Sometimes we all get caught up with the torrent of search engine marketing news that comes out daily. Every day there is another Google update, some new technique to use, some old technique to avoid. Sites get banned, rankings go up, pages disappear – it’s very hectic at times.

In the midst of the all the chaos, it is good to take a step back from time to time.

So let’s spend a little time discussing the most basic idea behind search engine optimization: Indexing.

Before you can begin to think about optimizing a page’s title tags, content, links – one thing needs to be certain, that page needs to be indexable.

There could be many factors holding back your web page from being indexed.

Perhaps there is an error in your robots.txt?
Maybe your web server is blocking directory contents?
Is there JavaScript or broken code within your page?
Are there any incoming text links to the page?
Are there any automatic redirects from the page?
Is your site using frames or only flash?
Is your entire site navigation in JavaScript? A dropdown?
Are your meta tags telling robots to not index?
Is your site full of duplicate content, invisible content, or hidden links?
Did you buy a banned domain?

Making sure nothing is preventing your pages from being indexed will save you a lot of trouble later on.

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