What are the 24 useful ways to use Google Search Console?

Google Search Console is a useful tool for a wide variety of users, including business owners, SEO specialists, marketers, site managers, web and app developers. Various labels and filters are lined up, but you can get a lot of useful data by mastering them.

Google Search Console

Table of Contents

What is Google Search Console?

Search Console is a tool that allows you to see how your website pages appear in Google searches . It can be said that it is an indispensable tool to improve the attracting of customers to the website .

Here are the main roles of Search Console:

Find out what keywords people are searching for

In Google search, users search by entering keywords to find the information they want.

Search Console allows you to see what keywords people are searching for on your website. You can also check the display ranking, impression count, click count, etc. on the search results page.

Find out about problem pages

Pages with issues may be a poor user experience or perform poorly in Google Search.

Search Console can help you find the root cause of such issues.

Check security

If there is a security risk on your website, you can use Search Console to find out what the problem is.

24 ways to use Google Search Console

Let’s take a look at how to use Search Console. Here are 24 ways to use it.

  1. Identify pages with high traffic
  2. Identify queries with high CTR
  3. Find out the average CTR
  4. Check CTR changes over time
  5. Check how impressions change over time
  6. See how your average position changes over time
  7. Identify pages with high search rankings
  8. Identify low-ranking pages
  9. Check for changes in search rankings
  10. Identify queries with high traffic
  11. Compare your site’s performance in search across PC, mobile and tablet
  12. Compare site performance in search by country
  13. Check how many pages are indexed
  14. Check which pages are not indexed and why
  15. Check total indexed pages and indexing errors
  16. Identify display issues on mobile devices
  17. Check the total number of backlinks for the entire site
  18. Identify URLs with many backlinks
  19. Identify sites with many links to your own website
  20. Identify popular external link anchor text
  21. Identify pages with many internal links
  22. Check the total number of internal links for the entire site
  23. Detect and fix AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) errors
  24. Check URL registration status

Let’s look at them one by one.

1. Identify pages with high traffic

  1. Click Search Performance.
  2. Click the Pages tab next to Queries.
  3. Change the date to ‘Last 12 Months’ (By looking at the data for the entire year, you can get a comprehensive picture of your traffic, but feel free to change the date range accordingly. ).
  4. Make sure Total Clicks is selected.
  5. Click the small downward arrow next to Clicks to sort by highest number of clicks.

2. Identify queries with high CTR

  1. Click Search Performance.
  2. Click the Queries tab.
  3. Change the date to ‘Last 12 Months’ (By looking at the data for the entire year, you can get a comprehensive picture of your traffic, but feel free to change the date range accordingly. ).
  4. Make sure Average CTR is selected.
  5. Click the small downward arrow next to CTR to sort by highest CTR.

Note: This field is useful in conjunction with Impressions (choose Total Impressions to see the two pieces of information side by side).

Some pages have high CTR but low impressions, and vice versa, so it’s a good idea to look at both of these stats to get the full picture.

3. Look at the average CTR

  1. Click Search Performance.
  2. Click a date to adjust the duration. It doesn’t matter which time period you want to see data for (you can even click Compare to analyze two time periods at once).
  3. Check Average CTR.
  4. Click Search Performance.
  5. Click a date to adjust the duration. It doesn’t matter which time period you want to see data for (you can even click Compare to analyze two time periods at once).
  6. Check Total Impressions.
  7. Select Status > Search Performance.
  8. Click a date to adjust the duration. It doesn’t matter which time period you want to see data for (you can even click Compare to analyze two time periods at once).
  9. Check Average position.

 

4. Check CTR changes over time

We encourage you to keep an eye on your CTR to make sure you don’t miss any big changes .

If your CTR drops sharply, but your impressions continue to rise, it’s likely that your average CTR dropped because your site was showing up for more keywords.

On the other hand, if your CTR goes up but your impressions go down, your site is showing up for fewer keywords.

