We can’t send you updates from Justia Onward without your email.
Because it no longer provides significant value to both users and Google, the company recently announced it is sunsetting the URL Parameters Tool on April 26, 2022. Keep reading to learn more.
In a recent announcement, Google confirmed that it will shut down the URL Parameters Tool in Search Console next month. After April 26, 2022, users will no longer be able to access the tool. Google indicated its crawlers will now deal with URL parameters automatically, and no action is required for current URL Parameters Tool users.
URL parameters are used after a core URL to help filter or organize content. The URL Parameters Tool launched back in 2009 as a parameter handling tool. It was a way to communicate that Google should ignore specific URLs or combinations of URL parameters.
Although Google upgraded the tool two years after its launch and initially planned to improve it to handle more parameter scenarios, Google claims it now has “low value” as its crawlers have gotten better at predicting which URL parameters are actually useful.
“Over the years, Google became much better at guessing which parameters are useful on a site and which are —plainly put— useless. In fact, only about 1% of the parameter configurations currently specified in the URL Parameters tool are useful for crawling. Due to the low value of the tool both for Google and Search Console users, we’re deprecating the URL Parameters tool in 1 month.“
This is what the tool looked like in 2009:
Final Thoughts: Why Do You Care?
We know that having control over how Google handles URL parameters on your site is important. Google suggests using robots.txt rules from now on to have greater control over how crawlers and your URL parameters interact. Using an improved CMS and taking a closer look at your internal linking can also help your site as this shift occurs. For those sites with regional languages, use an hreflang tag to specify language variations of a site’s content.
At Justia, we create optimized law firm websites, keep up with Google’s updates, and ensure all of our clients’ sites are technically prepared to handle the realities of Google changes. Rest assured, our team will take a close look at all Justia Elevate websites to make sure there are no URL parameters issues.