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Common challenge: Why doesn’t my policy pages appear in web parts?

A common challenge for editors and admins managing Policies & Procedures sites and pages is that it can take a long time – sometimes even days – before a newly created policy is displayed in the web parts.

This is due to the fact that the web parts rely on SharePoint’s search. This means that policy pages need to be crawled and indexed by SharePoint before they are able to appear in web parts.

There is a couple of things that can help you in this process:

1) Making sure that the pages you create does not have a friendly URLcan make SharePoint crawl and index the pages faster and the pages appear in the web part sooner.

Note that URLs for pages depend on a setting you perform at web site level, and that this is a setting that you have to apply BEFORE you create the handbook page. The URL settings will be applied to all pages you create AFTER you have set it and will not affect pages created before. Read more here about friendly URLs, how to enable and disable friendly URLs, and how you know whether or not your pages have friendly URLs. 

2) A good way to check whether or not your page is indexed by SharePoint yet, is by searching for it in SharePoint’s general search center. If the page appears as a search result here, it is already indexed by SharePoint and the reason it does not appear in the web part is NOT because it is not indexed by SharePoint. Hence, it must be due to another issue.

3) Know that your policy can be displayed in the page’s left menu and still not in the web part. The left menu does NOT rely on search and, therefore, is able to display the link to the page immediately, contrary to the web parts.