New: Google Lets You Block Any Site From Search Results

Google announced you can now hide or block certain sites from showing up in the Google search results.

When you do a search in Google, the search results will show a new link near the “Cache” link when you click a result and then return to Google. The link that Google adds to the search results reads “Block all results.” Clicking on that will allow you to block the site from showing up in the Google results.

If you are not logged in, Google will immediately block the result and confirm they did so. But if you want the site to remain blocked on future searches, you have to login and confirm the block request.

At the bottom of the search results it will show you that there are blocked sites. It will let you show the blocked results or manage your blocked sites.

Here is the confirmation page:

Here is the manage block page:

You can access this page under your “Search Settings.”

Google said:

We’re adding this feature because we believe giving you control over the results you find will provide an even more personalized and enjoyable experience on Google. In addition, while we’re not currently using the domains people block as a signal in ranking, we’ll look at the data and see whether it would be useful as we continue to evaluate and improve our search results in the future. The new feature is rolling out today and tomorrow on in English for people using Chrome 9+, IE8+ and Firefox 3.5+, and we’ll be expanding to new regions, languages and browsers soon. We hope you find it useful, and we’ll be listening closely to your suggestions.

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About The Author: is Search Engine Land's News Editor and owns RustyBrick, a NY based web consulting firm. He also runs Search Engine Roundtable, a popular search blog on very advanced SEM topics. Barry's personal blog is named Cartoon Barry and he can be followed on Twitter here. For more background information on Barry, see his full bio over here.

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  • James Dervish

    That is an interesting development. It can be very useful, but it would be very easy to set up an army to “block” competitor sites and devalue their ranking, if Google eventually envelopes this into part of their algorithm.

  • Nocturnal

    Is this being pushed out all at once or in batches? For whatever reason I don’t have access to it right now.

  • Barry Schwartz

    It is being rolled out slowly. It might take days for everyone to see it.

  • Jeff Yablon

    I agree with James’ point about the potential for people who have an axe to grind with you making life unfairly difficult if Google starts using personal preferences to influence the broader rankings.

    On the other hand . . . Google uses whatever they use and none of us really know what the facts are, so overall, this is GREAT. “I hate that guys and don’t wanna see him again” beats any other option I’ve seen. GREAT JOB, Google!

    Jeff Yablon
    President & CEO

  • tomblue

    James – Hopefully they want ever add it to their algo. I believe they shouldn’t. If you can block a site that sucks so quickly why should google be so concerned with using the blocked results. Especially considering the people that will be using the blocked option are probably more advanced users and aren’t going to represent google users as a whole.

  • Crosby Grant

    Poof! If I could just replace all links with links, I’d be a happy camper.

  • Alireza Sefati

    I bet you anything they will also be using this as a ranking factor. The more blocked a website is the less it will rank. …this is one of bets I wish I lose!

  • Nocturnal

    I definitely don’t agree with them using this in their algo and I’ve seen a lot of people get screwed over on Google Places with people hijacking their listings and or leaving negative anonymous reviews. Pretty scary if you ask me.

  • Jennifer

    Will there be a way to see how many people have blocked your site? While the metrics currently tracked in analytics should be good enough, sometimes you just have to see how much someone truly dislikes you before you change.

  • tomblue

    Nocturnal: I was just thinking. If they used this info in their algo wouldn’t that cause problems for reputable, “high quality” sites like the NY Times? Just think about it. Many democrats will block Fox News and many republicans will block CNN. The NY Times while being one of the most respected newspapers obviously has a liberal bias. This has been known for years. So, of course, they will get blocks by republicans too. A lot of Republicans can’t stand Arianna Huffington so I am sure the huffington post will be blocked by many people regardless of its content. And this only has to do with politics. What about religion, race, gender, sexual orientation, etc?

    This could get really bad if people know that blocked sites are counted in the rankings too. e.g. I bump across in a search and I don’t like Mayor Bloomberg so I block and I know his site gets demoted in the results. “Jason Calacanis is annoying – let me click this link – good, his rankings will go down.” It becomes more of who is popular rather than who is good.

    If Google uses this as an indicator I hope it is only a small part of its algo as I believe this could lead to lower quality results…

  • Durant Imboden

    What’s not to like about this feature, unless you’re a spammer?

    Sure, Google *could* use the site-block data in its search results, but then, it *could* have used its smiley- and frownie-face toolbar buttons to gather data for its algorithm, too. I’d rather deal with “what is” than worry about “what if.”

  • rmonitor

    Currently this is more like a feature for users than a quality signal. Facebook and Twitter have no option to give negative signals. So, they will require significant amount of data to use this as a negative signal in the algorithm. In the long run, this is likely. It is a useful tool for now.

  • PAUL

    my site has been blocked in search results, took ages to get to no1 and then someone blocks it, how do you unblock it, can you unblock it ?

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