Answers to Friday questions

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January 13, 2006

Today, we wanted to review a few things that we get a lot of questions about.

I tried to verify and I got a message that said "pending verification". Why

If we can't process the verification request right away, we'll add it to a queue and process it as soon as possible. While your request is in this queue, the status will show as pending. Once we successfully process your request, your site will show as verified. If the request is unsuccessful, you'll see a status of "not verified". You can read more about reasons the request might not be successful or take a look at our documentation.

I submitted my Sitemap and it now as a status of "Timed out downloading robots.txt". I don't have a robots.txt file on my site. What happened

Any time we access your site, we first check to see if you have a robots.txt file that restricts our access. If we get a timeout from your server when we do this check, you'll see this message. This is probably a temporary problem. Once your server is accessible again, we will be able to see that you don't have a robots.txt file, and will then access your Sitemap. If you continue to see this error, make sure that your webserver is up and responding to requests.

I submitted my sitemap at and verified it. But now you are asking me to verify at I can't verify at that location because I don't have access. Why are you asking me to do this

Some stats we can only show if you verify at the root level. If you don't have access to this location, we will show you all the information we are able to (such as errors we had crawling your site). Verification doesn't impact Sitemap submission or indexing in any way, and there is no penalty if you can't verify at the root level.

I've submitted my Sitemap, verified my site, and you've downloaded my Sitemap, but many of my stats show "Data is not available at the time time". Why?

We show you stats about what we know about your site. If we haven't yet crawled and indexed much of your site, we may not have many stats to show you. As we crawl more of your site and learn more about it, you'll start to see more stats.