Why isn’t my website showing up on Google?

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You’ve spent the money. You’ve built your website. Why isn’t it showing up on Google when you search for your products and services, or even your brand name? It can be frustrating, but you came to the right place. 

Google’s top priority is to connect people with the best answers to their questions. They do this by first crawling all of the websites that have been published, and then indexing them. They then crunch the data and try to present the best results to every Google user.

Five common answers to the question: Why is my website not on Google?

  1. Google doesn’t know that your site exists.
  2. Google has placed your site in the penalty box.
  3. There are pages or elements on your site that Google can’t read.
  4. Google likes the answers and information on your competitors’ websites more.
  5. Google feels that your site’s content isn’t original or informative enough.

Let’s go a little deeper to understand what each situation could mean for your site.

1. Google doesn’t know that your site exists.

Even when you’ve done everything right, it can take 3-6 months for pages on your website to reach the first page of a Google search result. This is because Google values long-term relationships with the sites it has learned to trust. 

Google monitors every interaction with your site through their platform to see if their users are satisfied with the information you’re presenting them. Search engine optimization (SEO) is not an overnight process.

You may need to tell Google that your site exists.

Google “crawls” the web constantly. This means that they are always looking for new content. But if your site is totally new, Google may not know about it. 

There’s an easy way to see if Google knows about your site: Go to google and type in the URL of your site in the search box (for example “www.FratzkeMedia.com”). Hit “enter” on your keyboard or click on “Google Search” to see if your website comes up as a result. If it doesn’t, Google probably doesn’t know about your website.  

You can submit your site to Google via Google Search Console. This will alert them that they need to take a look at your site and consider it for inclusion in their index of sites.

2. Google has placed all or part of your site in the penalty box.

Google may have looked at your site and decided that there’s something they don’t like about it. Therefore, your site’s pages are not showing up when people search on Google for your brand, your products or your services. If you worked with an agency, they may not have the experience or expertise needed to get Google’s attention the right way. 

Common reasons Google may be penalizing your site:

  • The content on your site is copied from elsewhere. Google doesn’t want to present duplicate information to their users.
  • Your content isn’t original enough. Large portions are copied from elsewhere and there isn’t enough unique value to get Google’s attention.
  • Your content has too many instances of a keyword or phrase. This is called “Keyword stuffing” - and Google doesn’t like it.
  • Someone has posted low-value links back to your site (backlinks) all over the internet. Backlinks are great when they come from authoritative sources and occur organically. Spamming links to your site across the internet is going to get you in the penalty box every time.
  • Your site has been hacked or compromised. When Google detects a security threat on a site, it removes it from their index to protect their users from malicious content.

It’s possible you ended up in the penalty box without realizing it.  The good news is that these issues can be resolved with the help of a trusted digital marketing expert, like Fratzke.

3. Are there pages or elements of your site that Google can’t read?

Just because you can see something on a webpage doesn’t mean Google can see it or comprehend it. Their website crawler is pretty sophisticated, but it can’t see everything.

For example, Google does not have the ability to understand images. You need to use captions and other text to describe the image so that Google can understand the visual content on your page. This includes text that is embedded in an image. We can read it but all Google sees is an unknown, square-shaped object.

It’s also possible that your site is configured to block search engines from crawling specific pages. This could be a “noindex” setting that was accidentally left on after a developer did work on your site. If Google’s crawlers are blocked, your page will not appear in their search results. 

4. Google likes the answers and information on your competitor’s website more.

Your site is competing with other websites for Google’s attention. If a competitor’s site does a better job of answering someone’s question, Google is going to prioritize their site over yours in search results.

Search rankings are constantly changing. The owners of high-ranking websites stay on top by making regular improvements to their content. Keep an eye on what competing sites are doing to deliver a better user experience and aim to outperform them.

The more crowded your market is, the harder it will be to come out on top. This also means that if your competitors aren’t investing in their digital footprint, you may have a real opportunity to leapfrog them online.

5. Google feels that your site’s content isn’t original or informative enough.

You probably feel like you’ve paid an arm and a leg to have your site designed and developed. There’s a lot of heavy-lifting that goes into building a strong web presence. Unfortunately, all of the money you spent making your site look beautiful and operate well can be a waste if you’ve forgotten to invest in quality, original content.

Google crawls millions of websites everyday. If the content on your site is only “just as good” as the other sites they’re looking at, they probably won’t move your site up the rankings. 

This is also a common issue for websites with a generic catalogue of products. Find a way to add value to your pages by providing a unique perspective and a more comprehensive answer to the questions your customers are typing into Google.

Website not showing up on Google? We can help. 

We just covered five common reasons your site may not appear on Google. Uncover the specific reasons your site isn’t performing well in Google by allowing us to complete our 236-point Digital Transformation Audit. This proprietary report will give you a 360-degree view of how your brand is performing across the 8 Channels of Digital Marketing (Your website is one of the channels). If you’d like to learn more, contact us for a free consultation. 

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James Fratzke

Co-Founder & Head of Operations

9.16.2019

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