October 05  Social Media News

We asked, you answered: Should Google add noindex support to robots.txt? Poll results - Search Engine Land

In September, I put up a poll here on Search Engine Land to see if readers would like to have an instruction in robots.txt to mark pages for No Indexation. Today I’ll present the results along with a review of what the key issues are (and why Google won’t be adding support for this).

Why would this be of interest?

In the current environment, robots.txt is used exclusively for guiding the behavior of web crawling. Further, the current approach to marking a page “NoIndex” is to place a tag on the page itself. Unfortunately, if you block it in robots.txt, Google will never see the tag and could still potentially index the page even though you don’t want that to happen.

On large sites, this presents some challenges when you have different classes of pages that you’d like to both block from crawling AND keep out of the Google index. One way that this can happen is in complex faceted navigation implementations where you have pages that you create that have significant value for users but end up presenting way too many pages to Google. For example, I looked at one shoe retailer website and found that they have over 70,000 different pages related to “Men’s Nike shoes.” This includes a wide variety of sizes, widths, colors, and more.

In some tests that I have participated in with sites with complex faceted navigation like the example I shared above we have found this large quantity...

Read Full Story: https://searchengineland.com/we-asked-you-answered-should-google-add-noindex-support-to-robots-txt-poll-results-374958

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