God bless Google.
With Trump ever being a possibility for president, (and this post was scheduled, so who knows – by the time it goes live he actually might be the president) (Update: eugh.) I don’t think we can say God bless America anymore. Besides, Google have cool branding. What does America have besides shitty gun laws?
A lot. They have a lot; it’s a pretty cool place. I’m just bitter that they could let a complete and utter bloody moron behind the wheel and potentially cause catastrophes all across the globe.
Remember when I was discussing the pros and cons of hosted versus self hosted and I left number 8 as simply: Google Analytics? Well, for those of you who don’t know, Google Analytics is a brilliant free tool wherein Google allows you to monitor all kinds of cool things about your site and its audience. Things like the demographics of your visitors, how many pages they visit – hell, it even tells you their interests. You can already imagine the possibilities, right?
I mean, you may have been assuming that all of your visitors are teenage girls, but what if women in their 20s and 30s with interests in cooking predominantly make up your reach? You may then decide to try a few posts more targeted to them, or more specific adverts and see an immediate increase in earnings. Now, who could ever complain about that?
Once again, God bless Google.
However, this post isn’t about Google Analytics (although I can do a post on that too if you’d like) – this is a post about Google Search Console, Google Analytic’s brilliant and yet lesser known cousin. It’s the Solange to Beyonce. Just as awesome, talented and capable – but not as much in the limelight. (Also doesn’t attack Jay-Z in elevators, which is a design flaw of Google’s, we can all agree.)
Why do you need Google Search Console?
Because ultimately most of us want more page views. We want to rank in Google and get people finding us. (And just saying – this means we totally earn more money as well. But, like, putting value back into the world and all of that shit.) Google Search Console (formerly known as Webmaster tools) allows you the power to control your SEO.
What is Google Search Console?
Nothing short of miraculous. Oh, you wanted a definition. Well, Google Search Console is a tool that helps you to improve your search presence. See? Wasn’t that hard, was it? It’s a useful tool Google has developed to allow you to monitor and improve your search ranking. You’re able to see what terms people are using to find your site, monitor how you site appears to search engines and who load of other useful things.
10 Ways To Use Google Search Console For Bloggers
- Check that all your links are working and that your site is up and running correctly. (Crawl errors). This is so helpful if you’re considering moving from hosted to self-hosted or upgrading from a domain to a sub-domain. Sometimes, your URLs can change or redirect incorrectly – the issue with this? You’re losing traffic and visitors. For example, if my .wordpress.com domain stopped redirecting to my .com site I’d be missing out (no to mention confusing people).
- Force Google to love all your newly implemented changes (submit to index) and submit sitemap. Did you know that it can sometimes take Google months to index all your new, brilliant posts? Well, it can – which you don’t want, do you? Well, with Search Console you can submit all your updates and changes to Google and request your site to be re-crawled.
- See keywords people find your site through – this is good at showing you surprises. For example, I rank on page 2 of “stocking fillers for him” – who knew? If your site is getting found through certain terms, you can improve those pages; write more for those terms and . . . well, it’s just handy to know!
- See whether you’re being found on images too. If not, ALT text! It’s something we all know – and we all forget: changing the ALT text on our images. However, on Search Console, you can see how many people are finding you via images and with what terms.
- Structured Data Markup – This is not my area of expertise, so here’s a great article about it.
- Monitor link backs to your site. This one is a biggie for SEO (which is really irritating, because I lost a lot of my page rankingds when I switched domains, but I guess half the fun is building them back up. Said nobody. Ever.) – backlinks are very important; you can see if you’ve got any and if not start working on it!
- You can see the things that Google may be penalising you for and resolve them. You can be penalised for a lot of things – some of them inadvertent, so it’s seriously helpful to see what Google doesn’t like – and fix it. More on that here.
- Check that your site is mobile friendly. Did you know this is actually a factor search engines take into account now? Yep – and Google has a bigger checklist than just a responsive theme, so this is really helpful for boosting those views.
- See where you need to optimise your site for better loading times etc.
- Change how your blog looks in search engines. This is actually a really useful tool – out of a page of search results, how can you guarantee that someone picks your blog to read? By making sure that you’ve optimised the way that your blog looks in Search Engine results!
Okay, so you now know how to optimise your blog to within an inch of its life and get all those views your hours of hard work (yes, hours – this blogging thing isn’t easy.) deserves. Let me know if you’re going to try Search Console out and if you have been already. Have a great evening, my chicken wings, and if you found this helpful follow and share.
All the love,