How to Fix Google Search Console Errors & Issues

How to Fix Google Search Console Errors & Issues

Google Search Console (GSC) stands out as a valuable, no-cost tool designed to monitor your website’s performance. It aids in identifying and resolving potential issues that might hinder your site from appearing as expected in Google’s search results. Below, we’ve compiled a list of prevalent Google Search Console error reports, along with guidance on identifying the causes of these errors and, in most instances, providing solutions.

Google Search Console Errors List:

When Google’s crawler, Googlebot, encounters difficulties crawling your site and fails to comprehend a page, it abandons the process. This results in the page not being indexed and, consequently, not visible to searchers, significantly impacting your search performance. Here are some of the errors that may arise:

  • Page Marked as “No Index”
  • Page Faces a Crawl Issue
  • 404 Errors: Page Not Found
  • Soft 404
  • Submitted URL Not Found (404)
  • Server Error (5XX)
  • Redirect Error:
  • Value in Property “ratingCount” Must Be Positive
  • Video Page Indexing Issues Detected
  • Mobile Usability Errors Analyzing Excluded Pages in the Coverage Report
  • Analyzing Excluded Pages in the Coverage Report

Submission URL Errors: Not indexed Pages with Issues

There are at least three reasons why specific pages on your site may not be indexed by Google. Why is this crucial? Unindexed pages mean zero SEO value, as they won’t show up in organic search results.

  • Pages Blocked by robots.txt
    • Issue: The submitted page is being blocked by the robots.txt file.
    • Fix: Confirm the problem using the robots.txt tester. Adjust the robots.txt file or modify the page to align with indexation preferences.
  • Page Marked as “No Index”
    • Issue: The submitted page has a “noindex” directive.
    • Fix:  Remove the “noindex” meta robots tag or HTTP header if you intend the page to be indexed.
  • Page Faces a Crawl Issue
    • Issue: Google encounters an unspecified crawling error.
    • Fix: Use the URL inspection tool in Google Search Console for debugging. Consult your developers to address underlying causes.

404 Errors: Page Not Found

A “404 error” indicates that Googlebot cannot locate a page. While not uncommon due to website evolution, specific actions can be taken based on distinct scenarios:

Submitted URL Appears as a Soft 404

  • Submitted URL Not Found (404)
    • Issue: A URL in your sitemap no longer exists.
    • Fix: Redirect or ignore the 404 error based on whether the URL should exist.

Server Error (5XX)

When a server error (5XX) is reported in Google Search Console, it indicates that Googlebot faced difficulties accessing your URL, possibly due to a timed-out request or a busy site. Consequently, Googlebot had to abandon the request. Various factors can contribute to this error, and addressing it may require collaboration with your development team or server host.

Issue: Your server returned a 500-level error during the page request.


  • Examine dynamic page requests as they can lead to prolonged load times; adjust if necessary.
  • Ensure your site’s hosting server is not experiencing downtime, overload, or misconfiguration.
  • Verify that your site is not unintentionally blocking Google.
  • Exercise prudent control over search engine site crawling and indexing. Some webmasters deliberately restrict Googlebot access to manage crawling and indexing behavior. Collaborate with your developers to optimize your site’s performance.

Redirect Error:

When you relocate or remove a page on your website, it’s advisable to establish a 301 redirect to inform the web browser about the page’s relocation and guide it to the new location. However, issues may arise if pages undergo multiple moves or are directed back to the original location.

Issue: Redirect errors typically stem from the following:

  • A redirect chain that surpasses the recommended maximum of three.
  • A redirect loop, where page A points to B, which then redirects back to A.
  • The redirect URL exceeds the prescribed maximum length, especially problematic in scenarios involving layered navigation or the addition of query parameters.
  • The presence of a faulty or empty URL within the redirect chain.

Fixing these errors: Conduct a thorough review of your redirects, aiming for a single redirect whenever possible. The Chrome Extension “Ayima” proves effective in identifying redirected pages, their destinations, and the number of redirect steps involved. This tool can assist in pinpointing issues on a page-by-page basis.

Value in Property “ratingCount” Must Be Positive

Warnings and errors in Google Search Console related to product-specific Structured Data Markup (SDM) require attention. Utilize the Structured Data Testing Tool to identify missing or incorrectly configured elements. Refer to and Google Search Console’s guide on structured data to understand the intricacies and rectify the issues.

1. Absence of “Offers,” “Review,” or “aggregateRating”

  • Issue: Product pages must specify at least one of these elements in the SDM.
  • Fix: Add at least one of these elements to the page or template HTML. Typically, these are parent elements with child elements like type, URL, ratingValue, or reviewCount.

