Google Search Console – All You Need to Know About it

best free website seo tools

Google Search Console is a no-cost service provided by Google that helps you keep track of how and where your website shows up in the Google Search Results. Google Search Console was originally known as Google Webmasters Tools until 2015 when a major overhaul was made to the tool.

 

And finally, in 2018 we received a more refined version of the Google Search Console with further improvements and added changes to the interface. It’s among the best free website SEO tools that you can get today.

 

Why do you need Google Search Console?

 

So why do you need to have Google Search Console for your business? First of all, it is free, and Secondly, it is the way that Google knows how to read your website in its search which is a really important piece that a lot of web developers don’t pass on to their clients.

 

As a business owner, you can get it set up for your business in no time as it takes a very small amount of time to do so. It is very easy to link up with your existing Gmail, Google Apps for work and G suite account which allows you to basically monitor all of your web properties for search.

 

Google Search Console is also the place where you can change your international targeting, for ex. If you are an India based website and use (dot)com instead of (dot)in for your website, for you to show up on the local search, you have to make the changes in the Search Console.

 

Also, Google Search will tell you every single website on the internet that it’s crawled that has a link back to your website, it will also give you important information on keywords like what people are searching for when they do find your website in Google Search and so much more.

 

For this reaaon, its also among the best free SEO website tools out there for you today.

 

What are the features of the Google Search Console

 

Google rolled out the revamped version of the Search Console in 2018, and here we discuss the new features.

 

Search Performance

Search Analytics has been the most popular and important features of the Google Search Console. It keeps us updated about the organic traffic coming from Google. The new Search Performance allows more in-depth data reports over search metrics like clicks, impressions, CTR’s, current and average ranking positions.

 

In comparison to the old console, there is a bit more flexibility of how you can build your segments and look at the different data points inside the analytics reports. The date range has also improved and you can look at backed-data of up to nearly 2 years.

 

Index Coverage

Index coverage doesn’t just help you identify the total number of website pages currently indexed by Google but also helps identify page indexation errors. If you do encounter errors on page indexation, the Coverage Report offers tips to helps fix it.

 

The newer version allows you to show more information and also alerts you when there is an indexing error, which helps in getting to the root of the problem and solving it faster.

 

AMP Status

Accelerated Mobile Pages or AMP’s status report basically helps fix errors that don’t allow AMP pages from showing in the search results. Now with this feature, you help you monitor AMP performance and how your pages will be displayed and fix any errors that pop up.

 

Job Postings

If you have Job Posting rich results on your website, this report allows you to monitor Google’s ability to process these results. And you can also inform Google about any updates or fixes made.

 

Let’s also discuss few other features of the Google Search console.

 

Data Highlighter

Data Highlighter is a user-friendly option to highlight certain elements of your website. This feature helps webmasters to mark-up their landing page so Google can have a better understanding of your website’s data. You have the ability to simply use your mouse button to tag each data field and highlight certain elements of your landing page.

 

HTML Improvements

HTML Improvements allows you to address all the HTML issues on your websites like problems with the title, meta descriptions, and non-indexable content. Duplicate titles or missing metadata can impact search results negatively. This feature helps in finding out these issues, and you can go about fixing them depending on your ability, or you can get help to fix the issues highlighted by this tool.

 

Fetch as Google

Fetch as Google is a diagnostic tool that simulates crawling and rendering for a given URL. It is basically Google’s way of allowing website owners or webmasters to mimic the behavior of Googlebot. The features such as ‘fetch’ and ‘fetch and render’ gives you the ability to choose which devices you take a look at as far as rendering and fetching is concerned.

 

robots.txt Tester

A robots.txt file is a text file that you can create using Microsoft Notepad. The directives from the robots.txt file can prevent crawler software like Googlebot from crawling certain pages and folders from your website. By using the robot.txt tester, you can let Google to get individual URL’s to see if they are being blocked for crawling.

 

Final Thoughts

 

If you are looking to do more with your website but are worried as to whether the results would be as you would expect, do not forget to take a look at the search console. It should be the first thing to look at whether it be for your SEO strategy or to ensure that everything is set up just the way it should be with your website.

