Google Webmaster Tools Link Count Drops

Apr 7, 2014 • 8:33 am | comments (10) by twitter Google+ | Filed Under Google Search Engine Optimization

Google Webmaster ToolsI am seeing some reports from Webmasters that the link report in Google Webmaster Tools is reporting a much smaller fraction of links.

A Google Webmaster Help has one webmaster complaining a drop from 7,000 to 4,000 reported links.

I checked this site's and we dropped from almost 4 million links (I am not sure how many I had recently here but June of last year we had 3.8M) and now it is just above 2 million. Not that it bothers me. But it does show that the link counts have dropped and I am able to confirm it on this site.

Google Webmaster Tools has had this issue several times, including June 2013, February 2013 and other times.

So if you see your link count drop significantly, do not worry. It has no direct impact on your rankings. "It" being the reporting in Webmaster Tools.

Forum discussion at Google Webmaster Help.

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John Britsios

04/07/2014 04:48 pm

Could it be that they are just showing a drop of the links they removed from their link graph?

Jeff Ostroff

04/07/2014 04:56 pm

We saw this happen 2 years ago as well, this is not the first time. Our inbound links plummet in one day back in Feb 2012. Everyone here was in a panic, wondering what we did wrong, then found out 2 days later hundreds others reporting the same thing, then Google announced it was a bug and fixed it the next day. I wonder how many cardiac arrests that week were attributed to it.


04/07/2014 07:03 pm


Christopher Simmons

04/07/2014 07:31 pm

We've been having weirdness since Friday night with Google News not grabbing our news items, two emails Sat. and Sunday (first "cannot access your robots.txt file"); then Sunday, "unable to reach website." Resubmit sitemaps Sunday, still not grabbing news items today, and random "page not found" errors in the 12 .gz sitemaps for main site -- even though when clicked from Webmaster tools, links obviously work. Now showing "latency" issues - where there is not such issues for our server, network, datacenter, domains, etc. Really sucks running a 15 year old news portal when Google News can't "see" your content due to their own internal issues. 80% error rate on Saturday ? 60% on Sunday. Today, random as hell. SO, either they are "fixing it" - or messing with the "Internet as they see it" once again. Argh. (Sorry to vent here.) ... Popped in to see if anyone else having bizarro world stuff here (funny, Disqus auto-corrects bizarro to bizarre....). Happy Monday!


04/08/2014 06:15 pm

just interesting to know - how billions of bugs in google panda and penguin? How we can see they even unable to handle raw data.


04/08/2014 11:15 pm

Actually, it seems Google has some issues with its databases. I've encountered some really old crawl which had been fixed 2 years ago. Same crawl errors started appearing a few weeks ago. They were fixed 2 years ago and are not presented on the website. Moreover, the website has a new template and design for 4 months which has nothing to do with the old one. None of the 404 pages have any inlinks that might bring users or crawlers to them. What I've heard is that Google had some issues with their servers and brought up old database backups and now all the info shown in Webmaster tools is about 2 years old. And it's happening for multiple websites.

AeroBase Group

04/08/2014 11:32 pm

Yeah very odd, my site had 2.5 million pages indexed, and now its showing 109k.....hmmm


04/09/2014 12:17 am

These numbers are huge drops (you are confirming that nearly %50 drop) this can't be a glitch when others are also experiencing the same thing) so it looks like Google is playing around with either (Google Webmaster Tool data reporting, or, Google algorithms which looks at backlink data as ranking signals) Either way, it is interesting we'll check again to see if the data it updated on our GWT account.


04/09/2014 12:07 pm

Would be bad news for people trying to do a link clean-up. Google wouldn't exactly be helping those trying to get back into Google's graces, this would make more and more people rely on paid tools to find backlinks to disavow/remove.

Gracious Store

04/11/2014 03:58 am

I thought it was only my site that have the issue of links dropping,I have been wonder why that has been happening

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