Types of Google Search Console Errors and How to Fix It

Types of Google Search Console Errors and How to Fix It
Google Search Console Errors


In today's digital realm, establishing a robust online presence holds great significance for both businesses and individuals. Google Search Console emerges as an indispensable tool, offering invaluable insights into the performance of your website in search results. Nonetheless, even websites meticulously crafted can face obstacles in the shape of errors that impede their visibility and accessibility. 

These errors can range from crawling and indexing issues to mobile usability and core web vitals discrepancies. Fear not, for in this guide, we'll delve into the diverse realm of Google Search Console errors and equip you with the knowledge to identify, understand, and effectively rectify these obstacles. Join us on a journey through the types of errors that might be lurking in the shadows, and let's illuminate the path to a smoother online experience.

Understanding Different Types of Google Search Console Errors

Understanding Different Types of Google Search Console Errors

The Google Search Console serves as a valuable repository of insights concerning your website's well-being and its performance within search results. Delving into the intricate web of errors it can uncover is key to enhancing your online presence.

Let's navigate through the various categories of errors that can arise:

1. Server Error (5xx):

When a user or a search engine endeavours to access a webpage, it's incumbent upon the hosting server of the website to respond appropriately. If the server encounters a complication during the processing of the request, it might issue a status code falling under the “5xx" series. Among these, the “500 Internal Server Error" stands as the most prevalent, denoting a general issue on the server that impeded the fulfilment of the request. 

Additional errors within the “5xx" range encompass the “501 Not Implemented," “502 Bad Gateway," “503 Service Unavailable," and “504 Gateway Timeout." These errors collectively indicate that something is awry on the server's side, preventing the delivery of the desired content. Potential culprits include server overload, misconfigurations, software glitches, or even temporary maintenance activities.

2. Redirect Error:

Redirects are employed to steer users and search engines from one URL to a different destination.  A redirect error occurs when the redirection process goes awry. For instance, a “302 Found" status code indicates a temporary redirect, but if it's used improperly or excessively, it can confuse search engines and lead to incorrect indexing

A “301 Moved Permanently" redirect is commonly used for permanent changes, such as when you change your website's URL structure. Effectively handling redirects guarantees that both users and search engines can access the desired content seamlessly, eliminating any potential confusion.

3. Blocked by robots.txt:

The “robots.txt" file serves as a protocol that furnishes guidance to search engine bots regarding the sections of a website that should be crawled and indexed. If certain parts of your site are meant to be private, sensitive, or otherwise not intended for search engine indexing, you can specify that in the robots.txt file. However, if important pages or resources are inadvertently blocked by the robots.txt file, it can lead to those pages not being indexed and therefore not showing up in search results.

4. Marked 'noindex':

Webmasters can use a “noindex" meta tag or header directive to indicate to search engines that a specific page indexing should not be included in search results. This might be done intentionally for pages like login or admin pages. However, if important pages, such as core content or landing pages, are mistakenly marked as 'noindex,' it can significantly impact your website's visibility in search results.

5. Soft 404, Unauthorized Request (401), and Not Found (404) Errors:

Soft 404:

A “soft 404" error occurs when a webpage displays a “Not Found" message to users but doesn't return the appropriate “404 Not Found" status code to search engines. Instead, it might return a “200 OK" status code, which indicates that the page is functioning correctly. This discrepancy between what users see and what search engines understand can lead to confusion and improper indexing.

Unauthorized Request (401):

A “401 Unauthorized" error is returned when a user or a bot attempts to access a page that requires proper authentication or authorization. The server essentially tells the requester that they don't have the necessary credentials to access the content. This error often occurs when attempting to reach sections of a website that are password-protected or have restricted access.

Not Found (404):

The “404 Not Found" error is probably the most recognizable error on the web. It happens when the server cannot find the requested URL. This might happen due to a typo in the URL, a broken link, or when a page has been removed or relocated without proper redirection.

6. Crawl Issue:

A “Crawl Issue" is a general term that encompasses a range of problems encountered during the crawling process. It could include issues like server timeouts, DNS resolution problems, server connectivity issues, or difficulties in fetching content. These issues can prevent search engines from effectively crawling and indexing your website.

By understanding these Google Search Console errors and their implications, website owners and administrators can take appropriate measures to ensure their site's accessibility, user-friendliness, and search engine visibility.

