There’s a saying that goes, “if Google can’t find you, then your customers can’t find you” and it’s very true. Google finds your site through a process called indexing. The simplified version is this: Google sends smart cyber-spiders out to crawl all over the web and these spiders bring back news of all the new sites and site changes. Google updates its database to include all these news bits and voila, you’re indexed. Now, when Hubert searches Google for neon-green, 80’s rapper pants, he’ll find them at your Ultimate 80’s online store.
That’s the perfect world. In the real world, some sites, blogs in particular, get indexed faster than other sites. Some sites get indexed late or badly due to issues with keywords or graphics that block the text. (Here’s a tip: Google can’t read a graphic, so make sure the name of your site is in the text or meta text.)
To make the process easier and quicker, Google has implemented two new applications, Fetch as Googlebot and Crawl URL.
Fetch as Googlebot works in conjunction with the Google’s Webmaster Tools. You submit your site through a form and after a moment, Google lets you know if the site is “fetchable.” If so, you can then submit either that single page or all of the pages in that site with a second click of a button.
Fetch is useful not only for new sites but anytime you make a big change or even a mistake, says Google, where you need to update the page cache quickly.
Crawl URL functions in the same way as Fetch but you don’t have to be the site owner to use it. This is excellent for anyone promoting a site for a client. Put in the address, click and you’re done.
In both cases, there is a max of 50 submissions a month, or 10 full site submissions. Google also makes no promises about the results. They say that it should speed up the wait time for indexing, but don’t bet the mortgage on it.
I look at it this way. Submitting these forms takes less than a minute, so why not do it? The worst that can happen is nothing. The best that can happen is you get Google traffic to your site in a matter of days and there’s nothing wrong with that.