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How to Submit Your Website to Search Engines (Works in 2023)

If you want your website to enjoy long-term success, you need to make sure it ranks well on search engines.

Before you worry about ranking, though, you need to make sure search engines know your site exists in the first place.

This guide on 📚 how to submit your website to search engines will show you what to do in order to achieve that result.

how to submit your website to search engines

We’ll show you how to submit your website 📥 to the major search engines:

But first, let’s talk about whether or not you even need to submit your site to search engines.

Do I have to submit my website to search engines?

Search engines use crawler bots to search existing websites for new links. When a bot finds a useful link, whether that’s a specific page on a website or a wholly new website, it adds the link to the search engine’s index. This process is constantly happening, which means that search engines should find your website on their own.

However, there are a couple of reasons to submit your website manually to search engines:

  • You control what search engines learn. Manually submitting your website means that you can make sure search engines get important information about content updates and other website changes.
  • You ensure that search engine results reflect your most recent content updates. Sitemaps are also checked more frequently by bots than regular website pages, so submitting your sitemap ensures that content updates will be indexed in a timely fashion.
  • You get more opportunities to improve your site. When you register your website with Google or Bing, you’ll gain access to tools that can help you improve your site.

What’s more, the process takes only a few minutes, which makes it one of the easiest ways to boost your SEO.

Submitting your website to search engines: step-by-step tutorials

Now let’s take a look at how you can submit your website to the most popular search engines:

How to find your sitemap

In order to submit your website to search engines, you’ll need to have your sitemap link ready to go. If you’re using WordPress, the default location for this is https://yourdomainname.com/wp-sitemap.xml or https://yourdomainname.com/sitemap.xml. Simply add the /wp-sitemap.xml extension to your homepage URL and you’ll find it.

Some plugins, such as Yoast SEO or Rank Math, can change the location of your sitemap to improve security and SEO. If you’re using one of these plugins, you can typically find the sitemap in the plugin’s Settings area. Some plugins may also have a separate location called Sitemap Settings.

How to submit your website to Google

Step one: sign up for Google Search Console

The only way to submit your website to Google manually is to use the Google Search Console. You can sign up for this by going to the Google Search Console website and clicking Start Now:

sign up for Google Search Console

If you’re not already logged into Google, you’ll be asked to sign in. You can use an existing account for this or create a new one.

Once you’ve signed in, you’ll be prompted to enter your domain (without prefix) or URL (with prefix). We recommend entering the full URL as it’s easier to verify.

sign up for Google Search Console - finish veryfication

You’ll then be required to verify ownership of your site. The easiest way to do this is with an HTML tag.

Step two: submit your website to Google

Next, click the Sitemaps link in the sidebar of your Google Search Console account and enter your sitemap URL into the area provided. Click Submit to submit your sitemap to Google officially.

submit your website to Google

Step three: submit a page to Google

In some instances, a page may not be on your sitemap. You may also find that pages just aren’t indexed.

To submit these individual pages to Google, type the full URL into the URL Inspection bar at the top of your Google Search Console account and press Enter. Google will then search its indexes and tell you whether the page is indexed and, if it isn’t, why it hasn’t been indexed:

submit a page to Google

Click Request Indexing and Google will crawl this page and place it in the indexes.

Step four: test live URL

The final step in how to submit your website to search engines is to test the URL to make sure it’s available to Google/that indexing is allowed. You can do this by opening the Google Search Console and typing the URL for your website into the URL inspection tool, then pressing Enter.

When the page information loads, you’ll notice a Test Live URL button near the top right corner of the page. Click on this and Google will scan the page for issues:

test live URL

After a couple of minutes, you’ll see the results of the scan. This will show you whether the site is available to Google and whether it’s eligible for enhancements like features snippets. If Google Search Console points out errors, click on the error listings to see more details so you can fix the issues.

test live URL - inspection

How to submit your website to Bing

Step one: set up your Bing Webmaster Tools account

The next step in how to submit your website to search engines is to head to the Bing Webmaster Tools area and click Get Started. This will prompt you to log in with a Microsoft, Google, or Facebook account.

set up Bing Webmaster Tools account

You will be taken to a page with two options:

  • Import your site from Google Search Console. If you’ve already verified your site on Google Search Console, you can import it and Bing will accept your site as verified. Sitemaps will also be imported so that your website is automatically indexed on Bing.
  • Add your site manually. This option requires you to enter a URL, verify ownership of that URL, and submit a sitemap manually.

If you’ve already verified your site with Google, you can choose the first option. Otherwise, enter your URL into the box provided and click Add.

Bing Webmaster tools

Once again, this will give you three options for verifying your site. Again, the easiest option is to add an HTML tag to your site:

XML file

Step two: submit your sitemap to Bing

After you’ve verified your website with Bing, head to the Sitemaps area of your account and click Submit Sitemap:

submit sitemap to Bing

Copy + paste your sitemap URL into the box provided and click Submit:

submit sitemap to Bing - click submit

Congratulations, you’ve now submitted your website to Bing!

Step three: request indexing

Want to make sure a specific page is indexed with Bing? You can submit it directly by opening your Webmaster tools account and selecting URL Submission from the options in the sidebar:

request indexing

On the next page, click the Submit URLs button. This will open a box where you can submit up to 100 URLs for indexing. Be sure to put each URL on a separate line.

request indexing - submit URLs

Click Submit when you’ve finished entering the URLs and Bing will start the process of indexing your pages.

Step four: test live URL

The final step to making sure your site is indexable is to test your URL. To do this, select URL Inspection from the sidebar in your Bing Webmaster account. Then, type your homepage (or another page you want to test) into the search bar provided and click Inspect:

test live URL

This will load a page with two tabs: Bing Index and Live URL. The first area will load automatically, displaying whether the URL can be indexed and any SEO issues the tool found.

When you click on the Live URL tab, Bing will start the test. You’ll then get more information about whether your site is indexable, including specific SEO issues you can tackle:

Bing Live URL

How to submit your website to Yahoo and DuckDuckGo

Yahoo and DuckDuckGo both use Bing for their search results, so if you’ve submitted your site to Bing, you’ve submitted it to all three search engines.

How to check if your site is indexed

You can check if your site submission worked by entering your URL into the homepage of the search engine you want to check with. If your site is indexed, you should see a list of links to it in the search results, starting with your homepage:

check if site is indexed

This method works with each one of the search engines discussed in this article.

If you want to see all the pages currently indexed for your website, type site:yoursitename into the search engine you’re curious about. You’ll then be able to see the ones currently indexed with that search engine – and you’ll get an idea of what the results for those pages look like, too!

pages currently indexed

Final advice on how to submit your website to search engines 👨‍🎓

Submitting your website to search engines can help you ensure that all the pages on your site are indexed correctly. Moreover, signing up with Google Search Console and Bing Webmaster Tools will give you access to other tools that can help you understand and improve your site’s SEO.

Want to learn more about website SEO? Check out our WordPress SEO checklist, our guide to the best free SEO tools, our list of effective SEO tips, or our tutorial on how to identify search intent for better SEO.

Don’t forget to join our crash course on speeding up your WordPress site. Learn more below:

 
Dianna Gunn

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