March 24, 2012

Settings For Blogger 404 Error Page, Redirects and Meta Tags!

blogger seo settingsIts big, its exciting and its worth an applause! Blogger finally introduced the most awaited SEO features for Google hosted BlogSpot blogs. Blogger Team is trying every possible effort to get closer to its biggest competitor Wordpress in terms of development. Its believed that BlogSpot blogs are not well optimized due to limited Search Engine optimization features but with the introduction of Meta Description for individual posts, custom redirection for broken links, nofollow attribute, 404 error pages, custom robots.txt and robot header tags features, blogger surprised almost everyone today. The problem of wrong post description appearing in social networks like Facebook and Google+ will all be solved thanks to Meta Tags for posts and pages. We will look into each feature one by one so that you may understand clearly the importance of these technical SEO terms.


What are the new Search Features?

Six important SEO options have been added to Blogger in draft which are:

  1. Meta Tags for Homepage and Sub-pages
  2. 404 Error Page
  3. Custom Redirects for broken links
  4. Custom Robots.txt         For Advanced users
  5. Custom robots header tags     For Advanced users
  6. Nofollow attribute for post Editor links

Caution: Out of six new features only two which relate to crawling and indexing of search robots are restricted for Advanced users. I would therefore recommend not to play with them because wrong settings can terribly effect search credibility of your blog therefore keep them as default.

To set the new SEO settings do this:

  1. Go To
  2. Then Go to Settings > Search preferences

search preferences

Now here you will see three important sub-sections which we will discuss one by one.

Meta Tags

The word meta here refers to Meta Description. It tells visitors what your blog is all about. In search engine results page it looks like this:

meta description for homepage

Previously we would manually set meta description for blog homepage but now you can set it using this page. So what's new? The new addition is that by enabling this feature, meta description for Posts will activate and you can then configure Description for posts using the blog post editor. To activate this option do this:

  1. Click the Edit link
  2. Choose "Enable Search Description?"
  3. In box define your blog in no more than 150 characters. Use our Character Counter Tool

Note: You must write the same description here that you have written manually inside your templates.

meta description

      4.   Click Save changes

     5.   Since the above description wont work correctly in custom templates therefore we need to insert some code inside the template. Please go to Design > Edit HTML   and just below <head>  paste the following code for meta description:

<b:if cond='data:blog.metaDescription != &quot;&quot;'>
  <meta expr:content='data:blog.metaDescription' name='description'/>

        6.   Save your template and all done!

Meta Description For Posts

Now open Blogger post editor and you will see a new option for post description:

post description in blogger

Now make it your hobby to write a one line description for every post that you publish. Write no more than 150 characters  or 15 keyword phrases. By doing this every new post that you publish will have a separate clean description that will attract more visitors by providing precise description of what you post is all about instead of a chopped random  snippet of text chosen by search robot. This will help both robots in better indexing your posts and also Facebook and Google+ to display correct description for your posts.

Errors and redirections

Most of you know that Google webmasters give you several links which are either broken or no more exits. Broken links refer to Pages that no more exits on your blog because for some reason you may have deleted them. Now if some website is linking one of your posts that you deleted then you wont get the reward of the PageRank juice from that website to yours instead if people click that link they will land no where in your blog and will see a 404 Page not found error. There was no concept of a 404 error page before instead this page would appear:

 blogger page not found

But now you can create your own custom 404 error page. Check ours by writing anything illogical at the end of our blog URL in your address bar or simply click here

404 error page blogger

Therefore in order to redirect deleted post links to new links and create a custom 404 Error page do this:

404 Error Page

  1. Click the Edit link next to Custom Page Not Found
  2. Inside the box write a message that you want to display when readers land on a missing page (404 page):

404 error page

You can write any message inside this box using simple HTML but once you click save changes and see how your error page looks, you will see that it looks dull and grey and appear inside an ugly box. In order to give it a good designed look with custom CSS styles just like ours then kindly wait for my next post.

Broken Link Redirection

custom redirects in blogger

  1. Click the edit link next to Custom Redirects
  2. Click the  checkbox to simplify the options
  3. Now you get a From and To input options
  4. Insert the link of your deleted Post inside From box and insert the link of your new post inside To box.
  5. Click Save changes

You can create several redirects by clicking the New redirect button. If you are confused where to redirect a deleted page or post then you can simply redirect all broken links to your Homepage in order to flow all PageRank juice there.

