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Google Webmaster Hangout Notes: October 17th 2017

google webmaster hangouts recaps - SEO tips

Notes from the Google Webmaster Hangout on the 17th of October, 2017.


Google Does Some Scrolling on Pages

Google does some scrolling on a page to make that there is nothing that would otherwise be missed.


Prevent InfiniteScroll Content Being Indexed by Blocking Onscroll Script with Robots.txt

If you need to prevent onscroll loaded content from being indexed, as with pages using infinitescroll, put the script that’s executed with the onscroll behind a robots.txt block.


Google Mainly Uses GET Request For Normal Crawling & Indexing

Google pretty much only uses GET requests for normal crawling and indexing. However, that doesn’t mean you’ll never see POST and HEAD requests in your server logs, but probably they’re a lot rarer.


AJAX Crawling With Escaped Fragment URLs is a Deprecated Set up

Using AJAX crawling set up with escaped fragment URLs is a deprecated set up. At some point Google will be turning off support for escaped fragment URLs and will only crawl and render the hashbang URLs themselves.


Serve 503s When Site Down For Maintenance

Serve 503 response codes (temporarily unavailable) instead of 404 errors when site is down for maintenance.


Header, Footer & Sidebar Links Seen in the Same Way by Google

Header, footer and sidebar links are basically seen in the same way. Google differentiates between primary content and the boilerplate (everything around it).


Fine to Make Large Scale Site Changes at Same Time But Cause Bigger SERP Fluctuations Than Phased Changes

No problem with making large scale changes to the content on a site all at once, but this will result in larger SERP fluctuations. Spreading content changes over time will result in smaller fluctuations over a longer period of time.


Check JavaScript Sites Render Correctly

John advises that any sites built with Angular or any other JS frameworks, should be checked to see if they render well, using Fetch and Render. There are a number of pages in Google’s developer documentation around debugging around JavaScript-based frameworks and Google have set up a JavaScript working group to ask questions about specific URLs.


Google Could Already be Indexing Mobile Version For Small Number of Sites

John says Mobile-first Indexing is still in the experimental stage but it’s possible that Google are already indexing the mobile version for individual sites but for a very small quantity.

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Sam Marsden

SEO & Content Manager

Sam Marsden is Lumar's former SEO & Content Manager and currently Head of SEO at Busuu. Sam speaks regularly at marketing conferences, like SMX and BrightonSEO, and is a contributor to industry publications such as Search Engine Journal and State of Digital.


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