Digital marketing is an umbrella term used to market services and products of a brand and business and is often conceived to be about posting content on websites, social media and gaining customers through Ads on search engines. On the technical side of this content display is the backend coding of sites, posts and pages that are the foundational basis for these websites to rank high on SERPs (Search Engine Result Pages). However, not always are content and media created and published to gain a high search engine ranking. Google’s new Robot Tags is one such innovative tool that allows users to decide which part of their website’s content is to be shared, if it is to be shared at all. Discussed below is the purpose of this new tool in relation to all other technical aspects of website coding and how it affects one’s SEO strategy imminently.
Unpacking the Basics
Robot tags also known as robot meta tags are HTML tags that function as instructions to bots guiding crawlers from search engines to either index a web page or not. HTML stands for HyperText Markup Language, which is basically the code written that structures and styles a website and its content. Meta tags are comprised of title tags and meta descriptions, the former being the title of the web page and the latter being a short description of what the page presents. Both are best presented in limited characters that help display the entire content of the meta tags on SERPs which build relevance and ultimately helps increase site visits.
Indexing is the process of putting web pages out there on search engines whereby they crawl the meta tags on these pages and accordingly put them on SERPs’ index or not. The variation exists because indexing is coded for within the meta tags in a simple Index or NO-index manner. Lastly crawling is an automated software process by which search engines scan through websites’ contents to index and present them on the SERPs. Google has its own main crawler namely Googlebot that crawls websites both on desktops and mobiles and displays aptly indexed results when a search is made.
Understanding the Options
To understand the function of Robot Tags better, it is important to grasp an insight into why some website owners prefer to not index their sites. While indexing helps websites rank higher which is the main objective of SEO (Search Engine Optimization) strategies, when the source code on meta tags reads NO-index, the site is not crawled and indexed and hence does not rank on SERPs. Certain website authors do this as they do not wish their content to be published for a wide-reach audience, one such example being personal blogs. With the new update: Robot Tags, the number of options available are further broadened as users can now choose to index or NO-index their content differently at every stage of publishing and sharing content including media files.
The All-New Update
Google’s new update on the Robot Tags, known as indexifembedded works to provide more freedom and precision when choosing to index embedded content present on another website despite the type of index tag originally coded for on the parent content page. Here, embedding content refers to integrating content, be it plain text, images, videos, social media posts or another website’s work into a site for direct viewing rather than providing links to the original creation. It boosts engagement and encourages more clicks on the site that helps build site traffic that will ultimately help in improving rankings.
Indexifembedded acts as a communication tool between the website owner and Google as it communicates to the search engine whether or not the embedded content should be indexed despite the page as a whole being coded for NO-index. In a normal scenario, when a NO-index tag is used, all content on the webpage including embedded creation are all crawled to be not indexed by Google given that the tag applies generally to all the work on the site. However, with indexifembedded, this general instruction can be tweaked to allow the embedded content to be not indexed while the other original content created by the publisher is indexed and vice versa.
The NO-index tag works in collaboration with indexifembedded as posted by Google Search Central where the combination of the two works “only when the page with noindex is embedded into another page through an iframe or similar HTML tag, like object”. This shows that any content hosted on a particular webpage can be embedded by Google when it is indexing the page. With this enhanced control on embedded content, website owners can be assured of a refined process to have their media displayed on third-party websites without having their entire media pages indexed.
Previously media publishers were restricted to using the NO-index tag that not only did not allow Google to index their media page but also their media displays were not embedded on other sites during the process. With this improved ease of publishing control, the tag is sure to be widely used across websites looking to rank on the search engine. Currently, only Google is supporting the indexifembedded tag, however, its suitability is sure to garner the interests of other platforms that will most likely adopt the tag as well eventually.
While professionals can easily navigate the jargon and instructions to avail the expedience of the indexifembedded tag, other website owners and managers can take advantage of SEO expert assistance in achieving the same feat. The team at Talir group is well equipped with expertise in SEO and other strategies that have contributed to its recognition as the finest digital marketing agency in Dubai. To transform your website and social media accounts into their best version, get in touch with our experts and change the face of your brand today.