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Rotating / Refreshing Content On Deep Pages
Issues with ranking, indexing, etc. Please help!
Shark27




msg:4665126
 12:51 am on Apr 23, 2014 (gmt 0)

I'm working on a project that provides a list of 3 results at a time for specific terms and criteria. Each time the page is refreshed, 3 different results popup. Pretend that we only have 9 entries for each category, so after a few refreshes, the same content will show up.

I have a feeling that this will be bad for SEO for the following reasons:

1. The "results" themselves are the only unique on-site content (beyond title and meta tags) which alert Google to what the page is about. If they're constantly shuffled, the page would appear "unstable" which I can't assume is very good. Google will keep indexing different results.

2. With the only on-site content being rotated with each refresh, Google might get confused on what the page is about. We have no solid, static content to describe the page or the results. While the page title will help out, if there's no static content describing the services, we're pretty thin on uniqueness. I also don't anticipate these deep pages receiving many incoming links to help describe it to the spiders.

Does anyone have any insight into this issue? I'd love to hear any advice or comments regarding this, especially experience with a similar issue.

Writing unique content for each page is not feasible or else I'd obviously do that.

Thanks a lot!

 

Shark27




msg:4667725
 9:34 pm on May 1, 2014 (gmt 0)

Anybody?

tangor




msg:4667734
 9:58 pm on May 1, 2014 (gmt 0)

It sounds impossible for any search engine to properly index the page. As these are deep page(s) you might noindex them to avoid any confusion on a crawl event.

lucy24




msg:4667761
 11:00 pm on May 1, 2014 (gmt 0)

The very word "result" implies that on some level this is a search-results page, even if it's dressed up with other content. And google is always saying they don't want to index those (even if they appear to be lousy at identifying them, based on what does get indexed...).

Shark27




msg:4668082
 8:04 pm on May 2, 2014 (gmt 0)

Thanks for the responses.

Tangor,

These are pages which we'll be targeting organically for their natural keywords so no-indexing them would not be advisable. We do provide value to the user as we review/rate the results provided. To be vague, think niche businesses in specific areas.

lucy24,

Sorry, I didn't mean to confuse by using the word "result" to imply strictly dynamically-generated results. We do offer an internal search for the users, but the pages I'm talking about will remain constant (only the results are currently shuffled around) and will be improved and added to in the future.

I am worried that the shuffling will give us issues with not only indexing, but more importantly, ranking for anything significant.

lucy24




msg:4668093
 9:47 pm on May 2, 2014 (gmt 0)

Each time the page is refreshed, 3 different results popup.

Is this a good user experience? It would drive me bonkers.

These are all identical URLs, right? Nothing involving parameters that you can tell search engines to ignore-- or, conversely, that you can tell them to treat as entirely different pages.

tangor




msg:4668094
 9:48 pm on May 2, 2014 (gmt 0)

If the page content is "dynamic" as it sounds like, it will be difficult for any SE to index it properly. thus lower score points. Not saying you should change it, just wondering why the page is not serving the content each time. What you might want to do is put a click for more results button and refresh the page for the USER not the search engines.

Shark27




msg:4668143
 2:42 am on May 3, 2014 (gmt 0)

Lucy,

I do not like the feature and have rallied against it for both negative user-experience and issues indexing and achieving/mantaining rankings. It looks like it's here to stay. The programmers are suggesting a "wait and see" approach, which seems asinine to me. :-/

Yes, the URL doesn't change upon refresh. It's the same URL and the same page to Google.

Tangor,

Sorry, I'm having trouble explaining it. The page IS serving the content each time, but only a limited amount (3 results at once). There's a reason for this and it can't change. However, since some of our pages will have more than 3 applicable businesses, we want to be fair and show all of them randomly.

I have suggested buttons that allows the user to do a wide variety of things, but can't be accessed by Google, so the results remain constant. Again, the programmers don't view this as a big deal, which is frustrating because I'm aware it is. I guess I'll try and communicate this to the boss man one last time and hope he gives the green light on a refresh button.

Thanks again for the responses!

Shark27




msg:4668146
 2:51 am on May 3, 2014 (gmt 0)

"What you might want to do is put a click for more results button and refresh the page for the USER not the search engines."

I was thinking of a JS button that Google can't read which simply loads the next 3 in place of it. But I'm afraid Google will consider this "hidden content" (even though it's not spam) and dislike this as well.

lucy24




msg:4668156
 5:03 am on May 3, 2014 (gmt 0)

a JS button that Google can't read

Google CAN read javascript. But this is not necessarily a bad thing.

