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by: Clare Lawrence
Dynamic pages and the Search Engines By Clare Lawrence 10th March 2003 Clare is the CEO of Discount Domains Ltd a leading UK Domain name registration service.
Do search engines such as google penalise dynamic pages?
Dynamic pages are used to deliver content from a database to websites - the advantage being that data can be updated and the contents of pages changed without the need to reload pages etc.
Google publishes guidance notes on its site at http://www.google.com/webmasters/2.html and at http://www.google.com/webmasters/guidelines.html
These say that dynamic pages are indexed but that the Googlebot ( Google's spider ) can overwhelm dynamic sites and therefore the amount of pages indexed are limited
Google recommends:- "If you decide to use dynamic pages (i.e. the URL contains a '?' character) be aware that not every search engine spider crawls dynamic pages as well as static pages. It helps to keep the parameters short and the number of them small.
How to get dynamic pages indexed
There are ways to get dynamic pages indexed, if the site is relatively small, then create a site map, which has static links to each of the dynamic pages. This gives the search engines a "doorway" to the dynamic pages.
For larger sites there are a number of ways to change the syntax of a dynamic URL so that it appears to be static. e.g http://www.discountdomainsuk.com/glossary.php?lang=english&gid=28 can be re-written as http://www.discountdomainsuk.com/glossary/english/28
Index pages If your index page is dynamical generated then it will be particularly difficult for search engines to index your site. If possible you should avoid dynamically generated index pages
The search engines and Google in particular are getting better at indexing dynamic pages.
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Dynamic pages are very useful to deliver content particularly if you wish to use a content management system. The Search engines do have some difficulties with dynamic content, but there are ways to improve the chances of dynamic pages being indexed.
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