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Does google see after the "?" or are .html static pages best?
TopNet

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 32891 posted 1:32 pm on Jan 23, 2006 (gmt 0)

If I have a page at http://www.example.com/customer/home.php and a page at http://www.example.com/customer/home.php?cat=441 does Google see a difference between the 2? Or do they ignore after the "?"?

If they don't see the second page as a different page does this suggest that php pages are not all that SEO friendly? I was always of the general opinion that static .html pages are always best because of unknowns like this.

Thanks for any advice here guys.

[edited by: tedster at 7:25 pm (utc) on Jan. 23, 2006]
[edit reason] use example.com [/edit]

 

trillianjedi

WebmasterWorld Senior Member trillianjedi us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 32891 posted 2:19 pm on Jan 23, 2006 (gmt 0)

Hi TopNet and welcome to WebmasterWorld.

Yes, most search engines can read variables and will treat the URL as being unique.

TJ

extranjero

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 32891 posted 6:17 pm on Jan 23, 2006 (gmt 0)

Best results you always will get with 'pure' site names I taught my server to process files htm or html extension as well as dynamic pages when clients 'create' their pages they create them in reality by server scripting: A 3-line file, with a html-filename including in the 3rd line the 'common file' so all files do exist real.
Changing to this system last year the number of unique visitors climbed from half a million to 1,7 millions in the last 12 months.

g1smd

WebmasterWorld Senior Member g1smd us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 32891 posted 8:05 pm on Jan 23, 2006 (gmt 0)

Yes, they can see all after the ? in the URL.

However, they have problems with having more than 3 parameters in a URL, and anything that merely looks like it might be a session ID.

Additionally, you can cause yourself a lot of trouble if you ever change the parameter order on some your links: buy.a.shirt.php?size=large&colour=blue is duplicate content of buy.a.shirt.php?colour=blue&size=large for example. Make sure that all links use the same ordering, and the exact same parameters.

If there are other versions of pages (perhaps an extra paramter &pf=1 for "print friendly" pages, then make sure that all of those are served with a <meta name="robots" content="noindex"> tag to keep them completely out of the index.

devitnow

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 32891 posted 9:05 pm on Jan 23, 2006 (gmt 0)

Let me firmly second that!

I think just as important, and often never asked, is the challenge of not not making careless mistakes with db driven links. Be consistent in your parameters.

/page.php?cat=2&id=4

and

/page.php?id=4&cat=2

are two different pages in the eyes of SEs.

So when you go down the road of db driven content. Be consistent so that you don't have goof ups that haunt you.. such as the popular 'duplicate content' isssues we all read and talk about it.

devvy

slade7

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 32891 posted 9:33 pm on Jan 23, 2006 (gmt 0)

I myself am responsible for about a zillion url question marks in Google's index.

So they WILL do it, but if you don't have PR up front, they may not go that deep. My site in google fluctuates from 50,000 to 80,000 pages - PR5 site that's been around a long time. The vast majority of my indexed pages have .php?something=something

Keep it simple and use as few parameters as you can. Personally I would go the static/translate route if I wasn't scared to death of mod_rewrite.

BillyS

WebmasterWorld Senior Member billys us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 32891 posted 2:53 am on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

You might also want to look here:

[google.com...]

If you decide to use dynamic pages (i.e., the URL contains a "?" character), be aware that not every search engine spider crawls dynamic pages as well as static pages. It helps to keep the parameters short and the number of them few.

I think the recent experience is this does not cause a problem for Googlebot.

TopNet

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 32891 posted 11:06 am on Jan 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

Thanks a lot everyone, much appreciated!

hermannen

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 32891 posted 10:42 am on Jan 25, 2006 (gmt 0)

quote: "Personally I would go the static/translate route if I wasn't scared to death of mod_rewrite."

What's the risk of mod_rewrite?

g1smd

WebmasterWorld Senior Member g1smd us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 32891 posted 1:23 pm on Jan 25, 2006 (gmt 0)

NO risk, other than you need to make sure that it works absolutely exactly as you want it to... and that you check that no "stray" URLs are generated by it, that all options are covered, and that every page of content has only ONE canonical URL that returns a status of "200 OK " for it.

slade7

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 32891 posted 3:23 pm on Jan 27, 2006 (gmt 0)

I understand php pretty well, yet almost every day I get unexpected results from some of my crappy coding. Unexpected results from crappy php coding usually result in page not displaying correctly, or some error message....

Unexpected results with mod-rewrite include: Site disappears... site disappears from google index, and other nasty stuff. And I don't know it that well, so it's easy for me to put off converting my pages so long as googlebot keeps sucking up my question-marked urls.

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