SEO: Lessons from Google’s ‘rel=prev/subsequent’ Pagination Identifier

Search engine optimization specialists had been caught off defend this week by Google’s admission that it hasn’t used its pagination identifier in “some of the years.” The access reinforces the requirement that SEO practitioners be flexible and conscious on what topics.

What Is ‘rel=prev/subsequent’?

Originally designed to streamline the indexation of multi-web page reports, rel=prev/next informed Google that character class pages shouldn’t be served individually in search results.

Pagination creates copies of the primary page, only with different products. However, it wouldn’t make experience to land a searcher on pages 2, 12, or 22 of your product collection. Consumers must land on the first page to look at all the goods.

So the rel=prev/subsequent metadata, combined with canonical tags, basically merged these pages in Google’s indexes and amassed any hyperlink authority to the primary paginated web page. Google didn’t want to waste time sorting through the paginated versions and index and rank best the prior page.

That turned into the idea.

In 2012, Bing also said that it supported rel=prev/. Next, this means that Yahoo did, too. Bing’s consultant Frédéric Debut indicated on Twitter this week that it’s nevertheless in use for “page discovery and placement shape expertise, now not as a way for merging pages.

Rel=prev/next Discontinued.

On March 21, 2019, Google Webmaster Trends Analyst John Mueller, a source of dependable technical SEO facts, confirmed on Twitter, “We don’t use hyperlink-rel-next/prev at all.”

One thrilling part of this revelation is that rel=prev/subsequent was Google’s creation. 2011 Google delivered it to reduce reproduction content and help cognizance its crawl equity in key areas.

For the final 8 years, the usage of rel=prev/subsequent changed into common practice. SEOs used valuable assets to put into effect and look at this requirement, resources that we now know might have been spent on other projects.

Google Stopped Supporting Rel=prev/next in Search Indexing Years Ago

In reality, Mueller described rel=prev/subsequent as a beneficial tactic within the Google Webmaster Central Hangout on March 19, days before he reversed Twitter’s message. Shortly after, Google eliminated its assist report, and the 2011 Webmaster Central weblog publication was marked as no longer legitimate.

Thus, Google recommended that site owners do something for its algorithmic use, stopped its use, and didn’t inform us. We spent sources continuing to put something they’d created and abandoned in force.

And yet, no person in SEO noticed that it no longer mattered. It didn’t have an effect that turned into measurable in any manner, so there was no way to perceive that it did or did no longer work.

When there are many interconnected portions in search engine optimization, and one piece is not an element, how do you understand? And if a tactic works or doesn’t work, how do you know? The fact is, you don’t. Not for positive.

Google and other search engines like Google and Yahoo preserve the playing cards. They manipulate the algorithms. They determine the cause and contextual relevance of keywords and phrases. And they decide which pages will and won’t seem to seek consequences.

What to Do

Since Bing nevertheless uses rel=prev/next, keep it to your website. But I wouldn’t spend much time enforcing it anew.

Regarding handling uncertainty, focus on what works and what has always labored. The pleasant pointers in search engine optimization have a high effect and don’t go out of favor.

Have you achieved your keyword studies and analysis?
Have you analyzed your herbal seek overall performance for opportunities?
Have you optimized name tags and different on-web page elements for priority pages?
Have you searched for move-slowly blocks and indexation issues?
Have you contacted bloggers and media to connect to their audiences through hyperlinks again for your site?
Don’t obsess on one element — whether or not it’s rel=prev/subsequent or hyperlink acquisition or anything else — to the exclusion of all others. Play the lengthy recreation across all SEO areas so your search engine optimization program doesn’t fall over after one component adjustment.

It takes time and continuous schooling. Read reliable resources such as Search Engine Land and Search Engine Journal. Pay interest to studies across substantial numbers of sites and scores.

Think seriously about the source and credibility of any recommendation you examine.

Don’t chase shortcuts and tricks. There are no hints that pressure has lasting advantages. Eventually, the tips that work nowadays will stop working because search engines like google get smarter. When that occurs, you may even have to spend money and time doing away with the one’s efforts.

An example is a past practice of acquiring clean but low-fee links. There’s now an entire enterprise of eliminating low-grade hyperlinks. They can be harmful.


I have been working in the field of SEO and content marketing since 2014. I have worked with over 500 clients and more than 100 websites. I started blogging in 2012 and have now made my first steps into the world of freelancing. In my spare time, I like to read, cook or listen to music.