Thread: Optimising PDF

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    Optimising PDF


    Hi, Iím trying to make a pdf indexable. Currently the client has a link to a download page where the visitor has to include their contact details, once completed they can download the PDF. This is causing the PDFs to not index. They want to keep the functionality of having a form completed before being able to download the PDF so they grab prospects. So I was thinking maybe the best way from an SEO point of view would be to add a popup div overlay with a contact form over the PDF. Once the Contact form is completed then the popup div overlay disappears to show the pdf in the background.

    The issue is that I will need to embed the pdf into a webpage so I can add the popup div overlay. Iíve never embedded pdfs before. I was going to use the following code to embed. Will Google be able to read the pdf and will the URL of the page its embedded into be the index URL for that pdf?

    <code><object data="data/test.pdf" type="application/pdf" width="300" height="200">
    alt : <a href="data/test.pdf">test.pdf</a>
    </object></code>
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    I'm not sure about the code to use for what you want, but with the popup overlay your thinking of using, they don't always work as well as you would think because people that are web savvy will be able to simply by pass the overlay, IE use a plugin such as firebug to delete the code that's preventing them from accessing the content behind the overlay! Just something to keep in mind.

    Apart from that, I shouldn't have thought what your proposing would effect your seo, but I'm not sure how google would treat the pages as they are only accessible once logged in or rather singed up so to speak?
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    On further research into this Iíve realised that embedding the PDF probably isnít the optimal way to do this in terms of link flow and whether or not Google will even be able to access it through embed (not a lot has been documented about what Iím trying to achieve).

    So I think the way Iím going to do it is by using CSS Ďmouse overí on the link to the pdf in order to initiate the popup. The popup will then remain visible until the visitor has added their details or hit cancel. This should allow Google to follow the link whilst ensuring visitors have to add their details before viewing the pdf.

    Can anyone see any problems with this?
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    I haven't had any experience in doing such things, but do you remember those sites where you use to have to enter your details or do some questions before you could stream a movie?

    Not sure how they worked, but the pages where indexed and only the video was not accessible, could you not do something like that?

    Again I haven't done this sort of site before or ever needed people to sign up in order to see content and I'm not sure if google would thrown upon such things because in a way you are showing the user something different to the search engine kind of?!

    Maybe a better way would be to show a part of the file on your page and ask people to login to see the full page content, which would be in a separate non-indexed area of the site?
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    Thanks for the tips, its a tricky one. I thought about having a kind of summary page that gets indexed but there's so much content in the pdfs its a shame for that to go to waste in SEO terms as they are important industry guides.

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