Google Crawls and Indexes Only the First 15 MB of Page’s HTML

Google Crawls and Indexes Only the First 15 MB of Page’s HTML

A few days ago, new information appeared in the Google Search Center’s documentation. Apparently, Google only uses the first 15 MB of a page’s HTML file when determining SERPs positions. What does this really mean? Do you need to worry? Keep reading to find out!

The Latest Information on Googlebots Work

A recent documentation update has brought new information about the work of Googlebots, specifically, their limited operation. Google reported that:

Googlebot can crawl the first 15MB of an HTML file or supported text-based file. Any resources referenced in the HTML such as images, videos, CSS, and JavaScript are fetched separately. After the first 15MB of the file, Googlebot stops crawling and only considers the first 15MB of the file for indexing. The file size limit is applied on the uncompressed data. Other crawlers may have different limits. –

It means that anything outside the 15 MB file limit will not be included in the ranking calculations, and thus will not be indexed.

The information caused some confusion, but John Mueller dispelled some of the doubts on Twitter.

He informed that, first of all, this limit is not new – according to him, it existed much earlier, but only now users have been informed about it – and secondly, it applies to the HTML file itself. The limit does not include any resources or content embedded with IMG tags.

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How Will the Limit Affect the Work of SEO Specialists?

In fact, in most cases, the limit will not change anything. Exceeding 15 MB is not easy, and if it happens, it is usually due to a series of errors and problems that need to be fixed anyway.

However, it’s worth keeping an eye on the size of the page – you’ll find plenty of tools online to do this, including Google Page Speed Insights.

What’s more, remember to place the SEO-important content at the top of the page to make sure it will be considered by Googlebots.

As mentioned, 15 MB is a huge amount of code that is difficult to exceed, so in most cases, this information should not be alarming. However, if you noticed that the size of your site exceeded this limit – you should check what is causing it.

Jr SEO Specialist - Kasia

Jr SEO Specialist

An editor who chose to work in marketing instead of correcting commas. Passionate about new technologies, UX, and typography. In her spare time, she reads whatever she can get her hands on, experiments in the kitchen, and practices yoga. She loves dogs, coffee, and long walks.

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