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Blocking USA Users But Allowing Googlebot Is Against Google’s Webmaster Guidelines



Blocking USA Users But Allowing Googlebot Is Against Google's Webmaster Guidelines

Google sends its crew of crawlers, Googlebot, from the United States. That is where 99% of the crawling originates from. If you are not allowed to show your website to users based in the United States, then you also cannot show that website to Googlebot.

You cannot show content to Googlebot when a user trying to access that same page will not see that content from the same region. Google’s John Mueller said it would be against Google’s webmaster guidelines to show Googlebot the content but then show a US based user a screen that says they are not allowed to see this content because of their location.

You can do the opposite, show US based users content but hide it from maybe folks in Russia with a disclaimer of sorts, and that would not be against Google’s guidelines. Why? Because Googlebot crawls from the US, not from Russia.

This is not new, we covered it numerous times but it came up again recently. Here is the recent context:

So if you want to block countries outside of the US, you can do that, if you want – just saying. But you cannot block users from the US.

Forum discussion at Twitter.

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Google Ads Testing Replacing Ad Label With Sponsored Label



Google Ads Testing Replacing Ad Label With Sponsored Label

Google Ads is testing replacing the “ads” label with a “sponsored” label again. And just so you know, Google in 2010 replaced the “sponsored” label with an “ad” label until this day. Yea, sometimes we do see “sponsored” labels in Google Search but not for the normal search ads – those have been labeled “ads” for the UK and US regions for a long time now.

I personally cannot replicate this but Bastiir posted some screenshots of this on Twitter:

Test: Sponsored label in Google Search:

Normal: Ads label in Google Search:

Here is another full size screenshot you can click on to see the “sponsored” label:

Here are more tests:

I personally like the “sponsored” label, makes it feel more luxury. 🙂


Forum discussion at Twitter.

Update: Google has now confirmed this as a test and sent Search Engine Land this statement:

This is part of a series of experiments to help users more easily identify the brand or advertiser associated with the Search ads they may see for a given query. We are always testing news ways to improve the experience for users on the search results page, but we don’t have anything specific to announce right now.


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