Troubleshooting Solutions to fix “Server Error (5xx)” in Google Search Console

Experiencing a ‘Server error (5xx)’ in Google Search Console indicates that Googlebot requested to visit and crawl your page but couldn’t due to server issues. This error hinders your pages from appearing in search results and signals potential accessibility problems for your website visitors.

Addressing these errors is essential to ensure your content is indexed and your site remains user-friendly.

What Causes “Server Error (5xx)”

Google Search Console displays the “Server error 5xx” status for URLs that Googlebot couldn’t access because your server communicated a malfunction. Without access to your content, Google won’t initiate the indexing process.

For a page to appear in search results, Google needs to:

  1. Discover the page
  2. Crawl the content to assess the quality
  3. Index the page by saving it in their database

The crawling stage is critical. A server error (5xx) prevents Googlebot from crawling, so Google excludes the URL from indexing to avoid overloading your server further.

Examples of 5xx Server Errors

The 5xx errors occur when your server encounters an internal processing problem. Common examples include:

  • 500 Internal Server Error: This general error means the server ran into an unexpected problem when trying to load the page. Something went wrong inside the server itself that made it crash. Think of it as the blue screen of death for websites!500 Internal Server Error
  • 502 Bad Gateway: This error occurs when there is poor communication between the website servers. The servers can’t understand the messages they send each other about the page request—it’s like they are speaking different languages!
    502 Bad Gateway
  • 503 Service Unavailable: This means too many visitors tried to access the website simultaneously and the server couldn’t handle it. It has to take a break and shut down temporarily, just like a store might close early if too many customers appear. The server should restart after a while.
    503 Service Unavailable
  • 504 Gateway Timeout: This happens when the main front-end server does not get a response from the background servers in time to load the page. It’s like if you asked someone a question and they took so long to reply that you lost patience and gave up. The front and back servers aren’t communicating properly.
    504 Gateway Timeout
  • 524 Origin Timeout: In this case, the first server waits too long (timeout period) for the origin server to respond with the required files to process the page request. It gives up waiting. Again, this indicates back-end communication problems.524 Origin Timeout

How 5xx Errors Affect SEO

Frequent server errors can significantly worsen your SEO in these ways:

  • Creates a poor user experience that may cause Google to avoid surfacing your pages.
  • Lowers allocated crawl budget so fewer pages are discovered and updated by Googlebot.
  • This causes indexing issues, so old content remains ranking without capturing recent improvements.

Identifying Affected URLs

The main places to find affected pages are:

  1. Google Search Console’s Page Indexing Report: This report likely notified you of the problem. Filter to only see error pages also in your sitemap that need indexing. Export the URL list to organize your work.
  2. Google Search Console’s Crawl Stats Report: Check the server responses section. Select the 5xx status codes to view URLs and trends over time.
  3. Server Log Files: Your server logs record all crawler and user requests and errors. Inspect them to identify the most problematic areas.

Troubleshooting Solutions

Try these fixes to resolve “Server error (5xx)” issues:

  1. Check Pages on Your Computer: First, open the broken pages in your web browser. Clear out old cookies and cache files first to see the newest website version.
    If the pages normally show on your computer, the issue could be that your server cannot handle spikes in visitor traffic. Getting a better server may help.
  2. Turn Off Problems With Plugins: One issue may be broken plugins if your site uses WordPress or another CMS system. Try turning off plugins one at a time and rechecking if the 500 error disappears.
    If turning a plugin off fixes the issue, try updating the plugin or finding a replacement.
  3. Go Back to Old Server Settings: Did you recently change something on your website server, like updating PHP or MySQL? Try returning to the old version to see if that stops the 500 error.
  4. Look at the .htaccess File: The .htaccess file controls settings on your server. If someone edited this file recently, check if they made a mistake that could crash pages. Resetting the file could help.
  5. Ask Your Hosting Company for Help: Cheap shared web hosting plans can sometimes crash if too many visitors arrive at once. Talk to your hosting provider about upgrading your plan so your server can handle more people.

Prevent Future 5xx Errors

While the above can resolve current problems, focus on these to avoid recurring server errors long-term:

  • Optimize Code – Ensure all site code follows best practices to prevent performance and stability issues.
  • Compress Resources – Reduce page weight through file compression, image optimization, and minification.
  • Upgrade Hosting – More robust infrastructure handles traffic fluctuations more easily with fewer errors.
  • Refresh Hardware – Older servers fall behind on performance needs. Regularly updated equipment.

When to Get Help From Developers

There are times when you should ask an expert developer or IT pro for help:

  • You tried all the troubleshooting tips, but the 500 error will not go away
  • You don’t know how to access server files like .htaccess yourself
  • The error started happening without any clear reason
  • Your site uses complicated custom code
  • Issues keep happening over and over

Don’t waste further time if basic steps don’t reveal the cause. Professional consultants can dive deeper to find and permanently resolve hidden errors you can’t tackle alone. Web pros can also advise upgrading outdated systems that contribute to problems.


Addressing “Server error (5xx)” quickly is crucial for maintaining search visibility and consistent site accessibility. Identify affected URLs and methodically troubleshoot potential causes like plugin conflicts, recent server changes, or shared hosting limitations.

For long-term stability, pursue holistic site optimizations to support rising traffic demands without overtaxing servers to the point of failure. Consistently fast, reliable performance is the foundation of positive user experiences. Contact AlgoSaga Internet marketing agency for professional help to fix Server Error 5xx.

About Sujal Negi

A Content Writer with extensive digital marketing experience, Sujal Negi crafts impactful content that resonates. With years in the field, they blend creative finesse with strategic insight for compelling online engagement.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *