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How to block indexing of Blogger archive pages

Posted on Jan 9th, 2011 by
How to block Google indexing of Blogger archive pages

Google indexed the same page twice. Bad..!

Here is a quiz question for you: What is the difference between the top and the bottom Google search result of the one and the same Blogger hosted blog?

Answer: The top is the actual post, while the bottom is the monthly archive page.

It seems by default, Blogger will allow the Google crawler index the every post twice: once as the post itself, and once as part of a monthly archive. And what is worse, for one reason or the other, it looks to me like, as the post gets older, the less chance one will get to find an actual post, but get a link to a monthly archive. For reasons unknown, at least on my Blogger blog, Google seems to rank archive pages higher than single posts.

While Blogger is a Google product, it seems they don’t live up to the basic SEO (Search Engine Optimization) rules nor to basic usability guidelines: neither users nor search engines like archive pages. Why?

1. Users don’t like archive pages

When a user searches for a certain topic, and gets an archive page as a link, he/she will have to scroll through all posts you published for that month. If you have an active blog, this means a dozen blogposts.. What are the chances he/she will find what they are looking for between pages and pages of posts? Minimal… And IF they find it, they will have to click on the post link again, to see the actual post, and its comments. No good.

2. Search engines don’t like archive pages

… for the simple reason because they represent duplicate content: indexing both archive pages and single posts will have the same content show up in two indexed “entries”: the archive and the actual post. And search engines don’t like duplicate content. At least not on the same domain.

3. How to avoid indexing of your Blogger archive pages?

The remedy for this, is pretty simple: Tell the search engine crawler not to index archive pages. How to do this on Blogger? Not by dialing 1-800-SEO-HELP but by adding three lines to your blogger template:

  • In your Blogger management dashboard, go to “Design”  (or “Layout”) > “Edit HTML”
  • Backup your template before making any changes: click “Download Full Template”
  • Add the following three lines this just after <head> tag:

    <b:if cond='data:blog.pageType == &quot;archive&quot;'>
    <meta content='NOINDEX' name='ROBOTS'/>

  • Your template will then look something like this:
    blogger template
  • Click “Save Template”, sit back, relax and enjoy your flight.

Just let the crawlers do their work. After a while, your archives will disappear from the search indexes. You will be happy, and your SEO conscience will be happy too.

Update March 19 2011:
I implemented this tip on my personal blog (hosted on Blogger) and after two months not a single archive page showed up in the Google search anymore.

With thanks for the tip to Suhas Tech, who also published some more advance Blogger SEO tips.

17 Comments to “How to block indexing of Blogger archive pages”

  1. rm says:

    I personally haven’t noticed that my archive pages are on higher places in the search results. It hink currently it is just the opposite. But one of the reasons if Google really ranks archive pages higher could be that they appear on each of the blog pages… It is just a guess.

  2. Perfect, just what I was looking for. I was noticing that my blog posts were no longer showing up in google results and mostly just the archives. Hope this helps. Thanks.

  3. Nse says:

    Thanks, I have implemented this hack on my financial blog (..). Hope to rise high in search ranking. Must say that such clear and concise instructions make blogging a fun.


  4. iPhone Apps says:

    I am facing this type of problem for long time in my blog ( before 6/8 month ago my blog was lots of visitor. but at present my blog has not enough visitor. when I search what is the problem on my blog. then I find search engine index my archive. Now I am using this meta code on my blog.

    Thanks for sharing this.

    • Peter says:

      I hope it helps. Keep in mind it will take a couple of weeks before Google will delete the archive-index from its search engine. I tried it out, and now you can no longer see the monthly archives, but only individual blogposts.

      Best of luck to you.

  5. iPhone Apps says:

    Thanks for instant replay my comments. Please help me what should I do to get more traffic for my blog. I am so frustrated to see my blog.

    May I get your facebook ID. well, my FB ID is please add me.

  6. J.J. says:


    I’ve noticed those archive pages showing up before, but now I finally had enough of them. Thanks for the tip. This might mean less traffic, but in this case, I think less is more.

  7. Ferdinand says:

    many thanks for this tips.. I try blogger help before and didn’t find any answer or help to fix this problem… finally found right answer here.. :)

  8. Kristin says:

    Thanks so much for this – I was going mad trying to clean up my archive pages.

  9. ONEPNG says:

    You rock! this is the information I was searching for..Google indexed my site’s archives as well and it was very frustrating. I have implemented the hack on my site. Hope this will work out find.

  10. Ron Woods says:

    I don’t mean to necro your post, I just wanted to say thank you! I am new to blogging, and I couldn’t figure out why my archive pages were showing up in Google. I followed your instructions, and added the code above to my blog. I also removed the archive pages from Googles index via Webmaster tools. They haven’t come back since. Your post here really helped me out, and I appreciate it. Take care, and I hope you have a great weekend! Thanks again!

  11. Chandra says:

    The same problem occurred with my blog-> . I have just tried your suggestions. Let us see what happen. Thank you.

  12. Nitin says:

    This is really useful information which was i want.
    But one thing i would like to know from you that
    we can also prevent by check in to noarchive in Custom robots header tags.

    Step -1 ==>Settings ==> Search preferences
    Now click yes for Custom robots header tags.
    Enable custom robots header tags? Yes No
    click for yes
    now there are three sections
    Archive and Search pages:
    Default for Posts and Pages:

    in above three section we have to choose second and check in for noarchive.

    Now tell me that this true way or not .
    Please reply ASAP

    • Peter says:

      Hi Nitin,

      Yes, this is a recent addition in the settings options. For as far as I can see it achieves the same result (though I have not tried it out yet!)

      best, – Peter

  13. Nihar Mohapatra says:

    Hi Peter,

    Thanks very much for this tip. I had always wanted to non-index the archive pages but never could figure out a way.

    This article was very helpful.


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