In January, promising reports came trickling in from Google’s Search Console beta site. The new Console launched in September.
Why should you care, and what’s new?
What is Google Console? Why should I care?
Google Search Console is a tool for webmasters to understand the ways their website interacts with Google Search.
Originally called Google Webmaster Tools, Google rebranded it to Google Search Console in 2015. It is a private little website webmasters use to examine their relationship to Google.
Think of it as your own Facebook between Google and you.
What Google knows about you. What Google shows about you. What Google’s opinion is of you. The Good, the Bad and the Ugly of your relationship with Google.
Although it’s a free page, you have to verify that you own the website before you can access it.
With this tool, you can learn what keywords you’re showing up for right from the horse’s mouth.
Before we move on — who came up with that phrase? It makes no sense to me.
But, I digress: here’s the bottom line, Google Search Console is a terrific tool.
Here’s a list of what’s new (straight from the horse‘s mouth):
- Get an accurate view of your website content using the Index Coverage report.
- Review your Search Analytics data going back 16 months in the Performance report.
- See information on links pointing to your site and within your site using the Links report.
- Retrieve crawling, indexing, and serving information for any URL directly from the Google index using the URL Inspection Tool.
Better alerting and new “fixed it” flows:
- Get automatic alerts and see a listing of pages affected by Crawling, Indexing, AMP, Mobile Usability, Recipes, or Job posting issues.
- Reports now show the HTML code where we think a fix necessary (if applicable).
- Share information quickly with the relevant people in your organization to drive the fix.
Notify Google when you’ve fixed an issue. We will review your pages, validate whether the issue is fixed, and return a detailed log of the validation findings.
Simplified sitemaps and account settings management:
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A Couple of Thoughts
I love that this allows you to submit your sitemap. If you change your site structure, you can make sure Google accepts your sitemap. Google lets you know when it has crawled your site.
Google continues to focus on making faster pages. So they started adding tools to highlight the slowest pages on your site. It also shows any pages Google suspects may have been hit by Malware. They target the affected HTML code and report it back to you.
You can now also quickly share the report with team members, allowing you to work together to fix any problem.
The reporting features are much improved. We all want more data. The new Google Search Console is hooking us up.
More to Come
Google is already promising to roll more out from beta in the future.
This is encouraging.
It shows me that Google is all in on Google Search Console. That’s great news not just for webmasters — it also means the UX and usability of web pages will improve exponentially.
What’s your favorite new feature on Google Search Console?