Google Search officially retires cache link
Google might add links to the Wayback Machine in place of the cache link.
Google officially removed the cache link from the Google Search results snippets last week and Google confirmed that it will remove the cache functionality completely in the near future. Danny Sullivan, Google’s Search Liaison told us that Google has “decided to retire it” and removed it from the Google Search result pages and will soon remove the cache completely.
Cache removed. Around January 25th I reported on the Search Engine Roundtable that the cache link was removed from the search results snippet. As you can see from this screenshot, the cache link is completely missing:
Cache operator works for now… But the cache operator currently works, at least for the time being. Google [cache:domain.com] – so for example, this site – you can search for [https://www.google.com/search?q=cache:seroundtable.com] and the cache will work.
Cache operator will stop working. But Google said this too will be retired and stop working. “You’re going to see cache: go away in the near future, too,” Sullivan wrote.
Noarchive. Google said you can keep the noarchive tags there, Google will still respect it. Sullivan wrote, “But wait, I hear you ask, what about noarchive? We’ll still respect that; no need to mess with it. Plus, others beyond us use it.”
Wayback machine instead. Sullivan added that he would like to see Google add links to the Wayback Machine so users can get access to the archived versions of those pages. “Personally, I hope that maybe we’ll add links to @internetarchive from where we had the cache link before, within About This Result. It’s such an amazing resource. For the information literacy goal of About The Result, I think it would also be a nice fit — allowing people to easily see how a page changed over time. No promises. We have to talk to them, see how it all might go — involves people well beyond me. But I think it would be nice all around,” Sullvian wrote.
Why we care. While the cache is not a good use for debugging SEO issues, it has become a defacto tool for many SEOs and searchers over the years. But Google decided it is time for it to go and we will have to find alternatives.
The Wayback Machine is an excellent way to see older versions of specific URLs, and it is free.
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