Search engine traffic can play a large part in the success of an e-commerce store. Most store owners are keen to rank well in search engines and make the most of the free traffic. Google Webmaster Tools (or more recently known as Google Search Console) is a FREE tool by Google that provides data about how Google sees your website. It tells you about any problems it finds while crawling your site. Those very problems are the ones that will stop you from reaching great heights in the search engines.
- Monitor and evaluate your sites performance in the search engines (desktop and mobile).
- Identify sites that are linking to you. This helps you identify bad links that you may be penalised for.
- Find out the keywords that people are using to find you.
- You can be alerted if you site is hacked.
Getting started with Google Webmaster Tools is really easy.
- You should already have a google analytics account. So while you are logged into Google, navigate to Google Webmaster Tools Click here for Webmaster Tools
- Click on “Add A Property”
- Enter your website.
- Verify you are the owner of your website. The easiest way to do this is use the Google Analytics method. You can find this under the “Alternative Methods” tab.
- Add a sitemap. This is a file all websites should have to tell Google how to crawl the site. Upload this by going to the dashboard and clicking on the sitemap link. Then, click on the “Add/Test Sitemap” and upload your sitemap.
You are now ready to analyse your data.
Analyse your traffic by going to the Search Traffic tab.
Here you will find data about the keywords that are getting you found, links to your site, and mobile usability issues.
Analyse your search appearance.
Here you will find out about errors associated with any structured data or rich cards you have on your store. You will also find suggestions for HTML (some of the code) on your website.
Analyse what Google is indexing
In the Google Index tab you can see what pages Google is indexing, that means what pages Google has found and is showing in searches.
Analyse how Google is crawling your site
In the crawl tab you see any errors Google finds as it crawls your site.
What to do with the data?
Use the data to optimise your website for search engines, make it faster and error free.
Check your account at least once a week and rectify problems as soon as you can.
Always follow Google’s advice with how to fix your problems. If you have too many or constant problems you risk your whole site being de-indexed by Google.
You want to give your customers the best shopping experience and this tool will help you do that so use it to it’s full advantage.
Need help implementing Google Webmaster Tools or analysing your data? Contact me today!
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