Google’s de-indexing issue still not fully resolved
Not fixed yet - but Google is working on it and has been communicating better about the issue.
On Friday, Google said it fully resolved the de-indexing issue that started on Thursday afternoon. But now Google is saying it is not fully resolved just yet and is still working on reprocessing a lot of the URLs that were delisted from the search index on Friday. Google suspects the issue should be resolved shortly and will provide another update when it is fully resolved.
What happened? On Thursday Google began to delist many URLs from its search index. We notified Google of the issue on Friday after we saw an influx of complaints from the SEO community. SEOs, webmasters, site owners and developers were noticing a nice chunk of their web pages were no longer showing up in the Google search results. Their pages were being removed, and they didn’t know why.
The sites’ traffic was impacted because those pages were no longer in Google’s index to display in search results for relevant queries. We do not know how widespread this issue was; we do not know how much traffic site owners lost over this bug; and we do not know what percentage of the Google index was impacted.
What is the status? Despite Google saying on Saturday morning it was fully resolved, it was not.
John Mueller from Google chimed back in on Sunday morning after many webmasters still didn’t see improvements and said on Twitter “Just a short update on this — indeed, it does look like there are still some pages that need to be reprocessed. Our systems are making good progress here, but it’s taking longer than I initially expected.”
John also said that you can use the Inspect URL and Submit to index feature in Google Search Console to expedite indexing of specific pages. He added that even when it is fully resolved that you may not see all your pages in Google’s index because Google doesn’t always list 100% of a site’s pages in their index.
Google posts on Twitter. Both John Mueller from Google and the Search Liaison account posted updates on Sunday:
Three days and counting. Again, we do not know how much of Google’s index was impacted by this de-indexing bug. But we do know this bug has been lingering on since around Thursday afternoon and as of right now, it is still not fully resolved.
Why it matters. You may see a loss in traffic, a loss in revenues, sales, conversion and overall metrics from Google search. You may also see a dip in your analytics tools from Thursday through today or until Google fully resolves the issue.
If there are specific pages you know are not in the Google index that you really need in the Google index now, use Google Search Console’s Inspect URL and Submit to index feature. That should help get the page back in Google’s index almost immediately. Google is working on reprocessing the affected URLs and Google believes it should be resolved shortly.
Postscript. Google shared an update on April 9th at 3:45pm that they need more time. Google said they are close and “should be almost completely resolved within the next eight hours.” But it won’t be fully resolved for yet another 12-24 hours. Google will update us when it is resolved.