Why are your site’s pages indexed in Google Search Console but they don’t show up on searches? Here’s why:

Google indexing and ranking are two distinct processes in the world of search engines, and they serve different purposes:

  1. Google Indexing:
    • Indexing is the process by which search engines like Google discover, crawl, and store web pages in their databases or indexes.
    • When a new website or webpage is created or updated, it needs to be indexed by search engines to be included in search results.
    • Search engine crawlers (also known as spiders or bots) visit websites to gather information about their content, structure, and links. They follow links from one page to another, indexing the content they find.
    • During indexing, search engines analyze the page’s content, metadata, and other relevant data to understand what the page is about and categorize it accordingly.
  2. Google Ranking:
    • Ranking is the process by which search engines determine the order in which web pages should appear in search engine results pages (SERPs) when a user enters a search query.
    • Google’s ranking algorithm takes into account various factors, including the relevance and quality of the content, links from other website, the website’s authority, user engagement signals, and more.
    • Pages that are indexed by Google are eligible to appear in search results, but not all indexed pages will rank equally. Google’s algorithm ranks them based on their perceived quality and relevance to the user’s search query.
    • The ranking process is dynamic and can change over time, depending on factors such as the competitiveness of the query, the freshness of content, and updates to Google’s algorithm.

Indexing is the process of adding web pages to Google’s database, making them eligible to appear in search results. Ranking, on the other hand, is the process of determining the order in which these indexed pages will appear in search results based on various ranking factors.

While indexing is a prerequisite for ranking, ranking is where Google evaluates and decides which pages are most relevant and valuable to users for a given search query.