Search Engine Optimization: Google Search Console
Although Google Analytics offers in-depth statistics about traffic on your website sometimes you will want to know more. If you really wish to know how search engines view your website, you should check out Googles Search Console, formally known as Webmaster Tools. Google’s Search Console will give you in depth statistical analysis in regard to your website and how you can optimize it for web usage. The main point of this service is to check indexing status and optimize the visibility of your website. This service will also do the following:
- Submit and check a sitemap.
- Help discover pages that are blocked.
- List internal and external pages that link to the site.
- Get a list of links which Googlebot had difficulty crawling, including the error that Googlebot received when accessing the URLs in question.
- “Googlebot is Google’s web crawling bot (sometimes also called a “spider”). Crawling is the process by which Googlebot discovers new and updated pages to be added to the Google index.” Google
- See what keyword searches on Google led to the site being listed in the search engine results pages.
- See what critical errors Google sees with your website
- Provide access to add, change and delete listings and list crawl errors.
- Additions to better mobile user experience
Site Verifications and Google Search Console can be set up for your site by completing the following instructions from WordPress.
- Log in to http://g.co/SearchConsole with your Google account. A Google account is required to use theis service. If you have a YouTube account, you alrady have a Google account too. They are the same. Otherwise sign up for a free Google account here.
- Click the Add a Property button
- Enter your blog address (with https:// in front)
- The option you want is “HTML Tag”. (You may need to select Alternate Methods to find this option.)
- You’ll see a line of HTML code like this:
- <meta name=”google-site-verification” content=”rc2RXSkjV5rz9P2s2hTwdDsnwTu4tD-gmruKUrqBGjs” />
- Copy that code. Then, leave the verification page open and go to your blog’s settings page. (in a new tab/window).
- Click on the SEO tab and paste the code into the Google field under the Site Verification Services section.
- Click on Save Settings at the top of the SEO settings page.
- Go back to the Google Search Console verification page and click Verify.
If you have a custom domain you can also verify if through these Google Search Console steps.
If you wish to have a website that is really optimized for web use and for discovery on search engines, we recommend using Google Search Console, so you can better understand how your site is being used and what you can do to make it more visible. Tools like these are only meant to help you and your website succeed so it never hurts to try it out and see what you can do to improve your website.