Fabrice Canel posted an SEO best practices post for sites that use subscription-based and paywall content. While Google has something called flexible sampling, previously a first click free program – Microsoft Bing does not.
Bing basically wants you to detect that BingBot is trying to access this subscription-based and paywall content and then give BingBot full access to that content. In a sense, show Bing all the content and show the users only a snippet of the content. Bing is saying this is okay, this is not a form of cloaking and this is allowed.
Fabrice wrote “the first step is to allow search engines, like Bing, to see the full content that normally resides behind a paywall or a subscription. By accessing the full content, search engines will be able to index more text which will help match more customer queries.” “You can identify Bingbot by referencing the IP address against the public list of Bingbot IP addresses,” he added. The list of BingBot IPs were published by Microsoft recently.
Then Fabrice explained the next step is to “prevent search engines from exposing publisher subscription-based or paywall content in search engines cache pages.” He aid “publishers can control whether search engines show a cached page of a document by using a special robots meta tag in the head section of the web page or, alternatively, by using a customer HTTP response header returned to the search engines crawler for each URL.”
His blog post explains how to do this Robots Meta Tag and/or X-Robots-Tag.
News web sites, academic and research web sites, enabling indexing of your subscription-based and paywall content in search engines is easy. Get more customers visiting your web sites and no need to engage with search engines. https://t.co/P8VSJcfewB
— Fabrice Canel (@facan) May 2, 2022
Google Product Grid Results Are Organic
We’ve been seeing a lot of grid-like formats with products and shopping results. We know some are ads and some are organic. John Mueller of Google just added official Google representative confirmation that many of these are organic – if you don’t trust that there is no ad label on them as evidence enough.
The other day, Dan Shure posted on Twitter this screenshot (click it to enlarge) of this grid product format and said “This is quite the search result page – there are up to SIXTEEN products below a SINGLE organic listing (in addition to the image carousels) and desktop is infinite scroll.”
Well, yea, these are organic. John responded on Twitter saying “They’re organic results too. This is one of the reasons it’s good to dig into our ecommerce site guidance if you sell products.”
— 🐝 johnmu.csv (personal) weighs more than 15MB 🐝 (@JohnMu) June 28, 2022
Honestly, like I said before, I am not a huge fan of these grid formatted results for products. At least, they should be in some “click to expand” feature so you can see more. So show one line of these results with a click to expand. It is just too much in my opinion, even if Google is confident of the intent of the query.
Also, not all of these image snippets need markup to work, although these with the pricing and reviews probably do…
Forum discussion at Twitter.
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