Over the last 2 weeks I have been doing tests on pages that have the noindex nofollow meta attribute, in theory Google should ignore these pages but the truth is actually a little different.
My recent obsession with this type of page started two weeks ago when I noticed that a links page on one of my blogs (which was set to noindex nofollow) was publicly cached by Google, which I thought was a bit strange. After around 5 minutes of being deep in thought about this discovery I thought I would run a test to see how Google treats the links from these pages.
Since I knew the page on my blog was being cached I added a link which contained unique anchor text pointing towards one of my test blogs, which also contained mentions of similar text on the page. The next step was to get the page reached by Google which was sadly quite a difficult task.
To get the page re-cached I had to use a combination few social bookmarks and a few blog comments then wait a week for the Google bot to find these links and follow them, luckily that did the job. Once the page was cached I typed my unique key phrase into Google to find that my test blog was the first result.
Just to make sure this wasn’t a one off I had a look through the link data on web master tools for a few of my other blogs, to my supprise there were around 10 links listed which were from noindex no follow pages.
Looking at the test data so far it would seem that Google has devalued the strength of the noindex nofollow attribute due to overuse of web masters, just like what happened to the nofollow attribute. I am still running tests on this to try and get clear proof that Google is now counting links from these types of pages so watch this space for further updates.