Crawlers and indexing

Do not worry, its not that advanced and horrifying! :)

This section includes two options which are robots.txt and robot header tags. You may not touch the robots.txt option however you can manage settings for robot header  tags  severed to search engines. All our long techy SEO tutorials that provided solution for optimizing Blogger pages, posts, homepage, archive and search pages can now be implemented with a simple click of a mouse.

The robots meta tag lets you control how an individual page should be indexed and served to users in search results. In order to keep things simple use the following settings as shown in the screenshot below:

robots header tags settings

The above recommended settings will tell search engines to index your homepage and all its content, to index your posts and pages but must not index archives and should also not take description suggestions from Open Directory Project (noopd).

Normally, search engines use resources like the Open Directory Project (noopd) and the Yahoo! Directory (noydir) to find titles and descriptions for your content. Generally, you will not want them to do this. The noodp tag prevents them from doing so.

What does unavailable_after Meta tag does?

Though you wont need them but for understanding we would explain it. Most blogs promote seasonal products by writing posts. If you are promoting a new product offer on monthly basis which would expire the next month then you must tell search spiders to stop indexing the old product posts and index the latest one. This will help spiders to give more importance to your latest posts than old repeated posts.

rel nofollow

To understand what is a nofollow link attribute and when should you use it, then kindly read this tutorial:

Internal links should never be tagged as nofollow. See What Matt Cutts recommends

Now whenever you need to create a link in post editor you will see two options

  1. Open this link in new window
  2. Add rel="nofollow" attribute

nofollow in blogger

Choose to open the link in new tab only if the link is pointing to an external site and choose the nofollow option only for links that point to low quality sites or login pages. To understand what links should be attributed as nofollow, I would highly recommend that you read our article on nofollow as shared above.

Liked This latest Change?

I am sure this would greatly improve the way your posts and blog is indexed and crawled by search robots and the way they appear on search results page. It is a great way to improve the quality of your blog and attract a better targeted traffic. Feel free to ask me as many questions as possible in order to throw away all confusions and misconceptions or myths related to SEO that may still be troubling you.  I will publish the 404 error page tutorial tomorrow and will share several Designs to give your blogs a new stunning look. Remember to add a new habit to your blogging and that is "adding post description to every new post that you publish". Peace pals! :)

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  1. Yes Sir I Noticed a bit update yesterday but now they have updated even more..thanks sir i want to know some thing i have a blog and you know that my Blog is now 2 months old it has about 60 posts related to blogger wordpress but i am not getting such good response I usually use MBT to get some traffic and even Facebook but Search engines are not giving me a lot.still i get only 250+ page views.please give me some tips Syed Faizan Ali Recently posted Protect Your Entire Blog With DMCA Protection Badges

  2. thanks mohammed for this post
    please see my post that i sent to you for guest posting

  3. I have another question should we need to edit our previous published posts ?

  4. Yeah By making these changes blogger made himself seo friendly.From now every body will stop saying that wp is best for SEO.. :D any way its beginning :D

  5. Hey Mohammad After enabling all the settings can i delete the meta tags from template?

  6. @ admin

    When I add any code in my template it shows me below error

    We were unable to save your template
    Please correct the error below, and submit your template again.
    More than one widget was found with id: HTML18. Widget IDs should be unique.

    Need Help.

  7. Hi, a new article with useful information. I love you site, keep it up.

    Nikon Coolpix P500

  8. Blogger is very cool with this feature..

  9. This comment has been removed by the author.

  10. @Faizan
    I am disappointed that you have completely copied MBT's design, look and feel and even gave any kind of credit. Though I see you have some skills and I would love if you use it in a proper and ethical manner.

    It is a misconception that using the same design or near perfect design as of some other greatly popular blog will give you good results.

    You are definitely a SPY watching my search activity :P

    Custom 404 is what I am looking for. Btw blogger no longer displays that old page which tells you to go on blogger homepage. Instead it works same as it does after enabling custom 404. The difference just is that it if custom 404 is disabled then the default message comes. That's it!

    Also if you notice while writing a post in compose mode you get to directly add h2, h3 tags (Minor heading, etc.) without going in to html mode.

  11. Oops in the previous there was a mistake.

    "and even gave any kind of credit." I mean "and even didn't gave any kind of credit."

  12. Custom Robot.txt is something I was long for. The 404 error page is also a brillant and well-thinking addtion too.

    Anyway, I got a problem with 404 error page. It seems that 404 error texts are not visible (I inspected elements, texts are on the page. They are just hidden) when numbered page navigation is applied. Can you solve it?

