Google Favors HTTPS Pages in its Indexing Sytem

Google Favors HTTPS Pages over HTTP Pages In its Updated Indexing System

Google recently announced in the Google Webmaster Central Blog another update in its indexing system – it will prioritize indexing HTTPS pages over the regular HTTP ones. Although, Google has already started doing this last year when they started using HTTPS as a ranking signal, it was just recently that they announced the change to their indexing system.

HTTPS hypertext transfer protocol secure

Zineb Ait Bahajji of Google said, “we’ll start crawling HTTPS equivalents of HTTP pages, even when the former are not linked to from any page… When two URLs from the same domain appear to have the same content but are served over different protocol schemes, we’ll typically choose to index the HTTPS URL.”

Eight Conditions for HTTPS Priority Indexing

Google crawlers will choose to index HTTPS urls when a domain’s URLs have the same content but are served over different protocol schemes if the following criteria are met: Continue reading

Social Extensions are No Longer Shown with Ads on Google Search Advertising

Social Extensions Discontinued

According to the announcements in the Google Partners Help pages, Social extensions are no longer shown with Ads if you are using it in your search advertising campaigns. This started last December 10, 2015.

social extensions Google Play example

What are Social Extensions?

Social extensions are one of the twelve types of extensions that can be used to enhance your ads for your search advertising campaigns. They fall under automatic extensions, meaning, ads that appear on Google search and the Search network show them when the Adwords system can link the ads to your active and verified Google+ page.

These extensions show how many Google+ followers and +1s that your company or website has if the Adwords system determines doing this would improve the performance of your ad campaign.

How Social Extensions Used to Help Ad Campaigns

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Google No Longer Recommends AJAX Crawling Scheme: Update Alert

Google is Deprecating Its AJAX Crawling Scheme

In a blog post in the Google Webmaster Central Blog, Google announced that it no longer is recommending the AJAX crawling proposal it made back in 2009. In other words, the major search engine is expressing its disapproval (that’s what deprecate means) of the AJAX crawling scheme.




What is the AJAX Crawling Proposal?

Six years ago, in October 7, 2009, Google proposed a new standard to make AJAX-based websites crawlable. AJAX, short for asynchronous JavaScript and XML, is a group of interrelated Web development techniques used on the client-side to create asynchronous (a form of input/output processing that permits other processing to continue before the transmission has finished) Web applications. There are websites that use AJAX on their pages because of its advantages.

AJAX Advantages

With AJAX, the following are made possible:

1. Update a web page without reloading the page
2. Request data from a server – after the page has loaded
3. Receive data from a server – after the page has loaded
4. Send data to a server – in the background

AJAX-based applications is a great development for users because it makes applications much faster and richer. And, back in 2009, it was proposed by Google to make these pages crawlable. But making applications more responsive has come at a huge cost: crawlers are not able to see any content that is created dynamically. Consequently, the most modern applications are also the ones that are often the least searchable. Thus, the proposal by Google to deprecate its AJAX crawling strategem.

What Now?

Google realized that the assumptions they made back in 2009 are no longer valid. They are now recommending strategies for web design that emphasize accessibility, semantic HTML markup, and external stylesheet and scripting technologies. An example given was using the History API pushState() to ensure accessibility for a wider range of browsers and Google’s systems.

Q & A with Kazushi Nagayama

Q: My site currently follows your recommendation and supports _escaped_fragment_. Would my site stop getting indexed now that you’ve deprecated your recommendation?
A: No, the site would still be indexed. In general, however, we recommend you implement industry best practices when you’re making the next update for your site. Instead of the _escaped_fragment_ URLs, we’ll generally crawl, render, and index the #! URLs.

Q: Is moving away from the AJAX crawling proposal to industry best practices considered a site move? Do I need to implement redirects?
A: If your current setup is working fine, you should not have to immediately change anything. If you’re building a new site or restructuring an already existing site, simply avoid introducing _escaped_fragment_ urls. .

Q: I use a JavaScript framework and my webserver serves a pre-rendered page. Is that still ok?
A: In general, websites shouldn’t pre-render pages only for Google — we expect that you might pre-render pages for performance benefits for users and that you would follow progressive enhancement guidelines. If you pre-render pages, make sure that the content served to Googlebot matches the user’s experience, both how it looks and how it interacts. Serving Googlebot different content than a normal user would see is considered cloaking, and would be against our Webmaster Guidelines.

If this AJAX-crawling update is too advanced for you and you have more questions, feel free to post them in the webmaster help forum.

How Will Google’s Buy Button Affect Mobile SEO?

Google’s Buy Button is Imminent

Last week, Google announced that the “buy button” is imminent. “There is going to be a buy button soon. It’s imminent,” said Omid Kordestani, Chief Business Officer of the most popular search engine, during the Code conference in Southern California.

Google’s “buy button” will initially be available on mobile devices. This comes after the recent update favoring websites that are mobile-friendly and, after the company communicated their intention to launch the “buy button” feature late last year to compete against Amazon.




This update, when it comes, will shift Google Shopping from simply redirecting users to ecommerce sites to letting them buy direct from a search result.

Effect on Mobile SEO

How the introduction of Google’s “buy button” affect mobile SEO and SEO in general is common sense. I can think of two.

It will further push ecommerce sites to shift towards becoming mobile-friendly. You can visit Google’s mobile-friendly test page to check the mobile-friendliness of your website.

The introduction of the “buy button” will increase the demand for SEO of ecommerce sites. Those selling online will realize further the need for optimizing their websites and making them visible in Google. For those who are already appearing in search results, it is necessary to maintain their presence there.

What the Buy Button Means for SEO Practitioners

1. Move towards the direction of mobile SEO. This may be a selling point for your clients who have been reluctant about upgrading their website to be responsive or mobile-friendly. Don’t be surprised if the demand for mobile-friendliness upgrade increases.

2. Brush up on optimizing ecommerce sites on various platforms. To those who have had a lot of experience, this may just be a refresher but to those starting out, going through a learning curve could be the case.

What other effects of Google’s “buy button” on the SEO market and for online marketers can you think of? Please share your ideas in the comment section.