HOW TO GET GOOGLE CRAWLERS TO INDEX YOUR SITE FASTER
If you want your landing pages, blogs, personal web pages, and other content to appear in Google search results, your site needs to be indexed. Essentially, Index Google is a huge database. When users search on Google, the search engine consults its database to provide relevant content. If a page hasn’t been indexed, it doesn’t exist for Google. In this case, you will not be able to drive organic traffic to this page through the search engine.
In this guide, we will talk about indexing and its importance. After reading it, you will learn how to check if a particular page has been indexed, how to avoid common problems in technical SEO that prevent indexing, and how to get search robots to index your site for the first time or again.
WHAT IS GOOGLE INDEX?
In simple terms, the Google Index is a list of all web pages that are known to the search engine. If Google doesn’t index your site, it will never appear in search results. Imagine that you have written a book that has not ended up in any library or bookstore. Potential readers will not be able to find it, and may not even know about its existence.
THE IMPORTANCE OF INDEXING WEB PAGES
There are no pages in the Google database that have not been indexed by its search robots. So, the search engine will not be able to display them in search results. To index a site, Google’s search robots must “crawl” its pages. Let’s find out what is the difference between crawling and indexing. Search robots use the following work algorithm:
- Browsing – search robots crawl a site to find out if it should be indexed or not. Google robots (“Googlebot”) are constantly scanning the global web and clicking on links in search of new content;
- indexing – search engine robots add the site to the database (in the case of Google, this database is called Index);
- Ranking – a search engine ranks websites based on various metrics such as the relevance of content, its usefulness to users, and others.
Indexing only means that a particular site is stored in the search engine’s database. And this is not a guarantee that it will be at the top of the search results. The indexing process is based on several algorithms, taking into account such elements as a user request, quality control. By influencing how search robots find your content, you also influence the indexing process of your site.
HOW TO CHECK IF YOUR SITE HAS BEEN INDEXED BY GOOGLE SEARCH BOTS?
Undoubtedly, you want to index your site, but how do you know if it has already been affected by this process or not? Fortunately, the search giant makes it easy to find out with a site search. Here is the sequence of actions to check:
- go to the google search page;
- enter “site: example.com” in the search bar;
- below the search bar, you will find several categories of results, including “All”, “Pictures”, “News” and others;
- just below you will see information about the number of indexed pages on your site;
- if the number of results is zero, then Google has not indexed a single page on your site;
Alternatively, you can use Google Search Console. Create your account on this service – it’s absolutely free. Algorithm of actions for checking the indexing of your site using Google Search Console:
- log in to your Google Search Console account;
- select the “Google Index” tab;
- then select the “Indexing Status” section;
- in the window you will see the number of indexed pages;
- if the number of indexed pages is zero, then your site is not indexed by Google.
Google Search Console is useful for checking certain pages to see if they’ve been indexed. To do this, simply specify the URL of a specific page. If the page is indexed, you will see the message “URL is in Google“.
HOW LONG IS THE INDEXING PROCESS ON GOOGLE?
The indexing process on Google takes from several days to several weeks. For example, you just created a new page, but it is not indexed for a long time. Accordingly, users will not be able to find this page in the search engine. Fortunately, you can improve your indexing performance. Below you will find a mini-guide on how to improve your page indexing speed.
HOW DO I GET GOOGLE TO INDEX MY SITE?
The easiest way to get the search engine to index your site is to request this process through the Google Search Console. To do this, use the verification tool via URL, specify the address of the page that you want to index, wait until the verification is complete. If the page is not indexed, click the Request Indexing button.
Notably, Google temporarily disabled the forced indexing tool in October 2020, but it is now available again.
Keep in mind that indexing is not instantaneous. If you’ve created a new site, it is unlikely to get indexed overnight. Moreover, if your site does not meet Google’s criteria, it may not be indexed at all.
Whether you are a simple website owner or internet marketer, the desire to improve indexing efficiency is quite logical. Below we provide tips to help you with this.
OPTIMIZE YOUR ROBOTS.TXT FILE
Robots.txt is a special file that tells search robots whether a site should be indexed or not. This file is also recognized by the search engines Bing and Yahoo. With Robots.txt, you can also prioritize pages to avoid overloading your site with requests. While it may seem like the job of technical specialists to work with this file, it all comes down to making sure that a particular page is available for crawling. Use the On-Page SEO Checker service to make it easier to work with this file. This service provides all the necessary information on the current settings in the Robots.txt file, including information about whether the page is blocked for viewing by search robots or not.
CHECK THE SPELLING OF THE SEO TAGS
SEO tags are an additional tool for managing the work of search robots. There are two categories of SEO tags that need optimization:
- Noindex tags are tags that prohibit search robots from indexing pages. If some pages on your site are not indexed, they may contain no index tags. Check for the following two tags:
- Meta tags. Look for “noindex page” warnings to find out which pages on your site contain noindex meta tags. Remove the noindex meta tag to allow robots to index the page.
- X-Robots-Tag. To see which pages contain X-Robots-Tags in their HTML titles, go to Google Search Console. Use the URL validation tool described above. See what will be the answer to the question regarding the availability of permission to index the page. If “No: ‘noindex’ detected in ‘X-Robots-Tag’ HTTP header” is displayed, then there is an X-Robots-Tag on the page that needs to be removed.
- Canonical tags are tags that indicate to search engine crawlers the preferred version of a web page for indexing. If there is no canonical tag, the search robot will consider that the current version of the page is the only one and is preferred for indexing. If the canonical tag is present, the crawler will decide that there is an alternative version of the current page and will not index it (even if another version of the page does not actually exist). Use Google’s URL Inspection Tool to check for canonical tags on pages. It will display the message “alternative page with a canonical tag” if a canonical tag is present.
RECHECK YOUR SITE ARCHITECTURE TO MAKE SURE INTERNAL LINKING IS CORRECT AND EFFECTIVE BACKLINKS ARE AVAILABLE
Internal linking allows search engines to find your web pages faster. Pages with no links are commonly referred to as “orphans”. They are rarely indexed. The correct architecture described in the sitemap provides correct internal linking. The sitemap XML file contains all the information about the content of your site. With it, you can identify pages that have no links. Use the tips below to improve your linking efficiency:
- Eliminate internal links leading to the page with the no-follow tag. If a search robot comes across nofollow tags, it tells Google to exclude the target link from the database (Index). To avoid this, simply remove the nofollow tags.
- Add highly rated internal links. As mentioned above, search engine crawlers find new content as they crawl your site. Internal links speed up this process. Improve your indexing speed by using internal links to high-ranking pages.
- Generate quality backlinks. Taking into account the new algorithms of the search engine, it determines the importance of pages and the level of trust in them by the presence of links from authoritative resources. Backlinks are a signal to Google that such a page should be indexed.
Content quality affects both the indexing process and the ranking process. To improve the performance of your website content, remove low-quality and low-traffic pages. By doing this, you will force the search engine crawlers to focus on more valuable pages, making more efficient use of the time allotted to you to crawl your site. Each of your pages should have a certain value for your visitors. In addition, it must contain unique content. Duplicate content is a red flag for the search engine.
ANALYZE KEY SEO METRICS FOR YOUR WEBSITE