7. Crawled – Currently Not Indexed:

Crawled – Currently Not Indexed error indicates that Google bots have successfully crawled the page on your website, but for some reason, the page has not been indexed in Google search results yet. This might be due to various reasons such as low-quality content, duplicate content, or other issues that make Google hesitant to display the page in search results.

8. Discovered – Currently Not Indexed:

Similar to the “Crawled – Currently Not Indexed" error, this error means that Google has discovered the existence of the page during its crawl, but the page has not been indexed yet. The reasons for this error are generally the same as the previous one.

9. Alternate Page with the Proper Canonical Tag:

This situation arises when you have multiple pages on your website that are very similar or have the same content. To guide Google in understanding which page should be considered the primary source of that content, you can use the canonical tag. If you encounter this error, it means that Google has identified that you've designated an alternate version of a page as the canonical version. This is usually a sign that you are properly managing duplicate content.

10. Duplicate Without User-Selected Canonical:

This error suggests that there are pages on your website with duplicate content, but you haven't explicitly indicated which version is the canonical one through the canonical tag. Google is letting you know that it's encountering duplicate content and can't determine which version to prioritize in search results.

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How to Fix Different Google Search Console Errors

How to Fix Different Google Search Console Errors

Certainly, let's delve into the solutions for each of these Google Search Console errors in detail:

1. Server Error (5xx):

Solution: Begin by investigating the specific error code (e.g., 500, 503) to understand the underlying issue. Common causes include overloaded servers, misconfigurations, or maintenance periods.


  • Check server logs for more information about the error.

If the server is overwhelmed, consider optimizing your website's resources or upgrading your hosting plan.

  • Ensure server configurations, such as .htaccess files, are correctly set up.

If it's a temporary issue, wait for the server to recover. If not, consult with your hosting provider for assistance.

2. Redirect Error:

Solution: Review and fix the URL redirections to ensure they are working as intended.


  • Examine the redirect rules in your website's configuration files or CMS.
  • Make sure each redirection leads to the correct and relevant page.
  • Avoid creating redirect chains, as they can confuse search engines and users.

Use appropriate HTTP status codes (e.g., 301 for permanent redirects, 302 for temporary) to convey the type of redirection.

3. Blocked by robots.txt:

Solution: Adjust the robots.txt file to allow access to the blocked content if necessary.


  • Identify which URLs are blocked by checking the blocked resources in Google Search Console.
  • Review your robots.txt file and modify it to permit crawling of the relevant content.
  • Use the “robots.txt Tester" tool in Google Search Console to test and validate the changes.

4. Marked 'noindex':

Solution: Change the 'noindex' directive to 'index' if you want the page indexing to appear in search results.


  • Locate the pages marked as 'noindex' and assess whether they should indeed be indexed.
  • If the pages should be indexed, update the HTML meta tag or robots meta directive to remove the 'noindex' instruction.
  • Fetch and render the page in Google Search Console to ensure it's now indexable.

5. HTTP Error Code Solutions:

Soft 404 Error:

Solution: To address soft 404 errors, ensure that pages returning a “Not Found" message also return the appropriate HTTP 404 status code.

Steps to resolve:

  • Configure your server: Set up your server to serve the correct HTTP status code for pages that don't exist.
  • Customize 404 page: Personalize the content of the 404 error page to offer guidance to users and provide relevant links for navigating your site.

Unauthorized Request (401 Error):

Solution: To tackle unauthorized access (401 errors), provide the necessary authentication or permissions for users to access the page.

Steps to resolve:

  • Review access restrictions: Examine the access restrictions placed on the page and determine if they are necessary.
  • Ensure proper credentials: If authentication is required, make sure that both users and bots possess the correct credentials.
  • Adjust permissions: If access is unintentionally restricted, modify permissions or authentication settings to allow appropriate access.

Page Not Found (404 Error):

Solution: Address the “Not Found" error by either restoring the missing page or creating a custom 404 error page to guide users effectively.

Steps to resolve:

  • Restore or redirect: If the page has been moved or removed, consider redirecting users to a relevant page using a 301 redirect.
  • Custom error page: If the page is no longer available, design a custom 404 error page featuring navigation links and a search bar to aid users in finding what they need.

By following these solutions and steps, you can effectively manage and rectify common HTTP error codes on your website.

6. Crawl Issue:

Solution: Analyze the specific crawl issue and address the underlying cause.


  • Review the details of the crawl issue in Google Search Console to identify the root cause with google crawler.
  • Address any issues with the site's structure, broken links, or server configurations.
  • Verify that your sitemap is current and precisely represents the structure of your website. 

