Google Product Forums

Re: What is the "unique urls" or "3 digit" rule?

Harvey P. Oct 18, 2011 3:04 PM
Posted in group: Google News Help Forum

Categories: Google News Publishers :

This is a method that Google News uses to determine what is, and isn't, a news article. As part of this process, we look at page URLs. Since most static pages, and non-news content, have URLs without any digits at all, we look for digits in article URLs as a way of distinguishing them from more static content.

Option 1: Add three digits to your article URLs

Each article must have at least three digits in its URL. This means we can't crawl an article with this URL:

We can, however, crawl an article with this URL:

Please also note that if the only digits in your article URL resemble a year (e.g., "1999" or "2007"), our system may not be able to crawl your content. If you're able to restructure your article URLs in accordance with this guideline, Google News should automatically begin indexing your content within a few days.

Option 2: Submit a Google News sitemap (recommended whether or not you choose to follow Option 1 above)

Your inclusion request will be processed within the next couple of days. Once it's processed, we encourage you to submit a Google News sitemap. This tool will enable you to optimize the inclusion of your content without having to change the structure of your URLs.

Please keep in mind that the inclusion process may take up to a few days, and you'll only be able to submit a Google News sitemap once this process is complete.