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Just like the title says, what are the effects of having a "Contact us" and a "Privacy policy" on your site?

I've read that it could build up your trust with Google, is this true? I've also read that some people said that you should add a noindex tag to your "Privacy policy" page, would this be a good idea? I say this because many websites have similar privacy policies, and I don't want any duplicate content issues. (For example, many people could be using the same WordPress privacy policy generator). I'm wondering the same things for the "Contact us" page as well.

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Still overthinking things. Almost every website has these and they don't have any problems because of it. –  John Conde Aug 1 '13 at 12:49
    
Using noindex on any internal page is so oldschool, I'd advise you stop reading to much on SEO, or at least articles that are over a year old. Using noindex on internal pages is just asking for trouble. –  bybe Aug 1 '13 at 13:29
    
@JohnConde Ahh thank you! So what about linking? Would it be safe to link to these pages from the footer (so it would be linked from every page on the site). I don't want to have any issues with that link juice crap I read about. –  Gkhan14 Aug 1 '13 at 13:39
    
That would be prefectly fine. :) –  John Conde Aug 1 '13 at 13:41
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@bybe, why is using noindex asking for trouble? I don't want to get into a debate, but this is poor advice you are giving. There are plenty of valid times when you can use noindex on your pages. –  Max Aug 1 '13 at 15:30

4 Answers 4

Google just recently released a video on this exact subject:

How does duplicate copy that's legally required (ie Terms & Conditions across multiple offers) affect performance in search?

So the answer from the horses mouth is I wouldn't stress about that.

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+1 for providing evidence for what I said :) –  John Conde Aug 1 '13 at 17:43

You're right. By simplicity, many webmasters use generator to generate privacy policy webpage and it leads to duplicate content issues. Moreover, for "Contact us" webpage in general, there is no big content and just a contact form.

For your "Privacy policy" webpage, I recommend to write your own text (see a specialized lawyer to help you). And for your "Contact us" webpage, you can add some personal text (before the form for example) to give more SEO weight on this webpage.

With these good practices, you won't have any problem about duplicate content. However, don't use <meta name="robots" content="noindex" /> on these webpages; just avoid duplicate content.

About linking, these two webpages can be available from all webpages of your site. Thus putting links on footer is a good practice. You're going to give link juice to these webpages and it's normal because there are two important webpages (that's why be careful of text on them is important).

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Ahh thank you! So what about linking? Would it be safe to link to these pages from the footer (so it would be linked from every page on the site). I don't want to have any issues with that link juice crap I read about. –  Gkhan14 Aug 1 '13 at 13:38
    
I have edited my answer. –  Zistoloen Aug 1 '13 at 13:44

You should have a privacy policy and a "contact us" page.

  • It's unclear if Google specifically boosts sites with these type of pages, but I find it plausible that they do.
  • Users trust a site more if these pages exist. Especially the contact page.
  • Even if Google doesn't specifically have an algorithmic factor for these pages, they certainly pay attention to how happy users are with a site.
  • A privacy policy is required (by Google) if you are running AdSense on your site.

You should not noindex these pages.

  • They won't cause duplicate content issues. So many sites have these pages that Google knows how to deal with this duplicated content without penalizing any sites.
  • Users sometimes search for "contact <mybrand>", it makes sense for users to be able to find the correct page for this.
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I've read that it could build up your trust with Google, is this true?

Yes, that is true. This pages show Google you are ready to hear your visitors and that you have rules of your activity.

I've also read that some people said that you should add a noindex tag to your "Privacy policy" page, would this be a good idea? I say this because many websites have similar privacy policies, and I don't want any duplicate content issues.

If in short, this is not necessarily. See this
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vi-wkEeOKxM

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