click “Confirm.”
  2. Done!

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How to Create a Short Link for a Google Review Using Bit.ly

Create a Link for Google ReviewsOne of the best ways to build a positive reputation and a strong web presence for your business is to give some attention to your Google reviews. Pestering your customers or clients for reviews is not likely to yield a positive outcome, but a friendly request can go a long way. At the end of your service, you may want to say something like, “Thank you very much! It was great working with you. If you had a good experience with us, we’d love it if you’d leave us a review on Google.”

A visual request for reviews may be even more effective for bringing in some positive words about what you do. Provide a link on your web pages, in emails, and find other creative ways to share a link to capture your customer’s desire to say something great about you. Here’s how:

  1. Use google.com to search for your business.
  2. Click on your business listing. Find the “Write a review” button and click it.Loebig Ink on Google
    A “Rate and review” box will open.
  3. The web address for the “Rate and review” box will appear at the top of the page. It will be very long.https://www.google.com/search?source=hp&ei=Fbq8XNaVDaGq_QaN65vQBg&q=loebig+ink&btnK=Google+Search&oq=loebig+ink&gs_l=psy-ab.3..0.1690.3653..4312…0.0..0.81.756.11……0….1..gws-wiz…..0..0i131j0i131i10j0i10j0i22i30.NxL doFwaGk#btnK=Google%20Search&lrd=0x89b7ceca5e5fcd8b:0xeae7036204131d65,3,,,
  4. Log into to bit.ly, or follow the steps to open a free account if you don’t have one already.
  5. Click the “Create” button in the upper right corner.Search and Create at bit.ly
  6. The “CREATE BITLINK” window will open on the right side of the page.Create Bitlink window
  7. Copy and paste the long web address in the “PASTE LONG URL” box and click “CREATE.” A new, short web address will appear.Edit Bitlink
  8. Edit the end of the short web address to make it more memorable, such as http://bit.ly/Loebig. Click “SAVE.”Edit bitlink - Loebig URL
  9. Share the new short link to increase your Google reviews!
  10. If your business doesn’t show up on the map when you search google.com:
  11. Find it on maps.google.com.
  12. A window will open on the left side of the page.Loebig Ink on Google Maps
  13. Scroll down and click the “Write a review” button. A “Rate and review” box will open.
  14. Follow steps 3 – 9.

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Increase Visibility Using The Top Small Business Directories

This article was published on 2/13/2014. It was updated on 4/1/2019. 

Increase your visibility image for small businesses in these local directoriesSmall business owners are always on the lookout for the lowest cost, highest value promotional opportunities on the Internet. Creating or claiming local business directory listings is a great way to expand ones digital footprint.

Many Internet service providers have identified the value of local directories which has spawned a bevy of mass listing services such as Yext.com, CityGrid and others. These services make it easy to claim a large list of directories that may or may not be relevant to a business. The listing provider’s monthly fees tie a business into a relationship with them for life since discontinuing their service will remove your business information from the listing enmasse.  A more time intensive, but lower cost, approach is to claim ones business listings by hand with the top directories relevant for your industry.

The following list of directories are recommended for a wide variety of businesses and industries. Links to the business listing page of the directory will make it easier to begin creating or claiming your business listings.(*Note: Always be sure to search for your business listing in each directory before creating a brand new one. Removing duplicate listings in these directories is equally as important.)

  1. Google My Business : *Domain Authority 90
      1. This is often the first and arguably the most important location a local business should list their business. Google My Business is key for local SEO to ensure customers can find your business on Google Maps.

     

      1. Your first step will be to sign in using an email account associated with Google. If you don’t have one that is connected to Google, you will need to set one up. [Link to blog on how associate email with Google My Business]  A Gmail account is an easy choice, but you can also associate a non-Gmail account with Google.

