Updated: June 30, 2023.
A super quick guide on Google indexing, how long it takes Google to index new websites, and what factors influence the indexing speed.
Today, I’m tackling a question that’s often on the lips of everyone launching a new website – “How long does it take Google to index a new site?”
To cut to the chase, Google indexing is simply the process of Google’s bots, known as spiders, crawling and adding your new website to its search engine database.
Without being indexed, your website is virtually invisible to searchers, which makes it pretty clear why this is such a crucial part of launching a new website.
After all, you didn’t spend all that time creating a stunning site for it to sit unnoticed in some obscure corner of the internet, did you?
In this short guide, I’ll take a closer look at how this indexing process works, typical timelines, and a few tips on how to speed things up.
Let’s get started.
TL;DR: How long does it take for Google to index a new website?
There’s no one-size-fits-all answer to this, unfortunately. The timeline for Google to index a new website can range from a few days to a couple of weeks – it varies widely and truly, “it depends.”
Understanding Google’s indexing process
To fully grasp how long it might take Google to index your new site, you first need to understand the indexing process itself.
To put it simply, Google’s indexing process is how it gathers and stores data from webpages to include in its index. This index is, in essence, Google’s enormous database that it draws upon when delivering search results.
Now, how does Google find new websites to add to this colossal index? Here’s a brief, simplified breakdown:
- Crawling: Google uses programs called “crawlers” or “spiders” (Google’s main crawler is known as Googlebot) to scour the Internet for new content. Crawlers follow links from page to page, much like you or I might do.
- Processing: Once Googlebot finds your new website, it needs to understand what it’s all about. It does this by processing the code and content of your site, evaluating everything from your text and headers to your meta tags and site structure.
- Indexing: If Google deems your website worthy (and believe me, it has high standards), it will add your site to its index. It’s at this point that your website becomes eligible to show up in Google’s search results.
This process repeats itself regularly so Google can keep its index up-to-date and ensure it’s providing users with the most relevant and high-quality results. It’s like a 24/7 operation over at Google, always looking for fresh and valuable content to add to its index.
TIP: Note that crawling does not equal indexing and indexing does not equal ranking (serving).
How long does it take Google to index a new website?
The time it takes for Google to index a new website can vary quite a bit.
In general, it can take anywhere from 4 days to 4 weeks for your site to be crawled and indexed. But this is just a rough estimate and the actual time can be influenced by many factors (discussed below).
It’s also worth noting that even after your site has been indexed, it can take some time for it to start showing up in search results.
Again, how quickly this happens can depend on a range of factors, including how competitive your keywords are and the overall SEO strength of your site.
Remember, Google’s goal is to provide users with the most relevant and high-quality content.
So, the best way to get your site indexed quickly and to rank well in search results is to focus on creating valuable content that meets the needs of your audience.
Factors that influence the indexing time of a new website
The indexing time of a new website can be influenced by a variety of factors. Here are some of the most important ones:
- Quality of content (E-E-A-T, helpful content): High-quality content that is unique, relevant, and provides value to users is more likely to be indexed quickly. Search engines prioritize content that is helpful to users.
This includes E-E-A-T (Experience, Expertise, Authoritativeness, Trustworthiness).
This also includes Google’s helpful content system which is basically about whether your site is helpful to its users.
If your site has quality issues and Google doesn’t want to index it because of that, your site may get stuck in the “Crawled – currently not indexed” report in Google Search Console.
- Website structure: A well-organized website with a clear hierarchy and easy navigation is easier for search engines to crawl and index.
- Sitemap: Submitting a sitemap to search engines can help them discover and index your pages faster. An XML sitemap is a file where you provide information about the pages, videos, and other files on your site, and the relationships between them.
- SEO Optimization: On-page and off-page SEO can influence how quickly a new website is indexed. This includes factors like keyword usage, meta tags, alt tags, and backlinks. Without proper SEO optimization, search engines may not be able to understand what your site is about and whether it’s worth being indexed.
- Website speed: Faster websites are easier for search engines to crawl, which can lead to faster indexing. This includes both the speed at which your pages load and the speed at which your server responds to search engine requests.
- Mobile-friendliness: As more and more people use mobile devices to browse the web, search engines give preference to mobile-friendly websites. The Google mobile-first indexing is finally live for almost all websites, which means that
- Social signals: Links to your website from social media platforms can help search engines discover and index your website faster.
- Regular updates: Websites that are regularly updated with new content are crawled more often, which can lead to faster indexing.
- Use of Google Search Console or Bing Webmaster Tools: These tools allow you to submit your website to the respective search engines and can help expedite the indexing process.
- Internal linking: Having a good internal linking structure can make it easier for search engines to crawl and index all the pages on your website.
- Technical SEO: If there are serious technical SEO issues on the website or your website’s content is invisible to Google, then your site may not get indexed.
Remember, while these factors can influence the speed of indexing, it’s ultimately up to the search engine algorithms, and it can still take time for a new website to be fully indexed.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on how often it takes Google to index a new site
Here are the most often asked questions on the topic.