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The Google Cache improves. A useful addition to the information stored in the Google Cache and subsequently published to the web for our consumption, is the precise date and time that the page being viewed was crawled by the Googlebot. Knowing when a site’s pages are crawled is very useful when trying to accelerate the indexing of new content, and to understand about the optimum times for content changes.

Many sites enjoy ‘daily indexing’ in view of the frequency of their content changes and this fact is more obviously displayed beneath their entry in the SERPs by a date attribute appearing after the page URL the file size, e.g. www.johnston.co.uk/ – 19k – 31 Jul 2004. For those pages that do not see the crawler every day, and this is often the case with pages that are targeted for improved performance in the SERPs, then understanding the pattern of crawling is very helpful.

To see examples of this, make a search, such as for a Google Consultant and scan down the list to find results that do not have a date attribute in the entry on the page. At the time of writing, the third entry down for Ring John qualifies. Click on the Cached link to view the Google Cache of this page. At the end of the very top line of the information Google presents is the following: ‘as retrieved on 13 Jun 2004 03:29:07 GMT’.

The Google Cache always was a useful tool, it has now just got significantly more so.

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Filed in Blog, August 2nd, 2004. Leave a comment, or trackback from your own site. Follow comments via RSS

One Response to “Google Cache adds Crawl Date”

  1. Jan
    28th

    This cache date change may be good for webmasters checking to see when googlebot was last there but it also seems like a good PR attempt for googlebot by showing the more recent date. I liked seeing the date for the last time Google found a new or updated page more so than than seeing googlebot’s activity. This gives me more of a clue how active the website is and how old the content is. With the number of websites that don’t date their articles or content, I would often check out the cache date just for that reason. If I want to see when googlebot last visited my site I can see those visits in my stats.

    It’s not a big deal, but I think the best solution would be to show both dates.

    Comment by:
    Karel Zeman

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