And if your CTR and impressions are increasing, then your site is in a desirable state.

5. Check how impressions change over time

We expect this number to increase as we add content and optimize our existing pages (there are exceptions, of course.

For example, instead of targeting a number of keywords with average conversion rates, you may choose to target a few high-converting keywords, or you may also be focusing on other channels.)

6. Check how your average position changes over time

Average position is meaningless when viewed at a micro level.

Most people feel uneasy when their average position drops, but it’s a sign that you’re short-sighted.

The more keywords your page appears for, the more likely your average position will drop. After all, if you don’t rank as high or higher than existing keywords, your average rank will drop.

Don’t get too hung up on this metric.

7. Identify High Ranking Pages

  1. Click Search Performance.
  2. Click the Pages tab.
  3. Change the date to Last 28 days. This is to ensure that we have an accurate picture of the current state of the page.
  4. Make sure Average position is selected.
  5. You can click the small upward arrow next to Position to sort by highest rank.

 

8. Identify low-ranking pages

  1. Click Search Performance.
  2. Click the Pages tab.
  3. Change the date to Last 28 days. This is to ensure that we have an accurate picture of the current state of the page.
  4. Make sure Average position is selected.
  5. Click the small down arrow next to Rank to sort from lowest to highest.

What we’re looking at here is the average position for each URL, which is the average of all search positions for that page.

For example, if a page appears in search results for two keywords and ranks #1 for the keyword with the most queries and #43 for the keyword with the least queries, the average rank is #22.

With all of this in mind, it’s best not to judge a page’s performance solely by its average position.

9. Check for changes in search rankings

  1. Click Search Performance.
  2. Click the Queries tab.
  3. Click Dates to change the period and select the Compare tab.
  4. Select two periods of equal length and click Apply.

After the above operations, you can not only check the data in Search Console, but also export it. We highly recommend exporting the data to facilitate further analysis.

To export, click the down arrow under Appearance in Search to download as a CSV file or output to Google Sheets.

Once you have the exported data open in a spreadsheet, add a column and sort by the position difference (last 28 days position minus the previous 28 days position).

A positive difference means your site ranks lower for that query, while a negative number means your site ranks higher.

However, if the position is shown as 0 (zero), then the page isn’t showing up in search results in the first place, so this explanation doesn’t apply.

10. Identify queries with high traffic

  1. Click Search Performance.
  2. Click the Queries tab.
  3. Click Date to specify a period.
  4. Make sure Total Clicks is selected.
  5. Click the small downward arrow next to Clicks to sort by highest number of clicks.

Knowing which queries are driving the most search traffic can be very useful.

Optimize pages that are showing up in search results for conversions, update them regularly to maintain rankings, advertise, or rank lower than (but just as important as) those pages. ), you can consider various countermeasures such as pasting links to related pages.

11. Compare Site Performance in Search on PC, Mobile and Tablet

  1. Click Search Performance.
  2. Open the Devices tab.
  3. Make sure Total Clicks, Total Impressions, Average CTR, and Average Position are selected.
  4. Compare PC, mobile and tablet performance.

 

12. Compare site performance in search by country

  1. Click Search Performance.
  2. Open the Country tab.
  3. Make sure Total Clicks, Total Impressions, Average CTR, and Average Position are selected.
  4. Compare performance by country.

 

13. Check how many pages are indexed

  1. Open Summary.
  2. Scroll down to where the index coverage summary is located.
  3. Check the Number of Valid Pages.

14. Check which pages are not indexed and why

  1. Click Coverage.
  2. Scroll down to “Details” to see the error that is preventing it from being indexed, and the number of affected pages.
  3. Double-clicking an error type displays the URL of the corresponding page. 

15. Check Total Indexed Pages and Indexing Errors

  1. Click Coverage.
  2. Make sure Errors, Enabled with Warnings, Enabled, and Excluded are all selected. 

The total number of indexed pages on your site will typically grow as you:

  • Publish new blog posts, create new landing pages, add pages to your site, etc.
  • Fixing indexing errors

A spike in indexing errors may be due to site template changes (because many pages are affected at once).

