Problem with unindexed pages in Google Search Console


I have a few alerts in the Google Search Console about unindexed pages, which has triggered a few questions and considerations that I will explain below while also creating some context.

  • We first launched our site with one structure on blog posts w. two different content types and then ended up simplifying the url structure, so we now have some redirects setup to account for /posts
  • We have the new webflow localisation module rolled out and all content is shown in a {{sitename . com}} / {{country}} / {{slug}}

These two categories are the main ones when it comes to the unindexed pages:

1. Redirects
Most of these are related to either content without the {{country}} or old links w. “posts” in them as described above. Am I right in assuming that then it’s not really an issue in terms of SEO even if Google Search Console shows the alerts?
2. Alternate page with proper canonical tag
I’ve set up {{sitename . com}} / {{country}} as the global canonical URL. In the “alternate page with proper canonical tag” I now have 8 important pages that are not indexed, how would I go about that?

Thanks in advance :slight_smile:

Hey, both are not errors. Redirects and Alternate page with proper canonical tag should not be indexed according to the search console.

Google is telling you simply: "I know these pages exists, but I’ll show the user the correct one (i.e. the redirected or the canonical).

I hope it helps!

Redirects - If the unindexed pages are due to redirects (like old URLs with “posts” or without the country code), it’s generally not a significant SEO concern. Google often shows alerts for redirected pages as it tries to crawl old URLs. As long as your redirects are properly set up (301 redirects for permanent changes), Google should eventually update its index to reflect the new URLs. This update can take some time, depending on how frequently Google crawls your site.

Alternate Pages with Canonical Tags - For pages showing as “alternate page with proper canonical tag” and not being indexed, there are a few steps you can take:

  • Review Canonical Tags: Ensure that the canonical tags on these pages are correctly pointing to the intended URL. Incorrect canonicalization can lead to indexing issues.
  • Check for Content Duplication: Google might choose not to index a page if it’s too similar to another page, even with a canonical tag. Ensure that the content on these pages is unique enough to warrant indexing.
  • Manual Indexing Request: You can request Google to index these specific pages using the URL Inspection tool in Google Search Console. This can sometimes expedite the process.

Issues are quite nuanced so keep an eye on GSC for updates in these index statuses.

Fixed robots.txt issue and check sitemaps