Glossary

AdTech industry is vast and ever-changing. It might be hard to keep up with all the new slang, but worry not - our glossary will keep you properly updated!

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Robots.txt

What is Robots.txt ?

Web admins use a Robots.txt file to give instructions to web robots. Robots.txt exclusion protocol is a text file that governs online robots, often known as search engines, to manage which sites are allowed to crawl and which are not. Another advantage of using the Robots.txt protocol is that it prevents your website from becoming overloaded with queries. A protocol is a format for delivering instructions or orders via a computer networking system. For robots.txt files, there are several different protocols. There is a protocol in a place called the Robots Exclusion Protocol that governs everything. Bots can be instructed to stay away from certain websites and resources by using this technique.

The robots.txt file contains formatting instructions for this particular protocol's instructions. To put it another way, Google is usually able to identify and index all of the most critical web pages on your site. Pages that aren't important or duplicates of other runners will automatically be excluded from the index, and that is why there are three primary reasons to employ a robots.txt file. You may have pages on your website that you do not want to be indexed. As an illustration, suppose you have a test version of a page or a login screen.

These web pages are a requirement. However, you do not want uninvited guests to land on your servers. It is an instance in which robots.txt might be used to keep these pages out of the reach of search engine crawlers and bots. Search engines have crawl budgets that they must adhere to index all of your content. Blocking pages that aren't important with robots.txt allows Googlebot to focus its crawl budget on the vital pages. Meta directives are exactly as effective as Robots.txt for inhibiting the indexation of pages. On the other hand, Meta directives don't work well for multimedia resources like PDFs and photos. It is where robots.txt comes in.

This URL filtering approach has limitations that you should know before implementing it in your website or application. Other ways to ensure your URLs are not searchable on the web may be an option depending on your objectives and circumstances. The instructions in robots.txt files cannot compel a crawler to behave in a certain way on your site; it is up to the crawler whether or not to follow them.

Although reputable web spiders adhere to the directives in a robots.txt file, each crawler may interpret the messages differently. Knowing the right syntax for addressing various web crawlers is important because some may not recognize specific instructions. A prohibited page in robots.txt can still be indexed if it is referred to from other sites, as well.

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