1

Apologies in advance for the basic nature of this question.

I created a fairly large web application, the vast majority of which is behind a password off the /private path. After telling the robots.txt file to Disallow: /private/, Google is left with around four public pages to look at. Those are the ones I'd like Google to index.

I followed all of the instructions found on sites like this one as far as signing up for Webmaster tools, Fetching as Google, submitting, etc. All of this takes place with no errors but I don't understand the results I'm seeing in Google.

Consider the results shown when searching on [site:mydomain] which is apparently the way to ask Google to show the pages that are cached in a specific domain.

My questions are:

  1. Why is Google appending "-HOME" to the title of my pages except for (ironically enough) the actual home page ? This issue was touched upon in this post and the answer indicates that Google is trying to append the site's name to the title and has incorrectly deduced that the name of the site is "HOME." But in my case, I can't imagine what would lead Google to believe the name of my site is "HOME." I don't recall even using that word on the site. It's certainly not in any <title> tags.

  2. Why is Google showing extremely rare error messages randomly embedded into the search result excerpt? Check out on the excerpt from the Resources page. It's showing "Sorry, your browser doesn't support HTML5 video," a rare fallback error message contained in a <video> tag that virtually no one will ever see.

Any thoughts?

  • Since your contact page was last changed on the 2015-10-01 I can only assume that you made recent changes, title changes take more than a week, more like 1-4 weeks! It's like you have removed it someway... – Simon Hayter Oct 6 '15 at 21:55
  • Yes, I changed the title format from "[site name]-[page name]" to "[page name]-[site name]" which was recommended in an unrelated answer on this site. But the word "HOME" wasn't in there. I'm stumped on the whole "HOME" thing. Good info on the update time though. Thanks. – Chad Decker Oct 6 '15 at 22:00
  • Well, its pretty obvious then. Your site has recently gone SSL and you haven't waited for Google to drop the HTTP... furthermore, you should never trust site:, doing rjoasis.com as the search reveals that its not an issue. – Simon Hayter Oct 6 '15 at 22:01
  • Also, your canonical links are not updated i.e <link rel="canonical" href="http://www.rjooasis.com/contact"> which obviously why its causing you further problems with the NEW HTTPS content being indexed correctly, your confusing Google. – Simon Hayter Oct 6 '15 at 22:05
  • Thanks, Simon. I've never used http. The site has always been https. Hitting the former will redirect to the latter. Thanks for the tips on the canonical <link> tag. I'm not familiar with that term but will research it right now. Will keep your suggestion on [site: domain] in mind and will use a different search term. Great info! – Chad Decker Oct 6 '15 at 22:12
2

This is exactly the same problem I addressed here just this morning: Why is the string "- Ruby Shoo" appearing in the page title of a lot of our google search results?

It is the same thing except that you are not a brand. Google is branding your SERP link and thinks your brand is "Home". You can control how your SERP links look by controlling the title tag length. In this case, your title tag is too short and Google is making one up for you. I advise keeping it between 45-50 character (512 pixels is the actual measure). Keep in mind that wider characters such as W, G, D, M, etc. will eat into how long the title tag can be. You will want to use the Google Search Console (Webmaster Tools) Fetch as Google to test how your title tag will appear in the SERPs. As well, always make sure you provide a title tag with something substantial in it.

This will solve your problem. However, because search engines are notoriously slow, you may want to use the Submit to Index option after testing your new title tags. Still this may take a couple of days before it will change so do not be alarmed. It will all work out. I promise.

  • Crowd out the Google appendage by using a longer title. I like it! I also gleaned some helpful information from the link you posted. Thanks for the answer. – Chad Decker Oct 6 '15 at 23:25

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.