This document is about the visibility of your event to search engine web crawlers, also known as robots or ‘bots’.
There are three options:
- All Private: No events are crawlable. This is the default, so you don’t need to take any action.
- All Public: You want all events to be crawlable. Ask Certain to enable this for your domain.
- Some Private: You want only some events to be crawlable. Follow step 2, and then use the META tag described below to make an event private (that is, not crawlable).
How to structure the contents of your site to optimize it for search engines (SEO) is not in the scope of this document.
Default Behavior in Certain
By default, events created within Certain are not crawlable. If you would like all your events to be public, Certain can enable web crawlers across your domain and block-allow your events to be indexed. Contact your Customer Success Manager, who can facilitate this request.
Once this is enabled for your domain, there are additional HTML META tags that can be added to the display shell to enable better crawlability; however, as stated above, that is outside the scope of this document.
This section is applicable if you’ve asked Certain to enable web crawlers in your domain, as described above.
You can use a special HTML <META> tag to tell robots to index or not index the content of a page, and/or not scan it for links to follow. By simply adding this extra HTML tag into the head of your Certain event display shell, you can instruct the web crawlers to exclude your event’s website(s) and form(s) from being indexed.
In order for Certain events to be excluded from being crawled, you should add the robots META tag described below to the custom display shell of the events’ display configuration.
How to write a Robots META Tag
When to include it
The default behavior of sites that exclude the robots META tag is that they are found and indexed by web crawlers. If you would like to exclude your event from being found by web crawlers then you should add this extra tag into your event display shell with the following values.
What to put into it
The "NAME" attribute must be "ROBOTS".
Valid values for the "CONTENT" attribute are: "INDEX", "NOINDEX", "FOLLOW", and "NOFOLLOW". Multiple comma-separated values are allowed, but obviously only some combinations make sense. If there is no robotstag, the default is "INDEX, FOLLOW", so there's no need to spell that out. That leaves:
<META NAME="ROBOTS" CONTENT="NOINDEX, FOLLOW">
<META NAME="ROBOTS" CONTENT="INDEX, NOFOLLOW">
<META NAME="ROBOTS" CONTENT="NOINDEX, NOFOLLOW">
Where to put it
Like any <META> tag, it should be placed in the HEAD section of an HTML page, as in the example below. You should put it in every page on your site, which you can do by placing it in the advanced display shell with Certain’s display configuration. (Plan Configure Display.) This enables the HTML “wrapper” to be included in all the websites and forms in the event.
Values for ‘Content’ Attribute
See overleaf for a list of the values for content, and the corresponding behavior that web crawlers, or "bots", will exhibit when they ‘re included as part of your ROBOTS <META> tag.
This is a list of potential values for the content of, with the corresponding behavior that web crawlers, or "bots", will exhibit.
|index||Allows the robot to index the page (default).||All|
|noindex||Requests the robot to not index the page.||All|
|follow||Allows the robot to follow the links on the page (default).||All|
|nofollow||Requests the robot to not follow the links on the page||All|
|none||Equivalent to noindex, nofollow|
|noodp||Prevents using the Open Directory Project description, if any, as the page description in search engine results.||Google, Yahoo, Bing|
|noarchive||Requests the search engine not to cache the page content.||Google, Yahoo, Bing|
|nosnippet||Prevents displaying any description of the page in search engine results.||Google, Bing|
|noimageindex||Requests this page not to appear as the referring page of an indexed image.|
List from “<meta>: The Document-level Metadata element”, by Mozilla Contributors: https://developer.mozilla.org/en-US/docs/Web/HTML/Element/meta, licensed under CC-BY-SA 2.5.