If you own a website or even run one for someone then chances are that you’ve probably heard of the tool called as the Google Search Console or maybe even used it.
Google Search Console is one of the many invaluable tools that google provides to webmasters for FREE. We can have a track of important statistics of our website like where the traffic to our website is coming from, who are our demographics, what keywords we rank for and many more.
I even wonder sometimes that this tool is too good to be free.
So today in this article I’m going to show you How to use Google Search Console in 2021 and beyond. So let’s get started.
- What is Google Search Console
- How To Start Using Google Search Console
- How To use Google Search Console
- FAQs Related To How To Use Google Search Console
What is Google Search Console
Google Search Console is a FREE tool by google that gives us important insights about our website like where the traffic to our website is coming from, from which country people visit our website most, what devices people use most to visit our website, what are errors in our website that we need to fix etc.
Without this tool I can’t imagine how difficult it would have been to find out all these important insights.
Without a shadow of a doubt, Google Search Console is one of the most important tools that I’ve ever used for managing my websites. It gives us some really cool insights and data that you cannot find somewhere else.
How To Start Using Google Search Console
So let’s explore each section of the Google Search Console one by one and I’ll also be explaining you about how to use this tool to the full potential so that you can use it to your maximum benefits.
So let’s get started.
Start Using Google Search Console – Verify Your Domain
To get started with using Google Search Console you just have to Sign up with your Google Account and you have to verify your ownership of your domain in Google Search Console.
When you enter the Google Search Console you will encounter a screen like this and you will be asked to verify your domain ownership, you will be presented with two options. You can verify the entire domain or you can verify a certain prefix of the domain from there.
Just verify the domain for your first time and you will be good to go.
If you have subdomains under your domain name that you want to verify then verify it under URL Prefix option.
Below is a short video that will walk you through the entire process of verifying your domain name on Google Search Console, after that you will get started using Google Search Console.
I hope you have already verified the ownership of your domain in Google Search Console at this point in time. Now let’s get into the actual details of How to actually use this tool.
Select the domain name that you want to get insights data on and you will be ready to go.
At first sight there’s nothing much going on there in your website property in search console if this is your first time on the Google Search Console. That’s because you haven’t added a sitemap yet.
You have to go to your property and add your site’s sitemap URL there.
Go to sitemaps tab and enter your site’s Sitemap URL there – You can easily create a sitemap for your website using the Rankmath SEO Plugin.
And within a few days of adding your sitemap in Google Search Console, Google will start fetching important information related to your domain name and website.
Here’s the Google Search Console appearance of Bloggingpal.com
Your Search Console’s dashboard will also look somewhat similar after a few days. If your site is new then it will probably take some more time to actually google to show some meaningful data there.
Let’s start exploring each section of the Google Search Console one by one.
How To use Google Search Console
There are various section in Google Search Console which may seem quite daunting at first sight but everything will pretty straightforward as you start using this tool more and more.
So let’s start Exploring Google Search Console one by one.
The Overview Tab
This is the very first section of the Google Search Console as you enter the dashboard. This section has some general details about how your website is doing in search, how many clicks you site is getting from search each day, what are the errors that your site is facing etc.
This is just a general overview of your site’s whole search performance.
There are further 4 sections in the Overview tab which are mentioned below.
Performance: This section under the overview tab shows you how many clicks you are getting from search per day and you can also dig down deep by clicking on Open Report button.
Coverage: This section shows any coverage issues your site may have. if your site faces any errors or encounters any coverage issues then it will be reflected here immediately. This section also has an Open Report Button that will take you to the detailed overview of this section.
Enhancements: This tab highlights all the possible enhancements that could be done to your site to make your site’s search appearance better in search engines. This section also has an Open Report Button that will take you to the detailed overview of this section.
The Performance Tab
Next up we have the performance Tab which shows how your site is performing on Search Engine, How many click you are getting per day, what keywords you rank for, What is the position of those keywords in search and what is the CTR of your site in search.
This section is probably my most favorite section of the Google Search Console because here we get to see the most interesting data points which I discussed above.