7. Crawled – Currently Not Indexed:

Inspect the Content: Examine the content of the pages that are not indexed. Ensure they are high-quality, unique, and provide value to users.

Check for Blocking: Ensure that there are no tags (like noindex or nofollow) preventing Google from indexing these pages.

Improve Internal Linking: Make sure there are internal links pointing to these pages from other relevant and authoritative pages on your site.

XML Sitemap: Add the URLs of the non-indexed pages to your XML sitemap to encourage Google to index them.

Fetch & Render: Use the Google Search Console's “Fetch & Render" tool to ensure that Google can properly access and render the content.

8. Discovered – Currently Not Indexed:

Follow these steps to address the “Discovered – Currently Not Indexed" issue:

Inspect the Content: Thoroughly review the content of the pages that have been discovered but not indexed. Confirm they maintain high quality, and uniqueness, and deliver valuable information to users.

Check for Blocking: Examine your pages for any blocking tags such as “noindex" or “nofollow." Ensure these tags are not unintentionally preventing Google from indexing these pages.

Enhance Internal Linking: Strengthen internal linking by creating relevant and authoritative connections from other pages on your website to the undiscovered pages.

Update XML Sitemap: To prompt Google to index these pages, include their URLs in your website's XML sitemap.

Utilize Fetch & Render: Utilize the “Fetch & Render" feature within Google Search Console. This tool helps ensure that Google can access and properly render the content on the pages.

9. Alternate Page with the Proper Canonical Tag:

Review Canonical Tags: Verify that your canonical tags are set correctly to point to the preferred version of the content.

Content Consistency: Ensure that the content on the alternate pages is similar enough to the canonical page to justify using the canonical tag.

301 Redirects: If appropriate, consider using 301 redirects to consolidate duplicate content into a single canonical page.

10. Duplicate Without User-Selected Canonical:

Identify Replicated Content: Discover occurrences of duplicated content within your website.

Canonical Versions: Select the main version of the content that you wish to have indexed as the canonical version.

Apply Canonical Tags: Implement canonical tags on duplicate pages, pointing them to the chosen canonical version.

301 Redirects: Alternatively, consider redirecting duplicate pages to the canonical version using 301 redirects.

Remember, after making these changes, it may take some time for Google to re-crawl and index your pages correctly.

By implementing these solutions, you'll enhance the overall health, accessibility, and performance of your website, ensuring a better user experience and improved search engine visibility.

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Best Practices to Prevent Future Google Search Console Errors

Best Practices to Prevent Future Google Search Console Errors

To minimize the occurrence of Google Search Console errors and maintain a thriving online presence, adopt the following best practices:

A. Regularly Monitor Google Search Console for Errors

Consistent vigilance is key. Periodically check your Google Search Console for any emerging errors. Staying informed ensures timely intervention, preventing issues from escalating and negatively impacting your site's performance.

B. Maintain Updated and Relevant Content

Stale content not only affects user engagement but can trigger errors as well. Regularly update your website's content, ensuring its relevance and accuracy. Outdated content can lead to Google crawlers crawling and indexing problems, hindering your site's visibility.

C. Optimize Website Performance and Speed

Page loading speed directly influences user satisfaction and search rankings. Consistently optimize images, condense code, and utilize caching methods to boost the speed of your website. Swift-loading pages mitigate the risk of Core Web Vitals errors.

D. Stay Current with Mobile-Friendly and Responsive Design

With the continuous surge in mobile usage, maintaining a mobile-friendly design takes on even greater significance. Confirm that your website remains responsive and operates seamlessly on various devices and screen dimensions. Employing this strategy not only reduces mobile usability errors but also enhances the overall user experience.

E. Test Changes in a Controlled Environment Before Deployment

Before implementing significant changes to your website, such as structural modifications or new features, conduct thorough testing in a controlled environment. This prevents unintended errors from surfacing on the live site and allows you to address any issues before they impact users.

By incorporating these best practices into your website management routine, you'll be better equipped to forestall future Google Search Console errors, ensuring a smoother online journey for both users and search engines.


In summary, this exploration of Google Search Console errors underscores the significance of promptly addressing these issues to maintain an impeccable online presence. The pivotal role of ongoing monitoring and optimization cannot be overstated; by proactively tending to your website's health, you safeguard its performance and user experience. As you conclude this journey, take to heart the solutions presented here and apply them diligently. Let these practices serve as your compass on the path to a flawless digital domain.


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