How to get Google to crawl your site and rank your content
Specifics of how to get Google to crawl your site, index it, and rank your content.
February 10 · 7 min read
After launching a site, many webmasters toss their crawl budget out of the window.
They believe that adding a fresh stream of content to their site is all it takes for them to start ranking in search and SERP (the little snippets the Google bots give you in the search results explaining your query).
As long as you keep producing targeted content using keywords and valuable information, you’ll eventually start indexing and ranking in Google and Bing searches, right?
The reality is whether you’re a blogger or e-Commerce professional, you’ll eventually run into some problems with the crawling and indexing of your site.
If you launch a new domain and spend hundreds of hours building and publishing top-quality content, your site deserves to rank. However, search engines might not feel the same way.
One day, you open your analytics platform and notice your fresh content isn’t even ranking in the top 100 for new posts. Your site is beginning to lose its keyword ranking, and your site is falling in search results.
What’s going on?
There could be several reasons why your site is underperforming. Issues with new domain registration, poor technical design and structure of your website, and thin, low-quality content might be the problem.
Your sudden slide down the search rankings could also be due to changes in the Google search algorithm, or your site could have a problematic error that’s confusing the crawler bots.
Google’s index is home to hundreds of billions of webpages, and webmasters need to prepare a crawl budget to stay ahead of the competition and rank in search.
This post unpacks the specifics of how to get Google to crawl your site, index it, and rank your content.
Track the crawl status on your site using the Google Search Console
If your website crawl status is experiencing errors, it’s a sign that there’s a deeper problem with your site. Webmasters must check on crawl status every 30 to 60-days. This strategy ensures you stay ahead of potential errors impacting the overall performance of your site.
Using Google webmaster tools like the Google Search Console can help you check up on your site’s health. This action is the first step of any SEO strategy. If you don’t complete it properly, the rest of your efforts are for nothing if your webpages don’t index.
Log into your Google Search Console, and you’ll see the crawl status in the sidebar under the index tab. If you need to stop the crawler from accessing a 404-error page or a temporary page redirection, you’ll provide these instructions through the search console.
It’s worth noting that choosing a 410 parameter activates the nuclear option, removing the page entirely from the index. If you want to get it back, you’ll have to go through a recrawl, and that might not be successful.
Removing error pages is vital to the successful crawling and indexing of your website.
What are the common errors encountered by crawlers?
If you’re dealing with a crawl error on your site, it might be a simple fix, or it could be the result of a more significant technical issue with your website. Some of the common crawl errors we encounter with new pages are the following.
- Server errors
- DNS errors
- 404 errors
- Robots.txt errors
For effective diagnosis of these site errors, use the “Fetch as Google” tool. This web tool gives you a view of your website from Google’s perspective. You’ll see how Google interprets your new site, homepage, backlinks, and all other aspects of your site as Google crawls through it.
The Google URL Inspection Tool is also useful during your page assessment. It gives you data on any indexed page, showing you Information like structured data errors, AMP errors, and any other indexing issues facing your website and pages.
Resolving server errors requires the assistance of diagnostic tools designed to pick up errors at the server level. Some of the more common server errors affecting your crawl status include the following.
- No response
- Connect timeout
- Connect failed
- Connection refused
Server errors are typically a temporary issue, and your hosting provider should resolve it for you timeously. Ensuring you’re using a good host and reliable hosting package keeps these errors out of the crawling process.
Robots.txt errors are the most challenging to resolve. If the robots.txt file returns a 200 or 404-error, the search engine fails to retrieve the requested file.
You can submit a robots.txt sitemap for a solution or avoid the protocol entirely by choosing to “noindex” pages manually, allowing you to isolate pages problematic to the crawl.
The prompt resolution of these errors ensures all target pages get crawled and indexed when the bots show up the next time to crawl your website.
Ensure your website templates are mobile compatible
With social media becoming a dominant force in communications and more people moving to mobile devices to browse online, your website must have mobile compatibility.
Changes to the Google algorithm included the establishment of the mobile-first index. As a result of the shift, webmasters must optimize all sites for mobile-friendly user experiences on the mobile index.
Fortunately, desktop copy indexes and displays under the mobile index, should a mobile-compatible copy not exist. Unfortunately, that’s going to affect the ranking of your site and pages adversely.
As the site owner, there are several tweaks you can implement to make your site mobile friendly.
- Implement responsive mobile-friendly web design on your pages
- Insert meta tags in your content
- Tag your pages using the AMP cache
- Optimize and compress video files and images for faster loading times
- Reduce the size of the elements in your on-page user-interface
After making the changes to your site and pages, check the alterations using the Google Pagespeed Insights tool.
