What are people searching that brings them to my website?
Whether you own a business that has a website, work for a company that has a website, or post content to a website for public consumption, you are probably interested to know how people find your site. What could people be typing into a search engine that would result in links to your website being included in that coveted list of results seconds after that Enter key is pressed? If only there were a free tool that could provide that information…
Well, you are in luck. There is. It is called Google Search Console.
If you have a website, my guess is that it is important to you that people can find your website. For people to find your website, first search engines must be able to find it, crawl (read) it and understand what it contains so that they can tell others. So, how do you confirm that these search engines (Google, specifically) can find and crawl your site? Google Search Console is the tool for you.
When you are ready to take things a step further, you will want to know what people are searching for that provides them search results linking to your site. Again, Google Search Console, or Search Console for short, can provide a list of branded (have your site or business name in them) or non-branded (general words/phrases) terms that have been providing search results in favor of your site’s content.
So, what do you do with that list of terms? Look at the number of impressions compared to the number of clicks for each of those terms. The number of clicks you get on those terms per the number of impressions is called a Clickthrough Rate. If you are seeing an extremely high number of impressions, but a very low number of clicks, your clickthrough rate will be low and that means that people are choosing not to click through to your website and are most likely clicking through to the competition instead. This tells us that we need to find out what our search result looks like when it appears in that list of results. Is it clear? Are there typos? Is it enticing for the things you are selling/offering? Is it informative and professional-looking? And now look at us…we’re standing at the gates of our first SEO (Search Engine Optimization) project. SEO is made up of many tactics and tasks that can improve the performance of your website. Optimizing how you appear to searchers is an important part of SEO.
There are many more helpful functions of Google Search Console. One final lifeline that I will mention here is the ability to be notified by GSC if your site is experiencing any issues that you may not be aware of like indexing issues, unwanted spam traffic to your site, or bot traffic that looks suspicious.
Add Google Search Console to our bookmarks, favorites, and VIP list. It’s a tool that you will not want to be without any longer. Your website and all the new visitors you will gain will thank you.