When checking your Google Webmasters Tools, also rebranded as Google Search Console, you might see that your Index Status is 0 (zero).
This can be alarming for webmasters and for SEO specialists. Though we don’t exactly have a control on what and how many Google should index, it is a best practice to submit a sitemap via Google Search Console. If you already did, check if it is updated (sitemap).
Another thing you can do is to go to Google.com and type the following: site:[yourdomain or URL here].
As you can see, there are about 201 results (index URLs/pages). So while waiting for your Index Status in Google Search Console, you can check it from google.com and monitor your index count.
I have a similar issue when I changed my site from http to https that is from https://www.brodneil.com to https://www.brodneil.com.
Waiting (when to get a good index count back ) can be difficulty. That is why patience is said to be a virtue. 🙂
Not everyone has the patience to wait.
Yet while trying to be one, check the following:
- sitemap (as mentioned earlier)
- robot.txt (make sure your entries are correct and not blocking Google)
- .htaccess (make sure your entries are correct and not blocking Google)
- WordPress setting (make sure you allow search engines to index if you are using WordPress)
- You can also use the Fetch as Google feature in your Search Console to quickly index a page. Though Google does a great job on indexing your webpages, using this feature can just speed up things.
Here is a test I just did to show you how quick Google can index your pages if pointed to the right direction. I did this test right after I published this post. Therefore this post was updated or republished after doing the test below.
So at 1:14PM on 2017 July 26, Wednesday, I went to www.google.com.ph and type the following:
You can see that it was not yet indexed. The search did not match any document.
I went to the Google Search Console and use the Fetch as Google feature at the same day 1:18PM. Note it did not take me 4 minutes to get there.
(My baby cried and I had to pause the test.)
After asking Google to fetch that specific URL, I then requested indexing for the said URL by clicking on Request Indexing. You can see the screenshot below.
At 1:25PM on the same day, Google has indeed quickly indexed the post or URL. That is quick isn’t it?
I repeated the test one more time for another URL; and from 201 results, I now got 203 results in Google.
I am not suggesting that you do this to all of your pages. Submitting your sitemap to Google serves the purpose.
Now, did the index status in Google Search Console improve? Obviously not. Yet, at least you know that Google can indeed index your website. You just have to wait.
If you see that your index count in google.com is decreasing overtime, this is something you need to investigate further.