Know What is an Orphaned Page.
Every page on a site with no links directly to the page is considered an empty page because these pages do not have internally linked links used by users or crawlers to access the page when exploring your site and are therefore not accessible. Orphaned pages are usually presented using the “notice” tag instead of an “error” tag since sometimes websites conceal their landing pages by employing this method.
Google won’t be able to find abandoned pages, and that is why it’s crucial to examine your site’s content to identify the presence of these pages.
This is because of how Google discovers new pages on a site:
- Crawlers can detect the URL of the pages listed on your site’s sitemap, which is XML.
- Crawlers look for the URL either internally or externally linked to another place.
If your website needs to be found and indexed by search engines, it is necessary to discover pages that are not indexed on your site and then make the required changes.
Is Orphan Pages and SEO a problem?
If the search engine fails to find a webpage through hyperlinks, it is usually without indexing. Even if your website is in your website’s XML Sitemap, it could be an SEO issue due to the reasons listed below:
- Orphan pages could have outdated content that could lower the authority in your domain.
- Most often, websites are abandoned during moving websites. This is a concern since the orphaned pages could have valuable content that can aid in improving your ranking.
- Pages that are not correctly optimised on your site can give confusing messages to engines regarding the content’s context, which could lower the position of your website on SERPs.
Orphan Pages Vs. Dead End Pages
It is crucial to understand that dead-end and pages for orphans are different items.
Orphan pages aren’t connected to or accessible from another page, so they’re called “orphans”. But, dead-end pages don’t have links to external sites or internal pages for visitors or crawlers to browse, which makes them a “dead-end”, hence the name.
If a user comes across an unresponsive page, the user has two options: either leave the site or go back. Like search engine crawlers, they can’t transfer link equity because they do not have a place to go from dead-end websites.
It’s easy to repair any dead-end website by adding hyperlinks to the content or adding sidebars/footer navigation to the page orphan pages that function differently. Let’s look at how to identify orphan pages and then fix them.
How can I locate orphan Pages on a Web site?
Find a list of the URLs of your website.
It’s a complex and often impossible task for crawlers to locate pages with no content. Therefore, using SEO software could prove problematic as they work on the data that crawlers collect.
The most efficient method of identifying an abandoned page is to compile an overview of all URLs of your site using a Google Analytics analysis. You could also utilise any other popular analytics software to do this.
If the website has been visited, it will be displayed on the Analytics report. There’s an account of this URL someplace, so you will be able to quickly find it in the description if you look at the page views section.
Resolve issues with duplicate pages
The main reason for pages becoming abandoned may not even be something you would consider. Page duplicates are a problem which is frequently ignored and must be taken care of. Every duplicate page should direct to a single URL only. If it doesn’t, then it’s a given that the pages of that page won’t be linked. It could result in these pages becoming orphan pages.
In this case, the fact that duplicate pages are the most critical problem. The first issue you should look for when searching for missing pages on your website when performing a web audit. There are two kinds of duplicate pages that you need to be on the lookout for:
A. Non Canonical Pages
Every page on your site should utilise either the https or http protocols and non-www or www in the URLs consistently.
So, you have to examine each of your public pages by entering into the browser all of the variations of your pages, for example:
These variations should bring users to precisely the identical page using the same URL. This makes the pages to be a reference point for their respective websites. If one of these variations isn’t redirecting users to the intended webpage and you are unsure, it is a widespread issue. Whatever is causing the problem, make sure you also test it on other sites
B. Trailing Slashes
Another minor issue to be aware of is it could have an enormous impact. If your website doesn’t consistently utilize the trailing slashes, you may remove certain pages. Let’s look at another scenario:
They may offer identical content to users, however, their URLs differ from one other.
Review your website’s pages using both versions to determine if they redirect users to the same site. Make sure that all your websites have been doing this consistently. It is possible to force the process to handle itself by using “.htaccess” to ensure all these redirect users to the identical website.
Check out the table of Crawlable URLs and Analytics URLs with Google Analytics.
Suppose you’re trying to locate pages not being used on a site. All you need to do is collect all URLs on your website by going to the “Site Content” section, and then the “Site Content” section, and clicking “All Pages”.
It will display in one of the sections below:
- Page (URL)
- Unique Pageviews
- Average Time on Page
- Date Range
It is essential to pay attention to the Date Range and Pageviews sections to separate regular pages from the orphan pages.