I've got a hunch that this is one of those special and happy situations where something you do to improve the user experience will also become good for SEO. You've just got to convince the people who sign the checks ;)

tangor




msg:4668183
 11:51 am on May 3, 2014 (gmt 0)

ON second thought I'm not so sure there's much to worry about. On one site I have a rotating "quote of the day" feature that randomly selects from 150 quotes ranging from 25 words to 200 words each. The page itself is static, and I've never had a problem with G indexing it just fine. I also think about all those blog rolls that change daily, or by the minute, on some sites and don't see them having much problem. We may be concerned over something that doesn't deserve the worry sweat.

Shark27




msg:4668696
 9:52 pm on May 5, 2014 (gmt 0)

lucy,

They can read it, sure, but they won't run the JS that shuffles/reloads the content and then index THAT, will they? That's what I mean. If the 3 results are static *until* the JS "shuffle/reload" link is clicked, to Google, it's always the same 3, yeah?

tangor,

I'd say the difference between a quote of the day page and us is that we're actually trying to rank for and build authority for these pages.

How would you build authority when the content is shuffled so often?

mhansen




msg:4668702
 11:35 pm on May 5, 2014 (gmt 0)

Pretend that we only have 9 entries for each category, so after a few refreshes, the same content will show up


Is there any way that "any" of these 9 entries can possibly show up on a DIFFERENT url? IE: Are they relevant for other pages of the site also, or will they always show up on ONLY this one specific page?

MH


Shark27




msg:4668703
 11:47 pm on May 5, 2014 (gmt 0)

Unfortunately, yes, they are relevant for other URLs as well. We'll have *some* duplicate content, but it's with the user in mind, so whatever. It's tough to have sites like this which don't repeat some content throughout.

mhansen




msg:4668704
 11:55 pm on May 5, 2014 (gmt 0)

Unfortunately, yes, they are relevant for other URLs as well. We'll have *some* duplicate content, but it's with the user in mind, so whatever. It's tough to have sites like this which don't repeat some content throughout.


If the chunks of content are big enough (like a few hundred words), why don't you put the smaller content pieces onto their own URL's, and just show the titles, with links to the pages? Instead of devaluing the text, it would make it more relevant, assuming it's worthy of of it's own page.

Regardless, your main landing pages, the ones you previously described as having the 9 random/rotating bits of content, are going to be devalued greatly with similar content across multiple urls.

Shark27




msg:4668965
 6:27 pm on May 6, 2014 (gmt 0)

1. The results pages will show "snippets" of the businesses reviews, perhaps 35 characters or so, and the link to the business is the link to the snippet as well.

2. The business pages themselves will show the full review and many others.

It's tough to find unique content for so many pages and the review snippets help the user decide which business they want.

3. I agree, but there's not an easy fix, especially so early on, and I don't think snippets are a HUGE deal.

If I could convince the developers/boss to make the results static on separate criteria, we would cut down on duplicate content as well.

We originally had about 3x as many pages (thousands) linked throughout which all showed duplicate content. It took a lot to convince them to chop these down.

Shark27




msg:4669506
 4:31 pm on May 8, 2014 (gmt 0)

So is the jury still out on whether the rotating content will shake things up and cause us troubles with holding rank?

mhansen




msg:4669512
 4:44 pm on May 8, 2014 (gmt 0)

So is the jury still out on whether the rotating content will shake things up and cause us troubles with holding rank?


Not in my opinion... I think without doubt, they will be classified as thin content, almost like search result pages, and they won't rank well on their own merit due to the content which is going to be duplicated across several URL's.

If you wanted them to rank better, you would need a higher level of unique and relevant content on them solely related to the content you want to rank for, with a minimum amount of the duplicated/rotated snippets. It sounds like the snippets/rotated content is the majority of the page content they way it's been described.

Again - just my opinion, based on how we see "category" type pages rank in both ecom and wordpress blog type sites.

MH

Shark27




msg:4669822
 7:56 pm on May 9, 2014 (gmt 0)

Thanks again for the response. We're working on ways to get unique content on these pages and I'm trying to chop down the amount of duplicated results.

"It sounds like the snippets/rotated content is the majority of the page content they way it's been described."

