Getting to know the new Google Search Console is of chief importance if you want to make sure your site is getting the traffic it should be. After all, traffic is the first step in converting. The new console could be a bit intimidating, though.
Still, you should familiarize yourself with it as much as possible as it will help you fix serious problems that may be keeping your site, or pages on your site, from being indexed at all. In the following post, HVAC-Plumber SEO Webmasters will be guiding you through the Google Search Console and providing you with a guide that will help you utilize it to benefit your plumbing website.
What is the Google Search Console?
The Google Search Console is a tool that Google provides to help your site optimize visibility on its platform. Every page on every website must be approved by Google to be indexed (or displayed) on Google.
The Google Search Console allows your website to be indexed on relevant SERPs or Search Engine Results Pages. The search console also enables you to increase visibility and provides you with analytical data on your website.
It can be a valuable tool when trying to climb the rankings with a handful of primary keywords. The problem may be technical or related to Google’s Terms of Service. The Google Search Console will help you sort out the situation to give you information that can improve your SEO.
One or more of your plumbing website pages may not be getting indexed at all. The Google Search Console will help you figure out why. Of course, you have to know how to use it, which is why we have put together this helpful Google Search Console guide.
Setting up Your Website
First things first, you have to register your site on the Google Search Console. To do that, you can start here. The setup process is pretty self-explanatory and intuitive, even if you have never done it before. The setup wizard will essentially walk you through each step and help you answer any questions you may have. Here are a few things you can expect, though:
Once you enter your URL in the appropriate field (link above), you will need to verify your website. It starts with uploading a piece of HTML code to your website’s home code, uploading an HTML file, or adding a unique name.
Google will need to know which geographical area your site will be targeting. To set your target country:
- 1) Navigate to the “International Targeting” tab which, is under the Search Traffic menu.
- 2) Click the “Country” tab.
- 3) Click the “Target Users In” box that appears, then select your target country from the drop-down menu provided.
The basic setup process is only the beginning of our Google Search Console guide. In the following section, you will learn how to troubleshoot the most common problems in the Google Search Console, so read on.
Resolving some issues in the Google Search Console is pretty intuitive. For example, to fix security issues, click on “Security Issues,” and the console will let you know any security issues to address. If so, they are pretty good about walking you through how to resolve them. Some other problems need a bit more explanation, though.
Index Coverage Report Problems
The index coverage report in the Google Search Console allows you to see which, if any, of your pages aren’t being indexed. Go to the Index Coverage section and check to see if anything shows up in the “Error” tab. If there are, scroll down to see what they are. They could be server errors (your server crashing or out of commission), redirect errors, or 404 errors. Web admins can resolve 404 errors by entering the URL into the Inspection field. Most error messages you will get in the Index Coverage Report can be analyzed and resolved by entering the URL in the inspection field.
Sometimes your pages aren’t being indexed because they have accidentally been added to the “Excluded” page list in the Google Search Console. To check, click the “Excluded” tab on the Index Recovery Report page. You will see a list of pages with a general explanation as to why they have been excluded. It could be because it’s a duplicate page or because the page redirects to another site. You will have to address these problems by making your content more unique or fixing technical issues.
Using Google Search Console to your Advantage
Now that some of the basics are out of the way let’s take a few ways to use the Google Search Console to improve your plumbing website’s performance.
Low Performing Keywords
You can use the new Performance report in the Google Search Console to identify under-performing keywords. The “Pages” tab allows you to see all the pages on your site ranking for these low-performing keywords.
Check Back in 10 Days
Once you have changed the content to improve the keyword performance, check back with the Performance Report to see if your changes improved your ranking for that keyword or if it hurt it.
Find New Keywords
The new performance report makes it easy to get new ideas for keywords that you are under-utilizing. Set the filter to “Last 28 days,” set the filter to “Greater than 7.9,” and sort by impressions. You will be greeted with a list of keywords that you are currently ranking 8th or higher for. These keywords are an opportunity to bolster your keyword list and increase traffic.
Fixing Internal Links
Not everyone gets internal linking right, but the new Google Search Console makes it easier to improve your internal links for a smooth user experience. To get started, click on the “Links” option in the sidebar. You will see a list of pages on your website along with the number of internal links that link to them. If you want to promote a specific page on your site, this tool helps because it allows you to see if you have weak internal linking for particular pages on your site.