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Should We Have About, Privacy, Contact Pages on Every Page?

 12:44 pm on Mar 5, 2013 (gmt 0)

Jerry West recommends to nofollow About, Contact, and Privacy Pages.

A lot of users recommended not to nofollow links: [webmasterworld.com ]

So, let's say, if I have an informational-based website, and most of the traffic comes from Search Engine.

A "SEO" guy recommended that all these pages are a must on the footer.

- About
- Contact
- Privacy Policy
- Disclaimer
- Disclosure
- Terms of Use

My question is:

Can I include all these pages in the homepage, and then include only "About" page in footer for the rest of the pages?

From the About page I will link to other pages -- like Contact, Privacy Policy, Disclaimer, etc. Does this make sense?

I see no reason to have Privacy, Disclaimer, etc. on every content page. Do I break any rule if I follow such technique?

Maybe I should noindex Privacy, TOS pages?

Appreciate your response.



 2:00 pm on Mar 5, 2013 (gmt 0)

My personal fealing is to agree with your SEO guy.

I live in the hope that Google recognises these pages and understands why they are linked to from all pages, but who knows.

I also believe that Google will expect to see most of those pages you have listed, and will expect visitors to have good access to them.


 2:05 pm on Mar 5, 2013 (gmt 0)

@Denisl -- The footer will look "cluttered" with so many "mandatory" links.

Thing is, Google is already passing pagerank to About page -- it has PR 3 at the moment.

I don't want the "juice" to flow to the rest of the pages anymore. Instead, I think it'd be better to show all these pages only on the homepage's footer.

Can the bots figure out these pages are not "money" pages? Are they so smart these days? I don't know -- I am confused at the moment.


 2:16 pm on Mar 5, 2013 (gmt 0)

I have one "reference desk" link on each page. On the reference page I then prominently have a link to; about us, contact, terms etc. This reference desk page accumulates a high pr (by being linked to from each page) so it is also handy to use as a mini sitemap to link to your main category pages to make use of the link juice it accumulates.


 3:46 pm on Mar 5, 2013 (gmt 0)

Well in the first place, some of those things can probably be consolidated. I put my privacy policy and disclosure on the same page, and you can probably also combine your disclaimers and terms of use (I don't have those myself)

If you are running AdSense, it's probably a good idea to put a link to your privacy policy on every page, and if you are running affiliate ads, your disclosure should be linked as well. Presumably not everyone is going to come in on your home page, and they shouldn't have to go looking for these things.

Personally, I don't nofollow ANY internal links, and I only noindex my privacy and search results pages. And I do quite well.

Don't worry about pagerank or "juice". It's not going to make a significant difference anyway. Make it easy for your users to see who you are and what you're about, no matter where they are on your site. They don't have to be in an inch high font, but they should be there. They're trust signals, albeit small ones, and they add up.


 5:56 pm on Mar 5, 2013 (gmt 0)

@No5needinput - Makes a lot of sense to do it that way!

Is it too late to move About page from the footer, as it has already gained a PageRank score?

I know I am thinking too much about "juice" but I like the idea of creating a new page -- like "reference desk" -- and linking all other pages from this new page.

@netmeg - Thanks for the advice. While I'd love to show my users all these pages, but they are a bit too much, isn't it? Those are 7 pages, and not to forget the "copyright" and "popular" page which I will be including in the footer.

I don't want Google to devalue footer links, or spread the pagerank to TOS pages -- again, I just hope Google bots are smarter.

I think I will stick with this proposed strategy:

- Keep ABOUT page as it is.
- Keep Privacy page as it is, but noindex it.
- Keep Contact page as it is, but noindex it.
- Add a new RESOURCE or FAQ page, where there will be links to Terms of Service, Disclosure, Disclaimer.

Does this sound like an acceptable solution?

Appreciate your help! :)


 6:25 pm on Mar 5, 2013 (gmt 0)

All you do by nofollowing is create a situation where you're trying to manipulate PageRank that does no good whatsoever, since 4 or 5 (I think) years ago when Google started "counting nofollowed links" for PageRank passing purposes even though they didn't "count the links" for ranking purposes.

You'll have to look around on your own to find the MC quote, but it basically says if there's 10 links on a page and 3 are nofollow the 7 that "pass PR" will pass the same amount as they would on the same page with 10 dofollow links.

So, basically, Jerry West is giving some really bad, out-of-date (by years) advice, cause about the best internal nofollows can do is "no good", but at worst they could certainly indicate you're trying to manipulate PR and indicate your site should be scrutinized more highly or even not rank as well.

I personally think you should do what works best for your visitors, cause there's probably better things to worry about than footer links that are rather standard across the web and how they do or don't impact your rankings. My guess is having them there for your visitors could actually increase your level of trust, but I don't have any "hard fast tested proof" of that, just a hunch.

I think the biggest thing to keep in mind is: It's not all about the links and PR and hasn't been "all about the links and PR" for quite some time, but I know many people still encourage optimization Circa 2005, so the information and what to focus on can be confusing a good deal of the time.


 7:08 pm on Mar 5, 2013 (gmt 0)

What a waste of time. As if it makes a difference when considering that most "About" pages are fabricated lies and display headers with group images collected from stock photos, ie: those people that you see smiling at the top of the page have never even heard of the company that owns the site.

How many new start ups do we see that claim to have been in business and experts in the industry since the year nod? ... far too many and they are usually no older than 1-2 years.

If they lie about staff identities and history then they will most certainly be lying about privacy policies or never intending to abide by them.

So if Google places importance on such links as described here, then that's just a another example of a useless policy "imagined" by people who have no real experience.


 8:26 pm on Mar 5, 2013 (gmt 0)

While I'd love to show my users all these pages, but they are a bit too much, isn't it?

Nope, but suit yourself.


 10:57 pm on Mar 5, 2013 (gmt 0)

Can the bots figure out these pages are not "money" pages? Are they so smart these days?

Remember, we're talking about the search engine that will index your robots.txt, stylesheets, javascript and even access logs-- assuming they're in a publicly accessible location --unless you give clear and unambiguous instructions not to. And will crawl your .midi files and include them in Preview downloads even though they have no mechanism for displaying them.

I got the impression that they want the "author" thingie to be present on each individual page. If I was wrong, I hope someone will tell me because then I can go simplify my generic footer by a lot. There's already too much clutter at the bottom of the pages.

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