All web pages are not made equally, and every page has its significance. The Google Search index contains millions of web pages which could be over 100,000,000 gigabytes in size.
Most businesses are concerned about pages that are indexed – either by choice or initiated by Google. The worst part is that most of the time, businesses don’t even realize that Google has indexed their pages. Indexed pages can compromise ranking, permissions, and compliance in a way. So, it becomes important to de-index pages using the expert services of an SEO company. Let us learn how you can do that.
Why Should You Deindex Pages From Google?
There are several reasons why you should de-index Google pages. There are some pages like the Intro Message or Thank You page that don’t need indexing, while on other pages, indexing can cause content duplication. You will certainly want to de-index such pages. Google Page Indexing can cause serious problems such as:
- Violate your authority and your page ranking
- When indexing is needed on important pages, unwanted indexing may cause the process to slow down.
To avoid the above-mentioned problems, you must deindex these pages from search results, and the easiest plus fastest way to do so is to use the URL removal tool from the Google search console. But this is not an ideal tool if you are dealing with a large website with multiple URLs. In such cases, it is recommended to keep the URLs deindexed using the following ways:
- By updating the XML sitemap
- Using the lastmod date to incorporate the change
- Changing to meta robots noindex
How Should you Quickly Deindex a Page from Google?
The fastest way to deindex pages from Google is by removing URLs from Google. You can consult with a professional SEO company to help you with the following:
1. Delete Content
Certain indexed pages may show on your site, which have no meaning or just occupy space. These can eventually discourage your web traffic or hurt your rankings. A Thank You Page or a Sample Page should be deleted from your site as it hampers the quality of your site. It only undermines your authority and slows down the indexing of other web pages. Once you delete the page, you’ll see the 404 Not Found page. There are different ways you can use to delete WordPress 404 Pages and Non-WordPress Indexed Pages.
2. Mark Content as Noindex
There could be pages on your site that are indexed, don’t add meaning or traffic to your webpage, but you don’t even want to delete them. It is better to Noindex them on Google. You can use the robots-noindex meta tag for this. Use it to inform the search engine not to index the page thus preventing search engine bots from indexing these specific pages. The search engine bot removes the page from the search results as soon as it crawls this page again.
3. Take Care Of Duplicate Content
You could have duplicate content on your website which can be accessed using multiple URLs. This can adversely affect the ranking as it can confuse search engines. More than 50% of the content is duplicated on the site and is listed among the most common OnSite SEO issues. Use appropriate tools to find duplicate content and create a file that contains all duplicates. The easiest way to sort and eliminate duplicate content is to use rel = canonical on the content. This is to inform the search engines that the page is just a copy of the main page. With this tool, you can fix duplicate content issues, deindex duplicate pages, and rank pages appropriately.
4. URL Removal Tool
Use this option as the last, after you have tried and tested the above. You must use it in extreme situations like a security hack, data leakage, unwavering data, etc. You can use this temporary solution that hides content within 24 hours for some time. You can change settings by temporarily removing URLs from the search results. After approximately 6 months in Google and 3 months on Bing, your content could reappear.
How to Deindex a page?
You have learned different ways to get rid of indexed pages that adversely affect your website ranking. You could also apply techniques and tricks to push your rankings through indexed pages. Thorough knowledge of such techniques will help you work on best practices and avoid casual mistakes that you make in website ranking. These are:
1. Noindex and Disallow are Not the Same Things
There could be a misunderstanding between the use of the Robots.txt file and the noindex tags on the Internet. Robots.txt guides the search engine bots to crawl and scrutinize all web pages on your site. Many SEO services guide you to disallow a certain page using Robots.txt and you may think that these are banned and won’t be considered for indexing or ranking. That could be wrong. The Disallow feature could interfere with the deindexing feature, not allowing you to withdraw certain unwanted web pages.
Disallowing the page crawl can prevent the bot from skipping the code on the web page, so make sure there are no conflicts between the Robots.txt file and the noindex tag.
2. The Conflict Between Sitemap.xml and Robots.txt
Sitemap.xml consists of an elaborate list of all web pages on your website. Search engine bots crawl sitemaps and Robots.txt, find web pages and index them. These can contradict each other. There may be bugs that can prevent pages from being indexed and deindexed. Make sure there are no conflicts between Sitemap.xml and Robots.txt.
You must test the Robots.txt file and Sitemap.xml as even the slightest mistake or a contradiction between both can destroy your traffic and rankings. So you need to make sure that both are working properly and there are no errors.
There are two simple tools for this – GoogleRobots.txt and Google search console You can use both and see more detailed statistics identifying any conflict or perceptual errors regarding indexing and deindexing web pages. Now, the sitemap.xml and Robots.txt files can be automatically and easily generated without error.
Deindexing a page can be beneficial for your ranking and website performance, especially if the indexed pages are irrelevant or of poor quality. It is better to de-index them by collaborating with a professional SEO company, so these web pages are not included in ranking. These pages should not be ranked in search results and it is recommended to deindex them. You have learned several easy and convenient ways to deindex a page on Google. So just apply them and make your webpage top among the rankings.