You probably already know that Google provides a number of free and paid services that can help you increase your traffic and grow your website. But were you aware that Google offers a set of tools to help you make your site even better? It’s called Google Webmaster Tools.
Simply go to www.google.com/webmasters/tools/ and login using a Google account. If you don’t have a Google account, take a minute to sign up for one – even if you only plan to use it for webmaster tools.
Don’t worry, it’s free.
Next you add websites that you want to monitor to your account. The process involves adding a short snippet of code to your website, which lets Google verify that you actually on the site.
Or if you have a Google Analytics account you can verify that it is your site by connecting the two accounts.
At its core, Webmaster Tools give you insight on how Google “sees” your website, and you can use this information to greatly improve your site.
Add a Sitemap For Better Google Indexing
A Sitemap is essentially a list of all the pages of your website. I use WordPress SEO by Yoast so I let it generate my site map. You can also use the Google XML Sitemaps plugin to automatically generate your sitemap. Webmaster Tools will guide you through the process of submitting that Sitemap to Google. By doing so, you’ll make it easier for Google to incorporate your website into its search engine results pages.
Malware Notifications and Alerts for Quality Issues
Webmaster Tools can provide you notifications whenever it believes your site might have been infected with malware, or if it notices other quality issues with your website. You can even sign up for email forwarding, so that you don’t have to be constantly logging into the Webmaster Tools to receive this key information.
Google Webmaster Tools will identify the top sources of all inbound links to your website. You can use this information to target the Web properties similar to your most popular links sources, or to focus on underdeveloped possibilities for new links.
The points above only show a few of the benefits of using Google Webmaster Tools. But to make sure you’re doing the most to promote your website and keep up with how Google views your site, consider signing up for an account today.