Because orphan pages aren’t accessible to the public, they will get the lowest number of page views. Click “Pageviews” to bring the least viewed pages up to the top of the list, and your abandoned pages will likely rise to the top.
Another alternative is to click “Date Range” and set the start date of the filter back to before Google Analytics was even in place. Google Analytics can only show you up to 5,000 URLs at one time, so choose the most rows at the bottom of the “Show Rows “Show Rows” section. All the pages you have abandoned are protected under this policy.
When Google Analytics has loaded all the URLs, click on export to obtain the CSV or Excel file for your URLs. You can also put Google Analytics API to use to speed the process.
Once you have the list, you’ll have to include the appropriate functions to differentiate crawlable URLs from Analytics URLs. Look at the image below for an overview of the process:
Then, it would help if you found the URLs that are orphans in the listing by checking those URLs and crawlable URLs. The last link, “https://xyz.com/7”, is an apparent orphan page in the above example. In actuality, this list is likely to be extremely long, and you’ll have to go through various URLs to locate the orphan pages.
It is easy to automate this process. Use the formula below to determine whether every URL in the Crawlable list is also included in an Analytics listing:
The dollar signs indicate to the spreadsheet to not alter the range once the formula is pulled down the appropriate column. The value “0” means to Google that the list isn’t sortable.
After applying this formula, the matches are moved to the first position within the range. Any that don’t are returned with an “#NA” error since they weren’t found on the Crawlable List column. For example, in our scenario, “https://xyz.com/7” would be displayed as “#NA” like this:
It will show all pages that are orphaned for you within the listing. All you have to do is collect all the #NA results sorting them out.
Utilize other tools to find your URLs that are Orphaned.
Once you’ve figured out how to identify pages with no content on the site, various applications are available to help you speed up the procedure.
The below tools are those which offer the most efficient settings and functions for this function:
- Moz Link Explorer
- Raven Tools
Each of these tools comes with various functions that will help you in other ways, apart from discovering orphaned pages. From them, Ahrefs, Moz, and SEMrush have specific tools that aid in locating orphaned pages significantly quicker.
Another benefit can be that the tools can also identify websites which were not searched for direction and aren’t necessarily abandoned pages. This will assist you in fixing these pages and also generate benefits from these pages.
Your developers can easily create the URLs of your website’s entire content by logging into the server. All you have to do is peek at the log files to discover the information regarding:
- Who visits your website
- From where do they access the website where they access the website
- How many pages did they go to?
This can be extremely helpful to you when performing a subsequent scan of your entire website. It is possible to do this by not ignoring directives such as “noindex” or “nofollow” and then comparing the data to the crawling information to discover those pages that were not crawled or orphaned. The reason is that sometimes websites can be visited by crawlers who ignore these instructions, which can result in pages being removed from the index.
After you have completed this task After you have completed this activity, look over The GSC’s Search Analytics report to find the URLs. It is possible whether these URLs have been crawled. However, some of these sites may not be crawlable via the internal links on your site. These pages are at risk of becoming abandoned shortly, and you can change that before it happens.
Fixing Orphan Pages – Get Ahead in the Game
Orphan pages can pose a problem for your site, particularly SEO. Once you’ve learned how to spot pages that are not being used, let’s examine the next step, which is fixing the problem.
Once you’ve identified all of the abandoned pages on your site, the next step to a decision should be to evaluate the ones you can resolve and which ones need to be deleted. These are the questions you must ask yourself to help you make this determination:
- Where does this page currently appear within the taxonomy of your site?
- Does the site provide something of value to users? If so, where can it be integrated into the structure of your website?
- Can your website be ranked for any keyword? Can it be optimized to increase the search engine optimization of your site?
- Do you have a chance for the site to be backlinked? Is the page table to be backlinked? The possibility of being externally linked by different sources?
- Is the information on the page very similar to that on any page?
These answers will assist you in making a final choice about whether to keep or remove those abandoned pages. It is also possible to use this information to determine how much work is required to make the pages better kept and the worth you can expect to get out of these pages.
It may seem like something complicated, but the advice of an experienced SEO Company india such as webzpapa can go far in optimizing the procedure. WebzPapa provides extensive SEO auditing services with a myriad of variables, which assists clients to quickly identify and fix their abandoned pages. Contact us now to get more information.