Hate a Website? Block It From Google

By  |  Friday, March 11, 2011 at 6:47 am

About a month ago, Google launched a Chrome browser extension that let users hide specific domains from search results. Soon, that feature will be available in multiple web browsers — no extension required.

The option to block websites from Google search results is rolling out on Friday for users of Chrome 9 and higher, Internet Explorer 8 and higher, and Firefox 3.5 and higher. Next to each search result, users will see a snippet of text that reads “block all example.com results.” Click it, and you’ll never see that domain on Google again.

To use the feature, you’ll have to be signed in to a Google account. This allows you to manage a list of blocked sites from search settings. Whenever a result is blocked from search, a notification will appear, so you can still view results from blacklisted domains on a case-by-case basis.

For now, Google says it’s not going to use the results of this feature to influence page rank, but may consider it in the future. That’s a slightly different stance from when Google introduced Personal Blocklist in mid-February. At the time, Google said it would “study the resulting feedback and explore using it as a potential ranking signal for our search results.”

Google’s been waging a war lately on search spam and so-called “content farms,” a phrase ascribed to low-quality, high-quantity writing that serves mainly to appease search algorithms. Last month, the company announced major changes to its algorithm that would affect 11.8 percent of all searches. An independent study from SEOClarity found that the changes hurt page rankings for TheFind.com, BizRate.com, ShopWiki.com, EzineArticles, HubPages and Associated Content, among others.

It certainly looks like Google’s doing a lot to fight bad search results, and that may be part of the goal. A pair of recent New York Times stories — one about a sleazy merchant who used negative feedback to boost his page rank, and another about J.C. Penney’s dirty search engine optimization tactics — have exposed weaknesses in Google’s algorithm. Spam and content farms are a separate issue, one that’s been stewing among tech watchers for some time, but it’s all bruising Google’s image just the same.

(This post republished from Techland.)




9 Comments For This Post

  1. Dale Houston Says:

    I have wanted a way to block experts-exchange.com from my work-related Google searches for a long time. Thanks google!

    I guess I will never find out if experts-exchange.com gives up on their requirement to register to see anything on their site or not.

  2. CircusUgly Says:

    Tip: Click on the ceched version and scroll to the bottom to see the answers.

  3. The_Heraclitus Says:

    Good move. Long overdue but, still welcome indeed.

  4. James Says:

    Dale couldn't agree more!

  5. Mr SEO company Says:

    Great Idea. If a site comes up that you know if useless just block it. No need to see it ever again

  6. Lobi Says:

    Hubpages is not a low quality site, but I know a lot people with too much free time on their hands who seem to have a grudge against Hubpages. Rather than start their own website or blog to write "quality" articles, they spend their days and night trolling the web talking about Hubpages. I think some of these people are former hubbers that were banned from the site for writing spam articles, and just cannot get over the rejection. If you think Hubpages is so horrible, then you have never actually stopped to read many of the quality articles on the site.

  7. Plastic Storage Bins Says:

    i use this feature all the time now. i love how i can block people's who's status updates annoy me on facebook as well! haha technology is great

  8. Sunny Isles Condo Says:

    Why did it take so long for Google to come up with this?
    These guys are geniuses, this should have came out a while ago!

    Now that it's hear, i'll sure be taking advantage..

  9. Wire Shelving Units Says:

    In 10 years you'll be able to block people in real life, at this rate. But in all honesty, I love that you can do this now, I no longer have to scroll through ebay and amazon for everything i search