Crawl errors can have a major impact on how your website does in online search results. If they’re not addressed then people may not be able find your website! Or, if users do make it to your website they may not be able to use it properly. This is why it’s so important to have, and monitor, a Google Search Console account for your website.
What is Google Search Console again?
Search Console is Google’s way of telling you how they see your website, and for you to tell them how you’d like it to be seen. Helping Google can significantly help your website, and not listening to them can have serious consequences. Search Console works with, but is separate from Google Analytics. We’ll discuss that more another time :)
I talked about the significance of Mobile-first indexing in an earlier post. That’s one of the many things you can learn about your website in the Search Console.
What are Crawl Errors?
In order to know what your website is all about, and when it should show up in search results, Google tries to look at, or crawl, every part of your website. If there is a part of a website that “should” be there but Google can’t access it then Google will report it as crawl error. The two most common reasons for crawl errors are either broken links or broken pages. So if the URL of a page changed, or it was deleted, you need to be sure to remove any links to that old page or redirect them to the updated version. Or, if a page on your website isn’t working properly for any number of reasons, and Google can’t see it, they’ll let you know there is a crawl error. It’s totally OK to hide parts of your website from Google, or tell them not to show in search results, but you want be sure to do so properly. If users, including Google, expect to see something on your website and don’t they’ll probably be disappointed. In Google’s case this means they’ll be less likely to show your website in search results. If this happens too often it can be extremely hard to recover from.
What you can do
If you don’t have Continuous Care for your website the best place to find out more about Google Search Console is the source. Google provides the most direct and up to date steps on how to set up an account for your website and what to do if there are any errors. Of course if you would like me to set this up and monitor it for you, as well as take advantage of all of the other benefits offered under Continuous Care, please read more about it and request to sign up here: https://www.chrisonealdesign.com/continuous-care/
Thanks, and may all your crawls be error free!