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Google Webmaster Hangout Notes: October 20th 2017

google webmaster hangouts recaps - SEO tips

Notes from the Google Webmaster Hangout on the 20th of October, 2017.


Show Paywalled Content to Googlebot Based on User Agent & IP Lookup

It’s OK to show Googlebot paywall pages with class names and schema markup based on user agent. You can also combine that with an IP lookup to recognise when Googlebot is looking at a page as opposed to another crawler.


Make Sure Internal Link Anchor Text Provides Context

Internal link anchor text should provide Google with the context of the target page. Avoid using anchor text like “click here” which doesn’t tell Google anything about the page you’re linking to.


Site Speed More Important for UX Than SEO

Google only differentiates between slow sites and those in the normal range. However, page speed is very important for user experience, especially on eCommerce sites where a couple of hundred milliseconds can make a difference.


Page Speed May Become More Important When Google Announce Mobile Updates

Google may make speed a more important ranking factor when Google gets to closer to announcing updates around mobile.


Tabbed Content Loaded On-Click Won’t Be Indexed

Content in tabs is fine for mobile as long as it is loaded when page is loaded and not when the tab is clicked on, otherwise it won’t be indexed.


Use Mobile Friendly Test to Check if Googlebot Can Access Page

Use the mobile-friendly test as an easy check to see if Googlebot can access a page. This will fetch the page with a Googlebot user agent and show you a screenshot of what was found.


Not All Links Shown in Search Console

Not all links are shown in Search Console. Google tries to pick ones that are relevant and doesn’t include every example of a sitewide link.


Test Navigation Models to Reduce Click Depth & Improve UX

Consider testing out different navigation models on your site to improve user experience and reduce click depth to important products/pages on your site.


Restrict Language in Advanced Search to Check Language is Seen Correctly by Google

Can check a page is showing in the correct language by searching for the page and restricting the language in Advanced Search. If the page doesn’t show up then Google thinks they’re in a different language than the one you’ve set.


May Take Time to Index Content for Single Page App Setup While Google Picks up JS Rendered Version

Google indexes the HTML version of a page first then the rendered version. John says that in future these two things will be done more or less at the same time. An example where this difference might be more noticeable is with a single page app setup where one HTML file is served to all pages which has no content and then the content is only later picked up through JavaScript rendering.

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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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