What is Google Webmaster Tools?
Google Webmaster Tools helps business owners optimize their websites by learning how their sites perform in the search engine.
What Can Google Webmaster Show Me?
Google Webmaster can help you understand the effectiveness of your website from several vantage points. Google Webmaster Tools will:
- Count the number of significant words on your website that were used in search queries;
- Determine how often your site appears in a Google search result;
- Detect errors in search queries that prevent your website from being found;
- Calculate how many people link to and visit your website, and reveal what features they use while on your page; and
- Alert you to malware and other threats.
Using Google Webmaster Tools
To use Google Webmaster Tools, visit the homepage. You will be asked to log in or create a Google account. Once you are logged in, you can add your website by clicking the “Add a Website” button and entering your domain name.
You will then be prompted to verify ownership of the site, which can be done several ways. Step-by-step instructions are provided for whichever method you choose. After Google authenticates your website, you will be taken to the Google Webmaster Tools dashboard. Soon, data will be collected on the domain you provided and you can start reviewing Google’s suggestions on how to enhance the performance of your website.
Let’s look at the five main dashboard components:
- Search Queries;
- Links to Your Site;
- Crawl Errors;
- Keywords; and
- Search Queries
Search Queries will tell you how many users are able to find your website by analyzing the following components:
- The keywords for which your site is ranked.
- Impressions, which are the number of users who are seeing your content in search results.
- Clicks, which refer to the number of users who (of those who see your content in the search result) actually click on the link.
- The click-through-rate. This is the percentage of people who click on your website in search results.
- Your average position. This tells you where you rank with certain keywords used in a search query.
- Links to Your Site
Links to Your Site outlines how many total links to your site have been generated and determines the most linked-to content on your site.
- Crawl Errors
Crawl Errors are the pages of your website that Google can not successfully find due to the site itself, URL errors, or because you have prohibited Google from accessing the file.
Keywords determines the keywords for which your site is ranked. Google Webmaster Tools can also tell you which of those words yielded the most impressions (significant keywords). The accuracy of keywords can be affected by crawl errors if Google cannot read the page content.
Sitemaps help you provide Google with a list of all the pages that can be found on your domain, as well as metadata that will help Google crawl your website. Sitemaps are helpful when your website is lacks a large number of external links or your content pages are not linked together.
Remember to monitor your Google Webmaster account regularly to ensure your site is functioning at its full potential. Data collection is a continuous process! Fort Pitt Web Shop understands the time commitment of data monitoring and is available to assist you.
The Webmaster Academy is an excellent resource for a hands-on learning experience with Google Webmaster Tools. This feature provides an in-depth explanation of Google Webmaster Tools by allowing you to participate in modules at your own pace.
For assistance navigating further pages of Google Webmaster, please visit the Webmaster Tools Help Center.
Fort Pitt Web Shop offers web development, consulting, and maintenance services. Contact us to keep your website running smoothly.