THE CATFISH BLOG
It could be that your site is not properly indexed. This can often happen when you have moved domain, or if you have added a Secure Socket Layer (SSL). Follow the steps below to check.
Note: When setting up your site on either Search Console or Analytics, ensure that you add all variations of your site domain – http and https, www and non-www. When indexing, make sure you’re on the page for your preferred domain, and if you have an SSL, this MUST be one of the https URLs!
If you are not already using it, set up Google Analytics – you will need to add the Global Site Tag to your site’s HTML if you haven’t got analytics already – we can set this up for you if you provide us with the tag. Once you’re set up and verified with Google Analytics, you can easily set up Google Search Console (search.google.com/search-console), verifying through Analytics.
If this is your first time using Search Console for the site, then there will normally be no data yet – data collection begins when you add your site to your account. In this case, the best thing to do is go straight to requesting indexing by Google – skip the next paragraph!
If you’ve been on Search Console before, if it was set up ages ago and is just gathering dust, or if you already had Analytics and have just now linked it to Search Console, this is for you. Navigate to Status > Index Coverage – if your ‘Valid’ category shows 0, or a very low number, and the ‘Excluded’ category shows 10+, then requesting to index your site is necessary.
To request indexing, you’ll need to go onto the ‘old’ version of Search Console, there should be a link to do so in the menu on the left. Once you’re on the old version, navigate to Crawl > Fetch as Google > Fetch > Request indexing. Once you’ve hit the request button, you’ll need to confirm you’re not a robot, and then select the option ‘Crawl this URL and its direct links’, then click ‘Go’. It’ll generally take 24-48 hours for the crawl data to appear, so just hold tight and check back in a couple of days! What you should notice when you go back to check, is that the ‘Valid’ category should have approximately the number of pages on your site. The ‘Excluded’ category may have grown substantially – don’t worry! This is generally because there are a lot of links which are not actually content pages, but direct links to pieces of content (i.e. a logo or photo) within your actual pages.
Now, all your public pages should appear in Google search results, not just your homepage!
You shouldn’t have to manually request indexing often, but there are some points where you should manually request it if:
And here's a video to help you find your way around.
There is so much more that Search Console and Analytics can do for you and your site, it is definitely worth spending the time to familiarise yourself with them.
If this all terrifies you a bit too much, get in touch! Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The next thing to think about is your meta descriptions – more on that later.