April 27, 2013

Plexo and Duel Modules No Longer Indexed by Search Engines

Looking at the cached version of one of my lenses on Google, I noticed that my Plexo and Duel modules are gone. Suddenly, the whole thing about getting "not enough content" warnings on lenses which were fine for years makes sense. HQ made these modules invisible to search engines, so the content inside them no longer counts towards minimum requirements - even if you have 1000s of words in your Plexo.

It makes sense because content invisible to search engines isn't very useful at all. My guess is that HQ wants to reduce the number of outgoing links on Squidoo to fight the recent loss in Google rankings and traffic. What baffles me is that not only Link and Amazon Plexos, but also Text Plexos and Duel modules are affected. Duel is simply a cooler version of Guestbook - yet Guestbook comments are indexed, while Duel entries are not. Text Plexos can also have tons of content and not a single link, and all that content will now be useless. We'll never know the logic behind this because this change, like many others, came unannounced.

My plan is to slowly convert my Plexos into simple Text Lists. Well, I say convert, but I plan to keep the Plexo as well, just without any descriptions (no point in putting any content there since it won't count towards anything). I still think the ability to vote and add new entries is really cool. Sadly, the popular opinion seems to be that it's not content unless it's in a Text module.

So far I've "converted" my lenses on top blogging and forum platforms. 7 or 8 more are on my to-fix list. It kind of irks me to have duplicate lists (one in Text List, another in Plexo for voting) but I don't see a way around that if I want my content indexed, but give the visitors ability to vote as well.

As for Duel modules, there's nothing I can do but avoid using them in the future. I guess my idea of making duel lenses is out of the window as well.

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