A while back Matt Cutts over at Google had asked for feedback on what his web spam team could be doing better. A lot of people responded and it seems that the biggest complaint was noresults pages. So Matt is asking for your help again.
In his blog post Matt tells you specifically how to report noresults pages that you receive. But he doesn’t really tell you why other than it’s a “bad user experience.” If you’re looking for something a little more than that, here are some reasons why noresults pages are so bad and why you might want to report them Google:
- Many review sites, sites that specialize in product reviews, are very well optimized for the word “review” so any product you type in followed by the word “review” will register as a result in the SERP but when you click the link to be taken to a page that has no associated review at that particular website you’ll end up with a noresults page or a “that review doesn’t exist” page. Why is that bad? If it happened to you, you’d know.
- Beyond the obvious, however, some webmasters include pages for future content and optimize them for results even though there is no review written yet for those products. First, I’d ask “why is there a page for content not yet written”, and secondly, “Why is it showing up in the SERPs?” Google wants to filter those pages out of its index and I don’t blame them.
- Some of these pages may actually be doorway pages, or squeeze pages, that are intended to capture your personal information for marketing purposes or meant to get into a site for other purposes; that’s not good.
I’d encourage you to report noresults pages to Google if you find them. To clean up the SERPs requires all of our attention. It’s a big web and one search engine can’t do it all. Read Matt Cutts’ blog post to learn more.