Not sure what to make of all the talk about the terms "cache" and "supplemental results" going on lately when it comes to Google? These are not new terms, but since there is more "buzz" going around in the internet marketing community I have been getting asked a lot lately to explain what these terms are and mean. I am going to take it a step further and help you understand how really knowing what they are can be an advantage, and even save you from being ripped off in the future.
"Cache" on Google is referring to the last time the search engine crawled your page. It is important to know the most recent date that Google has crawled you because it shows you what kind of relevance, or "weight" they are giving to your page. I have never been a page rank watcher, but if you are the kind of person that is, you might want to start becoming more familiar with "cache" and stop thinking so highly about "page rank". The more recent the date "cached" the better for you and your standings with Google. If your site is showing a cache from October of last year then you got thing to worry about and fix. That's a post for another day though.
If you want to see the cache of any page of your website simply go to Google, and in the search box type in: cache:www.domainname.com and you will go to a page with your sites cached info up top.
Supplemental results are another thing that a webmaster, and internet marketer should keep an eye out for. If your site has mostly supplemental results then you have some major duplicate content issues. These issues can be caused by meta info on all pages being the same, or duplicate content throughout the website. Making sure all pages are different and unique as possible when it comes to content, meta and general information will be a sure fire way to help the problem. Be patient though, as it can take several months to clear your site of supplemental results.
So how do I know if it's a supplemental result? If you go to Google and in the search box type in: site:www.domainname.com you will get a list of the pages that are indexed, and if at the end of the individual page there is an area that says "supplemental" thats how you know. It is not likely to get rankings out of a supplemental result page because of loss of "Google love" (due to the duplicate content) and this is why it's important to know.
Why bring all this up? With all the awesome posts and feedback today regarding links it really got me thinking what one should be looking for in a "page" to get a link from. Let's talk about a few of the places we get links from - directories, articles, press, back link research, related sites and blogs, paid links etc. Be very careful about putting too much emphasis on looking for a link with a high page rank. The page rank you are viewing anyway is outdated and there is better information out there for us. You want to be looking for cached and supplemental result information for the specific page you are wanting to get a link on. If you remember the recent post about Ebay selling fake PR7 links and domains, then this post becomes super important. The first thing I will look for on the page that I am wanting the link is the cached date, and is it a supplemental result or not. Is the page even indexed with Google at all? There are ways for people to high-jack page rank and give the appearance of high PR when its just a worthless site that is probably blacklisted on Google. Using these tools I am telling you about can save yourself from being ripped off.
Any place, and I mean any that I am thinking about getting a link from, I will be paying attention to the cached date, and if the page is a supplemental result or not. If you have not already, it's probably a good idea to start gearing your thinking this way when it comes to finding good places to get links from.