How To Use Google Webmaster Tools – And 5 Reasons Why You Should

Google has a very useful tool for you to use.

To Use Google Webmaster Tools, First You Must Verify Your Site

On the Google search page, click on the "Business Solutions" link.

Next click on the "Webmaster Central" link. You’ll want to click on the "Learn more" link under get started and improve traffic with Google Webmaster tools. You will also need a Gmail type Google account to use Google Webmaster tools.

On the Webmaster Tools Dashboard Page you can enter the URL of your site (or sites).

However, before Google give you any information about the site, you’ll need to verify.  Verifying its just proving that you are, in fact, the owner of the site.

There are two ways to verify your site with Google Webmaster tools.

The first is to add a meta tag to your index page.  The second is placing a blank HTML file in the root directory of your site.  Either the meta tag or the blank HTML file will be a unique code that will prove to Google that you have administrative rights to the website.  There are some cases where you will not be able to use Google Webmaster tools since you may not have the rights to this.

Once you have verified your site, you can also submit a site map.

A Google site map can help Google index your pages.  It tells Google with the addresses of all the pages in your site are.  It tells the Google bot which ones are new.  You can also tell Google which pages you believe are more important on your site. It also allows you to tell Google how often you add content to your site.  If you only add content once a month, you will save bandwidth by telling Google not to crawl every day.  You will need either a program to crawl your site and create the site map, or to go to one of the websites that provide this service.  There are many free options to create a Google site map.

After you’ve gone through all this work to verify your site with Webmaster tools and submit a site map, how will it help you?

First, you can tell Google whether you prefer them to index the www.or non www. version of your domain.

This can help focus page rank on the version you prefer. It can eliminate splitting the page rank between two identical pages.

Second, and probably most interesting, is Google will share many of the statistics it has for your site with you.

To find out what Google searches showed results from your site, how high you ranked, and which cases your site was clicked.  You’ll find out how many Google users are subscribed to your feed.  How page rank is distributed on your site and which pages have the highest page rank.  And finally, maybe most importantly of all, you’ll find what the Googlebot sees as it crawls your site.

Knowing what the Googlebot sees can help you improve your rankings.

You’ll find out what phrases are being used in links to your site.  In some cases, you may be able to work on getting links with more words related to your niche.  You’ll find out what words the Googlebot thinks are most important on your site and are used most often.

You may want to change your content if you find words that are not useful.  On the other hand, if Google thinks you’re site is about permalinks you may want to start concentrating on permalinks in your content.  You’ll also find a list of individual words are used often in links to your site.

Third, there are some tools available to you.

You can have Google analyze your robots.txt file.  Make sure that your blocking the right URLs on your site.  You can tell Google your preferred crawl rate for the Google bot your site.  I already talked about setting your preferred domain.  You can tell Google if you want it to use images on your site to help index your site.  Finally, there is a tool to remove the URL of pages that you do not want indexed.

Fourth, you can find out what pages are linking to pages in your site.

Google shows you pages from other sites that are linking to your site.  Google also shows you what internal pages on your site are planning to pages in your site.  This can be very useful if you’re using article marketing to market your site.  You can find out what sites have your articles on them with links to your site.

Fifth, Google can show you what errors it’s found on your site.

This can help you spot problems with your server if pages are timing out.  You may have bad links that are pointing to pages that do not exist.  Or, you may have http errors.

Knowing what Google knows about your site is important.

Knowing which are already doing right, can help you concentrate on further improving that.  Knowing what you may be doing wrong, allows you to correct those things before they become too much of a problem.  It will take some time before Google has enough statistics to show you for all the tools.  Once there is enough data, it can really be effective.

Google Webmaster tools help me catch a problem with this site.

The template I was using placed too much emphasis on terms that had to do with text presentation and fonts.  While I had no content about those subjects, that’s what the Googlebot was seeing. By switching the template, I was able to eliminate those terms and replace them with terms related to my contact.

This post was created for Courtney Tuttle’s  Internet Marketers United Group Writing Project.

You may want to take a look at his site for some of the other articles on Internet marketing covered in the project. Also, he always as some great advice in his own posts.

The Internet Marketers United Group Writing Project is a chance for you to share your expertise on any topic related to internet marketing. I have, of course come up with a list of possible topics, but I want to leave the door open to any topic that can help an internet marketer. Whether you are an experienced veteran or beginner, there are people that could use your point of view.

Internet Marketers United Group Writing Project | Internet Marketing | Make Money Online | Strategy | Services