In today’s article, I want to answer the question “What is Google Webmaster Tools?”.
If you have a blog or website you should analyze your traffic and traffic sources! This tool is what you must use if you want to take your business to the next level!
Please note, that Google Webmaster Tools has changed to “Google Search Console”.
It is the same thing, only the name is different.
Many people still refer to it as Google Webmaster Tools and I do so most of the times as well.
So, no matter if you want to learn about Google Webmaster Tools or the Google Search Console, you have come to the right place.
I will show you how you can use it efficiently!
Let’s get started:
Google Webmaster Tools (GWT) is a tool that, amongst other things, analyzes your website traffic.
It tells you exactly how visitors found your site (if they came from Google).
It will also tell you how many other websites link to your site and how many internal links you have.
All this is important for your Search Engine Optimization!
When you know how people come to your site and which of your posts and pages are easily found, you can use this knowledge to optimize your website even more.
Whether you like data or not, you should get used to it sooner or later.
In the beginning, it is fine to just get out your content and publish your articles.
But once you decide to take it more seriously, you have to use and understand the date Google Webmaster Tools gives you!
Now, I will show you how you can install GWT easily:
Type “Google Webmaster Tools” or “Google Search Console” into Google (alternatively click here) and log in with your Google account.
If you don’t have a Google account, create one. You will need it anyways!
Now, you will have to add your website.
Click on “Add Property”.
In the popup, type in the URL of your website.
After that, you have to verify that this website really belongs to you.
The easiest way to do this is by using Google Analytics!
If you have Google Analytics already connected with your website, you just choose Google Analytics as your way of verification.
A simple click on it and your website has been added and verified to Google Webmaster Tools.
Here’s the quickest way to do so (WordPress users only!):
Create your Google Analytics account here.
Add your website as a new property and get your Google Analytics Tracking ID (it starts with UA-…)
Then, install the WordPress plugin “All in one SEO”.
After installation, go to the settings and look for “Google Analytics ID”.
Paste in your Google Analytics ID and hit the save button.
Now, you can use Google Analytics to verify your website on Google Webmaster Tools as described above.
By the way, you always should use both GWT and Google Analytics.
Both are fantastic tools to analyze your website.
You are now a proud user of Google Webmaster Tools, aka Google Search Console.
Having installed it is not enough, of course.
Now, you have to put it to good use.
In the following, I am going to explain the most important metrics:
This is where you can see how many people are visiting your site.
The number of clicks shows the number of visitors.
Well, you can see that with Google Analytics, too.
But Google Webmaster Tools also tells you what people were typing into Google to find you.
The “Queries” are the keywords that were typed into Google.
It is also interesting to see on which position those keywords stand in the Google rank.
There are some additional metrics like “Impressions” and “CTR” (click through rate), but I don’t care too much about those.
For me, the number of clicks and the position of my keywords are the most interesting!
Of course, you can sort the data as you wish. Click on “Position” to see what your best keywords are.
The closer the number goes to 1.0 the better!
A keyword that has the number 1.0 is at the top of the Google search for that query!
That’s our ultimate goal!
It is also interesting to know which websites are linking to your own website.
Those links are also called backlinks!
The more backlinks from authority sites you have, the better will be your ranking.
Please note that it doesn’t help to buy backlinks for money! Those can do you more harm than good!
The best backlinks you can get are those that occur naturally.
Write high-quality content and other blogs or websites will notice you and link to your posts.
It takes time, but the waiting is worth it.
You are in full control of your internal links.
The more you have the better!
You should get used to linking from your posts to other posts on your site.
Of course, they have to be relevant and help your readers even more.
This creates a network of internal links.
Those links are a strong signal to Google. Your ranking will get better the more relevant internal links you have!
Here you can decide which country you are targeting.
This is especially important if your site is not in English!
Since I usually target the US market, I set it to the United States.
Mobile usability gets more and more important.
Many people are surfing the net on their smartphones nowadays and that’s why you have to make sure your site is mobile friendly!
If you have pages with issues, make sure to fix them.
Google will give you tips what to do.
I can’t stress this enough. If your site is not working good on mobile phones, you will lose a lot of customers!
Make sure to keep crawl errors to a minimum.
As you can see, I have quite a few errors on the site I have used to write this article (it is not Online Jedis but one of my affiliate sites!).
I added and later removed a plugin and that caused these errors.
I have not been able to fix them yet, but I am working on it.
Crawl errors like that can make it harder for search engines like Google to find your posts!
Fetch as Google is a little trick to index your posts and pages faster.
You can totally wait to let Google crawl your site at its own pace. But you can accelerate this process, too:
Just paste in the URL of your post and click on “Fetch”.
After that click on “Index” and your site will be indexed much faster.
I don’t do this for every site I have.
While it does help to get ranked faster, it is not really necessary.
Try it yourself and decide if you want to do that or not.
This, however, is a must have!
You must add your Sitemap to Google Webmaster Tools.
With a Sitemap, Google knows exactly what your website is about and it makes it easier for Google to rank you correctly.
If you don’t know how to create a Sitemap manually, you can simply use the plugin “All in one SEO”.
Create a Sitemap with it and add it to Google Webmaster Tools.
I will create a tutorial for this soon and add it here.
Another important metric you have to check from time to time.
Sometimes sites get flagged as not secure!
People who visit your site will get a warning from their antivirus software.
This is the worst that can happen to you!
Imagine your site triggers such an alert.
Nobody would come and visit your website!
If you have any security issues you have to fix them!
You can write me in the comments below or read the tips from Google.
By now, you should have a broad understanding of the most important aspects of GWT.
If you are not using it already, now is the time to start with it!
No matter what the purpose of your blog is.
May it be for making money online or just for fun.
Analyzing your data should become second nature for you.
You want to reach more people, right?
Knowing what works and what doesn’t is super important!
So, the next time someone asks you “What is Google Webmaster Tools”, you will be able to answer that question.
As always, if you have any questions or want to discuss anything related to online marketing, don’t hesitate to leave a comment below.
I will get back to you as fast as I can.
Have a great day,