Friday, February 6, 2009

Google Correctly Counting Links With Tracking Information

A major SEO rule has a cool solution thanks to Google. I am not sure how public this is, but I have not heard anyone talking about it. Tracking URLs cause problems when it comes to passing link value (part of all the major Search Engine’s algorithms today). Sometimes these tracking URLs use a third party redirect. Sometimes they just put a variety of variable strings at the end of the URL ( With the help of Time For Learning, a Homeschool Curriculum Provider, we found that inbound links using standard Google Analytics tracking are being counted correctly as backlinks. This was verified through Google Webmaster Tools.

Historically, a tracking code like “?ref=52&” may be for tracking, but it could also be part of a dynamic Web site. That code may be a query string that helps populate the page with content.

Google Analytics tracking uses very defined variables in their tracking URLs. It makes perfect sense that Google could correctly recognize those variables and appropriately pass “link juice” to the root link.

1 comment:

BBat50 said...

Joe, Glad you are making a little splash with this. I had dutifully noted it in my personal SEO blog in a post called: Do tracking codes screw up Google's link tracking?

Next week, I might go a little further on some research that I've been doing on pages that google doesn't fully count (do you remember the supplementary index concept?)