  13. Thank you for this very informative post Master! :)

  14. Thanks Mohammed for this post.
    I had tried adding Profile Picture in Google search,But
    It is been almost one month No result! ,had done all things which are mentioned in this post. Checked rich snippets tool and it say's
    "Verified: Authorship markup is verified for this page"

    But Profile Picture Don't Show In Google Search! What is the reason Mohammad?
    please help me.

    Blog URL :

  15. Thanks Mohammad and i am waiting for your next updates regarding 404 with a brief discription.

  16. @Bhavesh Pamecha

    Thanks Sir For Giving Your Lethal Opinions,I Started My Blog With MBT Church Theme but later on i Converted it into MBT's Own look my changing Styles CSS.So do you think i need to Remove The Current Template and Start Using New one But from where I can get a unique template,I also use MBT's template because its perfect in look could you tell me from where i need to improve except The Blogs Design

  17. @Faizan
    I am not telling that you use completely unique template which is obviously difficult. I am just telling you to give credit to MBT blog from where you got the design.

    Other things are not bad on your blog at all. The reason I told about the misconception is because most people see it as a tampered material.

    I am more of a design freak person. You did made SOME changes different from MBT but the feel at first sight is always the same as of MBT when I visit your blog and so others may also feel like this who know MBT.

    Try something different which is unique in look or atleast have a different new feel that when someone visit your blog first time he couldn't control himself saying WoW. Obviously that doesn't mean you are gonna put flash all over which will definitely slow down your blog.

    You asked me to tell you apart from the Blog's Design but as I told I am design freak, I couldn't resist to say all about design and design only. Lol :p

    About content, I don't really feel anything wrong in there. You have some interesting posts which attracts me. And your blog is fairly new so wait for around 6 months for consistent traffic and that applies for search engines as well.

    There are some errors or unedited stuff on your blog which you need to correct like you don't have a link to G+ but still there is a icon in that widget in the sidebar, the subnavigation have text but points no where and most important "contact me" points no where. Guess someone likes your blog and want to write a guest post, he clicks the contact me and wallop.. it points no where and he will loose the interest in your blog.

    Little things matters a lot and I see them very carefully and so should you.

    I hope I have given enough information to help you out.

    All the Best buddy.
    And I would me more than happy if I see a credit to MBT when I visit your blog next time and I hope this long is not a waste.

  18. This comment has been removed by the author.

  19. We need to edit the template for enabling new meta tag feature. Check out this post..

  20. oh awesome topic.
    Thanks for sharing with us.
    Visit my blog:Blogging Club.

  21. @Bhavesh Pamecha
    Thanks Sir For your delightful suggestion and don't worry sir I added credits to MBT No problem in Crediting MBT as my blog is totally inspired by MBT which i previously mentioned in my guest post Which Was Published At SEM.And i am Contacting Mustafa Sir So He Can Design a new template for me...Thanks...And Cheers :D

  22. Thanks Mohammad for sharing with us

  23. very good article and nicely explained I heard that google implemented these new feature some days back in blogspot and after that I search the net to use these optimisation feature in my blog but there was no good tutorial to follow but there I get the good stuff and I follow it and get what I was need!!

  24. Mohammad bro, i need some help with by blog and also need some Adsense tips. lease reply soon

  25. hye mohammad.. i already added meta tags for my blog before and robot.txt.. but after i read this posts, i decided to remove the meta tags and just make changes just like you show in this posts.. but then i looked back in edit Html section, i did not found any meta tags.. same goes with custom robots header tags..

    so does that mean, all changes that we made in setting > search preferences purposely to notify google that our blog is ready for meta tags and custom robots tags inserted then google will add the meta tags and custom robots tags later?

    Should i replace my old meta tags (meta description, meta keyword) and robot.txt for this changes?

  26. Bro after this my Post description is not showing well . It is showing wrong description :(

    Just check this and help me out please ...

    The description is not the post description. It is showing from the start of my blog ......

  27. i have a question that if we have custom theme for blog then these settings implemented automatically or we have to add it manually…..

