What is the difference between Disavow and Disallow?

Having a bunch of low-quality links that are pointing to your site? But don’t know how to disavow links? Here is the complete guide on the difference between Disavow and Disallow with the step-by-step process which helps you to remove harmful links.

Let’s talk in brief, 

1. What is Disavow?

It is a part of Google Search Console-GSC to discard harmful links that are pointing to your website that helping to prevent link-based penalties. If your site is being damaged by low-quality links that you do not control. You can ask google not to take them into account when assessing your site by disavowing your backlinks.

2. When to use Disavow tool: 

If you have received a message from Google Webmaster Tools that you have “unnatural links”, you should try to eliminate these manually. This tool will help you to protect your site from link-related penalties, and spammy links. There are 4 main reasons which will harm your site.

  1. When you receive a manual penalty
  2. When you receive an algorithmic penalty
  3. Remove toxic backlinks from your site’s link profile.
  4. Sudden drop rankings

3. On what basis a website is selected to Disavow?

Based on Moz & Similar Web metrics tools we can obtain a website to disavow.


  1. Domain Authority (DA)
  2. Page Authority (PA)
  3. Spam Score

B) Similar Web Metrics:

We check based on these metrics- Organic/Search Traffic, Referral. 

  1. If the website referral traffic is more than organic traffic we need to include the website in disavow file.
  2. If the website referral traffic is less than organic traffic; no need to include the website in disavow file.

5 simple steps to implement disavow on your website: 

Technical process is simple… To disavow submit a text file containing linked pages (or) domains that you want to disavow through Google Search Console.


  Login to your webmaster tools.

Click on the below link to sign into your webmaster’s account. https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/disavow-links-main  

How to disavow links


Open a new tab and search for Google disavow

how to add links to disavow


Choose the file from your computer

how to choose file for disavow links


Click on the file and select file (named as .txt and UTF8 format) clink on SUBMIT button

how to submit file to disavow links


Finally, check the results and download the file which you have uploaded and also you have the option to DELETE file.

how to know how many domains submitted for disavow

What happens after Disavowing a website?

It lets you to tell Google to ignore specific backlinks for ranking purpose. Quality backlinks help your site to rank higher in SERP (Search Engine Results Page). 

What is Disallow in Robot.txt?

Robots.txt file applies to all web robots to visit the site. “Disallow” tells the robot not to visit any pages on the site. The major goal of SEO is to get search engines to crawl your site easily to increase ranking on SERP.

Disallow robot.txt:

It is a text file that website owners can create to tell search engine bots how to crawl and index pages on their site. 


S.NoParameters                   Disavow             Disallow
1WhyTo remove toxic backlinks which are pointing to the website.We are giving instructions to robots not to crawl a webpage or a file or a directory.
2WhereThe complete process is done in Google Search Console (GSC).The complete instructions are given in robot.txt file. You can check the file in Google Search Console(GSC).
3PurposeTo improve website ranking.Not to miss out the important pages to crawl because crawler set the limited time to crawl the website.

Conclusion: There’s no magic bullet, no quick and easy shortcuts. However, those prepared to put in the time and required patience will obtain quality results with the efforts they have expended.

Share with...