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Webmaster Tools URL Removals

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2 replies to this topic

#1 qwerty


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Posted 22 February 2012 - 01:49 PM

Have any of you made use of the URL Removals tool under Crawler Access in Webmaster Tools? We have a series of form pages across a number of sites that never should have been indexed. There's nothing of any value on any of these pages, but thousands of them are indexed by Google. A disallow line was added to each site's robots.txt some time ago (I believe a few months), so they aren't being crawled anymore, but of course they remain indexed.

Just for the sake of cleaning things up, I entered the directory containing these pages in the removal tool for four or five sites yesterday before I noticed the link to this kind of scary page:
When NOT to use the URL removal tool
The URL removal tool is intended for pages that urgently need to be removed—for example, if they contain confidential data that was accidentally exposed. Using the tool for other purposes may cause problems for your site.

Getting rid of useless pages that cause no harm but never should have been indexed isn't, it appears, the purpose of this tool. So now that I've gone ahead and used it (it worked perfectly, by the way -- the pages are gone) for "other purposes" should I expect the mysterious "problems" for my sites? unsure.gif I've still got probably about 10 domains that I'd like to have these pages de-indexed for, but should I fear this unnamed retribution from an angry G?

#2 Jill


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Posted 22 February 2012 - 02:34 PM

Just a guess, but perhaps Google is just saying that to scare away those who might want to use it when they don't really need to, in order to save their resources.

Perhaps they actually do them by hand or something?

#3 Michael Martinez

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Posted 22 February 2012 - 06:08 PM

I think the stern warning is intended for naive site managers. I have used the removal tool myself without any unexpected consequences. It's not something I WANT to use but sometimes you need to get pages out of the SERPs quickly.

I'm glad to have that option.

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