SEO Q&A - Search Engines Can't Find My WordPress Site
This SEO question came to me indirectly through Twitter. Three Deep is developing a good relationship with the excellent ladies at the Savvy B2B marketing blog, and in order to keep up with one another, we follow our mutual Twitter updates. When @michellelinn had a question about WordPress techniques (which is my favorite thing in the entire world), I knew I could help. Here's how it all went down (in true multi-channel fashion):
My website, built on WordPress, is only showing up in Bing (not Google or other search engines). Any ideas on what I can do? Many thanks!
2:18 PM Jul 1st from TweetDeck
@michelelinn Did you check your privacy settings? Do you have an XML sitemap? When did you first publish content? How old is the domain?
8:18 PM Jul 1st from TweetDeck in reply to michelelinn
To which she directly messaged:
michelelinn: Sadly, I don't even know how to answer all of your questions! Let me do some research. Mind if I email you directly?
JS (via email): Hey Michelle - Definitely contact me. Several of these settings can be viewed right from your WordPress admin panel.
ML: Hi Jeff - I think we may have figured out the problem. Just like you suggest, there was a security setting checked that was blocking search engines. Google crawls the web every 2 – 3 days, so hopefully it appears soon; I’ll let you know if it doesn’t. If you don’t mind, though, I’ll definitely keep you in mind if I have other questions. You’re a very useful person to know!
JS: Yeah, that's what I figured it was... the privacy setting will block everyone from knowing about you (as long as the search engines respect nofollow and noindex tags). You should definitely do an XML sitemap and other enhancements to your blog. I don't mind helping as long as it's something I can answer quickly!
ML: Thanks for the suggestion on the XML sitemap; I’ll look into that. Are there any other quick techniques I should look into? Of course, I know how busy you are – only let me know if it’s quick!
JS: Those seem to be the most important techniques for getting indexed. I have also found success in "pinging" services each time you post something new... you basically use XML to let Google, Yahoo, Technorati, etc. each time you post. By default, you just use one ping service, but you can add 10-15 more to get more exposure.
ML: Just wanted to let you know that, thank to your tip, my website started appearing in Google yesterday. Thank you so much! I’m also going to look into the “pinging” services, especially for Savvy B2B Marketing. I have wondered why some blog posts get picked up in Google News Alerts while others don’t; maybe this is part of the reason.
JS: Awesome! I highly recommend pinging, as I have seen it do wonders in getting your site indexed immediately. It's a technique from the future of SEO that not many people know about!
Now back to Twitter:
A huge shout out and thanks to @threedeep: Great insights with Google Analytics and SEO. Thanks for the help, Jeff!
7:20 AM Jul 9th from bit.ly
I must say, I really do like the way that Twitter has changed the way I can communicate. I only wish I had more time to answer questions of this nature. However, with client work and business growth, it seems as if Twitter is one of the easiest things to cut out of the equation. Thankfully, there are no expectations that anyone will actually listen to you online, so I am not disappointing anyone when I mark all messages as 'read' in TweetDeck. If you do have any questions that you are dying to have answered, chances are that if you leave a comment or contact me through our web form, I will respond with the exact answer you were looking to hear.