Alternatively, you may have submitted a sitemap containing URLs that Google cannot crawl. Possible reasons for not crawling include noindex syntax, robots.txt, or the page is password protected.

If the total number of indexed pages has decreased, but the errors have not increased proportionally, access to existing URLs may be blocked.

Either way, check the excluded pages to try to identify the source of the problem.

16. Identify display issues on mobile devices

  1. Click Mobile Usability.
  2. Make sure Error is selected.
  3. Scroll down to Details to see which errors are causing rendering issues on mobile devices and how many pages are affected.
  4. Double-clicking an error type displays the URL of the corresponding page.

 

17. Check Total Backlinks Across Your Site

  1. Click Link.
  2. Open the Top Linked Pages report.
  3. Check the box labeled Total number of external links.
  4. Click the down arrow next to Links to sort by most backlinks. 

Backlinks are materials that appeal to Google about the reliability and usefulness of your content.

Basically, the more backlinks you have, the better Google will rate you. Of course, the quality of the backlinks is also important.

For example, one link from a site with high domain power is much more effective than two links from a site with low domain power.

To see which sites link to a particular page, double-click the page’s URL in the report.

18. Identify URLs with lots of backlinks

  1. Click Link.
  2. Open the Top Linked Pages report.
  3. Click the down arrow next to Links to sort by most backlinks.

To improve the search ranking of a page, it may be effective to set a link from a page with many backlinks.

A page with many backlinks has high domain power, so you can use the high domain power by setting a link from that page.

19. Identify sites with many links to your website

  1. Click Link.
  2. Scroll down and select Details under Top Linking Sites.

Knowing which domains have the most links to your website can be very useful when running campaigns.

We recommend running backlink campaigns from such sites (don’t forget to filter out sites with low domain power using tools like Moz, SEMrush, Ahrefs, etc. try not to).

Companies with such sites may also be suitable partners for joint marketing campaigns and social media partnerships.

20. Identify Popular Anchor Texts for External Links

  1. Click Link.
  2. Scroll down and select Advanced for Top Linking Text.

Anchor text should be as descriptive and specific as possible. Ideally, it should contain keywords.

If the website that links to your page uses anchor text such as “click here”, “learn more” or “check now”, ask them to change the text Consider sending an email.

21. Identify pages with high internal links

  1. Click Link.
  2. Scroll down and select Details for Top Linked Pages.

Of course, the number of backlinks varies from page to page.

For example, if you run an apparel e-commerce site, you might link from all product pages in the “Skirts” category to the overview page for the “Skirts” category.

This will tell Google that your page at the top of the category is the most important (and therefore rank better).

However, a large skew in the distribution ratio of links is not ideal. If only a few pages are collecting most of the backlinks, the majority of the remaining pages will not be able to take advantage of the domain authority and it will be difficult to get search traffic.

If the distribution of links is highly skewed, then:

If the distribution is optimal, the graph should look like this:

Identify pages with many internal links_2Search Console data on links can help you understand how your links are distributed and whether you need to work to reduce the distribution variability.

22. Check Total Internal Links Across Your Site

  1. Click Link.
  2. Scroll down and select Details for Top Linked Pages.
  3. Check the box labeled Total Internal Links.

 

23. Detect and Fix AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) Errors

  1. Click AMP.
  2. Make sure Error is selected.
  3. Scroll down to Details to see the error you’re getting and the number of pages affected.

AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) is a technique for speeding up the display of mobile sites.

Google recommends fixing errors before considering pages in the Valid with Warnings category. By default, errors are ranked according to severity, number of pages affected, and validation status.

24. Check the registration status of the URL

  1. Click the white magnifying glass icon at the top of the page.
  2. Enter the URL of the page (please specify the URL contained in the property you are currently viewing).

Explain how to interpret the test results. URLs registered with Google have been indexed and may appear in search results.

