|Google not indexing site - problem or lack of patience?|
I swear I'm not a newbie LOL but I can't figure out why Google will not index the site of a new client of mine. I have done and know the following:
- I've only been working on this for a week or so therefore I am being impatient
- First thing I did was implement analytics
- then an xml sitemap. There are no problems with the sitemap and/or the site according to Google Webmaster
- no pages indexed at Google according to site:domain.com
- server headers appear to be ok - receiving 200 ok on home page
- There is some flash/hidden divs - but there is a text based sitemap at the bottom of the page. I have seen flash sites get indexed (and be visible for decent queries)
- while the site has PR0 in Google, there are few but decent incoming links and I know of plenty of other sites that can get indexed without incoming links (I didn't say visibility in the index, just indexed LOL)
- I put up a robots.txt
- the site has been around for awhile (according to internet archive / way back machine) and the domain is registered until 2011 or so
- this site is in and gets traffic from Yahoo! and MSN
- because the site gets traffic from subject related websites that are indexed in Google I am reluctant to believe I need a linking campaign
- my only goal at this point is to get the site indexed - the goal (today) is not SEO (because we need to come up with a strong website strategy before we can do SEO)
Help? Ideas? I don't want to tell them to take out Flash, etc. yet - that may come in the SEO recommendations....
Thanks to Ted, moderator, who surmises this may be due to Google doing some heavy computations this week aka Dewey Update. I will try to be more patient :-)
You're welcome - and I want to underscore that comment. One week is a pretty short time to get worried, esecdially with Google's current gyrations.
You didn't mention any googlebot visits - are you watching the server logs for that? Have you set up a Webmaster Tools account to get feedback on crawling?
>Have you set up a Webmaster Tools account to get feedback on crawling?
I have - aka the xml sitemap that I mentioned and the fact that Google has not indicated any problems (other than implying a lack of incoming links but they can bite me LOL)
>are you watching the server logs for that?
Client doesn't have or doesn't have access to server logs but I can monitor via Google Webmaster Tools - downloaded sitemap April 1 and accessed robots.txt 4 hours ago.
I am only being impatient because my experience is that I can get a site indexed in a few days usually :-) Visible for important phrases is another story LOL
itrainu - Even when Google isn't distracted, a lot depends on how prominent the site is (think PageRank and number of good inbounds), what kind of site it is, and how often the site adds new content. Your first post on this thread, eg, is already in the index... but WebmasterWorld is an extremely prominent site with a high rate of content addition.
On the other hand, new pages that a client put up at the end of February took about a week or two to be indexed, depending on where the pages were in site. This was on a site that hadn't been changed in quite a while, and has yet to do any linkbuilding. Up till now, in fact, there hasn't been much on the site that was worth linking to.
New pages on another client site with tens of thousands of visitors a month have recently been taking about a week to be indexed. I remember a few months ago that they'd show up in two or three days.
Members here with blogs have reported topical discussions getting indexed in less than an hour.
A lot depends also on where in the spidering cycle Google happens to be when your new pages go up. Right now, I'd say give your site two or three weeks, at the least. If you've added a lot of pages, they may not all get indexed in one pass.
|the site has been around for awhile |
Could it be banned? Is it a domain you just bought and was used before according to WBM?
If you bought it recently look into its history. You might find your problem.
Forgot to mention a week is not enough usually but most of the times if you get some links. These are troubled times at Google, do take that into consideration too. See what happens next week but ... if you got no links ... don't put your hopes up high.
>Could it be banned?
Anything is possible but I have not come across anything shady about the site and this is not a knowledgeable client when it comes to driving traffic so I do not believe they would have engaged in shady practices.
>Is it a domain you just bought and was used before according to WBM?
The client has owned this domain and had content on it since around '91 according to them and the way back machine / internet archive.
I started tracking stats since March 26 and so far the breakdown is 25% direct traffic, 55% referring sites and 20% search engines (Yahoo!, MSN, Ask and Live). The referring sites are all <pretty much related to> the subject of my clients website - so the incoming links are relevant and they do exist - the sites that link to the client site are even listed in Google. Further more these referring sites so far are a beter source of traffic than search referred traffic - they view more pages, they bounce less and they convert higher.
Alas I will try to get some links and wait for Google to settle down. In the meantime I keep stimulating Google daily - allow image search, "resubmit", update sitemap, get a new link, etc. etc.
[edited by: Robert_Charlton at 9:26 pm (utc) on April 5, 2008]
[edit reason] removed specifics [/edit]
If site is so old and has relevant links and is not indexed ... I would worry. I bought a bunch of expiring domains over time and the bots were crawling the same day the sites were back up. Without any new links from me.
So a site from 91 ... that gets traffic from external related links ... should not be deindexed. If googlebot did not visit you at all (raw access logs) I would consider it sort'of banned and start looking deeper in the wayback machine material.
Old sites with links don't have to call the bots ... they come crawling ;)
Quick update... The Google Webmaster Tools sitemap was uploaded March 27; downloaded (by Google) April 1 and again 18 hours ago (Apr 7). When I check Google.ca, there are no pages indexed from this clients domain but over the past 2 days we have had 2 visitors from Google according to their web analytics! Ha ha it's a positive sign - albeit small :-) The visitors are from two different countries and using relevant search terms so I know it's not internal staff "Googling themselves".
Will keep you posted! In the meantime, every day I am looking for one new link from somewhere *argh* Tedious work.