TheOptimizationIdiot - 6:42 pm on May 12, 2013 (gmt 0)
Another question about justifying using the tool, what about just disavowing, or starting the disavow list, from the sites with links that cause errors?
Those links happen naturally on the Internet. Someone makes a typo in the URL of a link. Someone links to the right page on the wrong domain. Someone links to .php rather than .html or .html rather than extensionless. Links to error pages happen.
As long as the links pointing to the error pages are not on your site internally, I have not heard of issues from them. (It's too easy for anyone to tank anyone else's site they feel like by throwing up millions of links to non-existent pages if inbound links to 404 pages hurt the site the 404s are on.)
If you can figure out what page they're pointing to, you might redirect them, but otherwise I'd personally leave them as 404 and not use this tool, except as it's intended to be used.
Why? Because if it works and the links you disavow are really dropped from the graph I think it's entirely possible you could algorithmically shoot yourself in the foot by creating an unnatural link profile.
No inbound links to 404 pages?
No "ugly links" from scrapers?
What type of site has that type of profile? CNN, Apple, or someone trying to manipulate their rankings with links.
Personally, I would not fixing things with the disavow tool that aren't within Google's recommendations for using it.
I think one of the biggest problems people have wrt rankings is they seem to think "more is better" rather than "right is better" and end up "overdoing", but when "natural" is the standard, "over" could (would imo) easily be as bad as "under". Natural is natural. More and less than natural are both out of line with the standard.
Serve a custom 404 error page to make your site better for visitors. Redirect the links to the correct page for visitor convenience if you can. But "totally manicure" you link profile that doesn't seem to be hurting you? IMO Don't fix what's not broken, especially when the fix is to use a tool in a way that's not within it's stated reasons for use.