Google and noscript: To index or not to index?

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As we know, <noscript> is something that gets rendered in case JS is disabled. It usually says something like “the functionality of the site is limited due to the fact that JS is disabled”.

We also know that G executes JS mostly as a normal user would.

Some people try using noscript as white-hat cloaking to, for example, show pagination on pages where the content is dynamically loaded via ajax/socket on button click.

Google doesn’t click buttons. We don’t even need to test it. Maybe it will in Future, when the behavior of the crawler would be influenced by AI that would decide when to trigger various custom JS listeners and when not to. But for now, G is not able to trigger the custom listeners unless they’re unplemented via an anchor, which won’t help very much either. So the solution is to create hidden pagination for Google only to be able to use the content via it. One of the ways to hide it is via putting it in noscript.

I don’t recommend doing this via noscript since it shouldn’t be stable enough. Use normal cloaking methods: detect Google on the fly and add pagination to the DOM with JS. No, you won’t be banned.

Anyways, let’s conduct the experiment. Here’s my noscript:



It shouldn’t be visible unless you disable JS. Try disabling JS on this page to witness the glorious in action.

Let’s see if G can index it and find the word hidden in noscript on this page.

There are a few ways to disable JS on a page. I just use a plugin from here: js switcher

By the way, I used this plugin to disable JS on the site from where I copied the keyword and its description. Because they disabled selecting text with JS. Had they allowed copying, I might’ve considered leaving a backlink. Don’t be greedy, folks.

Result:

Looks like G ranks the page for the keyword in noscript, but fails to show the text in the snippet. But the snippet part may be unintentional or unrelated to the noscript. I know we can speculate a lot on it, but I played part in enough SEO speculations to know what’s batter. It’s best to use old good Occam’s Razor principle. G indexes noscript. Fin.