Now live to all: HubSpot will no-index KB search results pages by default

adanielson
HubSpot Product Team

Hi all! This is Amanda, the Product Manager for HubSpot's SEO tools.

My team built a setting in the knowledge base settings page that allows users to add or remove a no-index tag from their knowledge base search results. This setting is now live to all portals


When we rolled out this setting,
we turned on by default for all portals. This means that every portal now has a "no-index" tag applied to its KB search results page. Users who do not want a no-index tag on their search results page will have to manually go into the KB settings and toggle it off.

Here is some context on why we turnnd this setting ON by default for all portals:

  • SEO best practice indicates that search results pages should be no-indexed by default. No indexing search results pages is in Google's Webmaster guidelines and Google recommends it to make it easier for them crawl your site
  • Indexable site search creates a vulnerability for a website. Indexable site search creates an "infinite crawl space" problem, where there is no limit to how many pages can be indexed due to all of the query possibilities. Spammers can add malicious keywords into your site search and attempt to have your page URLs with those keywords as query strings indexed.
  • Indexable site search creates a poor user experience. If users try to Google information about their query, and they see hundreds of search results pages with varying query strings, this can be a frustrating experience
  • Indexable site search creates content equivalent to "doorway pages" - This article dives into how this caused problems for eBay in 2014

If, despite the above, you would still like your KB search results pages to be indexed, you can go into your HubSpot Settings > Website > Knowledge Base and toggle off the switch once we roll out the change. This will remove the no-index tag again. 

Please let me know if you have any questions or feedback about this change!

Best Regards,

Amanda

17 Replies 17
karengerberry
Participant

Are there situations where certain KB articles should be indexed?

adanielson
HubSpot Product Team

@karengerberry This change will only add a no-index tag to knowledge base search results pages (not individual knowledge base articles). I cannot think of any situation where it is recommended to index knowledge base search results pages. 

KevinPalonés
Participant

@adanielson I have the same question. Because maybe I have some specific KB articles to be indexed, but not all KB.

0 Upvotes
adanielson
HubSpot Product Team

Hi Kevin- we will not place the no-index tag by default on individual knowledge base articles. It is only the search results page that we are applying the tag to. See my attached screenshot of an example of a knowledge base search results page in HubSpot
Screen Shot 2021-08-23 at 12.31.15 PM.png

adanielson
HubSpot Product Team

We are actively building and will soon release a "custom HTML" section to all individual knowledge base articles (but this is not ready or in beta yet).Once that is available, you will be able to manually apply no index tags to specific individual articles if you want them to be no-indexed. 

KatieMarr
Contributor

Again, thank you! Finally some great SEO support on KB content. I'm so excited! Please make sure my portal is in the Beta for this as soon as it's released if you can.

0 Upvotes
adanielson
HubSpot Product Team

No problem, Katie! I'm so happy to hear you are excited about this. Can you send me a private message with your portal ID? I will be sure to ungate you

KatieMarr
Contributor

done! 

 

0 Upvotes
CMarritt
Contributor

Fantastic news! We're so excited about this change! Our KB seems to be effecting our main sites SEO 

0 Upvotes
GerogeRobert
Member

Thsi is geroge robert how do i do it?

0 Upvotes
adanielson
HubSpot Product Team

Hi George! If you send me a private message/DM with your portal ID, I will ungate your portal for this. The no-index tag will be applied by default when the portal is ungated. If you wish to turn it off, which I do not recommend, you can do so under "Settings> Website > Knowledge Base" 

0 Upvotes
KatieMarr
Contributor

THANK YOU!!!

This has been a long time coming and will go a long way in helping KB customers improve their overall SEO scores! So excited for this to roll out!

John_Ford_UK
Member

So the nest thing is to leave it as it is then, nothing else to do?

0 Upvotes
adanielson
HubSpot Product Team

Yes, that is correct! Best thing to do is leave it as is, since the default we are applying is best practice

0 Upvotes
WJaan
Member

The main question in my mind is about the KB articles because I have some projects and need to improve my SEO there. you can see my blog  here also.

0 Upvotes
adanielson
HubSpot Product Team

@WJaan as of right now, the individual KB articles will not be no-indexed. This setting does not apply to them- only to the search results pages in the KB. We do eventually want to add a custom HTML section to the head of KB articles so that users can manually add no-index tags to articles if they would like to. 

0 Upvotes
adanielson
HubSpot Product Team

Hello all- I just updated the original post to reflect that this setting is now out of beta and live to all portals (I removed that this is "upcoming"). I will no longer have to ungate portals that are interested/it should be available today 

0 Upvotes