  28. This comment has been removed by the author.

    i tested my blog on different computer but rendering is different to that on my computer and i use many custom fonts that are displayed on my blog which shows as default fonts on different computers can you help:)

  30. Hey Mohd, Maybe you don't know this. We have to add a blogger data tag manually to our templates. Most of the blogs which have covered this new have not mentioned about this.
    Just add the following code in head section of your template and it will be fine

    <b:if cond='data:blog.metaDescription'>
    <meta expr:content='data:blog.metaDescription' name='description'/>

  31. @Faizan
    Always welcomed pal. For a blog with 60 posts, 250+ views are normal. You need to push that limit and increase post publishing limit. Write at least 2 posts per day. Give more value to social media latest news and developments. Please read this post: Post frequency :)

    I have checked your mail and I will publish it at smartearningmethods very soon. Apologies for delay ahmed.


    If you have time then you surely may add description for previous posts also.

    Yes you may remove them if you use official blogger templates and No if you use custom templates.

    you are pasting a b:widget code somewhere directly. To add a widget simply use the Page Elements section.


    lol then it must be my goodness :)
    Yes the default message would appear even if you have not enabled it. There exits some html tags that you can directly embed in compose mode. Another is the jump break code.
    Thank you for helping faizan. He is a dedicated person and is learning at a fast pace. Feels great when you motivate others

    Numbered page navigation is a complete mess to be honest however try the latest post on 404 Error page and tell me if it works.

    @Naeem aziz
    Yes the features are always tried first before releasing them. I am glad you found the tutorial helpful. Please do check the latest post on 404. :)

    @Arup Gosh
    Sure just post your queries under posts related to your question

    I checked your blog and they are inserted correctly as content='index, follow, noodp, noydir'
    They will automatically get inserted pal. :)

    You are right haider, Google+ is having this schema problem. So far I found a code for facebook but no luck with G+. Did you remove the code I gave earlier?

    They will be added automatically. For a quick check up, after applying these settings, open your blog's source file and look for the new metas.

    You can only use Google Web fonts as embedded fonts else fonts that are installed on your computer wont work on others. What you see as a correct display is because browser is fetching information from your installed fonts but it can't from other computers where this font is not installed.


    You are right pal. I notice this problem yesterday and I will mention it in the post. Thank you amit.

  32. @Faizan
    Thank you very much for the credit :)

    My pleasure for helping :)
    And please read my mail atleast for that SEO one. I am telling again because only after your reply, I will go further =_=

  33. @Mustafa Sir After Reading your this Post at

    Thanks Sir Always Impressed they way you explained from very beginning to the end.I am currently the only blogger in my home that the biggest disadvantage i have and my friends they even don't know who is blogger so currently i am with Steady Going i do 1 post per day as i study also its very hard to post 3 to 5 posts.any how hats off sir

    @Bhavesh Pamecha

    No Problem sir.... :)

  34. This comment has been removed by the author.

  35. @ Mohammad
    bro i added meta description correctly but instead of [search description] on posts its showing [custom robots tags].and there is no
    enclosure link
    help me out

  36. Bro all fine now with that tag

    i was studying on it and found that our posts that are already published before this Blogger new SEO update are Ok with G+ and Facebook too and for new Posts we must have to write description on the right side and it works perfect on Facebook and Google Plus. I will write a Guest Post on it soon on MBT if you did not did before me :p

  37. nice article I have also written about this plz see my blog also

  38. Hey Mohammad today i checked my webmasters and i have got a warning which says "Some important page is blocked by robots.txt." and when i clicked the robots.txt i found 65 urls blocked why is that so and my posts are also not indexing only homepage is indexing.

    Please help me

  39. thanks and what about rendering background image overlap my post but in my computer it is located properly just before post title begin:)

  40. Mohammad,
    Can I add my XML sitemap optimized to show all of my post to bloggers new robot.txt or will it cause some crawlers to hiccup?

    For example:




  41. this very help ful for me bro thank you very much

  42. Thanks for tip, I'm just wondering if you should also put keywords meta tag and others in the html part of your blog?

    Also one thing I noticed on your blog, if your post is too short, your side bar goes to the middle of the page, actually I had the same problem with my blog. There is a solution, if you search google you can find it.



  43. SEO with Description Meta Tag in blogspot >>> view guide

  44. Is this description (Note: You must write the same description here that you have written manually inside your templates.) different than the Title or the description you are referring is relating to the Data fed in Description Meta Tag inside the template

  45. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  47. Mohammed, you've been such a blessing!

    My ads stopped showing yesterday and out of confusion I have been trying so hard to get it fixed. I have followed all the instruction here, but I also noticed that it was because of the robot.txt. Please help me, should I enable the Custom robots.txt? If yes, what do I write in the box?

