Frames in websites and search engine indexing

We had someone make our website and he used frames. However, Google is indexing the frames separately, so that when you search for something and our site comes up, only the content frame shows up, but not the menu frame on the right side of the page, so the people that click into those pages have no way of easily getting back to our front page or for that matter navigating to any other page of our site.

The web guy told me that is our problem, not his, but I don’t see that on other sites that I search for in Yahoo or Google. Luckily I have not paid him yet.

Is it true, is this impossible to fix, or can he some how marry the two frames to make them inseparable or some other solution?

Some search engines don’t support frames at all (they depend completely on the noframes content) while most have a rather mediocre support for frames (like Google). This means that sometimes they link to the frameset page (good) but often they don’t. As you wrote, this leaves your visitor seeing only the content frame. AFAIK, there are two solutions:

  1. Use Javascript to load the fameset (unreliable like all solutions depending on client-side scripts)
  2. Include at least some basic navigation on the content frame.

Have a look at this very good article for further info.


I’m pretty sure that you can design a page so that if it knows it’s not being loaded with the frames it’s supposed to be, it will redirect to the right page.

I’m pretty sure you can take care of the program through good programming. Tell him.

I found this quick article. It may not be the only solution but it seems to work.

If you ever need help doing web site maintenance, I’d be happy to help. It’s been a while since i’ve done it, but I am thorough and have a good understanding of technology, so if I know something’s possible, I won’t stop til I find out how.


did you edit the robots.txt file

This won’t help much, but I noticed some of the microsoft pages are frames and google pulls up the page, but without the frame (briefly). Then someone it’s gets redirected to the correct page (with the sidebar menu and framed info). So it’s possible somehow.

I think this is what Miltownkid is talking about. Put it in all of your pages that need to be viewed in a frame, like your menu and content frames. The script should go between the and tag. Also, replace MASTERPAGE.html with the name of the page that’s pulling your menu frame and content frame together.


Also, you can add meta tags to your master page so that this is the one search engines are indexing. It doens’t work for all search engines, though.

One simple solution is to include a ‘home’ button at the foot of every page that reloads the home page from scratch.