All the best,

Ed

If you enjoyed this post, you might want to check out these articles as well;
Bing Webmaster Tools – A Must Have Tool For Affiliate Marketers
Using Google Alerts as an Affiliate Marketer
Google Adsense – Get Paid to Advertise

18 thoughts on “Google Search Console – All You Need to Know About it”

  1. Dallas McCalister

    Thanks Ed… The timing for me to see your review on Google Search Console could not have been better!

    How long have you been using this new version?

    I have just launched my site and this tool sounds like an essential item for making my journey to successful online ownership even more possible.

    You did a great job of making this easy to read and understand. Thanks again for taking time to make something so technical easier to use!

    Dallas

    1. Ed

      Thank you Dallas, I am glad that you enjoyed the article. I have been using the new format for a couple of months now. 

      Ed 

  2. Darren

    This is a really good breakdown on Google Search Console and how it works. It definitely sounds like it provides loads on information on how websites are performing.

    I do have a Search Console account but haven’t used it much so far. After reading your article I now realise I’ve been missing out on loads of important data that’ll help with my online business.

    I needed to read this, thanks.

  3. Chris

    I recently noticed that this Google feature has been updated, although I was very competent with the old version (unfortunately!). 

    I used to like the Analytics section of the free tool but now I find this function a little hard to locate then read – does this updated version still save the key phrases that are popular on your site, and does it also list your backlinks?

    1. Ed

      Thanks Chris. You can still access the old version. Go to the bottom of the menu on the left-hand side, and click on “Go to the Old Version”. I hope this helps.

  4. mzakapon

    Google search console is very important for our every day life. But we hardly realize that there are lot’s of feature we are not using and not have enough knowledge of implementing in our online business. Thanks for this great post which is really helpful for us to use google search console in a better way.

  5. John

    Thanks Ed!  There are quite a few features & benefits of Google Search Console that I didn’t know about.

    Accelerated Mobile Pages or AMP’s status report is something I had no idea about and will check this out.  Also Data highlighter – that looks useful too.I always do the fetch as google, that is very useful to speed things up to get noticed on Google.Thanks again for the read and making it so simple.  I’m off to implement!

  6. Florence

    I am so excited to come across your article reviewing this Google Search Console, I just set up my website and in the process of learning how to manage it and make it better, a friend had mentioned using a search console to help me make sure that my content can be found by Google. I was searching to find out what it’s all about before starting to use any, You have just made it one step closer by this review, I feel I know something and have a beginning point.

    How can I test my site to confirm if it’s blocked from being crawled? I also wanted to know the registration process for it?

    1. Ed

      Thanks Florence. If you have a Gmail account, signing up is very easy. After your site is registered with Google Search Console, request a sitemap. This will show you if your site is able to be crawled or not. Hope this helps.

  7. Barry

    Hello Ed. This is a great post telling me more about Google search console. Like you have said, Google search console is one of the best free SEO tool. I make use of it alot when I am seeking for keywords to use for articles in my websites. It’s also a great tool I use to check my ranking position.

    Farewell.

    1. Ed

      Thanks Barry. It is a great tool to use.

  8. alan

    Have just visited your website, and found it very informative and detailed. Although I have been using Google Search Console for a while now I had not fully recognised its full potential and many tools which could assist me in improving my website ranking and indexing and traffic attraction rate and general performance. I also enjoyed the introductory video, which demonstrated its benefits in a more lighter and gentler mode. By reading your introduction and commendation of the benefits of making full use of Google search console, you will have many takers here myself included.

    1. Ed

      Thanks for visiting my site Alan!

  9. Nate Stone

    Hi Ed, 

    I’ve been advised on multiple occasions that I should get Google console set up for my websites. I must admit I wasn’t aware that Google console brought that many benefit. The index coverage and  search performance features sound of particular use. How long do you think it will take to get the search console and begin to get data?

    1. Ed

      Thanks Nate. You should get Google Search Console set up, and request a sitemap right away. Google can’t index your content if it doesn’t know it’s there. Also, after every post , use the “Fetch as Google” feature to ensure that your new post gets indexed as soon as possible. I hope this helps.

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