Supercharge Your SEO w/ Google Webmaster Tools (downloadable PDF version)
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Supercharge Your SEO w/ Google Webmaster Tools (downloadable PDF version)

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This is a downloadable PDF version of my "5 Ways To Supercharge Your SEO Using Google Webmaster Tools" mini-manual. If you download it, please let me know what you think! @dccutler

This is a downloadable PDF version of my "5 Ways To Supercharge Your SEO Using Google Webmaster Tools" mini-manual. If you download it, please let me know what you think! @dccutler

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Supercharge Your SEO w/ Google Webmaster Tools (downloadable PDF version) Supercharge Your SEO w/ Google Webmaster Tools (downloadable PDF version) Presentation Transcript

  • 5 Ways toSuperchargeYour SEOWithWebmasterTools
  • How does Webmaster Tools help SEO? Get important messages directly from Google Get info on your site’s current presence & optimize your keyword targeting Get informed on sites that link to you and links within your own site Make your site as “Google-friendly” as possible Webmaster Tools is Google’s own SEO tool. It helps you optimize your online presence in ways that are officially recommended/sanctioned by Google.
  • Step 0 – Email Notifications:Get critical updates straight from Google 1. Login to Your Webmaster Tools Acc’t 2. Click “Preferences” 3. Configure your messages to forward to an email account  Done – you’ll be e-mailed whenever Google has important messages for you about your website
  • 5 Ways to Supercharge Your SEOWith Webmaster Tools 1. Use the Search Queries and Content Keywords tools to fine-tune your site keywords and content 2. Use the HTML Improvements tool to correct some of Google’s least favorite site content errors 3. Use the Internal Links tool to check out and optimise your site’s internal links 4. Use the Crawl Errors tool to diagnose & fix site health issues 5. Use the External Links tool to monitor your link profile and evaluate current initiatives
  • Use the Search Queries andContent Keywords tools tofine-tune your keywords andcontent.
  • Use the Search Queries and Content Keywords tools to optimize your site keywords and content.Search Queries Tool:Reports on the performance of your site’s search queries, to:  Identify available opportunities for improvement  See the impact of SEO, campaigns, and fresh content
  • Use the Search Queries and Content Keywords tools to optimize your site keywords and content. What does the Search Queries tool report on?1. Queries: # of different search queries your site appeared for2. Impressions: # of times your site appeared in response to a query3. Clicks: # of times your site was clicked4. CTR: “Click-Through Rate” = Clicks / Impressions5. Avg Position: Avg position of your site for that query, for all results & pages.
  • Use the Search Queries and Content Keywords tools to optimize your site keywords and content.Select a Search Query to see:• Which different pages are served for that query, and how they perform• Site stats for specific search positions and ranges
  • Use the Search Queries and Content Keywords tools to optimize your site keywords and content.How does my CTR Measure Up? The most recent study produced these numbers use use them as a baseline and flag any of your queries that have lower CTR. *Don’t stress them too much – Google Search results are so unique to each user that there isn’t really a true standard CTR Source: “Google & Bing Click-Through Rates - CTR Study” by Slingshot SEO http://www.slingshotseo.com/resources/white-papers/google-ctr-study/
  • Use the Search Queries and Content Keywords tools to optimize your site keywords and content.How to Use the Search Queries Tool to Optimize Your SiteKeywords:Step 0: do your keyword research first so you know which search queries to targetStep 1: Login to Webmaster tools and open the search queries tab to view yourtop search queries.
  • Use the Search Queries and Content Keywords tools to optimize your site keywords and content.How to Use the Search Queries Tool to Optimize Your Site Keywords:Step 2: Identify the Search Query you’re going to optimize for: • Higher-value as identified by your keyword research • Start with keywords that are already performing well
  • Use the Search Queries and Content Keywords tools to optimize your site keywords and content.How to Use the Search Queries Tool to Optimize Your Site Keywords: Step 3: Head to Google, search for that query, and see how your site appears to evaluate your Page Titles, meta descriptions, and URL’s – and identify which need to be optimized. ...Not bad – should shorten the meta description so it doesn’t get truncated ...Uh-Oh - This page needs a meta description!
  • Use the Search Queries and Content Keywords tools to optimize your site keywords and content.How to Use the Search Queries Tool to Optimize Your Site Keywords: Step 4: Return to the Search Queries tool, and click your chosen search query for more info on which pages appear for that query and how your site performs.
  • Use the Search Queries and Content Keywords tools to optimize your site keywords and content.How to Use the Search Queries Tool to Optimize Your Site Keywords: Step 5: Things to look for: Is the best page for that term the being served the most? Are there too many pages? Are there any duplicate URL’s being served?
  • Use the Search Queries and Content Keywords tools to optimize your site keywords and content. What does the Content Keywords tool report on?-The keywords that Google has Select a keyword to see:deemed “most significant” when  How many times it appears in yourcrawling your site. site. More important keywordsWhat Google says it thinks your site is should be more prevalent.about. Your content’s keywords should  Which variations appear on yourreflect your search keyword goals – site (ie “system/systems”)and your business.  Which pages are most strongly associated with that keyword
  • Use the Search Queries and Content Keywords tools to optimize your site keywords and content.How to Use the Content Keywords Tool to Optimize Your SiteKeyword Content:• Check out the Content Keywords tab: Do the keywords match your site’s goals and the keywords you wish to target? Click a keyword to see how often it occurs and which pages it appears on.
  • Use the HTML Improvementstool to quickly diagnose andfix some key elements
