How to Get Your Tumblr Blog to Appear on Google
By Laurel Storm
Creating great content is only half the battle of running a blog -- the other half, and often the harder one, is getting people to know that it exists. Ensuring it appears among the results for Google searches is, then, absolutely essential. Although there is no way to guarantee that Google will index your blog immediately, you can ensure that it will eventually happen.
Check the Tumblr Settings
Sign in to the Tumblr dashboard, click "Settings" and then click the title of your blog. Near the bottom of the page, in the Directory section, is a "Allow Search Engines to Index Your Blog" option. If this option isn't active, your blog will never be indexed by Google and, as a consequence, will never appear in search results. Enable the option, if it is disabled, and then click "Save."
Google Webmaster Tools: Introduction
To make sure Google indexes your blog thoroughly and completely, you need to provide a sitemap for your blog. A sitemap is exactly what it sounds like: a list of all the pages on a website, in this case your blog, forming a map that Google can follow during the indexing process to make sure it misses nothing. To do this, you need to sign up for, and set up, Google Webmaster Tools (see Resources). To use Google Webmaster Tools, you need a Google account. If you use any other Google product, such as Gmail or Drive, you already have an account and you are simply prompted to re-enter your password. If you don't have an account, click "Create an Account" and work through the sign-up process, and then sign in.
Adding and Verifying Your Site
After you've signed in to Webmaster Tools, click the "Add a Site" button. Type in the full URL for your Tumblr blog, including "http://", and click "Continue." On the "Alternate Methods" tab, select the "HTML" tag option. Select the provided meta tag and press "Ctrl-C" to copy it to your clipboard. Open your Tumblr dashboard in another browser window or tab, click the "Settings" button, click the title of your blog, click "Customize" and then click "Edit HTML" to show the raw HTML code for your blog template. Click the gear button, select "Find and Replace" and type "" without quotes to find the location where you need to add the meta tag. Add a blank line just before the line you located and then press "Ctrl-V" to paste the meta tag into it. Click "Update Preview" and then click "Save" to save your changes. Click the arrow button to return to the main theme customization screen and then click "Exit" to return to the dashboard. Switch back to Google Webmaster Tools and click "Verify" to complete the verification process. Click "Continue" to go to the main Google Webmaster Tools screen for your blog.
Adding a Sitemap
Click "Sitemaps" and then click the "Add/Test Sitemap" button. Type "sitemap.xml" without the quotes in the text field and then click "Submit Sitemap." The "sitemap.xml" file is an index that points to further sitemaps listing all your blog posts; depending on how many posts your blog has, you may have only one or multiples. These latter sitemaps are identified by ascending numbers -- in other words, they're called "sitemap1.xml," "sitemap2.xml" and so on. If you want to speed up the process, you can add them as well, but it's not necessary.
Requesting a Crawl and Index Submission
Having added a sitemap, you can send Google a request to crawl your site. This doesn't guarantee that your blog will be indexed, but it does speed up the process of discovery when it comes to new posts and pages you've added. So if you have new and timely content on your blog, you can benefit from sending a crawl request. To do this, click "Crawl" and select "Fetch as Google." Type the address of the page you want Google to crawl in the text field, or leave it blank to have Google crawl your blog's main page, and then click "Fetch." Wait for the page to refresh and then click "Submit to Index." If you requested a crawl for an individual page, leave the "URL" option selected; if you requested a crawl for your blog's main page, select "URL and All Linked Pages." Click "OK." You see a confirmation of your request. Note that you can only submit 500 crawl requests per week and 10 index requests for an URL and all linked pages per month.
Laurel Storm has been writing since 2001, and helping people with technology for far longer than that. Some of her articles have been published in "Messaggero dei Ragazzi", an Italian magazine for teenagers. She holds a Master of Arts in writing for television and new media from the University of Turin.