Joran Hofman
March 6, 2021

What Is Indexing?

Indexing is a process carried out by search engines to store and organize the information found on the Internet to make it faster and more accessible to users. . This means that if a website is not in the index of a search engine, users simply cannot find it.

How Does Indexing Work?

First of all, you should know that search engines perform 3 main functions:

  1. Crawling: it's nothing more than searching the content on the Internet checking every URL or code you get.
  2. Indexing: this function consists of storing and organizing the content found during the crawling.
  3. Ranking: it means determining what each page is about and how it should be ranked in the search results for the relevant queries.

In the specific case of the Indexing process, when a web page or content is found by the search engine, it is added to a database called index, which includes all the URLs (or other forms of content, such as PDF files, images, videos, among others) with key data such as keywords, quality, meta tags and number of words that will serve to classify its content and display it in SERPs.

It is worth noting that search engines use different algorithms to index Internet content; for example, if you search for the word SEO in Google and Bing will show different pages with different positions in the results.

Why Is A Web Page Not Indexed?

Among several of the most common reasons that exist for a search engine not to index URL content are:

  • Robots.txt file, which tells search engines to ignore a certain content or URL.
  • Commands that tell search engines not to index a page or to index another one instead (noindex tag or canonical tag)
  • When the algorithm of a web page considers that content is of low quality or is duplicated.
  • When the URL throws the error 404.
Recommend reading: How to index your new pages via Google Search Console

How To Optimize a Website For Indexing?

When a website or content is created on the Internet, the main objective is that it is found, indexed, and classified by search engines so that it can be seen by as many users as possible.

Then, to help search engines make it easier to store and properly organize content in their index, you can do the following:

1.- Create a Site Map

A site map is nothing more than an XML document that is placed on a website's server to make a brief outline of the site's content, list the pages, and tell search engines when there are new pages and when they can revisit them to see new content and index it.

2.- Submit the Sitemap

After creating the Sitemap, a website must be sent to the various search engines to find it, crawl, index, and appear in the SERPs. 

In the case of Google, the content is included in the Google Webmaster Tool, in Optimization> Site Maps for tracking, we recommend the use of Google Analytics.

In the case of Bing the tool to use is Webmaster Tool.

3.- Send the website's URL to search engines.

Submitting a website's URL can help search engines in the tracking process.

4.- Create profiles or update them on social networks.

One of the things that search engines use to index content is links. One practice for getting more links is to create social accounts and link them to a website.

This way, search engines will notice new content and crawl it faster.

You should share that link on your website. When you add the page link to a new social network profile, share it in an update on those networks. Even if the links are nofollow, search engines will still crawl your content.

5.- Creating external content

The most important thing to optimize the indexation of a website or content is through the use of links to external content; this is the key to appear in the first places of the SERPs.

More links to a website can be achieved by creating new quality external content such as writing on another blog in the same niche, participating in other social network profiles, doing computer graphics, creating marketing agreements with influencers, making use of broken or outdated links, among others.

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