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How to Add Meta Noindex to Your Feeds

Want to make sure that your feeds are not indexed by Google and other compliant search engines? Add the following code to the channel element of your XML-based (RSS, etc.) feeds:

<xhtml:meta xmlns:xhtml="http://www.w3.org/1999/xhtml" name="robots" content="noindex" />

Here is an example of how I use this tag for Perishable Press feeds (vertical spacing added for emphasis):

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<rss xmlns:content="http://purl.org/rss/1.0/modules/content/" xmlns:wfw="http://wellformedweb.org/CommentAPI/" xmlns:dc="http://purl.org/dc/elements/1.1/" version="2.0">

<channel>
	<title>Perishable Press</title>
	<link>https://perishablepress.com/</link>
	<description>Digital Design and Dialogue ~</description>
	<pubDate>Mon, 29 Oct 2007 21:38:24</pubDate>
	<language>en</language>


	<xhtml:meta xmlns:xhtml="http://www.w3.org/1999/xhtml" name="robots" content="noindex" />


	<image>
	   <link>https://perishablepress.com/</link>
	   <url>https://perishablepress.com/_/perishable-press.jpeg</url>
	   <title>Perishable Press</title>
	</image>
	<item>
	   <title>Welcome to Perishable Press</title>
	   <link>https://perishablepress.com/</link>
	   <dc:creator>Perishable</dc:creator>
	   <dc:subject>WordPress</dc:subject>
	   .
	   .
	   .

Of course, other meta elements may be added as well, including this one that disallows Yahoo! Pipes from processing your feed:

<meta xmlns="http://pipes.yahoo.com" name="pipes" content="noprocess" />

While we’re at it, what do you think are some other useful meta elements to add to XML/RSS feeds?

Jeff Starr
About the Author
Jeff Starr = Web Developer. Book Author. Secretly Important.
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15 responses to “How to Add Meta Noindex to Your Feeds”

  1. Thanks for the hint with the noindex. So far I’ve had the problem that Google indexes my feed and displays it in the results instead of the correct subpage. Totally weird. I hope the additional noindex-code will solve this problem.

  2. Perishable 2008/05/31 2:19 pm

    Yes, it should definitely solve the problem. If not, there are other ways of keeping your feed (or any other content) out of the search-engine results. In the past, I have employed the following techniques:

    nofollow all local references to the feed URL
    • restricting feed access via the robots.txt file
    • redirect feed-requests from Google et al to the home page

    And of course, adding the noindex directive directly to your feeds is another excellent technique. Hopefully, Google will get will get the picture and begin indexing the correct subpages instead of your feed. Let us know how it goes!

  3. How I add this code into wordpress feed?

    thanks

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Perishable Press is operated by Jeff Starr, a professional web developer and book author with two decades of experience. Here you will find posts about web development, WordPress, security, and more »
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