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Indexable vs Non-Indexable Content: What is the Difference?

Last update : 23 November 2020

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When you make a query on a search engine, the order of web page results that appear is no coincidence. If you run a website or blog, you may at some point have become frustrated that your link was relegated to the third page.

Because, let’s be honest, how many users search beyond the first page? None. They never do.

For your site to be indexed on Google, Bing and other search engines, while also having a chance at overtaking your competitors, it needs to have visibility.

But, how do you get it out of the shadows and into the light? This process is called indexation.

Web crawlers: huh?!

As mentioned earlier, having indexable content is a necessary step for your site to be ranked among the top results. This is where web crawlers come into play.

Web crawlers provide search engines with useful information from the billions of sites on the internet. Their goal is to detect web pages and to “take note” of the subjects covered within them. This will allow your link to be indexed when a user types in your keyword or topic.

Despite their goodwill, robots are not infallible. They sometimes miss out on blogs or sites that are otherwise very interesting.

It is therefore essential to organize and develop your website so that it can be located and easily crawled by robots. In other words, to optimize it.

We often write about our hobby horse, natural referencing or SEO. And, of course, indexing is an integral part of this considerable undertaking.

Is this content indexable or not?

You no doubt understand that indexable content is much more valuable to you.

To ensure that your site is in the Google index, type: site: into the search bar. The number of results corresponds to the indexed pages of your website.


Now, how can you achieve a website that is properly detected and crawled by the search engines?

Indexable content

It is possible to ask Google to proceed with the indexation of your site, either by submitting a form or placing a link to your site on another site (backlinking). Of course, make sure that the site hosting your link is itself indexed!

Furthermore, the content must be authentic and unique. Much like at school, duplicating content is very negatively perceived by Google.

Another way to be noticed by crawlers is to add a custom TITLE tag. This is a particularly important step during the indexing process. The same goes for the META DESCRIPTION. Do not let the machine do it for you, at the risk that it won’t grab the attention of either the crawlers or your potential customers. Optimize them!

If you use images or videos, it is also necessary to improve them by filling in the title and description. Search engines are not yet able to recognize visual content, so they do not take it into account.

Think about it: if Google can’t detect the image subject (is it Barack Obama or a cat?), how then can it find the image when someone searches for the first black president of the United States?

Non-indexable content

Here are some examples of things that make it more difficult for crawlers to read content:

  • Sites with no links between internal pages;
  • Sites that require authentication to read content;
  • The absence of static URLs;
  • When JavaScript and Flash are misunderstood by robots;
  • Some pages do not use HTML (Word, PDF, Excel, etc.);
  • The pages are too large.

Content that is unindexable is found on what is called the deep web. Make sure your valuable data does not get stuck in this vast meandering space!

Final thoughts…

In other words, indexing is the process of detecting and analyzing your site that is performed by search engine robots.

If your content is unindexed, your page will not show up in searches, even if your info is the most relevant.

There are several solutions to getting your pages out of the hidden abyss of the internet, which usually comes down to optimizing your content. It’s not so surprising that content writing is in such high demand!

Content writers have the expertise to generate relevant content that is interesting for users and detectable by search engines. Provided, of course, you choose those that have the necessary experience!


Co-founder and SEO-SEM Specialist

Eugénie began her web marketing career at Microsoft with partners that included Hewlett-Packard and Dell. In 2013, she co-founded My Little Big Web with Maxence to help SMBs optimize their web marketing. Her SEO, online advertising and user experience skills help My Little Big Web's clients quickly and lastingly rank at the top of search results. Since she is committed to sharing knowledge, she teaches many internal and external workshops and gives talks on various topics related to digital marketing.

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