Yoast on why it accepts the IndexNow protocol


After initially rejecting Microsoft’s open source indexing protocol IndexNow, Yoast reversed direction and indicated that they would now support it.

In an interview with the Search Engine Journal, founder Joost de Valk explains why.

Yoast’s adoption of IndexNow is a turning point for publishers and the search marketing community. This could mean an even broader future adoption of a new protocol that could significantly change SEO and content marketing in a positive way.


IndexNow is an indexing protocol that helps websites receive near instant indexing from search engines.

It is an open source initiative designed to help websites alert search engines to new or updated content.

Search engines benefit from not wasting more data center resources with redundant crawling on web pages that are unchanged and already indexed.

The IndexNow indexing protocol can even be used to notify search engines of newly removed pages and return a 404 server response code.

IndexNow reduces the amount of energy consumed by data centers, which in turn contributes to reducing the causes of global warming.

Many companies already support IndexNow, from search tools to web publishing platforms.

The SEO plugin RankMath is also supported by IndexNow, which allows web publishers to instantly inform search engines about new or updated pages.

The two biggest hurdles to adopting IndexNow were Google and the Yoast SEO Plugin.

Until now.

Informal notice Yoast

When IndexNow was first published in October 2021, De Valk was the most outspoken skeptic about the new indexing protocol, tweeting that he saw no value in it.

So is he he tweeted:

“Since XML Sitemaps were designed, URL discovery has been a ‘solved problem’ for us.

For most sites, getting search engines to search for content is not a problem.

Yoast SEO creates XML sitemaps and can even ping search engines when they change.

So after all this opposition and opposition, it was surprising when De Valk unofficially announced that Yoast would integrate IndexNow into a premium version of the Yoast SEO plugin.

The blog post with De Valk’s post stated:

“This new standard is currently supported by Bing, Yandex and List, but I have heard rumors that other search engines are joining them.

Bomo We will be adding support for this Yoast SEO Premium soon and we look forward to seeing the impact it will have, if at all. ”

The post did not state why Yoast changed direction.

So the Search Engine Journal turned to De Valka and asked what had changed its mind.

De Valk replied:

“Yeah … so our opinion changed for two reasons:

We have heard that it is implemented by some other search engines and systems.

They have slightly changed the way we work (or better explained) where we only have to ping one endpoint. This basically replaces the ping of the xml sitemap with the IndexNow call and it’s done. “

Asked if he could see that IndexNow would eventually come up with a free version of Yoast, De Valk replied:

“Yes! You can!

I’m not sure when, etc. We will first see how well it will work. “

Yoast Integrating IndexNow

De Valk did not mention whether other search engines he had heard accepting IndexNow included Google.

Nonetheless, it’s a big deal that Yoast is adopting a new indexing protocol because it’s the largest WordPress SEO plug-in in the world with over five million active installations.

This helps consolidate IndexNow as an important indexing protocol and encourage more search engines to join the movement towards instant indexing, which in turn will help SEO and publishers.

Selected image: Vulp / Shutterstock


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