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Warning From Google! Googlebot Can’t Access CSS & JS

July 30, 2015

In case you haven’t already heard, Google is sending out mass warnings to webmasters that Googlebot can no longer gain access to their CSS and Javascript files on their sites.

As a result of these warnings, many webmasters are now worried about the accessibility of their sites.

For years, Google has been warning webmasters to not block CSS and JS, and Google would then render the webpage as a user would see. That’s why blocking CSS and JS can have a negative impact on these pages.

So what exactly does this mean?

Basically, if Google can’t see your entire website, it could result in a drop in rankings.

Not exactly what you want to happen to your websites.

If you see this message, get on the phone with you web developer right away to find out what you can do, if anything.

How Can You Find the Blocked Files That Google Thinks Are on Your Site?

There’s actually a pretty easy way to find out where the blocked resources are without having to follow Google’s longer instructions that are included in the message sent to webmasters. The message that Google sent says that you can check every page using Fetch as Google to identify which resources are being blocked.

But there’s an easier way. Google has a section called “Blocked Resources” within Google Search Console. When you go to this section, you’ll see all the pages on the site that have blocked resources under “Google Index.”

Even if you think you have a false positive, you can double check in the “Blocked Resources” section.

How to Unblock Your CSS and JavaScript Quickly

A fastest way to unblock your JS and CSS files is to permit crawling CSS and JavaScript resources by adding the following to the robots.txt:

User-Agent – Googlebot
Allow – .js
Allow – .css

Inputting this simple text will quickly open up all your files for Googlebot.

After unblocking CSS and JavaScript, you can submit the URL to be recrawled; or else, just wait for Googlebot to do it on its own.

Make sure that your home page and mobile view page of your website have their CSS and JS files unblocked, as Google tends to stop short of these pages and doesn’t necessarily go that deep into your sites.

And don’t worry about this warning if it’s an ad code or social embed that’s blocked CSS or JS. While you might see these warnings in the Google Search Console, you shouldn’t get any emails from Google for these third party issues.

While these are quick steps to take to unblock your CSS and JavaScript files, you might still want to get in touch with your web designer to make sure your website is in the clear and doesn’t get dinged in the rankings.

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