Earlier this week, Matt Cutts, distinguished engineer at Google, reported through Twitter that the company had rolled out a new feature that allows webmasters to view their newest inbound links. Users can download a spreadsheet that details the sites linking to them and the date they activated the link, which will help marketers develop an link timeline to better understand their SEO results. It may also be a tool that comes in handy if marketers want to request links be removed from their sites.
For marketers, the links provide good insight to the audiences their content resonates best with, while it can also be used to guide SEO efforts. With new algorithms rolling out from the company, it can be difficult to track the reason for traffic gains and losses. Earning high-quality inbound links for different content pages can guide best linkbuilding practices, while seeing frequent links from low-quality sites may be a strong indicator of problem.
This development might be related to an upcoming disavow tool Google is rumored to have in the works. Bing recently released a disavow feature that lets marketers request spammy, unsolicited links be discounted from their SEO ranking. In light of Penguin’s focus on sites with link schemes, many are hoping the search giant will present a similar tool soon.
With the inbound link viewing tool, webmasters can download new links whenever they see fit to monitor the inbound traffic they receive and act accordingly. Developing new tools to help marketers improve their search standing and truly own their web presences will likely boost they focus on delivering high-quality content. Providing this information also offers an element of transparency to shifts in Google’s search ranking.
Other tools Google has rolled out in hopes of helping marketers understand their web presence include search crawl error reports. Brafton highlighted the new feature in a recent report that found Google will now send companies the reason for a crawl error, along with suggestions to fix the issue.