Weekly SEO news: 7 September 2021
Welcome to the latest issue of our newsletter. Here are the latest website promotion and Internet marketing tips for you.

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Andre Voget, Johannes Selbach, Axandra CEO

1. Discovering, evaluating and indexing: how Google ranks your web pages

If you want to be listed on Google, Google must be able to discover, evaluate, and index your content. What's the difference between these steps and how can you facilitate the process?

Discovering, evaluating and indexing: how Google ranks your web pages

1. Web page discovery

Google must be able to find your web pages somehow. In general, new pages need at least one link from another web page before Google can find that page.

When you publish a new page on your existing website, it's usually enough to link to the new page from one of your existing pages. If you have a brand new website, you need links from external websites.

Without links from other pages, it's unlikely that Google will discover your web pages. The better the linking web pages are, the faster Google will discover your pages.

2. Web page evaluation (this is where things can go wrong)

After discovering your web pages, Google will evaluate them. Google will parse the HTML code of your pages. There are many things that can go wrong at this point:

  • Your web page might deliver the wrong HTTP status code. If your web page looks fine but sends a 4xx or 5xx HTTP status code to search engines, then Google won't consider your page.
  • Your web page might contain unwanted indexing instructions. For example, the page might contain a canonical URL that points to a different page, or it contains a robots meta tag that tells search engines to ignore the pages. In both cases, Google won't consider your page.
  • Google might not be able to see the content of your pages. If your web pages need JavaScript to display the content, chances are that Google won't see everything of the page. Google might also think that the page is a low quality page because it doesn't contain much content.
  • Your web pages might contain low quality content. If the page does not contain many words, or if the page contains content that Google finds dubious, Google might not consider your page.
  • If your web page is password protected, Google won't be able to evaluate the content.
  • If your robots.txt file does not allow search engines to access the pages, Google won't evaluate your pages.

There are many things that can go wrong when Google evaluates your web pages. Use the website audit tool in SEOprofiler to remove all errors that can have a negative impact on your rankings.

3. Indexing

When Google has evaluated your content, it will add your pages to the index (if there haven't been any problems). To check if Google has indexed a particular page of your website, enter site:https://www.yourwebsite.com/page-url/ in Google's search form (replace everything after site: with the actual URL of your page).

The actual positions of your web pages depend on many different signals

Being in Google's index doesn't mean that your website will get a particular position in the search results. The position of your web pages depends on many different factors. The most important factors are the relevance of your content to the search term and the quality of the links that point to the page.

You can optimize the relevance of your web pages with the Top 10 Optimizer tool in SEOprofiler. You can optimize the links that point to your website with the Link Profiler tool in SEOprofiler.

Google ranking overview

SEOprofiler offers many more SEO tools that help you to improve the position of your web pages in Google's search results. You can try SEOprofiler here:

Try SEOprofiler risk-free

2. Internet marketing news of the week

GoogleGoogle's Page Experience Update rollout is complete

"The page experience rollout is complete now, including updates to Top Stories mobile carousel. Changes to Google News app have started to rollout as well and will be complete in a week or so."

John Mueller: we don't have subdomain-region mapping

"We don't have subdomain -> region mapping. I'd recommend checking if it's really a problem & for which pages, and then adding hreflang for those pages. Hreflang can include multiple countries. Also, add a banner for users from the "wrong" region (don't redirect or block)."

John MuellerGoogle: don't put too much content on category pages

"Sometimes adding too much content will 'dilute' the value of those category pages. [...] avoid making it so that you have like a Wikipedia article on the bottom of your pages. [...] It's something where you can provide a little bit of context but you don't need to rank for every keyword in the galaxy."

Google: changing IP addresses might impact crawl rates

"[Changing IP addresses] It's fine. No worries. At most you might see a temporary change in crawling rate (as Google's systems figure out how quickly the new server can be crawled), but otherwise it's a non-issue."

+++ SEARCH +++ ENGINE +++ NEWS +++ TICKER +++

  • John Mueller: Googlebot doesn't randomly check sitemap-like URLs.
  • Google News is removing functionality in Publisher Center relating to feed-based article rendering.
  • Bing Content submission API is now open to all webmasters.
  • Discussion: Google Maps listing suspended for suspicious activity / quality issues (but we didn't do it).
  • Google says it has fixed two frustrating Android Auto location issues.

3. Previous articles