November 16, 2022

How Long Will Google Take To Index My Content?

How Long Will Google Take To Index My Content?

 

We all want our content to rank well on Google.

After all, that’s how we know that our business pages stand the best chance of being seen.

And to rank well, they first need to be indexed by Google.

So, how can we use our SEO skills to ensure our new content is indexed? And how long does Google take to do this?

Let’s take a look…

What Is SEO?

The world of organic SEO can be mystifying.

Why do we need to think about it? How can it help my website?

If you boil it down, the key goal for organic SEO is to help improve your website’s ranking on Search Engine Result Pages (SERPs) and therefore drive traffic and (hopefully) revenue.

Many factors can influence a page's ranking (we've previously looked at the six most important), but content creation is up there.

How Does Fresh Content Help SEO?

You might have heard from SEO professionals that regular fresh content can work wonders for your website.

But why is this?

The benefits of content are mainly two-fold:

It tells human visitors that your site is well–maintained and that you know what you're talking about. Establishing a brand trust can help increase consumer confidence in your business and therefore build brand loyalty going forward.

It tells search engines that your website is catering for your target audience, and – again – if your content is relevant and engaging, they will want to ensure it is listed highly on their result pages.

For search engines to understand the impact of your content, they first need to find it.

This process is called ‘indexing’.

What Is Indexing?

You may be forgiven for thinking that once you publish content on your website, people and search engines will immediately find it, and you'll start reaping the rewards for all your hard work.

Well, yes and no.

If you can see it online, that does mean that other humans will too. But only if they know to look for it.

Search engines will (eventually) find it. But this can potentially take weeks or even months.

To help speed up the process, they need a little more instruction to know that the content is there and start ranking it for search query relevance.

How Do I Index New Content?

There are many ways to help speed up the indexing process.

We won’t go through all of them here, but the most common method is to use Google Search Console (GSC) to submit your indexing request.

If you don’t have access to GSC (you will need a Google Analytics account), talk to our team here at Orca to help set you up.

This process alerts Google to your new content and prompts its spiders to crawl your site.

However, to quote Google's support pages, "Crawling and indexing may not happen immediately.”

How Long Does Indexing Take?

Aha - the $64,000 question.

To give you some perspective, the Google index contains hundreds of billions of web pages. It takes up over 100 million gigabytes of memory.

That means its spiders have got a heavy WORKLOAD.

And no one really knows how long it takes for Google to crawl and index a new (or amended) URL.

It can take minutes, hours, weeks or even months.

But my content will definitely be indexed, right? RIGHT?!

Well, maybe.

Google has admitted that not every page processed will be indexed.

Perhaps understandably, the search engine giant doesn't want its index to include pages of low quality, duplicate content, or pages unlikely to be looked for by users.

Quality SEO Content

We’ve spoken before about the importance of producing relevant, quality content to help drive traffic.

This is absolutely relevant when it comes to helping increase the chance (and potential speed of which) of your content getting indexed.

Here are some ‘best practice’ tips to help the process along:

Make Sure Your Page Is Indexable

There are two critical rules to follow to keep your pages indexable:

  • You should avoid blocking them by robots.txt or the noindex directive.
  • You should mark the canonical version of a given content piece with a canonical tag.

Submit A Sitemap

You can submit a sitemap to Google Search Console. Doing so makes it easier for Googlebot to discover your pages.

Include internal links

Getting your existing pages to link back to the new content (and vice versa) tells Google a bit more about your site's hierarchy and the most important pages within it.

The more important the page is perceived to be, the greater the chance of crawling and therefore being indexed.

Ask Google To Recrawl Your Pages

You can request a crawl of individual URLs using Google Search Console.

While it still won't guarantee indexing, it's another way to ensure Google knows your page exists.

Summary

Trying to predict how long Google will take to index your content is a bit like trying to predict the winner of the football World Cup.

Typically indexing occurs hours to weeks after publication.

We hope this helps at least paint a picture of the process involved behind the scenes with indexing.

If you would like help with your organic SEO content, contact our team today via hello@orcaonline.co.uk

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