Fetch as Googlebot from Google – 3 Reasons to Use It

Last week Google announced a new way to submit URLs / web pages to them:

Fetch as Googlebot

This is done in your Webmaster Tools account, and will tell you instantly if Google is successful in retrieving the URL. If it is, you can then submit the page to their index.

No, this is *NOT* the new way to have your site crawled, but it does highlight a few interesting scenarios…

What’s the big deal?

Google has always had a link to submit a URL to them. Now, they’ve integrated this into Google Webmaster Tools, provide feedback as to whether Google can at least retrieve the page, and state the page will generally be crawled within a day (or sooner).

So when should you use this new service? Here are 3 scenarios:

1. Submit a new site that doesn’t have a lot of sites linking to it
If you’re launching a new site, and no one is linking to it, submit a few URLs so Google can know your site exists and start crawling it. It still may take a while to be fully indexed, but at least you’re in the door.

2. Update outdated cached data
Google shows a “cached” version of most URLs. If this cache data is outdated (you fixed an error, changed an important date, etc…), submit the URL so Google will update this data.

3. Time sensitive page like an upcoming event or sale
Getting ready to announce something big? Make sure Google knows about it by submitting the URL.

Don’t go overboard

Beyond Google’s limits for this service:
– 50 submissions per week
– 10 submissions per month (with all linked pages)

remember that , most of the time, Google has already indexed your content and keeps it updated. There is no need to go “hog wild” and submit all of your pages. That would be a waste of your time and would not help with your ranking.

Instead, use this tool for those sporadic issues that come up where getting a page quickly indexed or updated would be of benefit to your website, and to your customers.

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2 Comments

  1. Steve says:

    Thanks for the explanation, I had noticed the new feature in Webmaster Tools and was curious how Google treated it.

  2. Joseph says:

    This tool is very good for those who just published and site and want to get it indexed as soon as possible, but I wouldn’t abuse this tool to try to index your page everyday as that can actually hurt you in the long run.

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