Canonical tags were created to fix duplicate content issues. In a nutshell, if you have 3 duplicate pages (or approximately similar ones) you should pick just one of them to be shown in Google. Canonicalization is a way to help Googlebot decide what page to show in the SERP. However, rel=canonical tags don’t help the search engines unless you use them properly. This tutorial walks you through how you can use JetOctopus to audit rel=canonical tags quickly and efficiently across a website.
Google guidelines tell us that if the page is non-canonical, (rel=canonical tag points to the other page), this page should be open to indexation. It’s a common situation when rel=canonical tag is added to all pages indiscriminately whether these pages are open to indexation or not. This is an easy way how to find those pages with JetOctopus:
2. Choose filters in DataTable:
Adding rel=canonical with URL that is equal to URL of the current page is a good practice that helps to avoid accidental duplicate pages issue. You should remember that self canonical page shouldn’t be closed with meta=robots noindex. Here is a way how to find self-canonical pages which are blocked by meta:
Choose filters in DataTable:
The canonized page is a page on which rel=canonical tags from other pages are pointed. It’s crucial for a canonized page to have 200 Status Code, be allowed for indexation and not to canonize the other page.
Find all canonized pages in DataTable. Set filter Is Canonized Page = Yes
Then you can filter these pages to meet your individual requirements.
Above mentioned cases are usually treated as bugs in Technical SEO and must be fixed.
Canonized pages must be always opened for indexation. You can use abovementioned How to find all canonized pages method to find these pages or choose the next filters in DataTable:
Canonized pages must have 200 Status Code response. To see canonized pages with other Status Codes, choose the following filters:
You can filter pages by values in DataTable, for instance:
Canonization has something in common with link building: page A can be canonized only with one non-canonical page, but page B – 100k different pages. This is a widespread situation on e-commerce websites.
Also, with the help of Setup Column you can add In Canonicals column
And sort pages by this column:
Where you can see all pages which canonized the selected page.
Wrong rel=canonical implementation can lead to huge SEO issues. We have a client-oriented philosophy, so if you have any questions about technical SEO in general, and the rel=canonical tags in particular, feel free to drop us a line jetoctopus-technical chat