4% of Indexed Sites Hit by Google’s De-indexing Bug in April 2019

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4% of pages indexed by Google were impacted by Google’s de-indexing bug.

From around the 4th of April 2019, a number of pages completely dropped out of Google’s search results.

Google were said to have resolved the issue a few days later, but then retracted this by the end of the week. By April 10th, Google had fully resolved the issue, supposedly.

Pete Meyers of Moz published data saying that 4% of Google’s index had been hit by the bug.

Looking at the day-over-day data from April 4th to 5th, it appears that the losses were widely distributed across many domains. Of domains that had 10-or-more stable URLs on April 4th, roughly half saw some loss of ranking URLs. The only domains that experienced 100% day-over-day loss were those that had 3-or-fewer stable URLs in our data set. It does not appear from our data that deindexing systematically targeted specific sites.

Indexing rates seemed to resume, but if you think any of your pages were deindexed, then it’s worth manually reindexing your site in Google Search Console.

Other than the brief period of uncertainty, most sites should be safe now, even if they were hit.

Each site is unique and will be impacted differently by the bug. Not every site will have been impacted, so it is not likely that 4% of your pages were hit, but more likely that a significant portion of a small percentage of sites were hit.

It is worth looking back through your Google Analytics and organic traffic to see whether your pages to be hit.

Google said: “April 5, 2019: Because of internal management of our Search index, some pages of your websites might have been dropped from our index for a period of a few days without any action on your part. The matter is currently being resolved, no action from your side is needed.”

The troubling part is that this is another demonstration on how businesses and websites alike rely so heavily on Google, and how big a difference being present in the search results can be.

There is nothing for webmasters or businesses to do.

Google has fixed the bug, and it occurred over a weekend. If anything, this is a stark reminder to ensure you gain traffic from more than just one place. Because, if for any reason, Google drops your rankings in the future, you need to have a plan B.