With IndexNow, webmasters are supposed to report new content to search engines

With IndexNow, webmasters are supposed to report new content to search engines

Website operators should report new content directly to search engines. With the protocol called IndexNow, Microsoft and Yandex want to accelerate the indexing of new content and at the same time relieve their crawlers.

It is important for both searchers and website operators that current information appears in search results as quickly as possible. Search engine crawlers are often the bottleneck. Despite various aids that website operators can provide – including XML sitemaps – the crawlers are anything but efficient. It can take days to weeks or even forever for current content to appear in the search index.

IndexNow aims to alleviate this bottleneck. That new protocol offers website operators a software interface (API) which they can use to notify the search engines involved in the project about changes to the content of a website. However, only Bing and Yandex are currently involved in IndexNow.

Submission of new content to the IndexNow API

(Image: Bing)

In order to send one or more URLs to the participating search engines via the protocol, you must perform the following steps:

  • Create one IndexNow key on Bing
  • Host the text file with the key value in the root directory of your website.
  • Submit URLs when there are changes to the content. Several URLs can be reported per API call.

A simple HTTP request with the changed URL and your key is sufficient for the transfer:

  • https://www.bing.com/IndexNow?url=url-geändert&key=ihr-schlüssel
  • https://yandex.com/indexnow?url=url-geändert&key=ihr-schlüssel

Further information on the use of the API can be found on the common website of the initiative as well as on the IndexNow presence bei Bing.

Microsofts currently has Bing has a global market share of 13 percent. Yandex, a Russian-Dutch company, has a market share of over one percent with its search engine. The immediate effects of IndexNow will therefore be limited.

After all, Akamai, eBay and Cloudflare announcedTo support IndexNow. Microsoft provides suitable code for WordPress and uses the new protocol on its own websites such as LinkedIn, MSN and GitHub. Sooner or later, various content management systems are likely to incorporate IndexNow.


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