Are You Using Flywheel to Host Your WordPress Site? It Might Be Blocking Google!

The other week a PointA website developer noticed that client sites hosted by Flywheel were blocking Google and Bing page-indexing spiders/crawlers. A deeper look showed the default Flywheel robots.txts was blocking all crawlers that had a query string in it, such as ”/?=.

It looks like this:

User-agent: *
Allow: /?v
Disallow: /calendar/action
Disallow: /events/action*
Disallow: /*?
Crawl-delay: 3

 

 

What Does This Mean for Hosting WordPress Sites With Flywheel?

 

Don’t panic – it’s not the end of the world.

All it means is that if your website doesn’t have a perfect URL structure, you might be unwittingly blocking Google and Bing’s ability to identify your website and serve it to search engine users.

Basically, if your Flywheel-hosted site is using the default query string (i.e.: ?p=100), Flywheel’s default robots.txt are not recognizing search engine indexing bots, affecting if and how your site’s pages are being found on the internet.

 

Get Back on Track With Proper URL Structure

 

This boils down to having a proper SEO-friendly URL structure. Having a proper, descriptive URL structure not only benefits the user, but it also benefits the bots crawling a site with the out-of-the-box Flywheel settings.

For instance, a lot of ecommerce sites might have product URLs like: “example.com/coffee/green/?sku=478ABE” – which Flywheel would not recognize as a valid URL.

From our research, Flywheel was blocking query strings from being indexed. It’s as if they made the assumption that if the URL isn’t properly structured, it’s not unique content and best to be avoided altogether.

While Flywheel was blocking by default, we just changed the robots.txt to solve the issue.

 

PointA Is Here to Help When Website Development Gets Tricky

 

With PointA, you can rest assured we’ll pay attention to these website problems so you don’t have to. Our skilled team of website developers puts your small business or franchise in good hands. Reach out today.

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