There is nothing better than the Google Search Console for always knowing how your site appears on the search results page.
But you need to know how to use it at its best and above all you need to know how to fix errors on Search Console.
As soon as you verify your site with Search Console , you will start receiving data regarding the presence of your site on the web in relation to user searches.
You will therefore see if your pages are indexed correctly and if there are technical errors within them that can compromise the positioning.
In this article I will explain how resolve errors on Search Console, or at least the main ones.
I remind you that the Search Console is moving to a new version, and that will be what we will refer to. If you still use the old one, I recommend that you switch immediately to the new one, also because many features are no longer available or will not be available soon.
Find out all the differences between the new and old Search Console on the Google support page.
Types of alerts on Search Console
First, let’s see what the types of alerts you can find on the Search Console.
The most important ones concern the coverage of the index, which means which pages have errors that do not allow indexing .
In some cases, you may have intentionally decided to exclude the page from the index, so you can ignore the error.
In most cases, however, it is necessary fix these warnings on Search Console as soon as possible.
In addition to index coverage, other Search Console errors may relate to usability on mobile devices, i.e. viewing pages on tablets and smartphones presents problems or difficulties in navigation.
Finally, the report on AMP pages shows the improvements you can make on these types of pages.
If you don’t use AMP pages, this section will not be present in your Search Console.
Troubleshoot Search Console Errors: Coverage
Top coverage alerts show you why a page is excluded from the index. Here are the main warnings and how to fix them.
Sent URL not found (404)
This error means that a browser has tried to open a URL on your site that does not exist.
It may have been a typing error by a user, or a broken link was clicked .
In the event that there is a broken link, or a page has been removed or moved, you will necessarily have to intervene with a redirect or by correcting the link.
If it’s a user error, don’t worry.
You can also ignore it, unless it’s a particularly common mistake.
There may be a chain of redirects that is too long, or even infinite.
Check your redirects and make sure they are set up correctly.
Read the guide on how to delete a redirect , if you notice that you have set up a redirect incorrectly.
The submitted URL is blocked by the robots.txt file
In the robots.txt file there is a Disallow line that prevents access to this page or to the folder in which it is located.
If you have intentionally excluded this page, you will not have to intervene; if not, correct the robots.txt file.
The URL sent contains a “noindex” tag
In the <head> of this page there is the meta tag robots with value noindex, which blocks the indexing of the page.
Remove this tag, unless you intentionally entered it.
Troubleshoot Search Console errors: Usability on mobile devices
When you create a responsive site , make sure that it is easily navigable from mobile and that all functions are working correctly.
If there are any problems, you will be able to view them in this section of the Search Console.
Viewport not set
This error indicates that the viewport property in the <head> of the HTML file is missing.
The viewport is used to set how the page should be resized, so it is essential for a responsive site.
Content larger than the screen
There are items that are too wide in width and they “protrude” from the screen, so they are not displayed correctly.
This happens if you set the dimensions, for example, in pixels and not as a percentage, that is, if you use absolute and not relative units of measurement.
Text too small to read
To prevent the text from being too small and to make it fit your device instead, you could indicate the font size in ems and not pixels.
This way, you’ll avoid having to zoom in to read.
Selectable elements too close together
When the links or buttons are too close together, it is difficult to touch the right one, so the user may end up on the wrong page and have a negative experience .
Make it comfortable to activate all functions by spacing out the elements sufficiently.
The Enhancements section has recently introduced the analysis of the new parameters Core Web Vitals, which consist in monitoring some values related to the speed and real experience of users on the site.
Read the guide to Core Web Vitals to find out what it is.
Troubleshoot Search Console errors: AMP pages
Most of the errors on AMP pages mainly concern the use of canonical pages.
So be very careful when setting the canonical URL. Here are the main warnings.
The referring AMP URL is not an AMP version
You pointed to an AMP page, which isn’t actually written in AMP HTML.
Correct the doctype and verify the correctness of the tags used.
The canonical version points to an invalid URL
The canonical page refers to an AMP page, but the format of the URL indicated is incorrect.
Make sure the tag like this example appears in the <head>:
<link rel = “canonical” href = “https://www.fanoftech.com/path-amp/page-amp.html”>
The domain of the AMP page does not match
You used a different domain for the AMP page.
The AMP pages must belong to the same domain as the canonical ones.
Mismatched content: Embedded video is missing
Errors like this indicate that you should make sure that you enter the same information on the canonical page on the AMP page as well.
This warning can appear if you use two different URLs to point to the same video.
I have shown you the main problems you may encounter and how to resolve alerts on Search Console which have a greater impact on the indexing and ranking of your site.