Rest of the sections also have important data but those sections barely have something new and you don’t get error and notifications daily right? But the Performance tab always has something new to offer. Performance tab fetches fresh data daily and you can see fresh updates to your search performance everyday.
The main graph shows how’s your site’s performance is in graphs, whether it’s going upwards or downwards, what’s the Average CTR percentage, Total Impressions, Total Click, and what’s the average position in the given time.
You can filter, compare these data according to different date ranges like day, week, month and even up to for last 16 months.
On the next section under performance tab we have a table that shows different types of data like what queries drives you the most traffic from search, Which country sends you the most traffic, What are the pages that drive traffic to your site etc.
Let’s look at each one of them.
Queries: In this tab you will get to see all the queries that drive traffic to your site, what’s their position in search engine, how many impressions they’ve got, how many clicks they’ve got. you can filter these data in ascending/descending order of clicks to get the best keywords of your site that bring traffic and which ones doesn’t.
Pages: Next up we have the pages tab in Search Console where we can get to see all of the important pages that drives the most traffic to our site and which pages doesn’t. You can also filter these stats according to ascending and descending order of click so it will show you the best pages of your site that brings traffic.
Countries: Countries tab help us to find out from which country majority of our traffic comes from. You can also filter these stats according to ascending and descending order of click so it will show you the top countries which send you the most traffic and which country sends the least traffic.
Devices: This tab help us to find out which devices people use to visit your website the most. you can optimize your website more so that it can server your audience better.
Search Appearance: This tab help us to find out about the type of search results that our website gets featured in search engines and how many times it showed up. All that data is showed here.
Dates: On this tab you can see different dates and how many click you got on your website from search engines on that day. You can apply filters to see which date got you the most traffic and which date give you less traffic.
URL Inspection Tab
If you click on this tab it will highlight the search box which is located at the top center where you can enter in your website’s URL to check the status of that URL in search engines i.e. from there you can check each and every detail of your URL. Like whether taht url is indexed in search engines, any other issues your URL may have etc.
If Google finds any issues in your URL then it will show up here and you should immediately fix that issue so that you don’t face any harm in your website rankings.
Next we have the Index tab which comprises of 3 different sub tabs namely:
Most of you can probably guess the function of each of these tabs by their name itself, they are pretty straightforward.
Let’s talk about each one of them one by one.
Coverage: This tab shows up all the errors if your website URL’s have any, if your website don’t have any errors then it don’t show any errors. It also shows how many URL;s are there with warnings etc.
You should keep an eye on this tab and should check this tab regularly to continuously find errors and to fix them immediately so that you don’t face any problems in indexing of your URL’s.
Sitemaps: Next on the Index tab we have the sitemaps tab which shows all the sitemaps that you have submitted for your website and their status whether they are at good standing or have any errors.
Removals: Next we have the removals tab where you can go and submit URL’s for removal which you don’t want to be indexed in search engines.
Next we have the Enhancements tab which further comprises of 9 different sub tabs, you can guess the function of this tab by its name itself – This tab shows you all the enhancements you can do on your website.
The 9 Different Subtabs under Enhancements tab are as follows:
- Core web vitals
- Mobile Usability
- How To’s
- Review Snippets
- Sitelinks Search box
- Unparsable Structured Data
Now Let’s look at each one of them one by one.
Core web vitals: This tab shows you all the URL’s that needs to be optimized for Core Web Vitals
Mobile Usability: This tab shows all the errors you might have in your website related to mobile responsiveness.
More and more people like to search on google with their mobile phones and optimizing for mobile devices is very necessary nowadays.
If you encounter any errors here then you should immediately get it fixed.
Breadcrumbs: Next we have the breadcrumbs tab. This tab shows all the valid breadcrumbs on your site and also shows if they have any errors. You should immediately get them fixed if you face any errors here.
FAQs: This tab shows all the valid URLs on your website which have FAQ schema enabled.
How To: This tab shows all the valid URLs on your website which have How To schema enabled.
Products: This tab displays all the products schemas that you have applied on your site.
Review Snippets: This tab shows all the review snippets that you have applied throughout your site.
