Webmasters Get Easier Google Content Removal

    April 18, 2007
    WebProNews Staff

Updates to Google’s Webmaster Central tools give webmasters more options for removing content from Google’s index.

The latest tools should make the process faster than the existing URL removal options have been for webmasters.

When people log in to their Webmaster Central consoles, a new tab for URL Removals will be available under the Diagnostics tab.

Vanessa Fox is product manager for Webmaster Central and a global star of WebProNews videos.

She wrote extensively about the new option for URL removals with Webmaster Tools at the product’s blog.

There are four removal options available to webmasters:

  1. Individual URL
  2. A directory or subdirectories on your site
  3. Your entire site
  4. Cached copy of a Google search result

Up to 100 individual URLs can be deleted in a single request.

For directories or subdirectories, the webmaster must block robots from visiting the ones to be deleted in the robots.txt file first to make it eligible for removal.

Vanessa wrote of some caveats to removing an entire site from Google’s index.

Webmasters should be sure this is what they want instead of just switching preferred domains:

Do not use this option to remove the non-preferred version of your site’s URLs from being indexed. For instance, if you want all of your URLs indexed using the www version, don’t use this tool to request removal of the non-www version. Instead, specify the version you want indexed using the Preferred domain tool (and do a 301 redirect to the preferred version, if possible). To use this option, you must block the site using a robots.txt file.

Once removal requests have been submitted, webmasters can check their status in the console.

A Pending status will change to Removed or Denied, the latter happening if the request does not meet removal criteria.