    Pls, anyone who has experience with this can reply me....I am desperate!

  48. hi mohammad how do u put after search in name site the arrow with Widgets and Plugins - Templates - Create a Floating Feedback ... - Tools ... when i search ur site in google u have this things how can do the same?, thks in advance

  49. Thanks for this tutorial master, I like it and very useful for me

  50. check out this site this is better then facebook..

  51. Hi,
    I have a blogger blog since 3 months which was ranking well for each post, suddenly before 3 days my indexing got slow and today if i try to search for a post in google which was ranking well, i can not see it on search result on any page. All contents are organic and there was no spammy links or over optimization. Can you suggest me solution please.

  52. This comment has been removed by the author.

  53. Looving your big footer layout. Why don't you change the background to white? That would look awesome. I like white and simple so I choose white background for my website ;)

  54. A very helpful post sir.

  55. Thanks for the great tips... Today, I just created the 404 page for one of my blogs.

    Thanks again... Finally, I made it

  56. Hii.. I have a question and its really important.
    I cannot change my number of post in my blog,i change it to 6,10 but it still showing 2 posts on my web page,Please help me out,i don't what should i do,???

  57. @Sahil Khan
    I can't find a solution right now but it definitely has something to do with your page navigation widget because when you go on next page posts show properly.

  58. MOhammad Bhai, meri site Godaddy per register hai. Is say pehlay blog tha. Me say dobara pe aana chahta hon. to pe redirect ho jati hai lekin say Blog Not Found aata hai. is liay me abi tak chala raha hon.
    Please mujhay guide krain k me kesay ki traffic ko par laaon? Q k Google Search Engine pe search results me URL hai. Please help me.

  59. v.good muhammad paji ,, i set up my custom meta tags successfully thanks,

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  60. assalamualaikum muhammad.. i wanna ask to you.

    1. why robot.txt not in settings ..

    2. how to cope duplikate tittle which usually occurs at m = 0 ...
    could you help me ..

  61. best templates with everything optimized at

  62. Your contents are progressing with days keep it up guys.
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  63. Thank you for the explanation,,, I'm a complete noob for this seo friendly things...

    By the way, is there any way to handle the issue of duplicate content in blogger? I mean the duplicate content that is caused by the "www" and "non-www."?

  64. Its believed that BlogSpot blogs are not well optimized due to limited Search Engine optimization video seo services

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  66. hi,
    its really great tutorial for new writers like me.
    i followed your instructions to keep my blog up in search engine.

    good day,
    hiren patel

  67. i also facing this issue with my blog

  68. thank you so much for this. I am geared towards organic traffic for my blog. This is really a big..hmmm no HUGE help. Keep it up.

  69. This will surely help me for my Government Job blog. Thank you for the detailed information.

  70. Thanks a lot this is so helpful.
    this is my blog

  71. What does the "permanent" option do in custom redirect?

  72. Absolutely fantastic topic! Great blog. Thanks for taking the time and writing this.
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  73. salam...its great to visit that site...what else can say except sikhaden yarrrr :p

  74. Great Tips. I have also incresed my Google Ranking using MBT's Tips. Thanks Alot.

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  75. What about robot.txt did you edit it?

  76. THANKS BRO Nice post, God bless!

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  80. Thank you this was so clear, I have been hunting for ages to find out this info.

    Keep up the good work.

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  82. I just couldn't thank you more... seriously, this is not any comment to show that i am also your reader, i knew about your blog, came once or twice via google search results...

    but this time.. I am totally thankful to you.

    Always thought that wordpress is superior but for the first time your blog actually does it all, came to you from another post, "how to get the featured post widget" but this was awesome.!!

  83. Thanks for this wonderful post. Please in a case i'm to direct all my broken links to homepage, how will i do that?

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  87. Hi,

    What I already try, custom 404 page is nice and good point to solve page not found besides 301 redirect, but custom meta robots tag header make my blog not getting index, so I will read again on google guide for this.

    myblog : _

    anyway thanks for this useful article

  88. Nice Work, Exelant Brother. I hope that your stroggle is very usefull by us. i like it. this site all post is very famous. For more info about SEO tutorials, blogger tutorials, wordpress, making money online see here

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  91. Can I redirect my 404 error pages, precisely every errorpage to a specific post url?
    My webmaster shows 30 error and I want all those error pages to go to
    Though I have used custom redirect for the known urls but what to do for the not known which are getting reported in webmaster?