Mass Loss of Links

Hi All

Has anyone else got any sites where 90% of your links have just vanished?

Was checking some stats this AM and I noticed one of my test spam sites that was starting to get some good page 1 rankings in a difficult niche had dropped back 3 or 4 pages.  Wasn't too worried with it being a test site and didn't check in any more detail until just now.

In total I've built around 25k links to the site (it'll be more, but that's what ahrefs reported last week) and it currently has 5.5k verified links according to SER.

However when I've checked with Ahrefs and Majesticseo just now, both are showing no more than 2k links although the domain/ip count is about the same as last week, so somehow the site seems to have lost 20k+ links in a day.

Checked all my other sites and it appears that for what ever reason, this is the only one affected.

Any ideas what might cause 90% of the links to vanish overnight?



  • EIther some links were never indexed or have become de-indexed because they were deemed low value. I see this happening all the time. Best bet is to keep harvesting fresh sites and push those links through the highest quality contextual Tier 1s you got to maximize the SEO results. Eventually u will get enough links that stick with regular maintenance.
  • AlexRAlexR Cape Town
    @davbel & @sweepicker - do you point those links at your moneysite or are you only using a manual tier 1 moat and then pointing links at that? 
  • @sweeppicker Do you think ahrefs check if backlinks are present in google index, and delete them if they aren't ? I don't think so.
    @davbel Have you checked if the lost backlinks are really not there anymore ?
  • davbeldavbel UK
    edited August 2013
    @sweeppicker & @AlexR no tiers at all, it's a purely spam project e.g. lots of everything pointing at the test site. 

    I thought it might have been something to do with de-indexing too, but none of my other spam projects have been impacted.

    It literally is one project with 20k links missing...

    @sawa73 don't really have a way of checking as I only use Ahrefs to check overall links and "quality".  Never save any of the reports.
  • ronron
    edited August 2013

    What would be interesting @davbel is to re-verify those links in SER and see if they actually exist.

    I am not sure how ahrefs and majestic seo go about their capture of links. I know they have their bots, but I am not sure if they have some other way of gathering links via API feed from Google, etc.

    The reason I am bringing this up is if Google is de-indexing links (which it does) that is one thing. But if ahrefs and majestic don't rely on Google to get any link info, then the fact that Google deindexes links should have no bearing on this matter.

    I was under the impression that their bots find the links, they catalogue them, and then revisit them to see if they are there. If that is true, whether Google deindexes them should be irrelevant.

    So if those two services are showing big downward spikes, I would think it is because the links no longer exist. And the only way to know is to re-verify.  

  • I'll reverify now as I have an update to apply
  • donchinodonchino
    If you mercilessly spam forums and blog comments, they can move on from the verified url in time, cause new submissions come on top all the time. So the url changes and Ser can't re-verify, though the link might exist somewhere. I just analyzed my tier2 lost links, and almost all Aska BBS, Fantasy Board (both Forum) were lost in a week (didn't use blog comments, but the point is same). Results were good in tier1 (high quality submissions), and also in tier2 in some reason lots of ClipShare-s (Video) were lost, not sure about that... but already excited to hear your news..
  • @ron finished reverifying and the verified list dropped from 5477 to 4764, which is pretty normal for the type of links I'm building

    Ahrefs has only 1.9k
    Majestic has 2.2k

    I've been building about 1000-2000 a day for the last 3 weeks
  • So Ahrefs and Majestic delete links which are actually alive ? This is strange, maybe they clean their index by removing low value backlinks, for controlling database size and for performance reason, or something like that, just an idea.
  • The only thing that contradicts all of this is that my other spam projects haven't been impacted.  Although some links will be unique to each project, I do know that there is a sizable amount of cross over betwwen them.

    It's all a bit bizarre
  • ronron

    @donchino you bring up a valid point in that the majority of the links will likely end up being comment spam, and many will roll on to a separate page, so the url location isn't the same.

    @sawa73 ; Ahrefs and Majestic maybe only catalogue 20%-40% of the total links as they don't have the 'universe' like Google does. But they do go back and re-verify, so if those links are gone, they will drop out.

    @davbel The other thing is to look at the %'s of links for each platform type to perhaps analyze where the bleeding is coming from. I think it's got to be the comment links. 

  • AlexR I point mostly contextual links at my money site with decent authority and alot of anchor text variation.
    sawa73 Not sure I never used ahrefer. The most accurate way to monitor your backlinks is through backlinksmonitor which is what I use. I know exactly at any given time how many indexed links I have in my tiers, linkloss, etc.  This helps me tremendously when powering up my links.

  • BTW, I only use blog commenting for indexing considering most are spammed to death. Forums are much better for powering up in my opinion.
  • Tim89Tim89
    edited August 2013
    @sweeppicker have you noticed, when you export your links from SER into BLM and hit go, once it's finished it's returned lets say 15,000 links for example, you then hit delete dead links and boom your links go down to 4k...

    This has been happening to me quite a lot with my SER campaigns.

