Session ID query parameters: A quick list
Ian Lurie Jan 11 2011
Session ID make your URLs look like this:
- They’re ugly, and discourage clicks.
- They prevent your server from caching pages properly, because they cause thousands of duplicate pages.
- They kill you in organic search, because search engines find ‘em and then can’t figure out which page is real. And because people link to them, splitting your link ‘votes’. Read my posts on canonicalization to learn more about that.
And, they’re just tacky. So, here’s a list of session ID variables and chunks of session ID variables you should look for. Cut it, paste it, use it to search client sites and root out the evils of session IDs everywhere:
This list is case-insensitive. Also, it has some vars in it that, while I found them used as session ids, they may sometimes be used for other stuff, too. An example would be ‘id’, which could be page id, product id, or session id. And, any mayhem you wreak with this list is your problem, not mine. Use it to make sites work better, ok?
How we built this list
Portent has a crawler we’ve used for years to track down issues like duplicate content. I went through a huge list of duplicate content issues we’d found, took a look, and then used those to build the list.
If you have some I haven’t included, send ‘em on! I’ll add them right away.
Join the SID Elimination Front!!!
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Ian Lurie is CEO and founder of Portent Inc. He's recorded training for Lynda.com, writes regularly for the Portent Blog and has been published on AllThingsD, Forbes.com and TechCrunch. Ian speaks at conferences around the world, including SearchLove, MozCon, SIC and ad:Tech. Follow him on Twitter at portentint. He also just published a book about strategy for services businesses: One Trick Ponies Get Shot, available on Kindle. Read More