Discover everything you’ve ever wanted to know about Google Search Console and how to use it to optimise your SEO results, including specific tactics and strategies for ranking enhancement.
If you want to make the most of Google Search Console and boost your site’s ranking, continue reading!
Google Search Console is a free service provided by Google that enables you to monitor the health of your website via a variety of tools and reports. This updated version, which replaces “Google Webmaster Tools,” is a critical component of your SEO toolbox because it allows you to monitor and improve nearly every aspect of your website’s SEO.
Why would you want to use Google Search Console?
Google Search Console enables you to:
1. Submit a sitemap to ensure that Google discovers and indexes all of your web pages.
To begin, you’ll need a Google account to configure Google Search Console. You should already have a Google Account if you use a Google product – Google AdWords, Google Analytics, Google Docs, Google My Business, or a Gmail account.
I recommend that you use the same email address to create accounts for all Google Products. This will simplify the process of linking accounts and sharing data.
The following are the steps for creating a Google Account:
Step 1: Navigate to Google.com and click the’sign in’ link in the top right corner.
Step 2: Select the ‘Create an account’ option.
Step 3: You can create a Gmail account or click ‘use my existing email address instead’ to sign in with an existing account, such as your work email. After that, click ‘next’.
You’re ready to create a Google Search Console account if you already have a Google account or if you create one.
You can verify your website in GSC in a variety of ways; simply click the down arrow next to each method.
If you want to inform Google that you want to target a specific region, you can do so in Google Search Console, which typically redirects to an older version of the search console.
To select a country as your target, follow these steps.
We would not recommend setting a geographic target for specific countries in this instance.
If you are a global business with a headquarters in the United States of America, DO NOT set a geographic target to the United States, as all subfolders will be considered to target only US customers. We recommend configuring GT for subfolders ONLY if you are using country targeting.
Selecting a target market via Webmaster Console enables Google to determine the country for which gTLDs should be targeted (.com, .net, .org etc.) Provision of this information will have no direct impact on your rankings. As with any other geo-targeting signal, it has the potential to boost rankings for locally-sensitive queries. On the other hand, you risk losing valuable international traffic.
Connect your Google Analytics account to your Google Search Console account
Google switched its search engine to HTTPS in 2013, citing increased security.
The disadvantage was that critical keyword data was removed from Google Analytics.
However, by connecting Google Analytics and GSC, it is now possible to easily retrieve some keyword data.
Once these steps are completed, your GSC will be connected to Google Analytics.
To gain access to GSC data, follow these steps:
There are four primary reports available in Search Console:
Add a Sitemap to Google Search Console for Your Website
A sitemap is essentially your website’s table of contents.
There are two types of sitemaps: HTML sitemaps, which are typically designed to assist website visitors in quickly locating specific pages on your website; and XML sitemaps. Especially useful for large websites with a large number of pages.
Sitemaps in XML format, which are typically optimised for search engines. These include the pages, videos, and other files on your website, which make them more discoverable for indexing purposes.
If your site is built with the “Yoast” plugin and is written in WordPress, the sitemap should already be present; you just need to access it.
Take the following steps:
If you are not using WordPress and are instead using a platform such as Square Space or Shopify, both of these platforms include built-in xml sitemaps.
For other platforms, I’d recommend directly contacting their support for assistance in locating your sitemap.
If you are not using “Yoast” and are unsure whether your site has an XML Sitemap, you can visit yoursite.com/sitemap.xml. If you have a sitemap, it is located here. If you do not already have one, you will need to create one.
To create a sitemap, navigate to xml-sitemaps.com and follow the instructions for creating one and adding it to your website.
Using Google Search Console to Submit a Sitemap
This concludes the process of creating a Google Search Console account for your business.
Google has now verified your website, and you can now:
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