How Often Does Google Crawl a Site?

Aug 21, 2023 | Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

It may surprise you to know that Google doesn’t automatically index and rank your site the second you make changes. In order for your website changes to improve your SEO, Google needs to discover and crawl your pages first.

Exactly how often does Google crawl a site, and is there anything you can do to speed the process up? Here’s what you need to know from Polianna, an experienced SEO company for plumbers. We can answer your top questions about Google crawlers and SEO to simplify the process of achieving a top spot in the search results for your plumbing or HVAC website.

How Often Do Google’s Bots Crawl the Web?

Google’s bots crawl the web continually, looking for new content to serve to users. If you publish fresh content regularly, Google will crawl your site more often than if you only publish once in a blue moon.

Precisely how often Google crawls specific sites is a mystery, and Google wants to keep it that way. It crawls some sites daily, some weekly, and others every six months to a year.

A few factors influence how often Google will crawl your site. These include:

  • Your website’s structure
  • Its popularity
  • How easy it is to crawl

Just because the Google crawler visits your website doesn’t necessarily mean it will crawl the entire thing. When Google’s bot comes to your site, it usually crawls as many pages as it can without consuming too much of your site’s bandwidth. If your site has poor bandwidth, the Google bot will crawl it less often.

What Is the Google Bot?

Now that you know the answer to the question, “How often does Google crawl a site?” you might be wondering exactly what the Google bot is.

Think of Google’s bot as a little spider and all the websites on the internet as threads of a spider web. The Google bot discovers, analyzes, and indexes pages by following one link on a page to another. When it finds and indexes new content, that content will show up in search engines.

How Does Google Discover and Crawl Sites?

Google discovers new content by checking for links when it visits pages. If it finds any links, it follows them to see where they lead.

But that’s not the only way Google can discover sites. Sometimes, Google’s bot needs help to find your pages. That’s where an XML sitemap comes in.

You can create an XML sitemap and submit it through the Google Search Console. Your sitemap tells Google about all the content on your site, including links, files, and images.

How the Crawling Process Works

The Google bot follows a roadmap to discover, crawl, and index pages. Here’s how it works:

  1. The Google bot starts out with a list of XML sitemaps and URLs from previous crawls. It visits each URL and looks for new links.
  2. When the bot finds these links, it follows them to discover new pages. The bot also checks for changes to existing pages.
  3. Once the bot finds new content, it downloads images, videos, and text.
  4. Google analyzes these files and stores them in its index.
  5. Google shows the links in its index to users when they type search queries.

Myths About Google Crawlers

How Google crawls sites is complicated, which is why myths surrounding the process abound. Here are two common ones to be aware of:

Myth #1: Crawl Budget Should Be of the Utmost Importance

Crawl budget is the number of pages Google’s bot crawls and indexes in a certain timeframe. Many site owners think that they should worry about crawl budget no matter how big or small their sites are.

However, crawl budget only matters for massive websites with thousands of pages. If you have a smaller site, worrying about crawl budget is a waste of time.

Here’s when to pay attention to crawl budget:

  • Your site has more than 10,000 pages.
  • Your site has a lot of redirect chains, which can eat up crawl budget.
  • You just added a bunch of new pages (more than 100). You need to consider crawl budget if you want Google to index them quickly.

Myth #2: Google Needs To Crawl Your Site Frequently for It To Rank Well

This is a widespread myth, but it’s just not true. Your site can still rank well even if Google’s bots don’t crawl it frequently.

Reasons Why Google Hasn’t Crawled Your Site

Google doesn’t crawl every single page on the internet. Here are a few reasons why it may not have crawled yours:

  • Your pages are blocked behind a login wall
  • Your site’s robots.txt file prevents crawling
  • Your pages are part of a long redirect chain
  • Your site has connectivity errors

How To Know if Google Crawled Your Site

It’s easy to find out whether Google has crawled your web pages. Simply go to Google Search Console and look at the crawl stats in the index coverage report. That will tell you how many pages Google has indexed, and it also lets you know if you have problems that could prevent Google from indexing pages.

You can also check out the URL Inspection Tool to know whether Google indexed a specific page and when Google last crawled it.

How To Get Google To Crawl Your Site

To encourage Google to crawl your site more frequently:

  • Ask Google to crawl your URLs. One way to do this is by clicking “Request Indexing” for the URL you want to crawl in Google Search Console.
  • Publish fresh content regularly.
  • Fix errors with your pages.
  • Build authority backlinks to other sites.
  • Ensure that your site loads quickly on all devices.

Become the Go-To Contractor in Your Area With Polianna

Now that we’ve answered the question, “How often does Google crawl a site?” we welcome you to reach out to Polianna. If you’re tired of working with SEO companies that overpromise and underdeliver, we want to work with you. We’ll help you improve local ranking on Google and get your site indexed by the Google bots.

Book a discovery call to learn more.

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