KevC wrote:Why would you set the bin so bots can crawl it?
Because having more volume of legitimate content which is not spam and that the bots can see means a higher chance to get traffic for the various keywords that people may type in the search engine.
Having more topics (i.e. content) that is not spam, that makes sense and that talks about something will bring more people at your website and they may decide to discover it.
On the other hand, that practice may lead to a higher bounce rate for your website or to a little time of user engagement, since people will most likely not find what they were looking for in your Recycle Bin. And that's bad, bad, bad.
It may not be prudent to have the Recycle Bin open to bots, it is very risky, but sometimes users may decide to stay on your website if it looks and feels good.
So moderators should be careful with what topics they soft delete because you may lose content that should have been crawlable. It can be tricky to decide when soft delete is appropriate. For example:
- If is is spam, then soft-delete it. Although, if it is spam, why not just hard-delete it?
- If the discussion goes nowhere, then soft-delete it. But that way you will hide legitimate volume of content, keywords, and perhaps some useful information. Why not just lock the topic?
So when should they soft-delete topics?
One case that I can think of is when topics are in a link-sharing forum and their links are dead. By soft-deleting them you cause them to fall behind at the last pages of that forum, making it easy to have them separated from the good topics.