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Thursday, 02 February 2017 17:12

Google Search Console Tricks You Need to Know to Boost Your Website’s SEO

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Want to kick your site’s search rankings up a notch? Want to do it for free, with tools that don’t require a Ph.D. in SEO?

Who wouldn’t, right? But while pretty much every small business wants more search engine traffic, most small businesses are not stepping up to optimize their sites.

When we surveyed over 1,100 small business owners earlier this year for the WASP State of Small Business Report, we turned up a surprising fact: Only 25 percent of them are doing any search engine optimization.

 

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Part of this is a time issue, of course–every hour counts for small businesses. It may also be a lack of knowledge about search engine optimization. Or a belief that it’s hard and time-consuming.

This is unfortunate because there are plenty of simple, effective things you can do for your site that will translate into more traffic. One of them is using Google’s free Search Console, previously called “Google Webmasters.”

Getting to Know Google Search Console

The Search Console is an ideal complement to Google’s more widely-known Analytics tool, but it is a bit different. While Analytics shows how people use your site once they’re on it, Search Console leans more toward showing you how people see your site before they get there–how it looks in the search results and other places.

So what specifically does it show you? Well, stuff like:

  • How many links point to your site, including which pages those links are coming from and which pages they point to.
  • Details about your site’s usability, both for people and for search engines.
  • How your pages are performing in the search results (namely, their click-through rates and rankings).
  • How to optimize your pages with Schema markup, so they show more information in the search results.

There’s more, but I’m getting ahead of myself. So instead of telling you how Search Console is different, let’s just show you. Here are five things you can do with it:

1. See if your website’s meta or title tags need any improvements.

There are two critically important pieces of copy on each page of your site, but the odds are high you’re ignoring them. They’re the meta description and title tags; they hold the text that appears in the search results.

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What you put in those tags has a huge influence over whether or not people click through to your site. They also tell Google what your pages are about.

The “HTML Improvements” section of your Search Console account can help you optimize these tags on your site.

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2. Make your site easier for mobile users.

You may have heard of Google’s Mobile-Friendly tool. It’s a fast, free way to see if your site qualifies as mobile-friendly. But while it’s a snap to use, it doesn’t go into a whole lot of detail; in fact, it only provides a “yes” or “no.”

The Search Console Mobile Usability report digs deeper. It’ll show you:

  • If you’ve got any links or buttons that are too close together for mobile users to comfortably click.
  • If the text on your site is too small to read.
  • If your page will correctly resize itself for mobile devices.

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3. Manage inbound links.

Want to find out who’s linking to your site, including exactly which pages are linking to you, and exactly which pages on your site they’re linking to? Search Console can show you. And if you ever did some questionable link building, this is the information you’ll use to disavow any shady links.

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Don’t ignore the “Internal Links” report in this same section. In fact, every time you publish a new page or post on your site, use this tool to add a link to the new content from several old pages on your site. It’s one of the best ways to pass page authority to newly published content.

4. Check if Google is having any trouble accessing your site.

Google gives you several ways to check up on how accessible your site is for the Google bot. If you do only one thing, add a sitemap and make sure there are no crawl errors.

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5. See where your pages rank in the search results, and how often they’re being clicked.

The Search Analytics Report can show you whether or not your pages are delivering on a user’s search intent. There’s a detailed article here for how to get actionable insights from this data.

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So there you have it. Google Analytics is a terrific tool, but it doesn’t tell you everything. You need the data in the Search Console to get the whole story. And because Search Console is used less often than Google Analytics, spending even a little time with it is an easy way to edge out your competition.

Author : Brian Sutter

Source : https://www.allbusiness.com/5-google-search-console-tricks-you-need-to-know-107557-1.html

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