If your marketing plan relies on the organic positioning of your web pages, then you may want to check to see if all the pages on your websites are still indexed in Google search. No, this wasn’t a new Google Update but a Google MISTAKE!
Last Thursday (4/4/2019) Google began to de-index pages from its search index due to unknown reasons. Search Engine Land had this to say:
We notified Google of the issue on Friday after we saw an influx of complaints from the SEO community. SEOs, webmasters, site owners and developers were noticing a nice chunk of their web pages were no longer showing up in the Google search results. Their pages were being removed, and they didn’t know why.
If you are a client of CixxFive then, we got your back. We’re already checking the indexation status of your web pages.
What’s the status
On Friday (4/5/2019), A statement was made declaring Google resolved the issue. After further outpour from the web community, they recanted that statement when John Mueller from Google posted “… indeed, it does look like there are still some pages that need to be reprocessed” to Twitter on Sunday (4/7/2019).
Just a short update on this — indeed, it does look like there are still some pages that need to be reprocessed. Our systems are making good progress here, but it’s taking longer than I initially expected. Using Inspect URL + Submit to index is fine, if you want to do that.
— 🍌 John 🍌 (@JohnMu) April 7, 2019
The official Twitter account for Google SearchLiason went on to say on Sunday, “… We’ll provide another update when the issues are considered fully resolved.”
We're aware of indexing issues that impacted some sites beginning on Friday. We believe the issues are mostly resolved and don't require any special efforts on the part of site owners. We'll provide another update when the issues are considered fully resolved.
— Google SearchLiaison (@searchliaison) April 7, 2019
What to do about it
Can you imagine how large and vast Google’s database of indexed web pages is? So, you can sit back and wait on Google to get around to reprocessing your website, or you can find out yourself if your site was affected and how to fix it if it was.
How to find out
You will need to know or have a list of URLs for your website. If you submitted an XML sitemap to Google Search Console, then that will have all the URLs provided to Google. If you do not have a list, XML, or HTML sitemap, then there’s another way.
Go to Google Search and input the site:yourdomain.com search modifier.
If all your pages are there, then you are in good shape. If any of your pages are missing then here is the next step.
How to fix it
Log in to your Google Search Console account and click on URL
Then you will enter the URL you want to index in the search bar labeled “Inspect any URL in “https://yourdomain.com/.” (Honestly, I would check every URL regardless)
Once you enter the URL, it will give you a status. If it comes back as “URL is not on Google” then you will have an option to “Request Indexing.”
After you request indexing, that’s it. You will have to wait.
If you need help with this, then get in touch.