     

    1. There are usually several quick verification options (e.g. via a business email or telephone number) to get your profile published immediately. However, in certain instances, post-card verification is required and can take up to two weeks to be mailed and received.
  2. Yelp for Business : *Domain Authority 94
    1. Yelp has become one of the most popular and important directory and review sites for a business due in part to the rigid system of controlled reviews on the site. Yelp works tirelessly to ensure reviews submitted are by real people and customers through a series of algorithmic controls that filters questionable reviews out of site.
    2. Like most directory sites, you will be guided through a search process to see if your business is already listed. If it is, you will “claim” the listing. If not, you will be able to create a new Yelp listing.
  3. Four Square: *Domain Authority 92
    1. Foursquare, is a local search-and-discovery mobile app which provides search results for its users. The app provides personalized recommendations of places to go near a user’s current location based on users’ previous browsing history and check-in history.
    2. There are three  steps to create a listing in this directory:
        1. First create an individual user profile.

       

        1. Next create your business listing.

       

      1. Lastly, claim your business listing.
    3. Upon claiming your business listing there is a one-time $20 fee to get your listing published in the directory.
    4. Claims to be “Trusted by over 150,000 partners and developers worldwide.”
  4. Angie’s List for Business : *Domain Authority 91
    1. Angie’s List is a popular directory and review site of service companies and health care professionals in over 550 categories. Angie’s List customers pay an annual subscription fee to access business listings and reviews from their local area.
    2. Categories include business description, service area, operating hours, services, payment options, 24 hour emergency service designation, etc.
  5. Crunchbase : *Domain Authority 91
    1. Crunchbase is a platform for finding business information about private and public companies. Crunchbase information includes investments and funding information, founding members and individuals in leadership positions, mergers and acquisitions, news, and industry trends.
    2. There are three steps to be aware of when setting up a free listing with this directory:
        1. First, create an individual user profile

       

        1. Next, create a company profile

       

      1. Lastly, you must use different social media account credentials to verify each profile.  
    3. Paid listings afford you the opportunity to perform searches for investors,   perform competitive analysis of other companies, and perform data analysis of your company’s performance.
  6. Manta : *Domain Authority 87
    1. Manta claims to be the largest online community dedicated to small business. Owners can list their business in the Manta directory for free and take advantage of networking, articles and numerous small business resources.
    2. Free listings include contact information, website link, business description, 3 business categories, products/services, years in business, state of incorporation, NAICS and SIC codes, etc.
    3. Enhanced listings range in price from $49 to $99/mo and include more prominent listings, competitor ad removal, multiple search keywords, etc. Compare plans here: Listing Upgrade Options
  7. Merchant Circle : *Domain Authority 87
    1. Merchant Circle claims to be “the largest online network of local business owners, combining social networking features with customizable web listings that allow local merchants to attract new customers.”
    2. Free listings include address, phone, embedded Google Map, up to three categories for listing the business, customer reviews and compliments as well as the ability of Merchant Circle members to “follow” your business on Merchant Circle.
    3. Paid listings include top search result positioning, business logo thumbnail image, social sharing buttons, website link, payment types, hours of operation, a simple blog, product descriptions, offers and recent news updates.
  8. Hot Frog : *Domain Authority 77
    1. This directory allows for a user to build a really robust business profile. You can list all products and services, create coupon offers, talk about news and updates with your business, and even share a portfolio of projects.
    2. Claims that “1.6 million people are making more than 372,000 inquiries to businesses on Hotfrog every month.”
  9. Next Door for Business : *Domain Authority 75
    1. This directory is great for local SEO because it targets the local neighborhood and surrounding local neighborhoods where businesses operate. You can also create events to go along with your listing.
    2. Recommendations have always been one of the biggest uses of Nextdoor. Members truly value their neighbors’ opinions about businesses, products, and services available in their communities on this platform.
  10. Bing places for business : *Domain Authority 53
    1. Bing Places for business another top-notch directory for local SEO. Many existing businesses are already listed in the Bing places for business directory. If your business is listed you just need to “claim” your business and update the listing.
    2. Free listings include address, phone, website link, hours, Bing map, customer reviews, and the ability for visitors to share the listing via email, Facebook, Twitter, and mobile phone.

