What are Google Webmaster Tools?
Google Webmaster Tools (WMT) is an important resource for any webmaster. It is designed to inform web owners about how “Google bot” is interacting with a website. It gives detailed information on important SEO factors such as broken website links, popular search terms (keywords) and how often Google is stopping by. It’s Google’s way of giving site owners the information that they need to be successful.
Google Webmaster Tools let you access data about the indexing of your website. This does the following:
- Displays Google’s view of your site
- Helps you diagnose site issues
- Lets you share information with Google to improve your site’s visibility in search engine results
- Provides you with crawl statistics, recent queries, errors, and other information that Google collects about your site
How to add your website
Getting started with Google Webmaster Tools is not to difficult. The first thing you’ll need is a Google account. Since all Google services use the same login, you may already be setup. If you have Gmail, Adwords, Analytics, Google+ or one of the many other services, then you are ready to go. If not, sign up for a free Google Account.
Once you have created or if you already have a Google Account you should be able to use that to login and then create your WMT’s account.
Then click on the “Add a site” link and enter your full website address. Site owners can add in as many sites as they want. Once you have done this it will ask you to “Verify ownership” of the website. To do this you need to add a meta tag to the home page or upload a file to your website that WMT’s will provide. We’ve found the easier and quicker method is to add the meta tag into your website code.
Verifying the site takes only a few seconds but access to the web server is necessary. Verification ensures that you are the site administrator/owner and can get the insight. If you don’t own the site, and you can’t verify it, then Google won’t give you the detailed information.
If you have difficulty setting up your webmaster tools you may need your web designer to help you.
Next you want to submit a sitemap to your new Webmaster tools, you can create and upload a Sitemap and use this page to submit it to Google. Just click Add a Sitemap and then follow the instructions.
Google Webaster Tools are a great set of resources to see how Google is interacting with your site. You can see issues, your site’s linking structure and how people are finding your site. It’s much more than other search engines are doing and something that is highly valuable for any site owner.