I'm afraid yes, when it comes to search engine ranking most sources
conclude meta refresh -- especially a fast one, and one leading to
another page than the current one -- should be avoided at all costs.
What Not To Do - Meta Refresh
"The problem with this tag is that it almost invites search engine
abuse: create a page which targets search terms, even inappropriate
search terms, let the search engine index it, but use meta refresh to
send users to another page.
Because of this problem, search engines generally do not index pages
with fast meta refresh rates, and some will exclude all pages
including the meta refresh tag."
Ten Controversial Search Engine Optimization Techniques
"In general, meta refresh tags set for under 30 seconds are considered
as spam by search engines. As such, most search engine optimizers use
The meta refresh tag is "one of the few potentially dangerous tags
there is. While it works quite nicely, many search engines dislike it
because it is (or was) commonly used with doorway pages. I recommend
that for the sake of your search engine success, leave this tag alone
and instead redirect visitors by giving them a link to click.
used, although with some caution."
Glossary of Search Engine Ranking Terms (by Sumantra Roy)
"Meta Refresh Tag: The tag present in the header of a web page which
is used to display a different page after a few seconds. If a page
displays another page too soon, most search engines will either ignore
the current page and index the second page or penalize the current
page for spamming."
Search Engine Ranking - get it right from the start (by Carl Hruza)
"Avoid using 'Meta Refresh' tags that are set to automatically direct
the viewer to another page. If you must use 'refresh' set the time to
a minimum of 15 seconds."
Search engine positioning tips, ranking & how to understand meta tags
for getting your web site ranked.
"I wouldn't use Meta refresh tags on pages you plan to submit to
search engines/directories. Some search engines, like Infoseek, may
not index or may give you a poor ranking on their search engine.
Infoseek especially, is one who likes to follow links by itself, it
doesn't like to be taken somewhere automatically."
Search Engine Optimization
"For best results, the following Web publishing techniques should be
avoided: (...) Use of fast meta refresh"
Search engine tips - search engine visibility
"Some search engines will refuse to index a page with a high meta
Search Engine Ranking
Regarding InfoSeek: "Never use fast meta refresh."
What search engines don't like
"The following techniques are spam: (...) Meta refresh tags"
Why use HTML meta tags?
"It is especially important that you do not use the meta refresh tag,
the meta redirect tag or robots meta tag if you want your site to be
properly indexed by all search engines and get a high search engine
I hope it helps!
"meta refresh" "search engine" ranking