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Poly <area> links/alt text not showing in Google cache
internetheaven




msg:4033137
 10:06 am on Nov 28, 2009 (gmt 0)

If you check the Google text-only cache of a page with a poly <area> map set up, nothing is there. No links, no alt text ... nothing.

This suggests to me that I need to have a separate navigation panel just for Google to follow. Does anyone know of any blogs/forums where Google have discussed poly <area> map links?

I need to know whether I have to now hide the map in Flash to avoid Google "seeing" 62 links (the href links on the map + the links in the extra Google navigation panel) instead of just the 31 links from the extra nav panel.

 

tedster




msg:4033256
 5:13 pm on Nov 28, 2009 (gmt 0)

I do understand the concern. However, the "cached" version of a page is not from the same area in Google's back end that the algo calculations are made. A page can be ranking and show no cache link at all.

Second, how could a poly area in an image map be represented in a "text only" version of a page? That's a very sticky technical problem to automate.

I checked one set of pages I know of that are interlinked only via an image map. Husr as you said, there is no indication of those "links" in the text-only version of the cached page. But still, these pages are all indexed and even ranking. In fact, they have decent toolbar PR even with no external back links. That seems to me like an indication that the image map is counting.

With Google's voracious hunger for cataloging links - even from form navigation and javascript - I find it almost impossible to believe that they aren't counting image maps -- except for one area:

You want to be careful that all the hotspots your coordinates create are actually within the image. There is an old-time spam technique that intentionally places links in areas that are off the image and therefore hidden. Penalties for this kind of hidden content mark-up can happen.

Marcia




msg:4033420
 5:17 am on Nov 29, 2009 (gmt 0)

>>Second, how could a poly area in an image map be represented in a "text only" version of a page?

The alt attribute in regular images shows up in the text only cache as though it was a regular text link, showing the alt text as anchor text.

What's missing in an image map is the anchor text benefit.

internetheaven




msg:4034515
 11:06 am on Dec 1, 2009 (gmt 0)

The alt attribute in regular images shows up in the text only cache as though it was a regular text link, showing the alt text as anchor text.

All poly maps with alt text I've looked at have nothing in the cache, the alt text does not show.

[edited by: Robert_Charlton at 7:32 pm (utc) on Dec. 1, 2009]

SuzyUK




msg:4034526
 12:08 pm on Dec 1, 2009 (gmt 0)

depending on the complexity of the image map this can be done with CSS, Lists & a background image which gives you a nice accessible list in plain text version.

The downside is it can't handle polygon shapes yet, but some quite complex maps can be simulated with the technique.

TheMadScientist




msg:4034736
 6:19 pm on Dec 1, 2009 (gmt 0)

1.) Out of curiosity, why allow caching of the page(s) in the first place?

2.) You should have text links to the pages in the first place, so why even hesitate to ad them?

(Emphasis Mine)
Every page should be reachable from at least one static text link.

[google.com...]

3.) Marcia, unless the link with the alt text in it is the first link on the page to the other page there is no possible benefit from the alt text being linked. Only the first text counts (according to a statement made by Bruce Clay [bruceclay.com] who's word I will take), and assuming you have a good solid linking and naming structure, IMO your first text link on the page should be very similar, if not more concise and specific than, the alt for the link to the same page, so it is really (or really should be) a non-issue if the pages are linked 'correctly' and you have a text link on the page, in fact, the 'focus' of the link could actually be diminished if you have long alts and they count rather than the text link to a page where you usually use a 2 word link...

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