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Google search index

A website index is all webpages that a search engine knows about. Indexing, or crawling, is the process for how search engines such as Google finds all known webpages.

If your web content is not indexed by Google, it cannot appear on a Search Engine Results Page (SERP) when users search in Google. Although search engines use advanced technology to automatically find, crawl, and index your web content, there are extra steps you can take to ensure your content is indexed properly.

How do I know if my website is indexed?

The easiest way to see if your website is in the Google index is to search Google for "site:yourwebsite.com". The search results should contain all your web content that you expect to be indexed.

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For more advanced insight into how Google has indexed your website, use Google Webmaster Tools

Can I make Google index my website faster?

If you recently added or made changes to a page on your site, you can ask Google to (re)index it.

Google Featured Snippets

Snippets have been a prominent part of Google search results for a while now, but are getting increased attention as Google continues to evolve their search engine results page (SERP) behavior.

  • Snippet: The description that appears below a page title in regular search results. The description is a summary extracted from the webpage that best explains how the page relates to the search query.
  • Featured snippet: Often called position zero, it is the top search result that appears in its own box above all search results. The featured snippet description is often identical to the description that appears in regular search results, but is displayed much more prominently.

You cannot buy your way into position zero or directly control the extracted description - Google programmatically determines what content is a good fit for a featured snippet.

Featured Snippet Example

How to become a Google featured snippet

  1. Do keyword analysis to determine common questions that people ask related to your subject matter.
  2. Create content to directly answer the questions - a list format is often best.
  3. Offer enhanced value or extra information within the content.
  4. Optimize the page for Google - a quick load time can be the most important factor.

Featured snippets are pulled from results that already appear on page one of a Google search engine results page (SERP).

Focus on the right content and queries

Look at content where you are already ranking on or near the first page and where your regular search result description has three or more lines of text. If your high-ranking search results do not have descriptions of at least three lines of text, follow Google's recommendations to create good titles and snippets in search results. To pursue long tail SEO opportunities, both branded and unbranded, unpack your existing documentation and turn it into powerful microcontent

MindTouch automatically structures content in a way that Google loves. If you publish content you already have then it's an easy win. To see examples of MindTouch customers capturing Position Zero in Google, read: Find SEO (and Customer) Success through Snippets.

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