I recently had an SEO training session with a client and spent some time explaining how the Google index works. If you want to learn how to do Search Engine Optimization yourself, or you are already taking steps to improve your websites SEO, having a basic understanding of the Google search index will be a big help.
Optimizing your web pages and blog posts for search engines, AKA Google, is an essential piece of building your platform that any entrepreneur can benefit from. But in this day of instant gratification you may be surprised when you don’t see your changes reflected in Google’s search results immediately. This is what brought up the topic of the Google index during our SEO training call.
My client had followed some of my SEO advice from a training session a few days earlier, but her position in the search results remained the same. I explained to her that it takes time for your changes to be reflected in the SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages). But this applies to more than your search engine ranking…
Have you ever made SEO changes to the title or description of a page or post that you rank for, only to see the old version displayed when you search Google? What’s happening here?
Let’s take a look at how the search results are delivered…
The Google Index – Secret of Instant Search Results
When you search Google for a keyword or phrase Google displays a list of sites almost instantaneously. How can Google search those millions of pages and display them for you so quickly?
What is really happening is that Google is giving you a stored index of sites that they have visited in the past and indexed for speedy display. The results you see displayed could be days, or even weeks old. Any changes that have happened since Google’s last visit won’t show up in the search results until they send their spiders back to the website. When the spiders find new or updated content, the Google search index is updated with the new information, and ranking is updated as appropriate.
What Does the Google’s Index Delay Mean for Me?
When you make SEO optimizations to your website, not only will your ranking stay relatively the same until Google comes back to re-index, but any changes you’ve made to the title and description will not show up in the search results until the index is updated.
The frequency that Google comes back to your site varies and is greatly impacted by how often you update existing content or publish new content. The more quality, relevant content you’re putting out the more often Google will come back to look for changes and fresh content. This means any changes you make, or new content you put out, will show up in the Google index more quickly.
Can I make Google Index My Site Faster?
There is a way to notify Google and other search engines of new or updated posts and pages, although it doesn’t guarantee that Google will come back sooner.
You can go to Pingomatic.com to submit the URL of the new or updated content and follow these steps:
- Enter the title of the post or page you wish to ping in the “Blog Name” field.
- Paste in the URL of the content in the “Blog Home Page” field below.
- Skip the “RSS URL” field.
- Check all the “Common Services.”
- Click on “Send Pings” to notify all those services that you have new/updated content.
While tools are useful, remember that there is no short cut to high Google ranking. The best way to get your content ranked on Google is to provide frequent, high quality content that is written to help real people, not to rank well on Google. My SEO training is a wise investment if you want to learn more on how to improve your Google rankings.
Now go write something that will help solve a problem, teach something new, and make the web a better place!
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CEO | Founder | Chief Web Developer
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