Unnatural Links

Artificial links created to manipulate a site's search engine rankings.


Unnatural links, also known as artificial or spammy links, are links that are intended to manipulate a website's ranking in search engine results. They are often bought or placed on sites without the knowledge or direct involvement of the site owner. These kinds of links are against the guidelines of search engines and can result in penalties.

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Usage and Context

Unnatural links are usually used in black-hat SEO practices, where the goal is to artificially inflate a website's search engine ranking. They are often found in link schemes, such as buying or selling links, excessive link exchanges, or using automated programs to create links. While they might bring a short-term boost in ranking, search engines like Google have algorithms to detect such practices, and websites using unnatural links can be severely penalized.


  1. What are examples of unnatural links?

    • Examples of unnatural links include purchased links, links from low-quality directory sites, links inserted in irrelevant articles, and excessive link exchanges.
  2. How do search engines treat unnatural links?

    • Search engines like Google consider unnatural links as a violation of their Webmaster Guidelines. Sites found using such links can be demoted in search results or removed entirely.
  3. How can I identify unnatural links?

    • Unnatural links can be identified by their relevancy, the reputation of the linking site, the anchor text used, and the overall link profile.
  4. What should I do if my website has unnatural links?

    • If your website has unnatural links, you should take steps to remove or disavow them to avoid penalties from search engines.
  5. How can I avoid unnatural links?

    • To avoid unnatural links, focus on creating high-quality content that naturally attracts links, and avoid buying links or participating in link schemes.


  1. Risk Avoidance: By understanding and avoiding unnatural links, you can prevent potential penalties from search engines.
  2. Reputation Management: Avoiding unnatural links helps maintain your website's reputation, as link schemes can be seen as unethical.
  3. Long-term SEO Health: Focusing on quality content and natural link building promotes long-term SEO health and sustainability.
  4. Better User Experience: Natural links provide value to users, whereas unnatural links can harm user experience.
  5. Trust and Credibility: Avoiding unnatural links builds trust and credibility with both users and search engines.

Tips and Recommendations

  1. Link Audit: Regularly conduct a link audit to identify and remove any unnatural links.
  2. Disavow Unnatural Links: Use Google's Disavow tool to dissociate your site from any identified unnatural links.
  3. Quality Content: Focus on creating high-quality, relevant content that naturally attracts links.
  4. Natural Link Building: Engage in natural link building strategies, such as guest blogging, influencer outreach, and social media promotion.
  5. Avoid Link Schemes: Stay away from link schemes and any practices that aim to manipulate search engine rankings.


Unnatural links are a risky and unethical SEO practice that can result in severe penalties from search engines. Instead, focus on creating valuable content that naturally attracts links and contributes positively to user experience and long-term SEO health. By understanding and avoiding unnatural links, you can ensure your website maintains a strong, credible online presence.