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    What is the best practice from Google to follow for pages that render dynamic content


    Hi, I was hoping you might be able to help me with this issue regarding dynamic website and content.

    The website we are building sets a cookie on the users browser when users arrive on the site via a query string.

    I.e. Canada:
    www.mywebsite.com?marketid=en-ca

    These cookies are only set at the home page level, thus the query string is also only used at this 'home' level. All subcategories of this follow a standard URL pattern with no query strings and no regional identifier (as we already have the cookie).

    I.e. US Sub Page
    www.mywebsite.com/subcategory
    I.e. Canada Sub Page
    www.mywebsite.com/subcategory

    So to all intensive purposes, once a users cookie is saved and they start to navigate the website there is no difference in URL whatever region you might be from, as the cookie data dynamically renders the appropriate content for users from each region.

    How should we approach this in terms of best practice for Google? As yes we are able to use hreflang at the landing page level as we have a query string for each home URL, but once you navigate past/down the structure all other pages are identical and all have the same URL, as it's the cookie, not the URL that differentiates what content users from different regions will see.

    Hopefully you'll be able to answer this tricky one?

    Thanks

    Ben
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    Hi Ben,

    The short answer is: do not do this. Google doesn't like it when you define content differently for different users. Which is why they typically recommend an entirely different TLD or sub domain for each language. That way the Canadian version of the site can be indexed with in Google's Canadian index.

    I can understand that building a different version for each language can be hard, and may not be possible. Therefore if you are going to continue to handle this issue with a cookie, then you need to make sure that any content you want to rank well in search engines, is present by default when a cookie isn't set. The web crawler will ignore the cookie and keep crawling, so make sure that the default content is what you want to rank.

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