2. Missing “Price” Field

  • Issue: The mandatory product field requires entry in the format of ##.##
  • Fix: Include the price in the SDM as “87.99” (without a dollar sign in this field). Specify priceCurrency in the offer markup if displaying prices. If not displaying prices, omit these fields.

3. Absence of Required “Best” and/or “Worst” Values for Ratings

  • Issue: For product ratings or reviews, specify the range for “bestRating” and/or “worstRating.”
  • Fix: Typically, set bestRating to 5 and worstRating to 1.

4. Non-Positive Value in Property “ratingCount”

  • Issue: This property must contain the total number of ratings on the product page.
  • Fix: While it can be 0 if no reviews exist, this number cannot be negative.

Video Page Indexing Issues Detected

If your website features videos, you might encounter errors in Google Search Console if the video structure is not optimized. Here are some prevalent issues we’ve observed recently:

1. Absence of Thumbnail URL or Missing “thumbnailUrl” Field

  • Issue: Google couldn’t generate a video thumbnail, or there is no specified thumbnail field in your video’s structured data markup.
  • Fix: Provide a link to a thumbnail image for the video. When utilizing VideoObject schema, ensure a link to the thumbnail image is included.

2. Video Outside the Viewport

  • Issue: A part of the video extends beyond the visible content area during page loading.
  • Fix: Ensure the entire video is within the main content area, guaranteeing visibility during page load.

3. Unsupported Video Format

  • Issue: The video file extension is incompatible with Google.
  • Fix: Employ a supported video file type such as .mp4, .mpeg, or .webm. Avoid including unnecessary characters at the end of the video filename.

4. Thumbnail Unreachable

  • Issue:The video’s thumbnail cannot be accessed at the provided URL.
  • Fix: Confirm the image is not password-protected or inaccessible.

5. Missing “uploadDate” Field

  • Issue: In your VideoObject structured data, the upload date is unspecified.
  • Fix: Include the date when the video was added to the site.

6. Video Not Found On Host Service

  • Issue: The search engine crawler, was unable to find the video embedded on your page when it crawled your website.
  • Fix: Ensure the video embed code is correct and includes the proper video ID and URL.

7. Google Could Not Determine The Prominent Video On The Page

  • Issue: Google has identified one or more videos on a webpage but is unable to pinpoint the most prominent one.
  • Fix: Place the video near the top of the page, ensuring it’s visible without scrolling. Ensure the video’s dimensions are adequate, ideally with a minimum height and width of 140px.

Mobile Usability Errors

As the usage of the internet on mobile phones continues to surge, ensuring a fast and user-friendly website for the majority of mobile devices is crucial. Mobile usability errors highlight issues that hinder users from navigating pages easily.

1. Clickable Elements Too Close Together
  • Issue: This report identifies sites where touch elements, like buttons and navigational links, are closely positioned. This proximity makes it challenging for mobile users to tap the desired element without unintentionally tapping a neighboring one.
  • Fix the Error: Properly size and space touch elements to suit mobile visitors. Refer to Google’s Accessibility Styles Guidelines, with a minimum recommended target size of 48 pixels and a spacing of at least 8 pixels between elements.
2. Viewport Not Set
  • Cause: Your page lacks a defined viewport property, crucial for browsers to adjust dimensions and scaling according to screen size.
  • Fix the Error: Specify a viewport for your pages using the meta viewport tag. The recommended setting is 
  • <meta name=”viewport” content=”width=device-width, initial-scale=1.0″>.
  •  Avoid using large, fixed-width elements that don’t scale to smaller screen sizes, necessitating side-to-side scrolling.
3. Content Wider Than Screen
  • Issue: This report indicates pages requiring horizontal scrolling to view words and images. It often occurs with absolute values in CSS declarations or images designed for specific browser widths.
  • Fix the Error: Ensure pages use relative width and position values for CSS elements.
4. Text Too Small to Read
  • Issue: This report identifies pages with font sizes too small for legibility, requiring mobile visitors to zoom in for reading.
  • Fix the Error: After specifying a viewport, set font sizes to scale appropriately within it. Utilize relative units (em or rem) for font size instead of pixel values.

By addressing these mobile usability errors, you enhance the overall user experience on your website, catering to the diverse range of devices and screen sizes used by your visitors.

Analyzing Excluded Pages in the Coverage Report

In the Coverage report, it’s not uncommon to encounter numerous pages excluded from Google’s index. While some exclusions may not be problematic, certain cases require attention.

