Google Says It’s Normal For Cached JavaScript Pages To Appear Empty

According to John Mueller, Google’s Search Advocate John Mueller, it’s not unusual for JavaScript-based pages to appear empty in Google’s cached view.

JavaScript-based websites may appear incomplete or blank in Google’s cache. This is normal and does not specify any problem.

John Mueller, Google’s Search Advocate, stated this in the latest episode of the Ask Googlebot video series.

An individual asks why JavaScript pages don’t appear in Google’s cached view.

The question is:

“The cached React pages page shows a blank page. How should you code the React pages with SSR to make them Googlebot-friendly?

A cached page shows the URL as it looked last time it was crawled and is called a “cached page.”

Googlebot may have encountered a problem crawling a cached page if it appears empty or missing content. However, this is not always true.

Mueller explained that Google’s cache does not contain all the HTML elements found on a page.

Google is not incapable of caching JavaScript. It is more than browser restrictions limit Google.

Google’s cache displays HTML Only.

Mueller says it is difficult to cache JavaScript-based websites.

It is not technical but security.

Web browsers place restrictions on the content that can be accessed. They may also block JavaScript files requests from websites other than Google’s cache.

Google Search may keep a cached copy of an HTML page downloaded from a server and show it to users as a cached page. This is not the HTML page.

It can get a bit more complicated for JavaScript-based websites. There are some restrictions regarding how content can be accessed via a page because of browser security.

Browsers can block requests from other websites that require JavaScript files. In this case, the cache of Google would be the other website.

This means that JavaScript-based websites may show an empty or incomplete page when viewed from Google’s cache. This is not a specific problem.

Unlock (not available) with Keyword Hero. See all organic keywords in GA and their performance metrics. Get a free trial. You can cancel at any time. Expert support. 4-minute setup.

Although it may seem discouraging to see an empty page in Google’s cache, the real issue for search is how that page gets indexed.

Google can process JavaScript independently and index the page as users view it.

Mueller continues:

Google will process JavaScript separately for indexing and attempt to index what a user would view when they visit your site directly. If you need to double-check, this rendered page can be seen in Google Search Console’s test tools.

Google can index and render JavaScript-based websites’ content fine for the most part. It’s not unusual for a JavaScript-based website to have a cache view that is incomplete or empty. It’s not a sign of a problem. It’s a browser limitation.