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Allowing Google to index your sites search results

Discussion in 'Black Hat SEO' started by ~777~, Dec 4, 2010.

  1. ~777~

    ~777~ Registered Member

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    Google are quite specific in their guidelines about this - Use robots.txt to prevent crawling of search results pages or other auto-generated pages that don't add much value for users coming from search engines.

    I've seen many sites who have their search results indexed, and one of my own jumped from under a 1000 indexed pages up to 37,000, mainly search results pages. I didn't do this on purpose, just never got round to adding the robots.txt

    Just wondering what your guy's experience was with this, and can I expect Google to penalize me?
     
  2. BlueKing

    BlueKing Newbie

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    I don't like indexing them, because they won't be found in regular queries, so I won't be getting anything from it.
     
  3. ~777~

    ~777~ Registered Member

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    Thats what I would have thought, but mine get found every day. I think they do add relevance though. If somebody was to search for say "red widgets" they may find a search result page with a list of different styles of red widgets, rather than just one.
     
  4. scb335

    scb335 BANNED BANNED

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    Personally I don't block them, because I've noticed big traffic coming to them from Yahoo search more than Google, but I do make sure that my page links on my site search results listings all have a canonical tag.

    Then again, I disagree with Google's position that search result listings and auto-generated pages don't add value to users coming from search engines.

    For example, if I run a site about "plastic widgets", and my site covers all types and colors of plastic widgets, then for somebody who is searching Google or Yahoo for info on "beveled sky-blue plastic widgets", they may well be very happy to land on my site search page for that topic and have a number of in-depth articles on the topic to pick through. If my site search listings have descriptive titles and decent summaries, then it's like a one-stop shopping experience for the information seeker.

    Then again, it just seems a bit smug and ironic that the king of search basically says in their webmaster guidelines that search listing pages (on everyone else's sites) are of little value to human visitors...