One of the most important thing to keep in mind when trying to index content with Google (or any other search engine for that matter) is that you want to make sure the document has text content in it, more so than image or video content.
Search engines like Google, Bing, DuckDuckGo, Yahoo, AOL and Ask will all always prefer text content in files when they index them, because it’s the easiest form of content to read – So when you create a PDF file and you want to index it you need to be sure that you create the original file in something like Microsoft Word or Google Docs, and then converted over to a PDF.
What To Know About How Google Indexes PDF Content
To ensure that you are PDF files are indexed in Google are several other things we need to be sure to look at:
- Make sure that the PDF file meta data is optimized for the given search terms or keywords that you want the file to show up for in Google search results.
- Be sure that there are links from other web pages or sites pointing back to your PDF file. This is necessary because Google and other search engines don’t normally look for PDF files, but will crawl links from an HTML page back to your PDF – this is the best way to ensure that your content will be indexed quickly and reliably.
- While not strictly necessary to index your PDF files, be sure that all of those links that are pointing from your social media channels, web pages and other source are fully optimized with UTM tracking parameters that will help you track where traffic is coming from, and better understand how people are finding your PDF on the web.
- When publishing a PDF file to your website you want to make sure that search engines and other apps can find the file – to do this, you need to make sure that the robot txt file for your site and any other noindex metas that may be blocking the file from being crawled and indexed properly are set up correctly.
If you are more of a DIY type be sure to check out my article on how to index PDF content, click the link below:
If you or your business are having trouble indexing PDF content on the web, please feel free to reach out to me through the contact form below and I’ll be more than happy to give you a free SEO site audit to make some recommendations I’m getting your PDF content indexed with Google, Bing or other search engines: