Dumb SEO Questions

(Entry was posted by Greg Kristan on this post in the Dumb SEO Questions community on Facebook, Thursday, July 26, 2018).

Can Google read internal links that are written as display:none?

Can Google read internal links that are written as Display None in a Div Tag?

Here is an example page where the core page ranks b/c there is a direct link the nav, but the internal link to Chelsea boots does not.

https://www.clarksusa.com/womens/boots/ankle-boots/c/w51
https://www.clarksusa.com/womens/boots/chelsea-boots/c/w52

My assumption is that the link to the Chelsea boots page can`t be seen with the div display none tag. Is that true?

Thanks
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YOUR ANSWERS

Selected answers from the Dumb SEO Questions G+ community.

  • Lyndon NA:

    I think you may be confusing things.I understand your question - but the example you`ve given isn`t great.1) G looks at the markup - so it can see the link as it`s in the HTML.2) Yes, there is some CSS that defines "display:none" - but then it`s overriden by a more specific style (as we can see it in the browser)3) If we can see it rendered in Chrome, chances are G can "see" it too.So is your question actually ... "hey, why don`t I see this page in the SERPs?".In which case the answer is that it`s recently been redirected, and G hasn`t caught up with it all yet.

  • Greg Kristan: +Lyndon NA thanks for your response! as an emergency, we wrote JavaScript to override the CSS nested in the DIV tag that was marking the links with display none. The site went through a migration a few months ago, so I`m concerned that these links are not being seen by Google. I did a fetch and render and I can see the links, but I`m still not convinced
  • Lyndon NA: Even with JS disabled - that style appears to be overridden.But the links URL is wrong, and gets redirected, by a 302!1) If you are going to use partial/relative URIs, please use the Base element2) All links should ideally point to the end-destination, not rely on redirects to get people to the correct page3) Redirects like that should be 301`s not 302`sYou are making your own life harder :(So ... why on earth is there a "display:none" property?And why are you trying to override it with JS (esp. considering it seems to already be overriden?)?The knee-high boots page is CIR`d - I can see it when I search for a snippet of the cat-desc. text at the top of the page.And it shows the current URI.I don`t see that linked to directly from the main nav ... so I assume it went through the exact same process the chelsea-boots page has gone through?
  • Greg Kristan: +Lyndon NA thanks for your answer! Yes, I need to update the links. I went through the womens drop down navigation to update all of the 302 redirects to the proper destination (status 200). I think your suggestion makes a lot of sense to continue to push to status 200 within the category links. I will work on that now. Regarding why the pages were coded with two levels of CSS to display note, I have zero idea. Unfortunately I can`t fix that issue for many months due IT, so I`m trying to find workarounds like the JavaScript that was implemented to override the CSS
  • Lyndon NA: Well, the CSS shouldn`t be a problem - when you disable JS the CSS is overriden by a more specific style ... it should be fine.Add to that the knee-boots category is fine ... so the chelsea ones should be too.But you do need to double check the site and ensure that;1) you update all links to the correct URI2) you deploy 301`s from each old/incorrect URI to the right URI (no redirect chains!)3) you replace all 302`s with 301`s (as per (2)4) ensure all final URIs are in sitemaps, and no redirecting URIs are (looked good when I scanned through it - but do double check :D).Then it`s simply a matter of waiting.If needed - cheat.See if you can convince someone to include a rolling-content section on your homepage ... and what ever G`s crawl period is ... match it with a "new" product/category each period.So if G crawls every 4 days, push a product or category into a block every 4 days so G can see the link from the homepage.(Warning - rolling/rotating links like that can cause minor fluctuations in crawl/ranking, but you`ll likely not notice them)
  • Greg Kristan: +Lyndon NA thank you for your support! Going through all of the 302`s at the moment via screaming frog trying to map everything out. I`m the only SEO working on the site, so sometimes it`s great to get the community to help out :)

View original question in the Dumb SEO Questions community on G+, Thursday, July 26, 2018).

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