Question

Gated Community - Indexed by Google?

  • 22 August 2023
  • 7 replies
  • 74 views

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Hi All - I’ve been asked to gate our community. All content will need to be visible only after you login.

However, I’d still like to have the content indexed by google. I’ve had multiple conversations about this and no one has a solution. 

I believe I’ve seen forums where you could see the question in google, but had to login to see the answer. Am I dreaming? Or is this possible? If so, anyone know how?

 


7 replies

Userlevel 4
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I think it isnt possible.

And I am glad it isnt - if you think about user point of view, it would be horrible user experience to force people to register / login just to be able read the answer. 

If I have a problem and I use Google to find help, when I find interesting content (answers in this case), login is the last thing I would do. Least I should know is the answer actual answer for me. But still, it takes a lot to login in these situations.

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@revote - I’m on the fence. I get what you’re saying because it’s annoying for an end user to find gated content on the internet. But anyone who uses our product is a customer or partner, so they’ve all been introduced to the community and hopefully have (or won’t mind getting) an account.

I just hate that google searches won’t send as many people to the community.

Userlevel 4
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Thanks, it explains a bit. Hmm. Hmm. I keep thinking about is there any other ways to do this.

As a Head of Community I totally understand that you want all the traffic to the community. But hiding the answers isnt the solution though.

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I’m generally an advocate for everything being open - knowledge base, release notes, forum, etc. - but I’m somewhat alone in that in my current role. So trying to work the best situation within the parameters.

Userlevel 4
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I want to add that I didn´t ment to be rude or anything 🙂 This is how it is.

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I believe what you are trying to achieve is called cloaking in SEO. You are trying to deceive search engines by showing them content a real user (without logging in) can’t access. This is a violation of webmaster guidelines and, if implemented, will ultimately lead to penalties and significant drop in SEO rankings. I would advice you not to do it.

I believe I’ve seen forums where you could see the question in google, but had to login to see the answer. Am I dreaming? Or is this possible? If so, anyone know how?

I think I know what you mean. The gainsight / inSided platform doesn’t have that functionality, where you can have different reading permissions for the topic post (everyone can read) and the comments below (only logged-in users can read). So I’m afraid it’s not possible to do it in a direct way.

A possible workaround, but maybe not suitable for your case, could be to create public landing pages for the categories / topics you want to “tease” (which will be findable on search engines). On that public landing page you can link to the restricted categories / topics, which only logged-in users can access.

Userlevel 4
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@Kgastaldo take a look of this:

 

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