Why isn’t Google indexing my site? Is that a situation you’re currently dealing with? Don’t worry. It happens to a good number. Several reasons could cause such a predicament.
This article explores some more common reasons and how to solve them.
Here is Why Google Isn’t Indexing Your Site
If your website is new, you may want to wait a few days or weeks before worrying about it not showing up on Google. You may, however, want to keep reading if your site has been up for a while and still doesn’t feature on Google.
1. Site Is Not Mobile-Friendly
Your site should be easy to use on mobile devices. Otherwise, it’ll make your rankings drop. Your rankings will be affected even if you have high-quality content.
Optimizing for mobile entails incorporating responsive design. You can use CSS Media Queries and fluid grids to make navigation smooth. Run your site through the Google Mobile-Friendly Test to confirm if your changes made a difference.
Photo by Tyler Lastovich
2. Site Isn’t User-Friendly
Google takes user experience very seriously, enough to lower your ranking if your website offers users an unpleasant experience. It should be easy for your visitors to find whatever content they’re looking for with seamless navigation.
You don’t want people getting frustrated or confused while moving around your website. Complex linking hierarchies, too many ads, or a website that takes forever to load all put your site at a disadvantage.
- Where there are related articles, make sure they link back to each other for easier access.
- Reduce the clutter on your website so visitors can enjoy the content without unnecessary distractions.
- Arrange the articles or blog posts according to categories.
3. Website Has No Domain Name
Not having a domain name means visitors are typing in an IP address instead of a domain name and getting redirected to access your site. Confirm whether your address looks like “https://www.sleekwebdesigns.com/”
Add 301 redirects from the “www” version to the right domain. When searching for your site name, you want people to end up on your physical domain.
4. Poor Quality Content
Google is where people go to find relevant and quality information. If your content doesn’t meet these criteria, indexing, and therefore ranking, becomes a problem.
Make your articles engaging and ensure they are filled with useful information. Where there are links, confirm they lead to the right content and that the information is still relevant. This way, you build authority on the subject matter, earning you more traffic.
5. Slow-Loading Website
A slow site is a nuisance for your visitors and a liability for Google, making it less likely to appear somewhere prominent. Different reasons could cause slow speeds, including heavy media, too much content for browsers to handle, or even old servers.
The solutions will depend on the cause. They include:
- Take advantage of Google’s Page Speed Insights. This free tool does a content analysis for both desktop and mobile versions of a webpage. It shows page speed scores and highlights specific areas that could benefit from improvement.
- After implementing the above solution, you can have targeted interventions such as compressing videos and images or switching to dedicated servers.
The goal is to get page speed as close to 100 as possible.
6. No Sitemap
A sitemap is an XML list of every page on the website. It shows Google how your content is structured and makes crawling and indexing easier. If your site isn’t already indexed, Google is rummaging in the dark with your content, and that isn’t ideal.
Create a sitemap! It’ll also improve your SEO.
Photo by FreeBoilerGrants
7. Website Has Bad SEO
Technical SEO is a necessity for your website. Search is dynamic and continues to be integrated into every possible device, and SEO seeks to tap into this to drive high-quality organic traffic.
Problems with SEO vary widely, and so do the solutions.
Problem: Robots.txt files may have noindex or nofollow tags. These tags signal Googlebot not to crawl and index a site. They’re usually used when a website is still under construction, but the developer may forget to remove them.
Solution: These tags are individual to pages. You’ll have to go through every page to remove any of these tags.
Problem: Crawling and indexing are a problem.
Solution: You may have checked the ‘discourage search engines from indexing your website’ option in WordPress. Undoing this should solve the problem. If not, it could be something more complex, causing performance issues.
Fixing technical SEO may require the help of an SEO expert for effective results.
10. Redirect Loop
It could be that you made a typo, causing a redirect loop. Googlebot will go through every link in their path, but if they encounter a long winding path or an unreachable page, they stop crawling. That means there’s no chance of indexing.
Check for 301 redirects to confirm where the traffic is supposed to redirect. Confirm that any 302 redirects are set to 301 as necessary.
11. Website Previously Penalized
Shaking penalization can be difficult. You made serious mistakes and were penalized before, but Google refuses to see you’re a changed person! Well, a changed website. Are you really changed, though?
Clean up your act. Instead of starting a new domain with the same content, work on the issues that got you there. Create better content and overhaul everything. Having your site indexed again may take a while, but it’s worth the wait and work you put in.
If, for whatever reason, you can no longer access your site, be sure to follow the rules and right procedures to keep your new site from experiencing similar issues.
Look through every possible problem with technical SEO, content, and links to establish why Google isn’t indexing my site. Indexing allows other SEO elements to thrive and propel your site to the levels you envision.
It may be a tedious process, but your Google rankings and organic traffic that will follow will remind you that it wasn’t a waste of time and resources.