    Exporting 10k links, after analysing them.. There are only 4k links within my tier structure!
  • AlexRAlexR Cape Town
    @sweepicker - Does BLM do a great job of tracking the number of indexed links? 
    What proxies do you use to check indexing of links? 
  • @Tim89. Yes, and this is why you need to continuously harvest and build more links;) Gscraper is great for this. When people experience rank drops I would bet most of the time this is the reason why. It's basically a race and for me I consider it crucial to be able to monitor my live link count. You want to gain more links than you lose. Over time you will build a big enough base that you will only need light maintenance to hold you rank. You can also go deeper with your tiers but you have to be careful as their is a greater the chance the chain will break. I usually wait for the link to age a few months before I do this.  The reason I like BLM is it takes the guess work for the most part of why your ranking where you are. Algo updates and link devaulation can be remedied by building more links to your tier!

    AlexR. It's pretty good but you need a large proxy pool to do all the index checks. I still have trouble with this so if anyone has a great proxie resource I'm all ears. I've tried proxy multiply with ok results but its a bit slow.
  • Also something to consider ... even if you have 1,000 live links to your tier 1, less than half may ever get indexed depending on the platform/engine. It's  good always overshoot in your linkbuilding because ultimately what matters is the number of live indexed links you have and you want them to stick. I'm sure their are some GSA veteran here who could chime in here.
  • AlexRAlexR Cape Town
    @sweepicker - thinking of getting it:
    1) Do you have to import all your links into the program? Is it quick? 
    2) Do you have to import it per project or can you just import an entire tier structure from SER directly into it?
  • This is not related, but I'm loosing lot of links too lately, mainly TIER 3.

    No matter whatever I do, whatever # of links I make to Tier 2 and 3, or whatever priority I set for Tier 2, the Tier 2 is always getting more links than Tier 3 for ALL projects. Also Tier 3 links are being lost fast these days.

    I'm following @ron 's diagram, so all the main Tier projects have same options checked, it's not link it depends on project's engines as all 3 main tiers have same engines.

    This is causing me getting worried because I'm unable to fill this gap and loss amongst tier 2 and 3.

    Is anyone experiencing similar situation these days like me?
  • AlexRAlexR Cape Town
    edited August 2013
    @Davbel & @ron - I think you have more than 1 site right? Can you do me a favor and check the ahrefs velocity for total backlinks over 6 months...

    On the 5 sites I checked they have all been going down (most have halved over 6 months). I've done a lot of project edits so it might just be me, but I think that the expanded user base on SER has meant that many links that were previously counted are no longer counted. (as opposed to a Google de-index which would show a sharp drop at certain periods) 

    See the screenshots:

    The above = troubled rankings! :( (I also focus on higher filters so that's why they aren't such high link numbers)
  • AlexR. I import per project. Their is a way to set it up for tiers. 
  • ronron
    @AlexR - this is common. The trick is to keep up with this on an ongoing basis, and turn up the linkbuilding to offset the loss and create a positive velocity. I do believe that more and more webpages are being sorted out of the index (relative to the past few years).
  • ronron
    @Pratik, my biggest concern are the links being lost on the T1. That will have a much bigger impact on your rankings as those links are direct to the moneysite.
  • @alexr I'm not seeing that.
  • What Ron said. Honestly, I don't have that many Tier 1s ( a few hundred per project) but the ones I do have are contextual, have good DA, and stick for the most part. Everyone has a different approach. I pretty much use use GSA to pump a shitload of links at the Tier 2 and 3 level. 
  • @ron Fortunately, no much links are being lost at Tier 1.

  • AlexRAlexR Cape Town
    @ron - could you maybe assist me with this question?
    1) I've got 82% unique spun articles according to Chimp Rewriter. (They take my writer days to write - but they read very well!)
    2) In Copyscape they show quite a few as having 53% duplicate content. When I check there is just no way to spin them more than 80%. It's basically finding that quite a few words are the same and thus matching them.
    3) I have a tier below these articles pumping out 20x per url. (10x contextual type, and a 10x secondary type project)
    4) I'm getting a 5% index rate on my contextual articles. 

    --> RESULT --> Negative Link Velocity As Per Graph

    How can I solve this? 

  • This is how I've been fighting it (it's tedious). I set up a dummy spam project and post to almost all of the platforms. I don't check the option to re-verify verified links anymore. I run a verify check manually maybe once a week or so. The links that verified at first but then get deleted quickly get added to the blacklist (I also use my better judgement and common sense a lot as well). This keeps GSA running lean and is more productive and minimizes the huge link loss. I don't see the HUGE submitted/verified numbers like I used to but my link velocity is a lot more stable.
  • @jiggsaw do you manually extract and add to your blacklist? How does one extract those links en-masse?
  • Finally got to the bottom of the Ahrefs missing links hoohar

    They've made a load of changes as well as introducing a new index which means they're re-indexing everything again, so over time they will find all the previous links.

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