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Google searching like this: 'seach-term-here site:www.xenforo.com/community' gives no results

Grover

Well-known member
#1
Hi, I don't understand something.

When I perform this search in Google: 'interface site:www.xenforo.com/community' I get o results.

In fact, I get 0 results on every searchterm I type in like that in Google, when I want to find something on www.xenforo.com/community

Edit... well coincidentally I just discovered WHY
. When you ommit the 'www' from the search command it... works!.

For me it's a bit strange , because I was used to search through Google exactly like this on www.vbulletin.com:

'interface site:www.vbulletin.com/forum'... which does give lots of results.

Also, the Dutch Help files from Google themselves, show an example ('press site:www.google.com') that it is indeed possible to use 'www' inside the search command: http://www.google.nl/intl/nl/help/refinesearch.html#domain

Who enlightens me?

PS: it's not only strange for me, but it also worries me a bit, since for people who are used to search like this it might seem that XenForo powered websites are simply unsearchable through Google this way.
 

Brogan

XenForo moderator
Staff member
#2
If you check the address bar, you will note that the www has been removed from the URL for xenforo.com

This is done using .htaccess and then updating the preferences in Google Webmaster Tools:
Display URLs as xenforo.com
 

Grover

Well-known member
#3
The www has been removed from the URL for xenforo.com if you check the address bar.
Why is this? What are the benefits... 'cause for example this unability to search anymore through Google like that was really puzzling for me.

This is done using .htaccess and then updating the preferences in Google Webmaster Tools:
Display URLs as xenforo.com
What do you mean by this? A default XenForo install does include the www, or what exactly?
 

Brogan

XenForo moderator
Staff member
#4
Search Google for www or no www if you want to read why it is done.

It's for this site only.

You can set your own site up the same way if you choose.
 

Grover

Well-known member
#5
It's for this site only.

You can set your own site up the same way if you choose.
Ah, thankfully. Cause a few moments ago I checked www.xenfans.com and also there the www was gone, making it impossible to perform the same 'www'-search on Google. Therefor I was thinking this was standard XF behaviour.
 

Walter

Well-known member
#7
Yes, but not for end users. They are used to it and the inept ones are baffled if there is no www prefix.
 

Brogan

XenForo moderator
Staff member
#8
Doesn't work on my (shared) server unfortunately.

If/when I move to a VPS, I'll implement it then.
 

rEd86

Active member
#10
Yes, but not for end users. They are used to it and the inept ones are baffled if there is no www prefix.
It's one thing to have a site respond to "www.yoursite.com" when the user types it into the URL, but it's pretty common practice to redirect to a single domain. (as others have pointed out) Once browsing a site, most users don't even notice it. (like you didn't initially notice with XenForo.com)

I see it as an issue on Google's side, where they should realize that the "site" you typed in redirects to another domain and they should change the search term accordingly. (just like they auto correct typos in search terms for you)

--Ed
 

Grover

Well-known member
#11
I see it as an issue on Google's side, where they should realize that the "site" you typed in redirects to another domain and they should change the search term accordingly. (just like they auto correct typos in search terms for you)
Yes, even more Amen to that.

Who on Earth is going to realize that 'search-term-here site:www.xenforo.com/community' is NOT going to work on Google anymore?! Google should be so clever to adapt to sites that apparently find it neccesarry to dish the 'www'.
 
F

Floris

Guest
#13
Yes, even more Amen to that.

Who on Earth is going to realize that 'search-term-here site:www.xenforo.com/community' is NOT going to work on Google anymore?! Google should be so clever to adapt to sites that apparently find it neccesarry to dish the 'www'.
How does google know that you not use www. for the guests and without www. for support - when you run a company? Or perhaps ww2. as cluster, but not being dupe content? ..

It's working just fine here, IN A record for www. to the IP , then apache conf saying servername without www. and serveralias with www. and .htaccess in public_html/ removing the www. with perm 301 redirect new conditional rewrite rule.

i now told google there's no www. since i want to use without www. and so there shouldn't be any search results.

does exactly what i expected.
 

Grover

Well-known member
#14
I remove www. from the url, and google understands this. So does Xenforo.
Yes, but that is not the point. As your 2nd screenshot clearly shows... the point it exactly that: Google does not show anything if an user performs a search using the 'www' inside the search term. I am sorry, but I think that is pretty ridiculous.
 

Grover

Well-known member
#15
How does google know that you not use www. for the guests and without www. for support - when you run a company? Or perhaps ww2. as cluster, but not being dupe content? ..
I don't know. And I don't care. I am the enduser of Google and I expect results when I type in 'www.xenforo.com/community'. Just like www.vbulletin.com/forum does give me results. Really, Google expects me to know what site uses www and what site doesn't. Hellooo.... come on: the software needs to figure this out for me, not us ourselves as simple endusers who can obviously not know which sites uses www and which sites don't.

It's working just fine here, IN A record for www. to the IP , then apache conf saying servername without www. and serveralias with www. and .htaccess in public_html/ removing the www. with perm 301 redirect new conditional rewrite rule.

i now told google there's no www. since i want to use without www. and so there shouldn't be any search results.

does exactly what i expected.
You are approaching this from a technical point of view, which is not how your average enduser will see it. It's very simple: the majority of Google endusers will expect exactly the opposite: when they type in 'search-term www.mysite.com' they certainly do not expect a screen stating that there are no results whatsover. Mysteriously by deleting the 'www' from their search term it works.... how userfriendly is that?!

Talking about user friendliness:

Our most userfriendly Google said:
Your search - admin interface likes watch site:www.xenforo.com - did not match any documents.
Suggestions:
  • Make sure all words are spelled correctly.
  • Try different keywords.
  • Try more general keywords.
  • Try fewer keywords.
Oh really? So why then, when I go to this www-address, I do see the phrases I wanted the bloody Google to find for me? .... 'admin' , 'interface' and 'like'... here they are: www.xenforo.com/community/threads/separate-front-end-language-and-acp-back-end-language.6179/#post-129487

Coming back to the Google output-quote above: Yes, all words are spelled correctly. Yes, the enduser is using different keywords. And yes, they are general. Fewer keywords? Been there, done that.

The one and only point that is missing is:
  • Jee, how can you make such a remarkable mistake? You, silly enduser have included 3 double-u's (a.k.a. 'www') in your searchterm! www is soooo 1885, so why o why did you include it? Ofcourse we give you a blank screen! You've asked for it!
 
F

Floris

Guest
#17
Ok, fine. Allow dupe-content .. Then set it up as cname or url forward, get it indexed twice, and get ranked lower.
 
F

Floris

Guest
#18
Actually, google fully understands the www. prefix ..
And shows the result as MINUS the www.

Screen shot 2011-03-02 at 6.23.45 PM.png