Here are the top indexing google search console errors

1. Crawled – Currently Not Indexed

  • Issue: Googlebot crawled the page but opted not to index it.
  • Fix the Error: Use a site:search in Google to verify if the listed pages are indexed. If not, ensure they are in your sitemap, not disallowed in robots.txt, lack canonicalization to another page, are not duplicates, and have the correct meta robots tags. If everything checks out, use the URL Inspection tool for resubmission or await Google’s recrawl.

2. Crawl Anomaly

  • Issue: Google encountered difficulties accessing the pages.
  • Fix the Error: Utilize the URL Inspection tool to identify potential errors. Consider crawling the page(s) with an Free SEO tool like ScreamingFrog to detect issues.

3. Duplicate without User-Selected Canonical

  • Issue: Googlebot found multiple versions of a page without a specified canonical tag, leading it to withhold indexing.
  • Fix the Error: Identify all versions and add appropriate canonical tags. If unnecessary versions exist, redirect them to the primary page. If all versions are vital, consider canonicalizing additional variations to the primary URL to optimize crawl budget and avoid keyword cannibalization.

4. Duplicate, Submitted URL Not Selected As Canonical

  • Issue: Similar to the above, but occurs when a specifically requested URL for indexing is not selected as canonical by Google.
  • Fix the Error: Apply suitable canonical tags. If the URL is not the primary page, consider canonicalizing it to the primary page. If it’s the primary page, canonicalize additional URLs to it.

5. Discovered – Currently Not Indexed

  • Issue: Google acknowledges the page’s existence but was unable to crawl it.
  • Fix the Error: Ensure Googlebot has access, isn’t hampered by crawl delays in robots.txt, or facing general overload.

6. Alternate Page With Proper Canonical Tag

  • The status message Alternate Page with Proper Canonical Tag in Google Search Console indicates that your website has two versions of a page with the same canonical URL. Google will automatically exclude the duplicate version and index the primary version of the page. This suggests that Google correctly identifies these canonicalized URLs, and you don’t need to take any specific actions.

7. Duplicate, Google chose different canonical than user

  • Issue: This message indicates that Google has detected two or more pieces of content on your website that are either the same or very similar. However, when Google decided on the main version of the content that should be indexed, it ended up selecting a different URL.
  • Fix the Error: To do this, we go to the SEO settings for the page and edit the canonical URL in the Advanced section.

8. Page removed because of legal complaint:

  • Issue: If your website has been compromised and infected with harmful code, you may encounter a surge of these issues in your reports. Hackers frequently create pages for illicit activities such as pirating movies or selling prescription drugs, which legal teams at large corporations actively monitor and file complaints against.
  • How to Fix: Upon receiving such a complaint, promptly remove the copyrighted material and thoroughly scan your website for any signs of compromise. Ensure that all plugins are updated to the latest versions, strengthen your passwords,and update your CMS software to the most recent release.

9. Crawling in Progress:

  • Issue: Your page is currently in the crawling queue. Check back in a few days to verify if it has been successfully crawled.
  • Solution: This is a promising development! Anticipate seeing your content indexed in search results shortly. While waiting, why not pop a bag of popcorn and return later? Utilize this interim period to address the remaining issues identified in the Index Coverage report.

10. URL Submission Failed

  • Issue: Despite your submission, this page was not indexed due to an unspecified reason.The lack of specific details makes it challenging to pinpoint the exact cause. However, we suspect that Google reviewed your content, evaluated its performance, and ultimately decided against including it in search results.
  • Solution: To address this issue, conduct a thorough assessment of the page’s quality. Is it overly simplistic, outdated, inaccurate, or slow-loading? Has it been neglected for an extended period? Have your competitors surpassed you with superior content?

11. Navigating the Core Web Vitals Report

  • Issue: Ensuring your website is free from technical issues that hinder Google’s crawling and ranking is crucial, but Google also considers the user experience your website provides. 
  • Solution: The Core Web Vitals report in Google Search Console focuses on page speed metrics that gauge the user experience, enabling you to identify areas for improvement and optimize your site accordingly. The report provides three metrics (LCP, FID, and CLS) and a status (Poor, Needs Improvement, or Good) for all URLs on your site.

Largest Contentful Paint (LCP):

LCP measures the time it takes for the largest content element on the page to load completely after initiating the URL.

First Input Delay (FID):

FID measures the time it takes for the browser to respond to a user interaction, such as clicking a link.

Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS):

CLS measures the amount of unexpected layout shifts that occur on the page, leading to a frustrating user experience.

Addressing these exclusions diligently ensures optimal indexing and visibility of your pages in Google’s search results.

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