Selected answers from the Dumb SEO Questions G+ community.
Shibily CH: Semrush has a backlink audit tool.
When is a backlink spammy? When you manually create a backlink in a totally unrelated website to your niche 🤔🤔🤔 by commenting..maybe..
Alan Bleiweiss: Be very careful with tools that automatically check links. They are okay, yet very often miss many bad links, and often flag good links as bad.
Spammy links are any type of link created entirely or primarily for SEO without regard to value of the link outside of SEO.
Travis Bailey: If it`s money keyword targeted, on a site that seems to exist just for links (onlinecasinopornprescriptionsseodirectoryezlink4u dot org variety), and it was easy to acquire (no editorial oversight, or paid) - it`s probably spammy.
The above is just one of my takes on what`s essentially; "Spammy links are any type of link created entirely or primarily for SEO without regard to value of the link outside of SEO."
Michael Martinez: Alan is correct. I will add there are two ways to look at "spam". First, there is the book definition (essentially "anything that intentionally violates search engine guidelines"). Second, what people probably want to know is "what signals do algorithms use to identify SOMETHING as spam". Well, good luck with the second way of looking at spam. I wouldn`t trust an SEO tool farther than I can throw it to correctly identify spam.
Travis Bailey: Cemper`s tool solicits feedback on it`s output. And I bet that has proven valuable over time. But one person`s trash is another`s treasure.
I remember doing a backlink audit for a recently penalized site. I employed the machete, rather than the scalpel. The client left the meeting railing; "I paid good money for these links!"
I verified over 200, 000 nasty links, personally. Over a few days. Most were correct.
Ryan Jones: take all the tools with a grain of salt. Use common sense when going through their reports. E.G. most of the common tools flag a link on readers digest as spammy - but it sends me tons of traffic.
Ryan Jones: To better answer the question, A spammy link is one you wouldn`t expect anybody to ever click on. A directory nobody ever visits, a forum signature, the comment field on a news article, a "guest post" on a site that has no real audience. A press release on a site that journalists don`t actually go to, etc.
If the link isn`t for users - it`s a spammy link.
Dani Lad: Adrian Tyler Normally we look these things for avoiding to make spam/low quality links
1- Link on irrelevant NICHE site
2- Link on site that already considered as spam site according to google (for getting idea you can use Moz toolbar it will show Spam Score)
3- Link should not look like Un-natural (depend on which technique you`re using to make link, Blog commenting, guest post etc)
4- irrelevant anchor
right now I have just these things in mind :)