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I have some elements which I don't want Google to see. Usually repetitive content, e.g. header and sidebar.

As Googlebot doesn't handle AJAX requests, I load these resources with AJAX and insert them into the DOM.

Does this cause any SEO problems? Does Google even recognize this activity?


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As Matt Cutts says (Nov 2011)... Google can execute some AJAX/JS – w3dk Jul 25 '12 at 13:44
up vote 2 down vote accepted

That's silly. Common headers and sidebars are common and fine. This at best is useless, at worst is serving different content up to search engines than to users which is black hat SEO.

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It is worth mentioning that the elements mentioned normally have your navigation in - Google needs these to be able to spider the site accurately. – Toby Jul 25 '12 at 12:33
I have very detailed xml sitemap for that. – Kristian Jul 26 '12 at 7:28
so, what is the right way to tell google about the main content in your page ? for example how did StackOverflow solve this problem ? – MhdSyrwan Apr 30 '14 at 20:44
@MhdSyrwan It's hardly a problem. It's a basic task for search engines. Headers and footers are easy to find based on many factors. The most common being the HTML tags and attributes used for them. – John Conde Apr 30 '14 at 20:47

If you are able to use HTML5, then putting your header in a <header> tag and your sidebar in a <nav> tag may have an impact on how the content is indexed.


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Any reference about that? I'm doubtful – j0k Jul 25 '12 at 12:00
j0k - just checked and you're right, it isn't definitive. Have updatd my answer. – cjk Jul 25 '12 at 12:34

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