Page speed is a critical ranking factor with the search bots, affecting how fast they crawl through your website.
Update your content strategy and start publishing frequently
Your content strategy is the lifeblood of your online business and marketing strategy. You have a better chance of the search engines crawling your site more often if you’re producing top-quality content regularly.
Marketers need to ensure they maintain a consistent posting schedule that matches their strategy and available resources. Incorporate link building into your strategy, and give your content more authority during the crawling and indexing process.
Adopting a frequent publishing schedule signals to the bots that your site is improving and consistently publishing new content users might find interesting. This action signals the bots to crawl your site more often, helping you reach your intended audience.
Submit sitemaps to search engines
One of the best indexation tips we can offer you is to submit a new website sitemap to the Google Search Console and Bing Webmaster Tools.
Create an XML version with a sitemap generator, or do it manually in the Google Search Console by tagging your canonical edited version of each webpage containing duplicate content.
Deep Link content to your isolated webpages
Do you have isolated or error-ridden pages on your site or a subdomain preventing the search engines from crawling your site?
Get it indexed with a link on an external domain. We covered this linking strategy a bit earlier, but it’s worth repeating. Placing a backlink on an authority site makes your pages more appealing to the search engines.
Make sure you review your internal links and eliminate any nofollow links in your backlinking strategy. Adopting these best practices ensures the search engines index your pages faster.
We recommend avoiding syndicated content for this purpose. The search engines ignore syndicated content, and it might flag duplicate content if you don’t canonicalize it effectively.
Minimize on-page resources and speed up page loading times
Forcing the search engines to crawl through unoptimized images chews up your crawl budget quickly, preventing the crawlers from indexing it as often.
Webmasters must optimize webpages for speed and mobile compatibility. Minimizing your on-page resources enables compression and caching, allowing the crawlers to finish with your pages faster.
Fix any no-index tags
It makes sense to attach “noindex” tags to your duplicate pages or pages designed to execute a specific action with users during your site development phase.
You can identify the pages on your site with noindex tags using a free web tool like Screaming Frog. We recommend the Yoast plugin for WordPress sites, allowing you to switch your pages from noindex to index tags seamlessly.
Set your crawl rate with the search bots
Google Console also allows you to customize the speed of the crawl rate. You have the option of speeding it up or slowing it down to stop the crawlers adversely affecting your site’s ranking.
This strategy gives you time to make changes or migrate your site before the bots get around to crawling it.
Eliminate any duplicate website content
If your site has significant amounts of duplicate content, it will negatively affect your ranking with the crawlers. It also slows the crawl rate, eating up your crawl budget.
Eliminate these issues by placing a canonical tag on all pages that require indexing. Another option is to block the pages from indexing completely.
Remember to optimize your headers and meta tags on every page to stop the search crawlers from mistaking it as duplicate content.
Block any pages you don’t want Google to crawl
If there is an instance where you need to block the search engines from crawling a web page, use a noindex tag or place the URL of the page in a robots.txt file. If you have no other option, you can choose to delete the page outright.
This strategy helps the crawlers operate on your site more efficiently, reducing your crawl budget expenses. As a result, your crawl budget drops dramatically, and your ranking improves.
Use B12 for your website build – Get fast crawling and ranking of your website
SEO is a complex subject, and you’ll probably need the assistance of an expert to help you overcome the challenges associated with the web crawlers indexing your site.
Hiring a high-quality developer and freelance writer for your SEO projects costs you thousands of dollars, and that’s not feasible when you’re a startup.
Sure, you could study Google Analytics and the other tools and strategies you need to resolve these issues and get fast crawling and indexing of your website and landing pages.
However, it will take you some time to study and implement the knowledge you learn. If you have no experience with coding or working with HTML, you might find it an overwhelming task to do everything yourself.
That costs you money and time. We bet you have more pressing matters to deal with than spending your time learning to code.
If you want indexable webpages and an attractive website design that indexes fast, work with B12. B12 is a comprehensive end-to-end website solution for your marketing needs.
B12 utilizes AI-assisted design to build your site faster than the competition. You get a domain name and hosting included with your package, as well as SEO features.
B12 builds a functional and effective site that’s easy for web crawlers to analyze and index. The B12 team ensures your site is error-free, offering you maintenance on your site.
When the B12 team finds an error, they notify you in your dashboard, and you authorize the fixes with one click. There’s no need to request indexing or re-index any of your pages; B12 takes care of it for you.
There’s no need to study for months to understand the principles behind crawling and indexing your site. B12 gives you a managed solution that boosts your organic traffic.
Get the search bots to crawl and index your site faster with B12. Visit the official B12 website right now, and request your free draft of an AI-assisted website template for your website.