If you’ve found yourself with this issue popping up in your Search Console dashboard, it’s because you’re sending mixed messages to Google. You’ve submitted the page for indexing but the noindex tag is telling Google to not Index it – hopefully you see why that’s an issue.
If you don’t want the page to be indexed, you can ignore this error but you still need to figure out why it was on your sitemap in the first place.
However, if you do want the page indexed, fixing this error should be high up on your priorities list because if the page isn’t indexed and shown on Google, it’s not bringing any new visitors onto your site.
Having Google crawl noindex marked pages is also a waste of your crawl budget.
How does this error come about?
Diving into the technicals a little bit, the URL for that specific page was included on your XML sitemap which is regularly submitted to Google by your CMS. However, Google identified a ‘noindex’ meta-tag for that specific page. This told it to not index the page, leading to some confusion on Google’s side because it’s getting mixed messages from you. So, it flagged the page has had a ‘Submitted URL marked noindex’ error.
How to stop URL from being marked ‘noindex’
First off, you need to check that this error isn’t outdated – you can do this by reading your sitemaps report. If your sitemap was last submitted over a month ago, you may want to submit it again manually and see whether the issue has since resolved itself.
If your sitemap was submitted recently and the issue persists, you’re going to have to remove the ‘noindex’ meta tag. The easiest way to accomplish this is by going onto your CMS and jumping onto the page that has the ‘noindex’ tag on it. You should be able to find a toggle somewhere for this meta tag – simply turn it off and save your changes. To speed up the indexing process, you can submit the URL directly to Google from your Search Console dashboard.
How to fix noindex error in WordPress
If you’re CMS of choice is WordPress and you have the Yoast SEO plugin downloaded (highly recommended), here’s how to switch off the ‘noindex’ tag for your page:
- Head over to your WordPress dashboard
- Go to Pages or Posts (depending on where your page is located)
- Find the page that has a ‘noindex’ meta tag
- Scroll down until you get to the Yoast SEO settings
- Under the ‘Advanced’ settings, you should find indexing options for that page
- Ensure that indexing is allowed
Once you have fixed the issue, head over to Search Console and submit each URL for indexing (there’s a daily limit so you may only be able to submit 7 or 8 per day).
Need help with URLs marked as ‘noindex’?
If all of this seems too complex for you or if you’d want to have a thorough technical audit of your site performed, you can fill out the form at the bottom of the technical audit service page to obtain a free technical SEO audit quotation.