Google search console is one of Google valuable free webmaster tools like Google Analytics and Google Tag Manager which help all parties interested in digital marketing like SEO specialists, web designers, web developers and content writers in optimizing their performance with tools and reports useful for optimizing the website performance in all aspects.
Google search console platform involves tools and reports that provide insights about your website performance regarding many significant matters including:
- The crawling status and issues for the website pages
- The mobile usability for the website design and content
- Security issues threatening your website
- Search queries used to find your website and the click-through-rate for each query
- Top pages generating traffic to your website from search engines
- Devices used to browse your website
- Top countries of your website visitors
- The number of external links and linking websites
Why Google search console is important?
A free efficient helpful platform that guides your journey to improve many aspects within your website with regular notifications and alerts about any current or possible issues in your website.
Relying on professional platforms and efficient SEO tools like Google search console will drive desired results from your website with fewer costs and efforts consumed in using paid inefficient tools.
Technical SEO factors will be covered using Google search console starting from the indexing of the new and updated webpages, submitting sitemaps, improving the mobile usability to evaluating the link building strategy performance.
Google search console site verification
The verification of your website in Google search console platform is the first step to acquiring professional help to your search engine optimization efforts. Verifying the ownership of your website can be done using 3 options explained in the following tips.
Access Google search console with your Google account and click the “Add Property” button to add your website URL and choose the most suitable verification option from the following options:
- First Option: Adding an HTML tag to your website HTML code then confirming the verification in Google search console dashboard
- Second Option: Using Yoast SEO plugin with WordPress websites for alternative verification method by an HTML tag verification code
- Third Option: Using Google Tag Manager for the website verification
Once your website is verified in Google search console, you’ll be eligible to benefit from all valuable tools and reports integrated into your website Google search console dashboard.
The main benefits of using Google search console
The potential benefits and uses of Google search console (GSC) are many and we will cover in this section of the article the most important benefits and uses of GSC dashboard to guide your website to the optimal performance.
The main benefits of using Google search console are:
#1. Checking and fixing the website crawling errors
The indexing status of all of your website pages can be viewed using the “Coverage report” in GSC dashboard and that reports include:
- The number of valid indexed pages in your website
- The number of intentionally excluded webpages from indexing
- The number and details of crawling and indexing errors
Click each error details to get a detailed view about specific pages with error and the error type with the date of detection that error. It takes up to 4 days for indexing and recognizing crawling errors fixing actions then check the coverage report to assure that your website page is clear from crawling and indexing errors.
#2. Submitting your website sitemap
Sitemaps are guidance instructions for search bots and crawlers to follow certain rules when crawling your website pages and that facilitate the search crawlers mission.
A sitemap will include the navigational structure for the website, specific pages to crawl and choosing the original versions of canonical duplicate webpages.
You can upload your website sitemap to GSC dashboard in the sitemaps section by entering the sitemap URL and then checking the acceptance status of the sitemap and the number of discovered ULRs of the website pages in your uploaded sitemap.
#3. The URL inspection tool for updated pages
Regular updates on any previously indexed page content often occur and those updates are done to optimize the content of the webpage to achieve a higher ranking in search results.
The URL inspection tool in GSC dashboard can be used to request indexing for updated pages will indicate the following:
- The date of last crawling activity on this page
- If the page is allowed for crawling or not
- If the page is allowed for indexing or not
- The status of the page fetch and render on Google
- The canonical status of the page (original or canonical version)
- If the page is mobile friendly or not
Use the URL inspection tool to make sure that your updated pages are efficiently crawled, indexed and mobile friendly.
#4. Google search console mobile usability report
If your website is not optimized for mobile users with responsive web design and scalable content, your website will lose a huge portion of traffic from mobile users (the majority of web visitors) to other mobile-friendly competitors’ websites.
The mobile usability report in Google search console dashboard indicates how many pages in your website is mobile friendly with no mobile usability issues, usability errors and issues of specific pages within your website and the validation status after performing corrective action on these pages.
Avoid losing higher rankings in mobile search engine results and portions of your website traffic for pages with mobile usability errors by checking daily the mobile usability report in GSC dashboard.
#5. Google search console AMP report
Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMB) is a solution for better user experience for mobile users as this option boost the loading speed for your website mobile pages. If your website has AMP versions of mobile webpages, you should use the AMP report in Google search console dashboard as it involves a detailed report about valid AMP pages, errors, and issues with invalid AMP pages and the validation status for corrective actions on these pages.
#6. Fix the noncompliance issues with manual actions report
The manual actions report in Google search console dashboard include any manual actions that may prevent your website from appearing in search results because of noncompliance with the webmaster guidelines.
Issues against your website will be shown in this report and will require to perform corrective actions to individual affected pages or the whole website to avoid search engine penalties that include preventing your website pages from appearing in related search results.
#7. Handling Security issues in your website
Security is an important factor for search engine results ranking and for the user experience of the web visitors as they should feel secure visiting your website, signing up for personal accounts and performing online payment transactions.
Security threats for your website are shown in the security issues report in Google search console dashboard that should be a checking priority to avoid the risk of the hacking possibility to your website and databases.
#8. Overview of the link building strategy performance
Links report in Google search console dashboard is another great option provided to perform link building analysis and evaluate your link building strategy performance.
The links report involves:
- The list of pages with external links
- The list of pages linked internally
- The list of top linking sites to your website
- Anchor text used to link your website
The valuable information provided by the links reports is helpful in determining the sources of refereeing traffic to your website, the top linked pages internally and externally and if the targeted keywords are used as anchor text in external links or not.
Use this report to evaluate how successful your link building strategy is and to choose the referring traffic channels to focus on within your updated link building strategy.
#9. Ignore harmful links with disavow links tool
Harmful external links in unrelated untrusted websites will drive search engine penalties that will drop your website ranking in related search results.
Disavow links tool is useful in this situation to ignore any external links from untrusted websites that pass no link juice.
#10. Increased CTR with the performance report
Would it be helpful to know the search queries that helped search engine users to find your website? Google search console provides a detailed report of the search queries that generated traffic to your website.
The performance report in GSC dashboard involves detailed information that should be used to optimize your website content in order to increase the click-through-rate (CTR) for your website in search results including:
- Search queries used to find your website pages
- The number of impressions and clicks for your website pages
- Top pages appeared in search results and their CTR
- Top countries for search engine users who used those search queries
- Type of devices used to perform those search queries and their CTR
Take advantage of this valuable data to improve your website CTR in search results in order to generate more organic traffic to your website and increase conversions.
Google Search Console Vs. Google Analytics
Google Search Console and Google Analytics are free Google webmaster tools that will boost your website performance if you rely on data and insights from both platforms together.
As we discussed earlier Google Search Console will provide performance reports and recommendations to reach more professional functionality to all aspects in your website while Google Analytics provides data and insights more related to your website traffic and the behavior of the website visitors that are helpful to optimize your website to achieve better user experience and drive more desired conversions.
When you reach this section of the article, you’re fully prepared to start taking advantage of all the potentials of using Google search console as a guide for a more efficient website for search engines and the website visitors (your potential customers).
Start the journey by verifying your website in Google search console dashboard and we are always available to answer all your question related to this subject or related to search engine optimization (SEO) in general.
Contact Sendian Creations today and see how we can help