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Use “noindex, nofollow” correctly

Use “noindex, nofollow” correctly

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One goal of every website operator, blog writer, and SEO specialist is to position a homepage, a blog post, or a page on a certain topic as high as possible in the search results pages. Search engine optimization is still extremely relevant to be found in the seemingly endless flood of information on the Internet. Tags like nofollow and noindex can help you optimize your ranking.
MetaTag, noindex, nofollow, crawler, robots – can you correctly assign all terms? If not, don’t worry: in the following article, we will explain each of them and what you can do with them.

What does noindex mean?

The meta robots tag “noindex” prevents the crawler of a search engine from including the content of a page in the search engine’s index. Use the command to exclude duplicate pages or copyrighted content from being indexed. This can potentially prevent you from ranking poorly in search results.

What is a robots day?

Search engines like Google search millions of web pages on the Internet with every search query. However, not all information that is found is relevant for readers. The search engine crawler or robot evaluates content that is found for a specific search term using various criteria in order to determine whether it is meaningful.
Based on an algorithm, search engines like Google rank the pages found in a ranking list – the so-called Search Engine Result Pages (SERP). The better you understand the algorithm and crawler, the higher the chance that your page will appear high on the search results pages. And the higher your page is displayed, the greater the chance of generating more traffic and trust.
The crawler, called “googlebot” by Google, digs through the source texts of all pages to create the ranking list and includes them in the search engine’s search index. As a rule, all information on the respective page is recorded. Unless you use so-called Meta Robots Tags. These tags prevent the crawler from collecting the information. We will explain the two most important robot tags – noindex and nofollow – to you later.
But why should you even prevent the crawler from finding and indexing certain pages and content?
As many links as possible or the same content within a website are penalized by search engines, which can negatively affect the ranking of a page. To avoid these gradations, you can use Meta Robots Tags to hide content from the crawler or to deliberately not list links.

nofollow: consciously hide links from the crawler

The HTML command nofollow prevents the search engine crawler from following outgoing links on a website so that these are not included in the evaluation. The NoFollow tag is set in the code with rel = “nofollow”.
The command has various uses. The number and type of links on a website can, for example, significantly influence the ranking in the SERP. Because not every link is beneficial for your search engine ranking.
We’ll tell you the three most important reasons why nofollow links are used.

1. Paid links

Paid links shouldn’t have any influence on the search engine ranking. This prevents the website visitors from being “deceived ”. This feature is comparable to mandatory advertising labels on social media such as Instagram.

2. Foreign and untrustworthy content

If you use outbound links on your website whose destination cannot be trusted without restriction, you should use nofollow links. In this way, you prevent any toxic content from having a negative impact on your ranking.

3. Spam

Many website operators struggle with spam comments from bots. These are systematically stored with links and automatically distributed in comment columns and guest books. Setting nofollow links prevents the pages linked in the comments from benefiting from spam.

noindex: Avoid checking the selected page

In addition to nofollow, there is another central meta tag. The noindex command is more comprehensive and prevents the crawler from indexing entire pages. If you incorporate noindex into the source text of a page on your homepage, the content of the page will not be recorded and the crawler will literally reach into nothing.
Use the Robots Tag for pages that could be harmful to the ranking of your page, such as:

  • Internal search results pages
  • Duplicate pages (categories or archives)
  • Copyrighted content

The line of code for this is: <meta name = “robots” content = “noindex” />
Would you like a certain page not to be found but a web crawler to follow the links to it? There is also a command for this, which consists of a mixture of follow and noindex.
For this, follow is added to the code line: <meta name = “robots” content = “noindex, follow” />

The line of code: <meta name = “robots” content = “noindex, nofollow”>

In addition to the well-known tags noindex and nofollow and the variation noindex, follow, there is another combination.
With the line <meta name = “robots” content = “noindex, nofollow”> you can ensure that the search engines neither index your page nor follow the links to it. However, this command is rarely used – it can negatively affect the crawling of a page.

Conclusion: when to use noindex, nofollow?

Both options are relevant from the point of view of search engine optimization. Use variations of both commands, get to the best possible for your site and to make possible interweaves in the search results on Google & Co. Another tip at the end: If you are planning a relaunch of your website and want to share the progress with others, use the noindex tag for the relevant pages during this time. In this way, you can avoid a premature listing on Google.

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