Failure to index a site has numerous negative consequences for the company or professional: finding out how to recognize the main indexing problems and correct them promptly. Creating a website is just the first step in your online adventure. Several steps are required to reach the desired audience, producing traffic, Visibility and conversions. The first of the requirements for any website to succeed is that its pages are indexed by crawlers of search engines engaged in crawling the world wide web every day. For a site to appear among the SERP results, it must first be noticed, analyzed and indexed by Google bots and other search engines.
Although the indexing work constantly proceeds every day, it is not evident that the ongoing work of web automatisms correctly processes a site. SEO indexing problems and errors can prevent search engines from carrying out their work. Task effectively. Failure to index a site has numerous negative consequences for the company or professional who created it as part of its digital assets. Therefore, Knowing the main indexing problems is essential to identify and correct them promptly.
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Indexing: Is It A Problem Of Time?
Let’s start by talking about a small test that can be performed to understand if a site is indexed or not. It is sufficient to type the words “site: domain name. xx” in the Google search bar, replacing the existing domain to be tested for the domain name. xx. In this way, all the pages of that portal indexed by the search engine will be shown: if the site or a portion of it does not appear, it means that indexing problems are actually in progress.
Suppose the site is recently built, however. In that case, the non-indexing can be a physiological phenomenon because the timing with which Google scans the web in search of new elements is not always swift. It could even take weeks before the crawler notices and adds to its lists a new portal. On the other hand, you are sure that the time factor can no longer cause the non-indexing.
It is necessary to start evaluating what controls and improvements can be implemented to resolve the situation. Connecting the website to Google Search Console is an almost mandatory step for anyone who wants to keep all information relating to the trend monitoring. For example, it can also be used to understand which pages are indexed by the search engine and which errors are found in this sense.
Sending The Sitemap
A helpful practice to speed up the indexing procedure is creating and sending an XML sitemap of your website to Google. Google Search Console can also be beneficial in this case, as it allows you to show the sitemap to the search engine in a few easy steps. Generally, within 48 hours, Google reads the sitemap and scans all the pages it contains: this is an effective method to “attract the attention” of crawlers and speed up the indexing process, allowing the search engine to read, clear and correct the different portions of the site.
Quality And Uniqueness Of The Contents
It is now known that Google, like its colleagues, tends to give a lot of importance to the quality of the content published on their pages. Even a lack of indexing could also depend on quality standards that are not acceptable for the search engine. What is meant by quality content? Generally, it is assumed that Google gives its preference to well-created and concretely helpful content for the users to whom it is addressed: in fact, every online publication should respond to specific needs of the target audience, satisfy their questions and provide clear, complete and original information.
Another decisive problem may concern the uniqueness of the contents. Often on large sites and especially on e-commerce, there are blocks of identical or very similar content (product listings, catalogs, etc.). In this situation, it is easy for the search engine to index only one of the available pages, considering the others are substantially identical. What to do then? The most used solution is to indicate to the search engine crawlers which is the most authoritative page among the similar ones, making it, in technical terms, “canonical” and assigning it greater representativeness than the others. In this way, he invites Google to index the site consistent with how it was designed and its functionality.
WordPress And The Tick To Be Corrected
One of the most common errors, but the easiest to solve, occurs when a website was created with WordPress, one of the most used and appreciated CMS on the market: a small check-in its settings could suggest to crawlers not to index the website. How to notice it? Just log in as an administrator to the site, look in the Reading settings, and then the Visibility to search engines option. Here is an entry that says, “Discourage search engines from indexing this site”: removing the flag from this indication allows crawlers to crawl the web content on the WP site again.
The Importance Of The Robots.txt File
Another critical factor that could lead to website indexing issues is the robot.txt file and associated settings. The robot.txt is a fundamental text file characterized by encoding with Unicode characters (UTF-8), which is saved in the leading directory and contains all the indications for accessing the site or its restrictions, aimed precisely at search engine web crawlers.
This file is of crucial importance: if configured incorrectly, it could, for example, prevent bots from accessing the website or specific sections of it, thus limiting its ability to be crawled and indexed correctly. If a spider-like Googlebot cannot analyze a particular page or a portion of the site, it will therefore not be able to insert it in its index, and it will not be able to show it in search results. When it is considered necessary to hide a part of the site from crawlers, it is good to pay close attention to the operations performed on the robot.txt file. It is advisable to check and meticulously test the actions performed.
Settings In The Robots Meta Tags
In addition to the robot.txt file, meta tags can also provide information and instructions to search engine bots. While the robot.txt file provides general and extended education, the metatags act on the site’s pages and inform the spiders how to interact with specific content. When not properly managed, even meta tags can create many indexing problems. Among the most common and insidious errors is the incorrect setting of instructions Quai noindex or nofollow: the first can prevent bots from indexing a page and showing it among the results of the SERP.
The second instead suggests to the spider not to follow a specific link from the scanned page that points to internal or external resources to the site. These meta tags are handy for managing an online project when used rationally. On the contrary, they could give rise to many problems, which it will be imperative to go and identify and correct one by one.
Manual Actions Are Never Correct
It is also possible that the non-indexing of a site is due to previous penalties that have never been considered and adequately resolved. Google reviewers may apply manual actions when they believe that its pages do not comply with the “quality standards for webmasters”. These events cause a significant loss of ranking and could also make the site or some sections disappear from the search results.
To verify the presence of these actions, it is possible once again to use Google Search Console. From there, you can identify the manual steps carried out and make the appropriate corrections to ensure that Google reconsiders the site and eliminates any penalties. Analyzing in-depth and regularly the possible indexing errors is therefore essential if you do not want to run the risk of undermining the effort put into creating the website, in the management of Search Engine Optimization and the creation of valuable content.