Editor’s note: “Ask an SEO” is a weekly column by technical SEO expert Jenny Halasz. Come up with your hardest SEO question and fill out our form. You might see your answer in the next #AskanSEO post! Today’s Ask an SEO question is from Ashok S. He asks:I am running a WordPress website. To avoid the risk of duplicate content, should I use a noindex tag on Categories and Archives Pages? Will this impact my overall traffic?This is a great question, thank you. It’s important for every SEO professional to fundamentally understand how Google works.So to begin with, the answer is probably not. Most websites don’t need to be concerned about Google crawling some pages that they find no value in.Pages like tag pages, category pages, and search results that are included “out of the box” in popular CMS like Drupal and WordPress are generally not prevalent enough to matter. If Google sees value in them, they will … [Read more...] about Should You Noindex Category & Archive Pages?
We regularly receive questions about category pages and similar pages. It seems some of you are unsure of how to properly implement these. And sure, it’s good to think about this, as pages like category or tag pages can be thin content, if you do nothing to improve them. But you can also use these pages to your advantage! It’s a good idea to give your category and tag pages some TLC, so there’s sufficient content on them. For product category pages, that means adding some text about that particular type of product, for example. So, what about food blogs? What should you do with your category and tag pages to help your recipes rank as best they can? Analida Braeger emailed us her question on the subject: Is it true that leaving tags, categories and paginated content open on a food blog hurts the ability of existing recipes to rank effectively? Should these be blocked with a ‘noindex, follow’ robots tag? Watch the video or read the transcript further down … [Read more...] about Ask Yoast: Noindexing tags, categories and paginated content on a foodblog • Yoast
You have this large site and you noindex a lot of the parameter, filter, sort, etc types of pages but yet, your navigation and internal linking structure links to these pages a lot - would that be an issue with Google and ranking? The short answer is no. Google's John Mueller told Laura Lippay, who is a seasoned SEO who has tons of large enterprise site SEO experience, that linking a lot to noindexed pages is not an issue.I don't see a problem with that.— John ☆.o(≧▽≦)o.☆ (@JohnMu) April 20, 2018 Why would it be? Well, it might be considered sending mixed signals to Google. On one hand, you are telling Google with the noindex to not index the page for some reason and on the other hand, your internal linking structure is telling Google these pages are important to your users. So which is it?In any event, John from Google said this should not be a problem - so there you have it.Forum discussion at Twitter. … [Read more...] about Google: Linking To Noindexed URLs Is Not A Problem
In a hangout from this morning, Google's John Mueller was asked how Google handles a page that you applied a canonical to but also has a noindex on it. Does that page pass the noindex. You can see how the question kind of caused a lot of confusion. The short answer is that Google in practice generally just assumes in these cases the canonical is a mistake and ignore it.The question came up at 4:51 into the video. Here is the video embed followed by the transcript:Question:I was at a seminar the other day and they said if you apply a canonical and a noindex on that page, the canonical will pass the noindex to the canonicalized page. Is that the case?Answer:Um. Thats. I don’t know. It is something where we kind of discussed this like a long time ago, internally at least, with regards to what we should be doing in a case like that. With the canonical you are saying these two pages should be treated the same and with the noindex you are saying this page here should be … [Read more...] about How Google Handles Canonical Pages With Noindex On The Page
Discussing/insulting newspaper business models is all the rage these days. Danny Sullivan has had some choice words for the whole “let’s give Google the noindex finger” thing and a few weeks ago Chris Silver Smith offered some SEO advice for local newspapers. Given how on-trend the subject is I thought it might be useful to offer some complementary advice to Chris’ recommendations. Certainly all newspaper sites should be figuring out how to rank well for news searches and Chris covers how to do this pretty well. The problem is that ranking for news searches is probably not the best business model (the CPMs for holiday traffic accident queries are probably not that great after all) and if that’s your main online marketing strategy then you are falling into the same trap that got your industry where it was in the first place. I have provided SEO help to some of the largest newspapers in the country. A big problem I typically see (and not just with … [Read more...] about Don’t Give Google The NoIndex Finger