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Php Dynamic Site Showing Inconsistent Indexing
Posted 24 February 2005 - 04:41 PM
i have a potential client may be building a site using a similar format/technology to that located at: www.cardcarebiz.com. In helping that client write SEO requirements, i want to make sure that their site will be properly indexed and i am worried about the dynamic URLs.
When i do a site:www.cardcarebiz.com on google, i come up with 466 indexed pages. But when i review those pages, most of them are the product specific pages, none of the category pages seem to be in the index.
the product pages have a URL like:http://www.cardcarebiz.com/php/browse.php3?CAT=1&SUBCAT1=3&CURSOR=0&p=1
while the category pages have a URL like:http://www.cardcarebiz.com/php/browse.php3?p=&SESSION_ID=0&CAT=1&SUBCAT1=11
looking at the two forms of URLs, the category pages have a session ID in the URL. However both forms only have two name/value pairs.
yahoo showed 127 indexed pages and some of those pages ARE category pages with the session ID.
I guess my question is this: Do you see any problems with their URL's for being indexed? Should i recommend that my client, if they use this type of site, to use a dynamic rewrite application for the URLs? Is the session ID a problem? I cant seem to find any concensus of opinion on dynamic URLs, query strings, etc...
out of bounds
Posted 24 February 2005 - 05:53 PM
I'm not sure why the SESSION_ID variable even appears in the URL of the site you mentioned since one never actually appears. It probably does once someone logs in to make a purchase, but frankly it doesn't need to be there at all.
The search engines are much better these days about not freaking out over the name that is given to a variable, but I still wouldn't push my luck with that one. It's being written to the URL so it could probably be pulled out of the code before the page is written to the browser, but that's going to cause you to consider that you'll need to understand what's happening with the underlying PHP code.
The larger issue though is the number of variables that appear in some URLS. One some of the category pages I saw as many as 5 variables, even if some of them are unassigned. That's going to be asking for a bit of a leap of faith on the part of the spiders.
The URLs I'm talking about are those that end with something like browse.php3?p=&SESSION_ID=0&CAT=1&SUBCAT1=1&PRICE=8 where I just toggled back and forth between italic and bold for each variable.
Generally speaking, I try to stick to a maximum of 3 variables, and whenever I can I try to keep it to 2 variables. Especially for newer sites.
Bottom line, it's going to take some work with that particular software. It can be done, but it's going to require digging into the code one way or another.
Posted 25 February 2005 - 10:47 AM
i guess the wierd thing is that yahoo HAS indexed some of those URLs with sessionID's in them and 4 variables. it seems yahoo is doing better at indexing their site than google? can i be sure when i recommend that the # of variables is going to be a problem or is it just a best guess?
Posted 25 February 2005 - 11:54 AM
The trick is that you want to make it as easy for the spiders as you possibly can, because your performance may vary.
I have sites that have been around forever and have a lot of link popularity/PR where the spiders crawl every dynamic link I put up there. Even if there are 4 or 5 variables in the URL.
I have other sites that haven't been around as long and don't have as much authority which really struggle to get pages with 3 variables indexed.
So it's all relative and depends a good deal on how much interest you're able to create for the spiders. Basically that's link pop. A PR9 site will get a lot of pages spidered, where the same site with a PR3 wouldn't stand a chance.
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