The indexed category pages (not category like WordPress defines category, category like the keyword itself) show businesses based on the criteria shown. We show a snippet of a user review and the business information, providing a link to the full business profile.

Shark27




msg:4669824
 8:09 pm on May 9, 2014 (gmt 0)

I think once these pages get a bit more unique content on them (very tough considering how many pages we're working with), we'll be better off, but still completely screwed by rotating results each time.

Shark27




msg:4670592
 11:41 pm on May 12, 2014 (gmt 0)

Can you guys provide any input on this idea:

Determining the 3 initial results based on specific criteria so there's always a constant set of results (able to change on this criteria, but not random).

Instead of JS trickery, we provide the next 3 results on another page. So instead of shuffling, we just link to the next 3 results.

Can I canonicalize this page even though it shows 3 different results? It's the same keywords, the same type of businesses, the same exact audience. Just on a different page.

Shark27




msg:4670858
 11:17 pm on May 13, 2014 (gmt 0)

Sorry, bumping for one last response to the canonical question!

phranque




msg:4670910
 3:36 am on May 14, 2014 (gmt 0)

i'm not clear from your description what content is on the canonical url vs the non-canonical url(s).

Shark27




msg:4671139
 12:41 am on May 15, 2014 (gmt 0)

Page 1: www.example.com/pizzas/toppings.htm
Content: The 3 most highly-rated pizza toppings. We'll provide a link to the next 3 favorite toppings.

Page 2: www.example.com/pizzaz/toppings2.htm
Content: The next 3 toppings.

The content (rating results) will be different, but they fit within the same content. I know this is kind of stretching it for duplicity and optimal canonicalization practices. But Google has said for "similar" content as well.

phranque




msg:4672553
 10:42 am on May 20, 2014 (gmt 0)

still not clear to me:

- page 1 has 3 topping descriptions which rotate and a link to a page 2 with 3 more descriptions which also rotate?

- which url is the canonical url?

Shark27




msg:4672795
 8:30 pm on May 20, 2014 (gmt 0)

Currently the site is setup with one single toppings page that shows 3 toppings at once. When the page is refreshed, it'll show a different 3 toppings.

The solution I am posing is using canonicals, but am unsure since they're technically not duplicates. The solution would be the example I gave above where toppings.html is the canonical.

Solution:

toppings.htm is the canonical and includes a link at the bottom to toppings2.htm which features 3 different toppings results. I'd like to slap a canonical tag on this page to toppings.htm, but seeing as how they're different results, I think this might be pushing it.

Shark27




msg:4673721
 2:01 am on May 23, 2014 (gmt 0)

I'm trying to convince the boss to consider having the initial 3 results remain static, but allow a button that loads the other results on command. So all of the results are preloaded in the source code, Google will know about them, and can tell that they're only temporarily hidden and can be shown by user involvement.

This would be completely fine, correct?

tangor




msg:4673750
 3:28 am on May 23, 2014 (gmt 0)

Yup... showing the "rest" of the page upon user interest.

Shark27




msg:4674123
 3:50 am on May 24, 2014 (gmt 0)

Okay, I think I convinced him to do that. Just curious about the following issues when implementing this function:

1) It definitely matters that the "static" results remain static, right? By static I mean the 3 that initially show up regardless of user action are the same whenever Google reaches it.

2) Does it matter if the user action displays the rest all at once or at separate times? It shouldn't as long as the user can see ALL of the hidden code eventually, correct?

3) Does it matter if the user can't see ALL of the temporarily hidden results at the same time? For instance, would it work if all the results were preloaded in the text, but we used a side scrolling button instead of loading them beneath the results?

Sorry for the ultra specific questions, but I'm curious!

tangor




msg:4674131
 4:51 am on May 24, 2014 (gmt 0)

I'm curious... why show only three (3)? Is the list that large? Is the site design structured for a specific layout/resolution?

There is more benefit if all is visible than hidden (but can be found by spiders) as that is a PAGE. Just asking.

Sadly, there is a secondary to the query: will any of the NOT IN THE FIRST THREE AS STATIC DISPLAYED have any reason to question your decision?

Sorry, just complicating things a bit (been there, done that).

If your "rotating content" is ads/wants paid by others for display on your site you have a much larger problem than google finding/indexing.

My suggestion is show them all, or show only those in a specific category (and all of those at the same time). If these are not paid listings then do as you wish.

This 40 message thread spans 2 pages: 40 ( [1] 2 > >
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