Google mean time to index

December 2nd, 2006

Matt Hurst of BuzzMetrics blogs in A Round Trip To Google about Google’s blog search engine’s mean time to index (MTTI).

“If you publish a blog and subscribe to Google’s blog alerting, you can – by using the real time option for altering – get an idea of how long it takes Google to get each post.

  • I posted Weekends At The Movies at 5:18 AM on December the first. The alert from Google came at 3:48 PM, a delay of 10 hours and 30 minutes. …

These figures suggest a substantial round trip time for blog publishing, indexing and alerting. Given that Technorati claims to have a mean time to index of 5 minutes (something which I personally doubt) Google seems to be pretty slow. …”

We’ve noticed faster times when checking for a blog post via their search, but with a lot of variability. We’d expect some lag to be introduced via their post alerting service, maybe it’s significant.

More interestingly, it seems like links are quickly moving from Google’s blog system into the main Google index. We first noticed this just a few months ago. Through informal sampling, it seems like our blog posts are getting into Google’s index in about twelve hours.

Of course, it’s only speculation that this is the mechanism: ping -> Google Blog Search -> Google. It could be that The Google thinks our blog so significant that it crawls it daily, but we think that less likely. It makes a lot of sense for Google to take advantage of the push from feeds to get pages indexed more rapidly.

If this is true, the news is both good and bad. The good part, of course, is that a major search engine is taking the feed based world of blogs and other sources more seriously and their indexes will be a more accurate picture of what’s on the Web right now as opposed to last week. The bad news? Splogs will become even more tempting as a way to get spam into search engine indexes.