How To Get Your Site Indexed Before Launch & Why It Matters

Are you planning to launch a new website? If so, your first step to acquiring traffic will be to get your website indexed on search engines like Google. This will allow your target audience to find you for relevant search queries sooner than later.

This article will look at the many reasons for getting your website indexed as quickly as possible and some ways to do it.

Why Does Fast Indexing By Search Engines Matter

There are many good reasons to get your site indexed in search engines or specific pages before the official launch.

They include:

  • You want PR people like journalists, bloggers, and influencers to find you on launch day so they know where to link and which site to share. (If you have competitors with similar names or non-competitors with similar domains, the journalist may link to the wrong site.)
  • Your site needs to render and index properly to attract new customers via search engines. By being indexed before launch, you can check the cache and troubleshoot any issues. (Some spiders will do this as well, but I always prefer to use the search engine when I can.)
  • Launches mean big ad spending, and you’ll want the customers you are paying to gain exposure to find you easily.
  • If the new product or category pages are not indexed, consumers will need to go through your home page or search functionality, adding extra steps to your conversion funnel.
  • New sites can take weeks to get fully indexed. At that point, the “newness” of your company has already started to wear off.
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How Long Does It Take To Get Indexed By Google

According to Google Advanced SEO documentation, crawling can take anywhere from four days to four weeks.

In a #AskGooglebot session with John Mueller, Google Search Advocate, he answers how long SEO takes for new pages.

Mueller begins with two disclaimers: Google doesn’t guarantee that all webpages will get indexed and that not everything that is indexed is shown to search users.

He continues to say that when a new page is published on the internet, it can take anywhere from several hours to several weeks to get indexed. He “suspects” that most suitable content is indexed within a week.

So, how do we get search engines to begin indexing our sites?

Request Indexing From Google

Google Search Console offers multiple ways for website owners to notify Google of a new website and ensure that the most important pages are crawled and indexed. You can start by submitting a sitemap and creating a robots.txt file.

You can also ask Google to crawl your URLs with the URL Inspection tool. They note that indexing can take up to a week or two.

Notify Bing Of New Website Content

Editor’s note: Like Google, Bing offers a set of tools that website owners can use to get their website on Bing’s radar. This includes their IndexNow protocol. It allows website owners to inform search engines of new website content instantly.

According to IndexNow.org,

“…it can take days to weeks for search engines to discover that the content has changed, as search engines don’t crawl every URL often. With IndexNow, search engines know immediately the ‘URLs that have changed, helping them prioritize crawl for these URLs and thereby limiting organic crawling to discover new content.’”

Tweet A Link To Your New Website

Google crawls Twitter at lightning pace. Twitter’s Help Center notes that:

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“Keep in mind that the words you write in your Twitter profile or public Tweets may be indexed by Google and other search engines, and cause your profile or Tweets to come up in a search for those terms.”

In 2015, Google began indexing tweets to show in search results.

If you have a Twitter account and you see tweets showing up when you Google your name, try tweeting the link out and see if Google crawls your tweets to your website.

Get Links From Google Discover

One underutilized technique to get indexed is having backlinks from pages that get crawled by “discover” and “refresh.”

  • Discover is Google’s new content discovery spider.
  • Refresh is the bot Google uses to refresh the content within its indexes.

Once you have a blogger or website owner that will give you a backlink or two, see if they’ll log into Search Console.

In the settings area, you’ll be able to download a list of URLs Google crawls and when they crawl.

Find the pages that get crawled the most frequently and ask for the link from these pages. You can find instructions on accessing the crawl stats feature here.

Additional Tips On Search Indexation

You’ll also want to check a few things before the search engines arrive at your website to help ensure they index your most important pages.

  1. Your robots.txt should disallow duplicate pages, site search results, and parameter-based URLs like variants.
  2. The sitemap is listed in robots.txt and inside Search Console and only features self-canonicalized URLs.
  3. Once you leave staging, the meta robots tag has been updated to encourage indexing and following by using “index, follow.”
  4. You don’t have code other than metadata and resources to load the page inside the head of your site – that means excess scripts, plugins, tracking tools, etc.
  5. Test a spider as Googlebot or Bingbot, and see how it crawls your website. There are a ton of options, including free ones.
  6. Test “live URLs” in Search Console to ensure they render properly, and there are no errors.
  7. You have internal links to help guide the spiders to your most important pages within content, the main website navigation, and breadcrumbs.
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Conclusion

It can be scary to request indexing and have your launch leaked, but would you rather journalists and customers find your competitors versus you and risk losing out on money and backlinks?

If you don’t index your website before launch, it could be a few weeks before consumers find you in search engines. Anyone who shows up for your brand or name may get your customers.

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