How Often Does Google Crawl a Site? A Simple Breakdown

How often does Google crawl a site and how do you know if your site has been crawled? These are two important questions to answer if you own a website and you’re trying to grow and increase your traffic. 

Google generally crawls a website anywhere from once every three days to four weeks. The frequency of Google crawling your site depends on a number of factors which I will discuss. Let’s dive right into it. 

What is a “Crawler”? 

If we’re referring to search engines, a crawler is a piece of software systematically designed to browse the internet and discover new or existing web pages. A crawler is also known as a “Googlebot.” 

These bots are designed to automatically navigate through websites to collect information and determine the search engine’s index. 

A Googlebot will travel from one webpage to another “crawling” through the information and structure of the site. It accesses the website, reads the content, and stores the data in an index which is how search engine results are formed. 

This is one of the reasons why website structure is so important. The easier and more sensible your site is set up, the easier it is for Google to crawl the site, discover what you’re about, and find new keywords to rank you for. 

The crawling process allows Google to update existing content and ensure that only the most relevant and useful search results are displayed for users. 

How Often Does Google Crawl Websites?

According to Google:

Google reindexes the documents automatically, but that can take time.

To have your contents/documents reindexed by Google, you can create a sitemap containing all the updated contents by adding <lastmod> date and submit the sitemap to Google Search Console for indexing. 

Please refer to the document:

https://developers.google.com/search/docs/advanced/sitemaps/build-sitemap

https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/7451001?hl=en

So, like many other factors in SEO, the answer is unclear. 

That said, from experience, indexing can range anywhere from a couple of days to a couple of weeks. 

Sites that update content often are generally crawled more often. This is why it’s important to publish new content on your site on a regular basis if you’re trying to increase traffic. When Google sees that you’re regularly updating the site, the AI begins to understand that it should check back frequently to make sure that it’s displaying the most updated content. 

If you aren’t updating your pages on a regular basis, it may take weeks for a new piece of content or page to be crawled and indexed. 

Remember that factors such as domain authority, backlinks, and site age can also impact the frequency of crawling on your website. 

How to Make Google Crawl Your Site More Often?

If you’re having trouble getting pages indexed, there are some things you can do. First of all, why? 

Why do you want Google to crawl your site more often? 

The frequency of crawling will determine how fast Google picks up on new pieces of content when you publish them. This means you’ll rank faster for more keywords and ultimately more traffic. That’s the name of the game, right? 

Here are some things you can do to get Google to crawl your site: 

1. Check For Usability Issues

Just like user experience is important for people, it’s important for Google Bots too. 

URL inspection in GSC

The usability section of Google Search Console can help you determine if any of your URLs are difficult or impossible to reach due to various errors. These errors will impact how often Google crawls a site. 

2. Update Content More Often

Publish blog posts and be sure to have a fully functional sitemap. Remember that link from above about setting up a sitemap?  The sitemap ensures that Google can quickly find any page on your site and it doesn’t take much to set it up because there are tools that do it automatically. 

Also, publish new content on your site with relevant keywords targeting your audience. This will get Google into a cadence of checking out your site every few days for new content. 

3. Have a Pristine Internal Link Structure

You want to create a web of links on your site by internally linking from one page to another as long as it’s relevant. Create content around different topics related to one another and use Link Whisper to automatically identify internal link opportunities

How to Index a New Page to Google

For simplicity purposes, think of “indexing” and “crawling” similarly. Crawling is the process of search engines looking through your website. Indexing is the process of the search engine actually placing you somewhere in the results. 

You can manually request indexing, and I think it’s a good idea to do so every time you publish a new page. 

URL found in GSC

Go into Google Search Console and enter the URL in the field at the top. You’ll see a page similar to the one above. If Google can find the URL, it’ll tell you. Otherwise, it’ll say that the URL is not on Google and you can request indexing. 

Even if a URL is live, you can still request indexing if you updated the content or changed anything on the page. 

Keep in mind that this is not a guarantee that Google will crawl the page. You’re requesting it and your request can be denied without notification. Requesting indexing over and over will not do anything. 

Can I See The Last Time Google Crawled My Site?

When did Google last crawl my website? You can find this out in Google Search Console as well. 

last crawl

If you click the arrow under page indexing, it’ll drop down with a panel like the image above. You can see that at the time of writing this that this page was indexed on July 16th. That’s two days before writing this so this website is regularly indexed. 

How Long Does it Take for Google to Crawl a Site? 

There is no information regarding the exact time frame for how long it takes, and it doesn’t really matter. Your website doesn’t go “down” or become inactive when it’s being crawled so there’s no downside to having Google crawl your site as often as possible. 

Final Thoughts 

So, how often does Google index websites? While the answer is unclear, it’s typically every couple of days to as far out as every few months. The frequency of crawling depends on the quality of your website and how often you update your content. 

Make sure your site is easy to crawl by having a strong internal link structure with the help of Link Whisper. With Link Whisper, you can automatically internal link between relevant posts using the most related anchor text. It makes internal linking simple and fast! 

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