Prevent Google From Seeing Specific Posts & Pages
Below is a question I hear often from reader’s that use their blogs not only as personal journals but also as marketing platforms.
Is there a plugin or other option to keep your pages private from the search engines as well as the search on your own site
I already have a plugin (or theme) to keep the pages out of the menus and it doesn’t work for this problem.
An Awesome Just Ask Kim Reader
If you are a marketer like myself you may have run into this tricky question before!
As noted, this isn’t about how to hide pages from the appearing in your theme’s menu bar (which requires a different solution) or how to keep your posts from appearing on the home page/feed/etc (which again requires a different solution)… but rather…
How in the world do you keep those pesky search engine bots from making your marketing or sensitive pages from turning up in the search results?!?!
The Simple Solution
Fortunately there’s a non-technical answer.
The solution to this riddle is “Robots Meta” which you may or may not need as a plugin.
If you have a SEO optimized theme such as Thesis, this plugin is built in. If you are using Platinum SEO or WordPress SEO, you also have this plugin built in.
If you’re using a non-premium theme and/or All In One SEO (which does not include this feature) then you need to add this plugin: “Robots Meta”
Regardless of how you’re getting the features added… what all of this does is adds a set of check-boxes to the posts/pages edit page that looks similar to this:
If your using Platinum SEO or WordPress SEO its in with their SEO stuff on each edit page. Same idea for Thesis.
Select either of the no-index options. Generally I use noindex, follow (as this second half is talking about the links written on the page and whether they are forced into no-follow status, I don’t personally know how it matters if the page isn’t indexed but it’s what I use!).
As long as you select “noindex” for that particular post or page, while the search engine bots/spiders may climb through the page, the results will not be returned in search results.
This is how we block a post or page from the search engine results – by restricting indexing!
That’s all you need…. (sorta)
One Caveat: This will NOT remove a post that was previously indexed until at least the next time Google attempts to spider that page (and possibly a lot longer). Fortunately, if your page is already indexed, once you have used the method outlined here FIRST, then you can Tell Google to Remove An Indexed Post, Page or Site.
The Code Solution
Now, for those that prefer to do this without a plugin (and do other magic that only coding can provide), you’ll find “How To: Disable Search Engine Indexing On A Particular Category” & “How To: Disable Search Engine Indexing On A Particular Post” & “How to: Hide Portions of Text From Google on your WordPress Blog” by Jean-Baptiste Jung from Cats Who Code and WP Recipes to be very helpful!
There you have it, a quick and tidy way to tell the search engine bots or spiders to not provide a particular WordPress page in the search results.
Best of all, you likely already have this feature available and didn’t even realize it!
This post shows us how to keep a post/page on our blog OUT of Google’s hands (often the case for optin-only content)… and if your post is already in the search results, be sure you also check out how to get stuff OUT of the search results that shouldn’t be there.
Using these two approaches together, you’ll be able to GET IT OUT of Google and KEEP IT OUT of Google.
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