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Including Content

For information on search engine optimization (ranking and results placement), please see web writing guidelines on the Brand Tools site.

Why isn't my website in the search engine?

1. Your site hasn't been indexed yet by Google

For new sites, we recommend you link from a site that has already been indexed and sign up for Google Search Console in order to submit the site to Google and monitor for any issues.

2. There might be a robots exclusion

It's possible that your web server is restricting access to your website via robots.txt rules. You can usually check this by reading the file (if it exists on your web server). For sites hosted on nuinfo, the primary Northwestern server, robots.txt is located at If your website is at another address, just replace everything before the last slash, e.g. If this file does not exist on your web server, you have no corrections to make. If the file does exist and your site URL appears in this file's list of disallowed directories, you may need to edit the file to remove the line containing your site or contact a server administrator who can help you with this.

This is the most common type of robots block. For more robots exclusion methods to check, please see the excluding content page.