Pagination with rel=«next» and rel=«prev»

Post-54-Pagination-with-rel=«next»-and-rel=«prev» 

Without any exceptions, every webmaster, starting from beginners and ending with professionals, has to realize that the abundance of attributes, just like rel=«canonical», leads to the situation when content starts being processed as duplicate. This, in turn, negatively impacts Google’s perception of a given web-site. In order to avoid such complications, you can establish the relationship between various URL-addresses through the implementation of the following attributes: rel=«next» and rel=«prev».

 

Grouped content (the one allocated into specific sections) may be processed differently on the web-site. For instance, it may be some sort of article that is paginated in several pages; the category of commodities, names of which are extended to several pages; or any forum’s topic which is separated by different URL-addresses. Now, if you intend to include the mentioned attributes (rel=«next» and rel=«prev») as a new component to your web-site, you are showing Google that:

 

  • Your goal is to add links form every component/URLs to the whole block. As a rule, different links can’t be grouped randomly, meaning that it is inadmissible for them to dissipate among page-1.html, page-2.html; instead, there must be a strict sequence and a well-defined formation under one block.
  • You are trying to redirect Internet-users to the page containing the most relevant/important information.

 

However, it has to be emphasized that there is an exception if you want users to see the whole page («view-all page»). Needless to say, people, while surfing the Internet, extremely value the opportunity to check the needed information on a single page, without having to go through tons of pages. That’s why it is extremely vital to exploit the mentioned function. If you have already abandoned using «view-all page» or only intending to do so, you can easily and efficiently make use of the following attributes: rel=«next» and rel=«prev».

 

3 ways you can organize the sections of content

  • Keep things the way they are. Paginated content is widely represented throughout the World Wide Web; Google, in particular, is determined to keep on improving the searching algorithms, regardless of the fact whether you are using rel=«next»\rel=«prev» or not.
  • You can take a look at this page - https://webmasters.googleblog.com/2011/09/view-all-in-search-results.html; there you might learn about the possibilities that the option «view-all page» presents.
  • What is more, you can help Google improve its searching mechanisms with respect to rel=«next»\rel=«prev». This will substantially enhance the indexation of your content and increase the probability of people getting the information they really desire.

Below we discern all of the mentioned in more depth.

 

Implementation of rel=«next» and rel=«prev»

Do you prefer the third alternative? Let’s scrutinize it then!

We are assuming that your content is grouped into three sections:

 

http://www.example.com/article?story=abc&page=1

http://www.example.com/article?story=abc&page=2

http://www.example.com/article?story=abc&page=3

http://www.example.com/article?story=abc&page=4

 

On the first page, you would put <head> - the next component:

<link rel="next" href="http://www.example.com/article?story=abc&page=2" />  

 

For the second page, in turn, you would have to use:

<link rel="prev" href="http://www.example.com/article?story=abc&page=1" />

<link rel="next" href="http://www.example.com/article?story=abc&page=3" />

 

Consequently, for the third page:

<link rel="prev" href="http://www.example.com/article?story=abc&page=2" />

<link rel="next" href="http://www.example.com/article?story=abc&page=4" />

 

And, finally, for the last one:

<link rel="prev" href="http://www.example.com/article?story=abc&page=3" />.

 

Let’s sum it up

 

  • The first page has to include only rel=«next».
  • All the pages, starting from the second one and ending with the one before the final, have to be subject to the following attributes: rel=«next» and rel=«prev».
  • The last page has to be comprised of this marking:  rel=«prev».
  • These values - rel=«next» and rel=«prev» - may be either relative or absolute URLs (depends on how it follows the tags <link>). If you include this tag - <base> - in your document, the relative paths will be correlated with the basic URL.
  • Both rel=«next» and rel=«prev» have to be mentioned only in the section containing <head>. There is no need to include them in <body>. 
  • As a syntactical difference, it is possible to use rel=«previous» instead of rel=«prev».
  • From another perspective, rel=«next»/rel=«prev» and rel=«canonical» present two independent concepts. On a single page, it is admissible to use both versions of the attributes. For example, the page -  http://www.example.com/article?story=abc&page=2&sessionid=123 -  may contain:

 

  1. <link rel="canonical" href="http://www.example.com/article?story=abc&page=2”/>
  2. <link rel="prev" href="http://www.example.com/article?story=abc&page=1&sessionid=123"/>
  3. <link rel="next" href="http://www.example.com/article?story=abc&page=3&sessionid=123" />

 

  • Both rel=«next» and rel=«prev» happen to be some sort of prompts for Google; not the primary directives, though.

If the attributes are used incorrectly (for instance, they are missing in the places, where there is a necessity for rel=«next» and rel=«prev»), Google continues the process of indexation, using its own heuristic methods for detecting the essence of content.