Audit your backlink profile in SEMrush

1. Type in the URLs for your website and the websites of 1-4 of your competitors in the SEMrush Backlinks Analytics tool to compare their backlink profile against yours.

Look at the number of backlinks, referring domains, and referring IPs that you have against your competitors. Note down the type of content that your competitors get more links from and decide if you want to start creating more of those.

2. Create a project in your SEMrush dashboard by clicking on Projects > Create my first project.

3. Navigate to the Backlinks Audit tool, click on set up, and select the project you created earlier.

Under Campaign scope, choose root domain. Select a closely related category to what your business does from the list provided in Domain categories. In Target country, type your target country. If it’s international, leave it blank.

4. Click on Integrations from the options at the top right section and select Google Search Console (GSC) to connect it with SEMrush.

Click on Add Google account, log in with the Google account that you use in GSC. Allow SEMrush access to your Google account. When done, copy the email address provided by SEMrush at the right section of your screen. Log in to your GSC account. Go to Settings > Users and permissions. Click on Add user, paste the SEMrush email address and add. Go back to SEMrush and click on check connection and verify backlinks.

5. Check the toxic score of your backlinks in the overview results from the Backlinks Audit tool. If you have toxic backlinks, click on the Audit tab.

6. Select all the toxic backlinks and send them to either the disavow list or remove list.

If a domain is filled with ads or error messages, or it looks like it’s spam, send it to the disavow list in SEMrush by clicking on the stop icon at the right. Only send domains to the disavow list when you have a larger percent of toxic backlinks than non-toxic backlinks. If you’re unsure if the domain is spammy, select the paper plane icon to move it to the remove list in SEMrush to reach out to the domain to take out the backlink.

7. Click on the Remove tab and click on the Send button beside each domain. If SEMrush did not provide an email address, check the contact page of the domain.

Replace the placeholders in SEMrush’s email template to fit the link you want to remove.

8. Go to the Disavow tab, click Export to txt at the right, then open the GSC Disavow tool, select your domain, and upload the .txt file.

If you don’t get a response from those in the remove list, add them to the disavow tool. Every time you need to disavow links, download the old file from the disavow tool and copy all the domains there to the new file if the old domains aren’t there.

9. Check for lost and broken backlinks in the Lost and found tab of the Backlinks Audit tool.

Check the link to see if you recently deleted or moved that page or a typographical error. If it’s a broken backlink caused by a deleted or moved page on your website, set up 301 redirects. If the broken backlink is caused by the linking website making a mistake in your URL, reach out to them to fix it.