Google advises the ‘Discovered – Currently not indexed’ status in Search Console’s Index Coverage report can last forever as there’s no guarantee every page on the web gets indexed.
This is stated during the Google Search Central SEO office-hours hangout recorded on February 18.
An individual named Davor Bobek joins the livestream to ask Google’s Search Advocate John Mueller about the ‘Discovered – Currently not indexed’ message and how long it can be expected to last.
That message means the page was found by Google, but not crawled yet.
There are various reasons why Google wouldn’t crawl a page, despite knowing it exists.
It could be due to technical reasons. Google may have tried to crawl the URL but the site was overloaded. If that’s the case then Google will reschedule the crawl for a later date.
Another reason for the ‘Discovered – Currently not indexed’ message could be because the website doesn’t meet a certain threshold for quality, in Google’s view.
Google doesn’t make any guarantees to crawl and index every webpage.
Even though Google is one of the biggest companies in the world, it has finite resources when it comes to computing power.
The computing resources Google uses to crawl the web are reserved for websites considered valuable and high quality.
To that end, the ‘Discovered – Currently not indexed’ status can possibly last forever.
Mueller says as much in his response, which you can read in the next section.
Google Index Coverage Report: ‘Discovered – Currently Not Indexed’
When asked how long webpages can remain discovered but not indexed, Mueller says:
“That can be forever. It’s something where we just don’t crawl and index all pages. And it’s completely normal for any website that we don’t have everything indexed.
And, especially with a newer website if you have a lot of content, then I would assume it’s expected that a lot of the new content for a while will be discovered and not indexed.
And then over time usually it kind of shifts over, like well it’s actually crawled, or it’s actually indexed, when we see that there’s actually value in focusing more on the website itself. But it’s not guaranteed.”
So, what can you do if you have a number of pages that Google has discovered but not indexed?
Rather than leaving the content as-is and hoping it will get indexed one day, you should continue working on your website to improve its overall quality.
“So from that point of view it’s not that I would say you should just wait a little bit and suddenly things will get better with crawling and indexing. It’s more that, like continue working on the website and making sure that our systems recognize that there’s value in crawling and indexing more and then over time we will crawl and index more.”
Hear Mueller’s full response in the video below.
For more insight into how quality issues can prevent content from getting indexed, see the following articles:
- Google: Sites Need To Be Worthwhile To Be Indexed
- Google: It’s Normal for Pages of a Site to Not Be Indexed
- Google Will Likely Index Content That’s Important
Featured Image: IB Photography/Shutterstock