What Is IndexNow and How It Will Change Search Engine Indexing and SEO?
In this article, we help you understand precisely what is IndexNow and how it will change search engine Indexing and SEO + SERPs
Know what is IndexNow and how it will change search engine Indexing and SEO? If you keep up with the latest search engine trends, you may have heard of IndexNow. IndexNow is a new way that helps you Index your content instantly to rank quickly in search engine results pages (SERPs).
In this article, we help you understand precisely what is IndexNow and how it will change search engine Indexing and SEO.
The Importance of Indexing for SEO
Before people can search your pages, web search engines must be delivered and indexed. Once your content is not indexed, the ranking process will begin.
Search engines initially started crawlers to follow the hyperlinks to discover new and update old content. Once crawlers discover a page, they relate to search engines what they find and Index it. Search engines read and analyze this page’s content, media, tags, and more during indexing. And search engines store all this information in a vast database.
Why do we need IndexNow?
In today’s online functional space, indexing your content is crucial to ensure a high ranking in search engines. The faster your content gets indexed, the faster it gets and the more likely it appears correctly in the SERPs. Of course, you need great content to rank, but that’s another story.
But here’s the thing: you can not control how fast search engines index your site. And also it can take days or weeks for search engines to crawl and index your new page. Moreover, it all depends on many factors like the size of your website, permissions, complexity, etc.
Imagine that you have an online store that sells clothes, and you have news for the next season. You shop with the latest products, but you see the two changes in the update engines after the search. In the meantime, you can have potential traffic and sales for your competitors. Nobody likes it when that happens.
So, to streamline this process and increase indexing speed, Microsoft and Yandex team up and create a new protocol called IndexNow.
What is IndexNow, then?
IndexNow is an open-source protocol allowing web publishers to inform participant engines of the latest website updates. Simply put, it’s a simple ping to inform search engines that a URL and its content have been added, updated, or deleted. Then search engines can quickly send bots for analysis, Index, and reflect as changes.
What makes IndexNow different?
Search methods: index data in two ways, pull and push. Traditionally, search engines visit your data site or web pages and “search” to Index.
Indexing is when your CMS notifies search engines of new changes to specific URLs. The Index now protocol follows a push indexing, which is different from the traditional ‘pull’ model. As a result, you don’t have to rely on search engines coming to your site to look for the new one. Instead, you’ll ask them to come to you when your content changes.
Here’s what’s impressive about the IndexNow protocol. When you submit any URL via the IndexNow API to a participating search engine, and will simultaneously send those URLs to all other engines using the protocol. And when you inform the IndexNow API of an update, it automatically alerts participants’ search engines.
Are search engines participating in the IndexNow Which protocol?
Microsoft and Yandex were the first two search engines to become fully involved in IndexNow. They jointly announced the IndexNow agreement in October 2021. And as of June 2022, the list of participating engines includes Microsoft Bing, Yandex, and Seznam.
Google is not currently participating in the program and claims that its crawling engine is very efficient and that the company will continue to improve its crawl tracking. However, Google has confirmed that the company is in the process of testing the IndexNow protocol, so we may see Google stick with it in the future.
How does IndexNow benefit you?
The Index now protocol has the potential to facilitate the evolution of indexing from pull to push. You won’t have to wait for the engines to come along and pray they get the right changes. And instead, you can direct them to the actual differences and tell them how to handle and index precisely.
But the main benefit of IndexNow is still eliminating what is done and search engines discovering them. This means your content can be indexed faster across all participating search engines. Not to mention that it helps to streamline the process of new content, talking about the more efficient web and the use of energy consumption.
Search engines use a lot of crawling activities, but they are not exactly efficient. They can crawl a page multiple times a day, even when there’s nothing new on the page. This is a waste of energy. With the Index now protocol, search engine bots will not need to perform exploratory crawls to determine if a page has been refreshed. This reduces unnecessary site load, reducing energy consumption and allowing servers to work more efficiently.
IndexNow Integration in Yoast SEO
You must do a few things to configure your site to use the IndexNow API. But if this sounds complicated, don’t worry because there are workarounds. At Yoast, we are launching an IndexNow integration in Yoast SEO Premium. And it will activate automatically so you can start using IndexNow on your website immediately. We will ping IndexNow whenever you publish or update your content. You don’t need to do anything – everything works silently in the background. We will release this feature in the next Yoast SEO Premium update, so stay tuned!
How to add IndexNow to your website
Adding IndexNow to your WordPress site can be intimidating if you’re not a developer.
To enable Index on your website, you will need to generate an API key and host the key manually by adding it to your public_html folder in the form of a text file.
However, adding IndexNow shouldn’t be that difficult. Fortunately, a more direct method is available, which is to use a plugin. For an in-depth guide, check out how to enable IndexNow in WordPress.
Add with AIOSEO plugin
One of the easiest ways to add IndexNow to your website is to use the All in One SEO plugin. And it’s far one of the nice search engine marketing plugins depended on via way of means of over three million websites.
All in One SEO is designed to make search engine optimization easy for all WordPress users. Some of the popular features of the AIOSEO plugin are:
- SEO Audit: AIOSEO comes with an SEO Audit feature that performs technical analysis and shows you the areas to improve your website’s SEO.
- TruSEO: Optimize posts, pages and products using AIOSEO’s TruSEO feature and improve your content’s on-page SEO.
- Link Assistant: The Link Assistant tool gives you a clear view of your site’s internal and external links.
- Search Appearance: Helps you create a business knowledge graph and display your company details in search results.
- Local SEO: You can rank your business higher in local business search results.
And many more.
Let’s dive into the steps to implement IndexNow using the All in One SEO plugin.
But before we start, please note that AIOSEO introduced the IndexNow feature in version 4.1.7. Therefore, you will need to update the plugin to the recent version.
After updating the plugin, navigate to the Feature Manager menu.
Now enable the IndexNow feature.
The next step is to verify the API key by going to General Settings » Webmaster Tools.
Check the IndexNow box and click the Save Changes button.
You have successfully activated IndexNow on your website using the All in One SEO plugin.
While using the AIOSEO plugin is the best way to add the IndexNow feature, another method is available that you might want to check out.
Add IndexNow with Bing’s IndexNow plugin
Since Microsoft started IndexNow for the Bing search engine, they have created a plugin to add IndexNow feature to WordPress sites.
You can find the IndexNow plugin in the WordPress plugin repository.
Just install the plugin just like you install any other plugin.
Navigate to Settings » IndexNow on the dashboard and click the Get Started button.
When you update the content, the plugin automatically generates the host API key and ping search engines.
You can check IndexNow statistics for successful and failed URLs in the plugin’s dashboard.
However, the most important reason to use AIOSEO over the Bing IndexNow plugin is that AIOSEO is a dedicated SEO plugin and comes with many crucial SEO features.