Sitelinks Search Box: This tab shows how many sitelinks your site has in search results.
A Sitelink is a quick way for people to navigate through your most popular pages of your website directly through the search results page.
This is what a sitelink search box looks like.
Unparsable Structured Data: This tab shows all the Unparasble structured data errors your site may have and also shows suggestions to fix them.
Security and Manual Action Tab
Next we have the security and manual actions tab which further comprises of 2 sub sections mentioned below:
- Manual Actions
let’s look at both of them one by one
Manual Actions: This tab shows whether your website is facing any penalty in google search engines or not. If you get any warnings in here then you should immediately get them fixed because that may completely eradicate your website from google search engines.
Security: After that we have the security tab where we get notifications about the security of our website. If your website is hacked or faces some malware or any kind of security issues then you get a warning here.
Legacy tools and Report: This tab is not used very often by webmasters and Even I don’t use this feature much but these tools can oftentimes be very beneficial.
This tab comprises of 4 different sub tabs Namely:
- International Targeting
- URL parameters
- Web tools
Let’s look at each one of these features one by one.
International Targeting: This feature can be very beneficial for you if you want to change your target country. Like oftentimes we get most of the traffic from the countries we don’t want to target, In that case this feature is very beneficial.
You can set your target country from here and this will tell search engines that you only want traffic from that particular country and search engine will try to send majority of traffic from that country.
Inside this feature we also get an option to do language settings, if you have added herflang tags on your website then you can see it here.
Messages: Next under the messages tab which is the same as the notifications tab, all the messages you get in the notifications will show up here.
URL Parameters: Next under the Legacy tools and reports tab we have the URL Parameters tab where you can set the preferred URL parameter for your site.
If you don’t know what you are doing in here then don’t dare to touch anything here because this can cause major damage to your search engine rankings.
Web Tools: Next under Legacy tools and reports tab we have the Web Tools tab where we get lots of tools to check our website in different areas.
You can do lots of different testing’s from here, you can report abusive notifications, abusive behavior and you can also test structured data from here.
Next we have the links tab, It shows all the URL’s where you have got a link from. This tool don’t show you all the links, for that you will need to use Premium Keyword Research Tools like SEMrush or Ahrefs.
Next we have the settings tab where you can set different things related to search console. From here you can add users, associate different services with Google search console like you can add Google Analytics, You can notify google of change of your site’s address and also you can remove your Google Search console property from here.
This tab allows you to submit your feedback, if you have any suggestions, there is something you don’t like about search console, whatever you want to say about search console you can give feedback here in this tab.
About Search Console
Last but not the least, you can know about the search console from here, what it does, how to use it and all the important information related to search console.
SO that all there is to Google Search Console, I hope this article has helped you to gain some insights and gave you some clarity on using this invaluable tool which Google Offers for FREE.
If you think that I have missed something related to Google Search Console then feel free to tell me about that in the comments section below, I will be more than happy to assist you and cover that topic as soon as possible.
Until then. Keep Rocking.
FAQs Related To How To Use Google Search Console
Can we find our top performing keywords from Google Search Console?
Yes you can find the top performing keywords for your site in Google Search console under the performance tab.
Does Google Search Console shows all the incoming links to our site?
No, Google Search Console doesn’t show all the incoming links to our site, It just shows all the top linked pages and most linked keyword anchors, that’s it. If you want to get more precise Backlink analysis then I would suggest you to use SEMrush or Ahrefs.
Should you check Google Search Console Regularly?
Yes, You should regularly keep checking your Google Search Console Dashboard because as soon as Google detects any problems on your site then it immediately reflects in your Google Search Console Dashboard. and therefore you should always have an eye on your Google Search Console Account.
Which Feature of Google Search Console is the Most Used Feature?
It depends on people to people, Some people use some different feature and some other people like to use some other feature. I like to use the performance tab the most because that’s where the most valuable information of Google Search Console lies.
Performance tab shows which keywords are performing better, which country we get most of our traffic from, what devices people use to visit our site, what pages are the most visited pages and much more, therefore I like to use the Performance tab more often.