Saturday, September 05, 2009

The Search Engines, And Web Sites With Dual Addresses

I've written separately about a problem that the search engines might have with possibly duplicated content. If you're not careful, and Blogger wasn't looking out for your interests, your blog (web site) could get a duplicated content penalty from the search engines, for your possible use of label searches to index your blog. Yet, there may be another way for your blog to get a duplicated content penalty from the search engines.

Your blog, as published by Blogger, comes with 2 aliases - "yourblog.blogspot.com" and "www.yourblog.blogspot.com", or maybe "yourdomain.com" and "www.yourdomain.com". If not managed properly, these aliases may cause the search engines to see duplicated content.

To properly manage this dual personality, you use the Google Webmaster Tools "Preferred domain" wizard. For a properly verified website, go to "Site configuration", then to "Settings".

Under "Preferred domain" for a BlogSpot published blog, you have 3 choices
  1. Don't set a preferred domain
  2. Display URLs as www.yourblog.blogspot.com
  3. Display URLs as yourblog.blogspot.com


Similarly, Under "Preferred domain" for a custom domain published blog, you have 3 choices
  1. Don't set a preferred domain
  2. Display URLs as www.yourdomain.com
  3. Display URLs as yourdomain.com


Further explanation is provided, behind the "Learn mode" link.
The preferred domain is the one that you would like used to index your site's pages. If you specify your preferred domain as http://www.example.com and we find a link to your site that is formatted as http://example.com , we'll treat that link as if it was http://www.example.com . In addition, we'll take your preference into account when displaying URLs in our search results. It may take some time for changes to be reflected in our index.
Learn more about setting a preferred domain

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