During a recent Google SEO office-hours Q&A session, a concerned website owner inquired about the slow indexing of their 16,000-page site.
Google Search Relations team member Gary Illyes provided a comprehensive response to the query, addressing the factors influencing indexing speed.
Quality & Popularity Matter In Indexing
Illyes explained that indexing speed depends on several factors, the most crucial being the quality of the site and its popularity on the internet.
Illyes suggested that website owners ensure their content is of the highest quality possible to increase the indexing speed.
High-quality content is essential as Google’s algorithms prioritize it when determining indexing priority. However, the definition of high-quality content extends beyond the mere text of individual articles.
According to Google’s John Mueller, the quality of content encompasses the overall website, including its layout, design, integration of images, and page speed.
These elements contribute to a positive user experience and are key factors that Google considers when assessing quality.
Utilizing Social Media To Boost Popularity
Illyes also recommended leveraging social media promotions to drive engagement and discussion about the website.
“How fast a site is indexed depends on a bunch of things, but the most important one is the quality of the site, followed by its popularity on the internet. Once you ensure that your content is the highest quality you can possibly make, try to run some social media promos perhaps so you get people to start talking about your site. That will likely help.”
Increasing a site’s popularity and online visibility makes it more likely that Google will prioritize its indexing.
Though not explicitly mentioned by Illyes, the role of backlinks shouldn’t be overlooked here.
Backlinks, links from external websites to your site, contribute to faster indexing and improved search engine rankings.
When high-quality and authoritative websites link to your content, it acts as an endorsement, signaling to search engines that your website is reliable and contains valuable content.
Backlinks also generate referral traffic, increase brand awareness, and contribute to the credibility and trustworthiness of your website.
This approach boosts indexing speed and can improve the website’s overall search engine rankings.
Technical SEO: Optimizing For Indexing Efficiency
In addition to improving the quality and popularity of a website’s content, several technical aspects impact indexing speed and search engine rankings.
Technical SEO refers to optimizing a website’s structure, code, and page speed to meet search engines’ crawling and indexing requirements. It plays a vital role in improving a website’s visibility and making it easier for search engines to index the content.
Regarding indexing, here are some technical aspects to consider:
- Site structure: A logical site structure is essential for users and search engines. It helps visitors navigate the website and assists search engines in finding and indexing content.
- Internal links: Internal links play a crucial role in guiding search engine crawlers to discover new pages and distribute PageRank, which affects the quality assessment of a page
- URL optimization: Optimizing URL structures to be clear and descriptive enhances the user experience and improves search engine understanding of page content.
Website owners can accelerate the indexing process and improve their search engine rankings by creating high-quality content and utilizing social media and link building to increase site visibility.
Featured image generated by the author using Midjourney.