Getting to the top of search engine result pages used to be quite a feat that only the expert webmasters could achieve through the search console so here it is, the Google Search Console 101. But with Google’s recently re branded Google Search Console, anyone can get their website to the top of search engine results page. This tool has helped website owners, digital marketers, and SEO specialists propel traffic to their websites. If you’re new to this space, keep reading below to find out Google Search Console 101.
Google Search Console, previously Google Webmaster Tools, helps you monitor performance and troubleshoot issues and technical errors on your website. When used together with Google Analytics, Google Trends, and Google Ads, this can be a powerful tool to help you understand how Google sees your site, and help you optimise it to improve its presence in Google search results. It also a has site crawling feature which allows Google to find and index your website.
Within the Google Search Console, you can access the search analytics report which provides helpful information on how your website performs. It shows keywords that users searched for, the number of clicks that landed a user on your website, impressions, click-through-rate, and your average position of the topmost result from your website.
Google also reports on the number of times your website is externally linked, which is a primary factor in Google’s algorithm and SEO. This section helps you understand which content is most linked and the anchor text other websites use when they link to your website. It also reports on how Googlebot crawls your internal links and which pages are performing really well or performing badly.
Most users are on their phones when browsing the internet. Google knows this which is why the Google Search Console helps you ensure that your website is mobile-friendly. It identifies any mobile usability issues and how to fix them.
Lastly but certainly not the least, the most important feature of the console is pulling up reporting on top keyword queries. It also reports on your current ranking for each keyword, clicks, impressions, and click-through-rate. The top keywords should properly reflect your business’ theme and focus.
Setting up the Google Search Console is very easy. First, log in to your Google Analytics account or your Google Account. Once logged in, go to the Google Search Console and click the ‘Add a Property’ button on the top part of the page. You need to enter your website’s URL and click continue. You would need to verify that you are the owner of the site in different ways. The easiest way is to verify through your Google Analytics Tracking ID. Other options are verifying through your website’s hosting provider, via Google Tags in the Google Tags Manager, or uploading an HTML file to the root of your website. Once verified and set up, you need a little patience as it takes a week or so for it to gather useful data. In the meantime, you can create and submit an XML sitemap which helps Google find content on your site easily and index it quickly.
Whether you are the business owner, SEO specialist, digital marketer, site admin, or web developer, the Google Search Console has something to offer you. Valuable insights from this tool will help you in making decisions on how to promote your website. Getting reliable data on how your website is performing will allow you to do sophisticated marketing analysis and make informed decisions on how you will optimise your website. Whether you are a newbie or an expert, the easy-to-use interface lets you use the tool together with other tools that Google offers in order to find out what’s working well for your website and how to improve further.
If you need assistance setting up your Google Search Console, reach out to us and we will have our one of our SEO experts assist you.