Google Does Not Differentiate Between Category, Filter, Tag Or Search Pages

Google’s John Mueller said in a video hangout that Google Search does not specifically differentiate and treat differently category pages or filter pages or search pages or tag pages from other pages. John said it is not about the technical type of page it is, but rather what is on that page and how you link to it internally.

John said this at the 31:59 mark into the video. He said “we don’t try to recognize the difference between different category pages or filter pages or search pages.” “Essentially we see all of these pages as being equivalent and it’s more a matter of the kind of content that you’re providing there,” he added.

Later on, John explained how you can get these types of pages indexed and ranked, if you are having issues with that. Assuming it is not a technical issue, John said “look at your internal linking structure and see what you can do to make it so that we can find those pages a little bit easier. And that could be something like on your home page you list a section of popular categories or popular kinds of products and then you link to those pages directly. Or maybe do occasional blog posts with information about a specific kind of product and then from there you link to that kind of product page on your side. Which could be like a filter page it could be a category page whatever you want to do.”

Basically, put content on those pages that are useful and then make sure to link to them internally.

Here is the video embed where he said this:

Here is the transcript:

We have a new e-commerce store with lots of different variants and search queries for products. For example we sell diamond cutting disks. These have search queries like diamond cutting disk for tiles, wood, concrete. Our competitors are ranked with own categories for these products. We use filter pages which are optimized and are also indexable but the filter pages don’t get ranked or don’t get indexed. So should I create hundreds of unusual subcategories instead?

So, I think first of all the one important aspect here is that we don’t try to recognize the difference between different category pages or filter pages or search pages. Essentially we see all of these pages as being equivalent and it’s more a matter of the kind of content that you’re providing there.

So it’s kind of similar to in the past we would get questions like if if I do a blog post if I set up a separate page for a piece of content does Google treat that differently. And again it’s not we treat we don’t treat kind of like the semantic thing that you have set up on your side separately. But rather we recognize on this page there are lots of products that are linked here and there’s information about this kind of product on this page and we’ll take that into account. And it doesn’t matter for us if this is a category page, a search page a tag page, a filter page, essentially it’s one URL that has this this kind of information on it.

So from that point of view I don’t think you artificially need to create something special on your website. But rather if you’re trying to get these kind of pages to appear in search you just need to make sure, I mean just, need to make sure that you have the the right amount of useful information on these pages. So that when we look at these pages we can recognize oh here’s some information about the type of page that it is, here’s a clean heading on this page, maybe there’s a subheading there as well, maybe there are links for additional context and there’s a list of products that we can follow and also go off and crawl and index.

And that’s that’s essentially what we’d be looking for. And if if you’re seeing that none of these pages on your site are being crawled or indexed then the first thing I would look into is kind of the technical side of things is crawling or indexing of these pages blocked somehow, is there a canonical setup, is there no index perhaps set up by your shop system, all of those those kind of things. But if you’re seeing that some of these pages are being indexed and ranking but not all of them then I assume from a technical point of view they’re fine and it’s more a matter of well we don’t know enough about these pages to actually go off and crawl and index them. So you could do things like look at your internal linking structure and see what you can do to make it so that we can find those pages a little bit easier. And that could be something like on your home page you list a section of popular categories or popular kinds of products and then you link to those pages directly. Or maybe do occasional blog posts with information about a specific kind of product and then from there you link to that kind of product page on your side. Which could be like a filter page it could be a category page whatever you want to do.

Sounds similar to using internal linking to help Google trust your site more on some level.

Forum discussion at YouTube Community.

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