Marketers looking to monitor their search standing more closely received some help from Google this week with the addition of the Index Status feature. The new element within Webmaster Tools can help companies see if and when their search presence takes a hit from various algorithm updates or simply track their progress after launching a content marketing campaign.
Within Webmaster Tools’ Health menu, the data is presented as a chart showing the number of site pages indexed by Google over time. Sudden rises or drops likely indicates an impactful algorithm update. Previously, marketers often relied on traffic numbers to determine if they have been adversely affected by by an algorithm update. They could also check the exact number of indexed pages on a given day by entering “Site:YourURL.com” into Google search. The results yielded by the query was the number of pages included in Google’s index. This feature is still available, but Webmaster Tools makes it easier to assess trends.
There is other data included in the new tool, including total pages crawled and information related to pages blocked from being indexed.
The tool comes at an opportune time as many marketers may be trying to assess their search presence in light of a recent algorithm update. Any site seeing a recent change was likely impacted by a Google Panda update. Brafton highlighted the latest iteration, Panda 3.9, which went live Tuesday evening and impacted 1 percent of searches.