Google Checker: Outstanding Webmasters Tool

I call it the Google checker.

Officially called “Google Webmasters”, also referred to as “Google Webmasters Tool” or even “Google Webmaster Central”.

Whatever you call it, Google checker is an essential webmasters tool that also serves as a search engine optimizer. For the most important amongst all search engines: Google.

If you’re not familiar with Google checker, you absolutely have to use this online application to drastically improve your website.

Here are the basics of this wonderful webmasters tool.

Google checker: webmasters tool
Photo Credit: EvinDC

If you already have a Google account or use Gmail you just need to sign in and go to webmasters.google.com. Otherwise you have to register there first.

Then you can add your website(s) to the dashboard for inclusion.
Each added website needs to be authenticated (which is just to prevent identity theft, etc). You can do this by either inserting a line of code into your home page HTML or by uploading a unique file (generated by Google checker; just copy and paste) onto your website (using FTP). Either way is quick and easy.

Next, uploading an XML sitemap of your website to the Google checker is an outstanding idea. If you don’t know how to do this, use Google again to search for ‘google xml sitemap creation’. There are plenty of sites that can create such maps.
After you’re done, upload the map to your site as a page, but with an extension .xml instead of .html. Submit that URL to the Google checker.

Google thus knows the location of your web pages which helps indexing them.
Now that you’re doing this anyway, take some time to also create an HTML sitemap as well (again, use Google to find such a service), upload it as a (normal HTML) page and link to it from your homepage. This helps the other search engines, that don’t use the XML format, index your pages.

After you’ve done this, Google needs some time (give them two weeks, but you can check frequently) to crawl your website and gather data about it.
When that’s done, you’ll have tons of information from the most important search engine at your fingertips!

Some of the more important figures that you can find in the Google checker:

Site Configuration.
It’s very important to use the right settings for your site. You can manage a lot in here and it’s wise to spend some time figuring out how you want your site to be indexed.

Search Queries
This area of the dashboard reveals some of your main keywords for which Google is displaying your website to searchers. Ideally, you want to ensure that the keywords that you originally chose for your website feature in this list. If not, back to the SEO grindstone…

Crawl Errors
Crawl errors won’t do your site any good for search engine optimization, so you better make sure to clear this area up as soon as possible. If there are any crawl errors on your site, find out where they are, and adjust those links. If they’re coming from other sites, use 301 redirects.

Links to Your Site
This section contains an overview of internal and external links that Google has detected. Coming from Google itself, this is important information. Despite the fact, that it sometimes seems fairly inconsistent, Google usually seems to update these figures at least once a month. Your goal should be to try to grow this figure every month.

At the left side navigation bar, Google checker lists lots of other options, including diagnostics and crawl stats. Take some time to learn what these statistic mean.
There’s no better way to view your site than through the eyes of Google webmasters tool!

So, do you use this Google checker?
Post your comments below




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10 thoughts on “Google Checker: Outstanding Webmasters Tool

  1. Andreas says:

    I use the google webmaster tools frequently for all my own and my clients sites to get in depth stats and suggestions regarding the content and where to optimize it.

  2. Case Stevens says:

    Yep. You can even add a toolbar to check speed of your websites.
    Strange thing however is, that, in order to speed things up, we are supposed to combine the external Google Adwords javascripts!
    Which is of course something Google has to do.
    Still, I agree, the Google checker IS a great tool.

  3. Email Marketing says:

    The tool that’s part of the webmaster package I use the most is the keyword ranking tools which has recently seen an overhaul.

    By checking what you are currently ranking for it is simple to see where you can improve, rather than starting from scratch. Here you can see which pages are strongest in relation to your keywords.

    Great overview of the service.

    Thanks for sharing

  4. Michael @ Email Marketing Software says:

    After reading this I’m literally just logging into google webmasters tool. It sounds like a really good resource. I use wordpress which has a similar feature to xml sitemaps, as a plugin, but this looks like it could be a really useful thing to try out anyway.

  5. Keegan says:

    I just signed up for Webmaster tools… it’s amazing! I created an xml-sitemap, and my site got crawled so fast.

    I didn’t know they gave such accurate information. Search queries and average position is super valuable to know.

    I’ll have to try that crawl speed plugin.

    Thanks! Great post!

  6. Case Stevens says:

    You can use both Webmaster and Analytics. They complement each other well.
    And low click through’s means some extra work to get that click. A nice warning from a tool that can’t help it. 🙂

  7. I love GWT. Whats great is their analysis of the site showing duplicate content, titles and 404 links which when remedied can bring in loads of lost traffic.

    Ive never had any feedback from the on-site reporting tool so i guess my seo is string lol.

  8. MizBoat says:

    I try to use both analytics and webmaster tools to get different views of how my content is being seen. I find the search queries option on webmaster tools really handy. I click on the ‘average position’ heading to put the position of the queries in numerical order. This way you get to see all your pages that are ranking in positions 1 to 10. Really helpful for working out what is working and what needs more work.
    http://www.babyboat.com.au

  9. Joseph Gray says:

    It is a great tool Case. I find the labs tool for loading time and web page speed is very good. The feature of using both webmaster and analytics sound great.
    http://thehillsarborists.com.au/

  10. Mike says:

    Google Webmasters is great, it gives you insight on how your website is crawled by Google. Together with Google Analytics this gives you a lot of insight all your traffic.

    The only thing I don’t like about Google Webmasters is that the information is updated very slowly. It can’t be faster then how fast Google crawls your site of course, but I heard that it’s at least a couple of days behind the real crawl information.

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