How To Disavow Backlinks In SEMrush: A Guide

December 29, 2021  /  
How To Disavow Backlinks In SEMrush: A Guide

Backlinks are one of the most critical elements of building a strong website. Bad backlinks can, however, negatively impact your site if Google decides to penalize you for them. The consequences of being penalized for "unnatural links" are the same whether or not you are aware of them.

As a webmaster, part of your job is to deal with Google penalties. It used to take a lengthy and complicated process to convince Google to ignore the links so that they would not affect the site's ranking. Fortunately, SEMRush's disavow tool has made this process considerably easier. 

Below are the steps to disavow backlinks using SEMRush:

  1. Navigate to SEMRush’s Backlink Audit Tool
  2. Make a new project (If the project has already been created then you can skip this step)
  3. Specify the protocol you want to use 
  4. Integrate your project with Google Search Console, Google Analytics, and Majestic
  5. Click on the “Start Backlink Audit”
  6. Compare your links using the “Toxic Score”
  7. Identify the links with a high toxic score and send them to SEMRush's disavow tool
  8. On SEMRush's disavow tool, download the links as a .txt file
  9. Upload .txt file to Google Search Console
  10. Confirm you have disavowed the links using

The process of disavowing links yourself can be time-consuming — especially if you don’t know what you’re looking for. However, by using SEMRush’s Audi tool, you can easily identify what links are bad for you based on their Toxic Score. Once you’ve compiled a list of links, you can quickly move this to your Disavow list and export said list into a .txt file. 

After submitting a disavow file to Google with a properly formatted list of links, the search engine can no longer take those links into account when calculating how valuable your website is for SEO purposes. It is impossible for the Backlink Audit tool to verify whether you have uploaded your file to Google Disavow Tool on its own. Upon disavowing the links, click "Done" in the message bar at the top of the report to confirm it. After you successfully disable the links, the Toxic Score for the project will be recalculated and the status of the links will become "Disavowed". 

A Quick Tip When Disavowing Backlinks

Keep in mind that disavowing links at the domain level is almost always preferable to disavowing links at the URL level. By disavowing links at the domain level, you remove your website's association with the linking site. In contrast, if you disavow only the URL level, you risk omitting other toxic links.

As an example, if you disavow a link from, that same link may exist at If you disavow at the domain level, you ensure that all links from a dangerous domain will be removed from your website.

All in all, disavowing harmful backlinks is a necessity in order to ensure your backlink profile is pristine. Having a great backlink profile can ensure you reach the top of Google’s search engine results pages (SERPs), and is a critical part of a good search engine optimization (SEO) strategy.

If you want to learn more about how to build a website and maintain it, visit the rest of Page Kits today!

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