I have a webpage where a user can search for items based on around 6 filters. Currently I have the page implemented with one filter as the base filter (part of the url that would get indexed) and other filters in the form of hash urls (which won't get indexed). This way the duplication is less.

Something like this


Now as you may see, only one filter is within the reach of the search engine while the rest are hashed. This way I could have 6 pages.

Now the problem is I expect users to use two filters as well at times while searching. As per my analysis using the Google Keyword Analyzer there are a fare bit of users that might use two filters in conjunction while searching.

So how should I go about it?

Having all the filters as part of the url would simply explode the number of pages and sticking to the current way wouldn't let me target those users.

I was thinking of going with at max 2 base filters and rest as part of the hash url. But the only thing stopping me is that it would lead to duplication of content as per Google Webmaster Tool's suggestions on Url Structure.

2 Answers 2


If users are searching by combinations of two filters, then it makes sense to have a landing page for them. However, don't just blindly create pages for all combinations of two filters. Rather use Google trends or the Google AdWords keyword estimator to figure out which filter combinations will have search volume. Create landing pages just for the combinations that are likely to have search volume.

Make sure all landing pages created have unique title and meta descriptions and that they read well. This often takes a bit of thought and the ability to hard code some of the cases rather than rely just on rules to generate them.

It sounds like you already have the ability to link to just one filter and then apply other filters with the hash URLs. I like that approach. I have done something similar myself using two scripts that generate the filter pages but have kept one in robots.txt to control whether specific filter combinations are indexed.


Do you want to rank against filter URL? No wont if do want that, because filter URL will mostly give the same content and Google will rank you for the best URL only.

I as an SEO expert suggest to disallow those filter URLs using your robots.txt and let the Google crawl only the main URLs. You can track the patten of filter URl and disallow by using 1-2 commands in robots.txt.

  • But when I search google with the two filters along with the item the first result that I get is that of a competitor website page that has all combinations of the filters indexed. Even with all the duplicate content that page matches my exact search and hence it more apt I guess and hence the higher ranking. The rest of the results are nowhere near my query. Sep 18, 2013 at 11:42
  • 1
    Domain clustering has been introduced by Google in Penguin 2.0. It is only possible to see 1 -3 results from the same domain then its hard for a site to rank 4rth and 5th time. Your competitors site must have high authority in internet that makes it legitimate in Google's eye. If your website is new I would recommend using only one filter and focus on only one URL to rank better for that.
    – user2434
    Sep 18, 2013 at 11:45
  • When I say rest of the results I didn't mean that the same competitor has multiple results. Sep 18, 2013 at 11:49
  • The high authority point seems valid to me. Thanks! Sep 18, 2013 at 11:50

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