Greg is impressed how Trulia so dominates the search results for “714 West Culver Street”. Heck – they got the listing from somewhere, right? Why does Trulia show up above the original sources of data? In this case, two reasons: the original source doesn’t even display the address on the page (dude – MLS rules are stupid, but they usually let you display your own property’s address at least – you gotta fix that!). But the much more common reason is that Trulia blocks Google from following their links.
How do I know? Go to any listing on Trulia. See that “See more photos and details” button? Hover over it and look at the bar at the bottom of your screen. See how it says something like http://www.trulia.com/transfer.php?s_id=10424505&feat=1&p_id=1053500646&t_id=fdpt3 ? That gobbledygook links internally to a page on Trulia that instantly passes you on to the listing broker. However it tells Google that it is a temporary redirect (a 302 redirect), which Google has explicitly stated does not pass any PageRank. That means while you move on to the listing broker, Google goes no further than that internal page.
Why would brokers who share their listings allow this? My best guess is they aren’t tech savvy enough to identify that this could be a problem. In the online world, the devil is often in the technical details. Surely they wouldn’t intentionally share their valuable listings on the promise that they’ll receive more traffic, only to find that they were giving up their valuable search engine position for those listings (and the traffic associated with it).234 comments