Why does my WordPress site not show on Google? – Top reasons

Make Google thy friend, and thou shalt get noticed!You’ve worked on your first website for a month and are now all set to run the first Google search with your website URL. How exciting it must feel! More often than not, though, you’re in for big surprises, one of them being “Why am I not seeing my WordPress site on Google search?”

“I typed the website address in the URL bar, but where is it?”

Before you strain your brain any further, check out our top reasons why your WordPress site might be missing or invisible.

Your website has asked to be “private”

The first thing you should probably check is whether your website is marked as “private.” If yes, Google or any other search engine will not have permissions to display it on public domain, or being crawling and indexing your site’s pages.

Login to your WordPress admin account > Settings > Reading. Ensure that the checkbox/radio button for “Discourage search engines from indexing this site” is unchecked (or the radio button for “Allow search engines to index this site” is checked).

Your site is not private, but your pages are!

Your website administrator might have deliberately or accidentally set your webpage to “no index.” This can be done explicitly via a custom code or via WordPress SEO plugins like Yoast SEO.

Now why would someone do that?Well, your SEO expert might have been setting up the website’s structure and might have prevented Google from indexing categories and pages which are work-in-progress. So what would you do? Go to the WordPress admin site and to the specific page and switch it back on!

You are searching for a webpage that does not exist!

SEO gurus and Google Search hate “404 page not found errors– these pages are usually set to “no index, follow” – Google doesn’t bother indexing it. The fix? Stop fretting about a non-existent website or webpage!

On the other hand, if you are quite certain that the page exists, perhaps you’re searching for a website that is “https://” and not “http://” or vice versa. Perhaps you’ve made a teeny-tiny mistake in the URL, or the page that you’ve requested is re-directing to a webpage that 404s. There are multiple possibilities – investigate your admin site.

New kid on the block? Patience, pretty please!

We’re not here to kill the enthusiasm of your new website. However, if you are a first-timer and still not featuring in the search results, you need to wait for at least 2-3 weeks (assuming you’ve ruled out issues #1, #2 and #3).

So why does Google need 2-3 weeks to index your site? Google sends its bots to “crawl” your website;to navigate through your webpages; to understand keywords most relevant to your website; to build a map of internal links; and to read your content and establish its relevance to Google Search users. Google also keeps a tab on which of your webpages are getting traction, which are not, and why. All this can take a while; so you won’t see your website immediately in organic search.

If you don’t see your site on Google even after a month and you’ve also ruled out issue #5, you need to speak with a service executive.

Messed with Google’s policy guidelines?

If Google thinks that your site is malicious, or has violated their guidelines in some way, your website will be removed from their search results temporarily or permanently.

‘Disindexed’ websites are taken off Google’s search bots and your site will not be displayed. ‘Penalized’ is a slightly lower offence than ‘disindexed’ – your website may be off Google’s radar for some time, and penalty may be removed after couple of weeks of taking appropriate corrective actions. In any case, Google will be kind enough to send you details of the issue over an email; so you won’t be totally unaware.

Banned by your country or government authorities?

Did you know that Facebook is banned in China, and that they have their own social networking sites? For your website to be banned by your country or government, you don’t necessarily need to be doing something illegal or unethical. If you are, chances are that your website will be banned by your country and government anyway.

Remember: nothing or no-one is above the law; keep your website within boundaries of your country’s internet rules and regulations.

Unrelated keywords or tough competitors

You’ve read through the entire post and figured that none of the above apply to you. In this case, the reason could simply be that you’re searching for an unrelated keyword, or that there’s a lot of competition out there for the specific keyword or search term.

The fix? Search with other keywords. Get an SEO expert to investigate and beat your competitors at their game.

Did you find our tips useful? Please let us know in the comments section below.

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