*Domain Authority is a ranking metric (based on a 100 point scale) established by the SEO experts at Moz.com. It determines the power of a domain and how well it will rank in Google search results using a  multi-factorial algorithm.

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How to Add an Administrator to Your Facebook Page

This article was published on 12/20/2012. It was updated on 8/14/2015 and 3/13/2019.

How to Add an Administrator to your Facebook PageAs a small business grows in size and complexity, it will often begin enlisting others to help support its efforts. Social media management is a natural area of any business to benefit from a professional marketing consultant. To that end, it may be become necessary for someone else to act as an administrator of a business Facebook page.

The first step in giving someone access to a Facebook page for page management purposes is to assign them an Admin role. Facebook allows a business to provide up to six different roles. The Admin role provides page administrators with the highest level of access available. The Analyst role has the lowest level of access. This step-by-step guide describes how to give a person access so they can set up and manage a Facebook page.

  1. Choose the role you would like to assign. The six administrative roles, described by Facebook in detail, include Admin, Editor, Moderator, Advertiser, Analyst, and Jobs Manager.Facebook page admin roles chart
  2. Navigate to your Facebook Business page.
  3. Click “Settings” on the top right side of the page.Facebook settings link screen shot
  4. On the next page, click “Page Roles” in the column on the left side of the page.settings column - Facebook business page
  5. In the space below the heading that reads “Assign a New Page Role,” type in the name of the person you want to add as an admin. If you are Facebook friends with the person, their name will pop up. Click on the name to choose it. If you are not Facebook friends with the new admin, type in the person’s email address.Assign a New Page Role
  6. Next, select an admin role for the person from the drop down menu.Assign a New Page Role - Editor
  7. Click “Add,” then click “Save.”
  8. Done!

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How to Post an image to Instagram from your Desktop Google Chrome Browser

Social Media Ninja Hack for 2019: Posting to Instagram from your Desktop in Google Chrome

By Stephen Rabil and Angela Martinez of Loebig Ink, LLC


Follow these steps (*Note: This only works on one Instagram profile at a time):

1. Open Google Chrome Browser.

2. Login to the Instagram account you want to post to.

3. Right-click  on your mouse, press control+shift+i (on a PC) on your keyboard, or command+shift+i (on a mac) to open the menu below then select “Inspect.”

4. In this view, HTML developers screen appears on the right, click the toggle device toolbar icon with your mouse (circled in red).

5. Refresh  the page:

6. The Instagram toolbar (red highlight) will appear at the bottom of the window similar to the mobile app.

7. Click on the plus button icon. This will access your computer’s hard drive to add images.

8. Select the photo you want to use to begin a new post.

9. Then choose “Next” and type in a caption and any hashtags you want.

10. Hit share and Voila! It’s posted to your Instagram account from your computer!

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How To Add a Linkedin Page Administrator

This article was updated on January 21, 2019.

LinkedIn logo with add a person iconCreating a LinkedIn business page is a key component of a complete local business internet marketing strategy. LinkedIn is the top social media site for business professionals and LinkedIn business pages provide a unique opportunity for a business to showcase its products and services in a professional manner. Regular updates can be shared with followers on a business LinkedIn page and built-in analytic tools allow page owners to measure the impact they are having on this social media platform.

Here are the simple steps to giving additional people access to your LinkedIn business page. There can only be one page owner, so giving someone admin access is a safe and effective way to involve others in helping to manage the page.

  1. Log into LinkedIn.
  2. Go to your Linkedin business page.
  3. Click the “Admin tools” arrow on the top right side of the page.

Admin tools arrow, LinkedIn

  1. The Admin tools menu opens. Click “Page admins.”
  2. The Manage admins window opens. Start typing the name of the new admin in the box. (You must be connected to a LinkedIn member to make them a page admin.)

Manage admins window detail, LinkedIn

  1. The name will appear in a drop down menu. Select the name and click “Save changes” in the lower left corner.
  2. Done!

 

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