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To index or not to index the feeds

RSS Feeds

Finally, Google decided on the indexing of the feeds. The policy is now to index the multimedia podcast feeds only, as no HTML page has the same content or they have more complete item descriptions than the associated HTML page.

There are two main reasons to exclude the common feeds from the Google’s search results:

  1. Feeds increase the likelihood that users see duplicate search results (because of this, some webmasters block off access to the robots to avoid them indexing the pages that have these data feeds)
  2. Users clicking on a feed may miss valuable content available only in the HTML page.

An alternative for the old search for the feeds it is Google Reader or iGoogle.

For the owners of podcast feeds that do not want it to be indexed, they can comply with Yahoo Guidelines, or, if they use Feedburner they can easily set this up within Feedburner.

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