That’s it! You have just posted your beautiful SEO content on the web. Now, all that’s left is for it to be indexed and positioned on Google to generate traffic and customers. However, after several days, weeks, or even months, you might discover that your page has still not been indexed.
If you navigate to the coverage section of your Search Console, you may notice that Google has explored but decided not to index some of your pages. According to Google’s article (link provided), pages may be excluded from the index due to poor quality. So, what can you do in this case? The solution is to modify your page to improve its quality, as evaluated by Google, and increase the chances of it being indexed.
The real reason why your page is not indexed
During the exploration process, known as crawling, Google will visualize your web page as it should appear in a typical web browser. However, this process is more complex than it seems, and Google will create a copy of your page on its servers to index it.
Discovering and indexing a page requires resources from Google. It’s important to understand that indexing your content is not free, and Google will try to prioritize what it keeps in its index and what it rejects. They aim to avoid wasting resources on useless or potentially harmful web pages for internet users.
Before being indexed, your page will undergo several tests to determine its quality. In a Search Engine Roundtable article (https://www.seroundtable.com/google-pass-quality-checks-for-indexing-31309.html), Barry Schwartz tells the story of a webmaster on Reddit who was confused as to why much of his site was not indexed. Gary Illyes explains that the content must pass quality tests before being indexed.
Therefore, the quality of your page, and more broadly, your website, is the most critical factor in whether it will be indexed or not. If Google does not consider your page to be of sufficient quality, it will not be indexed and will not be visible to anyone.
The 3 main solutions for Google to index your page
In the previous section, we discussed the importance of the quality of your page and website in determining whether Google will index your content. If you’ve read and understood the previous section, you’ll know that your page likely has an intrinsic quality issue that needs to be addressed.
Since each website is unique, providing recommendations that will work for everyone can be challenging. When working with my clients, I carefully evaluate each web page and provide tailored, specific recommendations to improve their content quality.
However, I have observed several recurring issues that my clients face. In the next section, I will outline some of these common problems and provide suggestions for addressing them.
1. Add more relevant and useful content
The quality of your content is the most crucial factor in determining the quality of your web page. Remember that Google’s primary objective is to deliver high-quality content in its search results.
Therefore, Google will not index a page if it deems the content insufficiently interesting or valuable to users. To avoid having your page categorized as “thin content,” you must create relevant and useful content.
“Thin content” refers to content with little or no value to the reader. The concept of thin content is not solely based on the word count of a page. Even a 1000-word article can be considered thin if the quality and quantity of ideas expressed are low.
Basically, you’ve done filler, and it shows.
On the other hand, it’s possible to create a highly effective and concise article that provides a solution to the user’s problem in less than 500 words.
However, creating high-quality content that ranks well on Google is challenging. I have written an article dedicated to what constitutes SEO-optimized content.
Remember that each page on your website that is intended to be indexed should be created with care and attention. It’s important to demonstrate to Google that your content is relevant, useful, and valuable to users.
2. Demonstrate a lot more EAT
If you don’t know what EAT is, you are simply ignoring the cornerstone of modern SEO.
E.A.T stands for “Expertise, Authoritativeness, Trustworthiness.”
Expertise: Google wants content that experts in their respective fields write. This means you should demonstrate your expertise by creating high-quality content and clearly indicating who wrote the content. If you are writing about health, for example, having a doctor write (or at least proofread) your content is important.
Authoritativeness: This refers to the authority of your website. Are other experts in your field citing your work as a source? This is closely associated with the concept of backlinks. If no one is citing your work, it’s probably not good enough to cite. If your site doesn’t attract natural backlinks after a while, it may be a sign of poor quality.
Trustworthiness refers to the confidence that users and Google can have in your site. To gain trust, you should be transparent about who is behind your website, have a good reputation online, and clearly indicate if you are using affiliate links. It’s important to avoid deceiving your users at all costs.
For sensitive topics like health and money, it’s important to demonstrate enough EAT. Google’s Your Money, Your Life category is particularly vigilant about EAT for these topics. If you don’t demonstrate enough EAT, Google may not index your content.
3. Improve the quality of your site in general
If your website has a proven track record of high-quality content, Google is more likely to quickly index your new content. Conversely, if your website’s overall quality is low, there is little chance that Google will index a particular page, even if it is of excellent quality.
For new websites without an established reputation, it is important to focus on the individual quality of each page to maximize your chances of quick indexing. By accumulating quality pages, you can improve the website’s overall score, making it easier for future articles to be indexed.
Some bulk tips to get your page indexed
- Pay attention to grammar and spelling
- Check the structure of the titles (tag H1, H2, H3, etc.)
- Avoid false or misleading titles
- Avoid objectively false information and other fake news
- Cite your sources when talking about a scientific subject
- Avoid putting too many affiliate links and advertisements
- Avoid duplicate and/or copied content from other sources
- Create backlinks to the pages you want to be indexed
If your website is not getting indexed by Google, there may be a quality issue that needs to be addressed. This doesn’t necessarily mean that there is a technical problem preventing indexing. It simply means that Google may not consider your website to be of sufficient quality to index.
It’s important to evaluate your website’s content and structure to identify areas that need improvement. Once you’ve addressed any quality issues, your website’s chances of getting indexed by Google should improve.