When You Should Use Noindex and Nofollow
For businesses and brands pursuing SEO, knowing exactly what to do can feel like a challenge. Even if you possess all the knowledge and skills required to be successful at boosting brand visibility, enacting it is an entirely different set of hurdles. Most are familiar with the basic concept of SEO: create great content, make sure search engines can see it, and ultimately generate traffic through these efforts.
However, there are times when you don’t want search engines to crawl select pages or evaluate links present on them. In order to help you navigate this situation, we’ll discuss when you should use noindex and nofollow indicators to exclude specific content from search engines.
Admin and Account Pages
Perhaps one of the most common examples of pages that provide no value to SEO – and could in fact even harm it – are login pages, admin pages and other comparable entities. While most websites understand that these pages need not be analyzed by search engines, some leave them there for the world to see, pinging links to them. Given that they are devoid of content and can also present a security risk if discovered by the wrong people, it makes sense to ensure that search engines aren’t indexing these entities.
You should know by now that duplicate content can be a huge problem in the world of SEO; if search engines think you’re plagiarizing others, then your rankings will undoubtedly take a hit. However, there are some situations where you need to duplicate content on various pages – but this content shouldn’t be visible to search engines. By ensuring that these pages are not indexed by search engines, you won’t suffer any penalties. Whether you have a reason to duplicate one of your own pages or posts on a different part of the website or merely need to quote another source, make sure that you’re not the victim of a duplicate content penalty.
Less Than Stellar Content
There are many reason to create pages and posts that may not be search engine-worthy. For example, you might need to provide users with some information based on a purchase or subscription, but simultaneously not feel like or have the ability to spruce up this content for prime time. In these cases, keeping search engines from evaluating you on this content is paramount. Whether it’s short-form content or a simple set of instructions, there’s probably not much value these pages provide to those using search engines. Make sure you’re not judged for them by using noindex and nofollow.
Other Internal Pages
There are a variety of internal pages on websites that may not be security risks (such as admin login pages) but that do not provide real value in the world of SEO. Some examples of this include internal search pages, confirmation pages and thank you pages, all of which have intrinsic value to users navigating your website – but don’t provide any benefit to those using search engines. By pinging links to these pages, you’re lowering the overall quality of indexed content on your website: be sure to take appropriate action.
Not all pages are created equal. Some pages provide real value in search engines, while others can harm your efforts or even leave you vulnerable. By using noindex and nofollow responsibly, you can ensure only your best content is being evaluated by search engines.