How Long Does It Take for Backlinks to Get Indexed?

website links

Have you ever Googled something only to end up on a social media page or a LinkedIn guest post? Many of us searched for relatively technical information only to end up on some random social media platforms.

While this isn’t common, it can happen because of accidental on-page SEO, or intentional digital marketing on social media. Regardless, it does have to do with the Indexing and the SEO strategy in these pages.

Depending on various link-building strategies and search engine optimization, a relatively new website may rank higher than a well-established website—all because of how fast the link profile of the page was snapped by Google.

This guide will give you an estimate of how long it takes for backlinks to get indexed, as well as the ranking factors that can affect the index speed.

Backlink Indexing: An In-depth Look

Backlink indexing is the process of search engines like Google recognizing and storing backlinks pointing to your website. Backlinks are essentially links from other websites that direct users to your content.

They act like a vote of confidence for your site, and search engines consider them a factor when determining your domain authority and search engine ranking.

how long do backlinks take to get indexed?

Unfortunately, despite constant algorithm updates, there’s still no specific time frame for the indexing process. It can range anywhere from a few days to several weeks before the Google search console detects your backlink profile.

Many factors can affect how long backlinks take to be detected by Google’s algorithm.

Factors Affecting the Indexing Speed of New Backlinks

Google indexing can take anywhere between a few hours to several weeks before appearing in the SERPs. Here are the reasons for this:

Search Engine Crawl Rate

Search engine crawlers don’t discover new backlinks instantly. It depends on how frequently they crawl and re-crawl pages linking to your site.

Search Engine Crawl Rate

That being said, popular web pages get crawled more often than obscure ones, making it more likely for them to be higher in Google ranking, even if they have a low or moderate domain authority.

Link Relevance and Location

Links embedded in high-quality, relevant content tend to get indexed faster than links on low-quality pages or unrelated topics.

For example, let’s assume that you own a gardening website and that you have two new backlinks:

  • A gardening blog post with your link naturally included in the body text, since the content is highly relevant to your site’s topic.
  • A fashion article on a lifestyle site with your link tucked away in the sidebar, unrelated to gardening.

The link from the relevant gardening content is much more likely to get indexed faster by search engines compared to the unrelated fashion article link.

This is because it meets the criteria of being embedded in high-quality, topically relevant content versus an unimportant sidebar link on an irrelevant page.

Authority and Ranking of Linking Page

Website Links from popular, authority sites are likely to get indexed quicker than links from small, unimportant sites. Search engines scan the big guys more often.

Link Authority

Such websites often have a high domain rating of 60-70 or more. Domain rating is a metric established by Ahrefs. It shows the strength of the page authority.

Location and Positioning of the Link

Naturally-placed links tend to get indexed faster than artificially-constructed links intended just for SEO. For example, let’s assume that our anchor text is “clinic near me.”

A natural placing of the anchor text like this: “She was going to a clinic near me” is more likely to be detected faster by those Google bots than an anchor text that goes: “Have you ever Googled: clinic near me?”

Link Attributes (DoFollow, NoFollow, and Sponsored)

DoFollow links pass authority and get prioritized for indexing over NoFollow links which get deprioritized. Sponsored or paid links are often seen as less valuable by search engines, so they may get lower indexing priority.

For example, if you get a dofollow link and a nofollow link from two new pages similar in their link-building campaigns, the dofollow link will likely get indexed much faster.

Internal Linking Structure in the Sitemap

Having a good internal linking structure on the linking website can expedite the discovery of new outbound links by search engine crawlers.

Internal Linking Structure

For instance, if your new backlink is linked-to from other important pages internally, it boosts the chances of that link being quickly found. Conversely, flat site architectures with orphaned pages can conceal new external links from crawlers.

Site Changes and Content Freshness

Publishing fresh content or making significant site updates/redesigns tends to trigger more frequent recrawling by search engines. During these recrawls, any new links to your site get found and indexed quickly.

If your website contains buying guides, for example, a great approach to boost the website’s ranking is by refreshing the content according to the year of production.

A 2022 product guide in 2024 in a website that doesn’t regularly publish new, high-quality content may experience delays in link indexing. Webmasters should always keep an eye out for this.

Pace and Scale

“Pace and scale” is basically how fast your website is earning new backlinks. This factor looks at not just the number of new backlinks, but the consistency at which they are earned.


Each new high-quality backlink you obtain doesn’t just contribute to its own “ranking power” score additively, it can also have a multiplicative effect.

For example, let’s say you have one backlink scored at 10 ranking points and another at 8 points. Rather than simply adding to get 18 ranking points, the two links may combine to yield 80 ranking points or more through this multiplier effect.

The Verdict

Many intersecting factors go into optimizing a page and helping it appear in the top-ranking results. The indexing speed is but one of them. If you know what you’re doing, this guide will help you rank up your page.

However, if you want an SEO expert’s assistance, consider reaching out to us at SEONorth. Unlike agencies that act as jacks of all trades, we specialize only in SEO, making us among the best in the field.


  • Do forum posts count as backlinks?
  • What are HARO backlinks?
Posted in SEO

Published on: 2024-05-07
Updated on: 2024-05-07

Avatar for Isaac Adams-Hands

Isaac Adams-Hands

Isaac Adams-Hands is the SEO Director at SEO North, a company that provides Search Engine Optimization services. As an SEO Professional, Isaac has considerable expertise in On-page SEO, Off-page SEO, and Technical SEO, which gives him a leg up against the competition.