If you’re running Yoast’s SEO plugin and you’ve recently updated it, you might have noticed a scary warning in your dashboard saying “Your homepage cannot be indexed by search engines.”
The warning also reminds you how bad it is for SEO (damn right it is!).
(Clicking the link takes you to a page on Yoast’s site that contains no further information.)
If you haven’t changed the settings on your blog, I’m sure you’re as puzzled about this message as I was. You may also, like me, have checked the source code for ‘noindex’ and had a quick shufty at the robots.txt file. You probably found everything in order. Like I did.
So, what’s happening? Is your blog invisible to Google?
I don’t know exactly what’s happening within the plugin, but it’s running a check on a site called OnPage.org and the result coming back generates the warning.
Take a look at this area on your WordPress dashboard.
Clicking the link next to the red dot brings up a page containing some useful information. This is what it says:
If Yoast SEO reports your site as not indexable by search engines, this can be caused by several reasons. At the same time, it’s an issue of the highest priority, assuming that you want your site to be in Google’s index.
Our best advice is to use the “Analyze entire site” button, create an account on OnPage.org and see what they have to tell you. It could be that you have a robots.txt file that’s blocking indexation, it could be that your theme has some code in it that’s blocking search engines, etc. etc. OnPage.org can tell you what the problem is and how to fix it!
That’s good information, as long as the plugin isn’t reporting a false positive. Which it seems to be at the current time (I’m sure it will be fixed soon).
Now, try clicking on the gray box to “Fetch the current status.”
If everything goes according to plan, the warning should go away and the message in this box should change from “Your homepage cannot be indexed by search engines” to “Your homepage can be indexed by search engines.”
Did it work for you? I hope so. Let me know in the comments.