  • Use the HTML Improvements tool to quicklydiagnose and fix some key elements Meta description: • Duplicate meta descriptions: Google strongly encourages unique meta descriptions • Long meta descriptions: Meta descriptions should be no longer than 155 chars • Short meta descriptions: Meta descriptions should be no shorter than ~ 50 chars Tip: resent research has shown longer descriptions perform better.
  • Use the HTML Improvements tool to quicklydiagnose and fix some key elements Title tag: • Missing title tags • Duplicate title tags • Long title tags > 69 char (incl spaces) • Short title tags ? (Use common sense) • Non-informative title tags Generic / placeholders • ie “Index” or “Page 2” Better to use tags that describe content: Ie “Home Reverse Osmosis Systems”
  • Use the HTML Improvements tool to quicklydiagnose and fix some key elements Non-indexable content: • Pages containing content that Google cannot crawl and index (in other words, can’t give meaning to), such as some rich media files, video, or images. (Not involved in this “quick fix” procedure)
  • Use the HTML Improvements tool to quickly diagnose and fix some key elementsHow to use the HTMLImprovements tool:1.Access the HTMLImprovements tool underOptimization > HTMLImprovementsOn the HTML Improvementsmain page, you’ll see a list ofpossible errors, with errorsthat have been found,marked in blue
  • Use the HTML Improvements tool to quickly diagnose and fix some key elements2. Click on one of the errors to view a list of all the pages on which this erroroccurs
  • Use the HTML Improvements tool to quickly diagnose and fix some key elements3. Work your way through the list of pages that contain the error untilyou’ve corrected all errors on all pages4. Repeat: Return to the main HTML Improvements tab and start onthe next list of errors, if any Best order in which to address the HTML Improvements tool? 1. Title tags - the Most Important Site Element for SEO 2. Meta descriptions 3. Non-indexable content (may be more complex / not a “quick fix”)
  • Use the Internal Links tool toanalyze and optimise yoursite’s internal linking**internal links are links from pages on your own site to otherpages on your own sites
  • Use the Internal Links tool to analyze and optimise your site’s internal linking1. Open the Internal Links tool to view the pages on your site that receivedlinks from other pages on your site, in order from most to least.
  • Use the Internal Links tool to analyze and optimise your site’s internal linking2. Click on a specific page in the list of to see which other pages on your sitelink to that page.
  • Use the Internal Links tool to analyze and optimise your site’s internal linkingWhat to do with the info you get from the Internal Links tool? The Most Important Pages Should Have The Most Internal Links If they don’t you should try to build more targeted internal links to your more important pages, or if needed, reduce internal linking to some less- important pages – or both. Find out what kind of internal linking takes place on the site and find opportunities to enhance it. Example: If nearly all your pages have the same number of internal links, then they’re probably just in your navigation, and you probably could stand to add more keyword targeted internal links within your site content
  • Use the Crawl Errors tool todiagnose & fix a variety oftechnical “website health”issues
  • Use the Crawl Errors tool to diagnose and treat a variety of site “health” issues.What does the “Crawl Errors” tab tell us?Crawl Errors take place whenever Google is not able to access – to “crawl” - aURL as expected.When they take place on your site, it means that your site contains these sucherrors - and these can affect your rankings.The crawl errors listed in Webmaster tools are classified according to a fewdifferent criteria.
  • Use the Crawl Errors tool to diagnose and treat a variety of site “health” issues.How to correct crawl errors?Server error: The site was “unable to respond” to Google’s request for theURL. check your server / the website’s technical back-end. Possible .htaccessfile issues.Soft 404: Usually occurs in empty blog categories. Not a true 404, rather thewebsite is responding that the URL exists, but there’s no content for it.Access denied: Determine why Google is attempting to access a protectedURL – did it used to be public?Not found: Either redirect the missing URL’s to new ones, or block them usingrobots.txt so that Google will stop lookingCorrecting “Not found” can be a great way to “recover” links to your siteNot followed: A URL that Google found while crawling your site, but wasinstructed by your site not to follow. Make sure it should indeed be no-follow,and then leave it alone.
  • Use the Crawl Errors tool to diagnose and treat a variety of site “health” issues.What is robots.txt?A file that allows you to instruct search engine spiders (the programs that crawlthe web and follow links) not to crawl or index content.Blocking specific URL’s with robots.txt is a great way to cure Crawl errorswhen the URL returning the error cannot be fixed or redirected. It tells Googleto “stop looking.”
  • Use the Links to Your Sitetool to review your link profilein order to evaluate and planlinking strategies
  • Links to your siteo Plan and track growth of inbound linkso Who links most to you and linked # of pageso Most-linked contento Anchor text used to link
  • Links to your siteWhat to look for:• Have you gained or lost a lot of links lately? & To what pages?• What *kinds* of sites are linking to me? Example: forum marketing initiative leads to lots of links from forums.• Are there links I know about that aren’t indexed? • Protip: The fastest way to get Google to index something is to +1 it.
  • Other Tools:• Crawl stats: How many pages does Google crawl? How much of Google’s resources are spent on these pages? • Improved indexation (HTML suggestions & Crawl errors) + Improved site speed (Google Page Speed https://developers.google.com/pagespeed/) = Better crawl stats• URL Removal Tool: URL index that shouldn’t be? Ask Google to deleted it (make sure it’s gone, ie returning a 404, when you do – and block it w/ robots.txt)
  • Conclusions on Webmaster ToolsImportant tool for monitoring and configuring:  Critical site elements for SEO & content targeting  Errors & issues  Launch of site, new design, new host  How your site appears in search results