This is a medium through which to easily index your website in Google.For SEO reasons this is a very handy tool to help you understand how well perceived your site is by Google. Occasionally your site can run into a few problems such as Google not being able to crawl and index your site or issues with the sites robots.txt. It also has a whole array of data for you to look at including analytics and mobile usability. There are a number of tools that will allow you to test your site
The first step – in using the search console is adding it your site. To log in you need to use a Gmail account. Once this is created head to https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools From here you will enter your Google
From here is where you would add the URL of the website that you want to gather the information on. In this case, I will be adding the URL “www.ashutoshtech.com”, once you’ve entered in the URL click on the button “Add A Property”. Now you will be met with the page below. This gives you a list of methods on how to get the search console working along with your site.
There are multiple ways to add this code to your site but I will show you my preferred method. The site I am currently working with is running on WordPress so I will be adding this code through an SEO plugin called “All in One SEO Pack”. To do this you need to click on the “Alternative methods” button at the top, then “HTML tag”. Just like the picture above you’ll see it gives you the code you need to paste into your site. To add this to the ‘All in One SEO Pack’ plugin you only need to copy the code that is blacked out above.
Now you have a copy of the code, log in to the website that you’re working on and download the SEO plugin. ‘All in one SEO’ has a menu that appears on the left-hand side of your dashboard, you need to open up this menu and scroll down until you find the area that says “Webmaster Verification” just like the image above. Paste the code into the “Google Webmaster Tools” section and then click “Update Options”.
Now head back to the google search console and click verify at the bottom. If done correctly you should see a message like the one above. Click “Continue” and you now have access to the search console
Search Console Overview
This is the dashboard of the Google search console. One thing to note is that your site will now begin to gather your statistics and won’t pull information from the past which is why you can see here that there is no activity at the moment. First, click on the “messages” tab on the left-hand side. Whenever you set up your search console you will receive a message detailing how you can make the most of it.
- Add all of your website versions – What this really means by ‘versions’ is the differences in the URL. For example, you may be able to access your site using “www.yoursite.com” but you could also type in “yoursite.com” and you would still end up in the same place. Just follow the same steps as last time but when it asks you to paste the code again just click “verify” as you’ve already done it.
- Select your preferred version – After you added all of your URL’s this will let you choose which way you’d like Google to index your site (How it looks on the search engine).
- Select target country – This will let you choose the country that you primarily want to be found in, just open up the country tab and select yours from the drop down menu.
- Share access with co-workers – This allows you to give anyone access to the console using their own gmail account. You can choose between restricted access which allows the user only to view most of the data or you can give full permissions.
- Submit a sitemap file – A sitemap is what makes it easy for google to crawl and index your site. To know if your site has one, type in www.yoursite.com/sitemap.xml into your browser. If you don’t have one you will most likely see a 404 error. If this is the case you have to get one for your site. There are tonnes of sitemap plugins out there that will automatically set it up once it’s downloaded. Just browse through the plugin section in WordPress and download one. Now that you’ve got a sitemap you can submit it to your search console.
- Learn how to work with search console – Have a quick read through this section to get a better understanding of how the search console operates
Clicks – This is how many times a user has clicked on your site through the search engine.
Impressions – This is how many times your site appeared on a particular search page. This means that even though the user never actually clicked on your link, it still counts towards an impression. However this isn’t the case if the user only views page 1, but your link is on page 2. It has to be visible on the user’s page for it to count towards an impression.
CTR(Click Through Rate) – This will simply divide the clicks by the impressions.
Position – This will show the average of your top positions on the search engine.
Links – The search traffic tab also includes the ability to view your sites backlinks and internal links. You will be able to determine from here if your site is easy enough for the user to navigate and if all of the necessary pages are accessible through your internal linking structure.
Links to Your Site: This section will show you any links that your site has from other websites(backlinks). If you have just set up your search console it will take some time before you can see the majority of this data. If nothing is appearing, check back every couple of days or so until it eventually pulls through.
Internal Links: This will show you a list of the internal links on your website. This is a good indicator for Google to understand the importance of each page. If you notice that an important page on your website isn’t displayed here, then you should check your internal linking structure and rearrange it appropriately. This section will again need time to eventually appear on the search console.
Manual Actions: If you see the message above when on this tab then you have nothing to worry about. If not then your site has been manually reviewed by Google and they have found something not satisfactory to their guidelines. In a manual action report, there are two different types that could be displayed.
Site Match – This means that you have a site wide action that needs to be resolved.
Partial Match – This is an issue with an individual page(s) within the site. This one is the more common of the two and in most cases will only affect the link on that page specifically. Each match will display a reason for the action and what effect it will have on the page or site. If your site has a few actions that need your attention you can change it to fit into Google’s guidelines and then request a review.