However, it is not guaranteed that the URL will actually be displayed. It will not be displayed if you receive a spam judgment or if you have removed or temporarily blocked the content.

This means that if you do a Google search on the URL and it shows up in the search results, it might be found by other users.

In addition, [Coverage] gives you detailed information about Google’s crawling and indexing of URLs.

For example, the sitemap containing the URL, the referring page from which Google bot accessed that URL, the last time Google bot crawled that URL, the status of Google bot’s permission to crawl, and the status of Google bot’s fetching of the page. , the permission status for indexing the page, the user-specified canonical URL and the Google-selected canonical URL.

In addition, you can check the following items in [Advanced].

  • AMP version of target page (if any) and AMP related issues
  • Status of structured data such as job postings and recipes

 

Filters in Google Search Console

Search Console offers several filters for viewing and analyzing your data.

These filters are very useful, but can be confusing if you’re new to Search Console.

search type

There are four search types: Web, Image, Video, and News.

Most of my HubSpot blog traffic comes from web search, so I often specify web search. Let’s.

You can also compare two types of traffic.

Click the Compare tab, select two categories for which you want to compare traffic, and click Apply.

Comparing traffic can lead to interesting discoveries.

For example, I’ve noticed that this blog post on color theory basics gets more impressions from image searches than from web searches (although it gets more clicks from web searches).

date

Search Console now allows you to see data for up to 16 months (previously up to 90 days). The date range can be selected from multiple pre-configured options or can be custom specified.

As with search types, you can also specify two time periods to compare on the Compare tab.

Appearance in Queries, Pages, Countries, Devices, Searches

You can add up to five filters for queries, pages, countries, and devices by clicking New next to Date filters.These filters can be stacked.

For example, to see data for SEO-related queries displayed in mobile searches, add a filter for queries containing the string “SEO” in addition to the filter for mobile devices.

Additionally, to narrow your results to articles from HubSpot’s marketing blog, add a filter for pages containing the URL “blog.hubspot.jp/marketing”.

In this way, the filters can be set very finely.

It’s a good idea to experiment with different filter combinations to get an idea of ​​what works best for you.

Index coverage report

Each page has one of four statuses:

  1. Error: If the page could not be indexed
  2. WARNING: Page is indexed but has issues
  3. Excluded: if the page is not indexed, but it’s not an error
  4. Valid: if the page is already indexed

 

Submit Sitemap

Sitemaps report in Search Console

Once Google has processed and indexed your sitemap, it will appear in the Sitemaps report.

Reports let you see your sitemap submission history and the number of URLs indexed.

Search Console dimensions and metrics

Here are some terms you should know before using Search Console.

search console search query

It is the search term when the display (impression) of the website occurred in the search results of Google.

Search query data is only available in Search Console. Not visible in Google Analytics.

Display (impression)

An impression occurs each time a link to your site appears on a search results page.

Impressions are counted even if the user scrolls through the search results and never actually sees the link.

click

A click is counted when a user selects a link to go to a non-Google search page.

Even if a user clicks a link, presses the back button, and then clicks the same link again, it only counts once. If you click on yet another link, it will be a double click.

If a user clicks a link within Google Search that runs a different query, it doesn’t count as a click.

Google’s paid search ads are also excluded.

average position

Refers to the average rank of a page when it is displayed for a search query.

For example, if a HubSpot blog post about SEO tools ranks #2 for the search query “SEO software” and #4 for the search query “keyword tool”, the average position for this URL is 3. (assuming nothing else was displayed).

CTR (click-through rate)

CTR is the number of clicks divided by the number of impressions (impressions) multiplied by 100.

For example, a blog post that appeared in search results 20 times and was clicked on 10 of those times would have a CTR of 50%.

Setting Owners, Users and Permissions in Google Search Console

There are two types of roles for properties in Search Console. As much as you can’t wait to start analyzing your data, it’s important to get the roles right.

  • Owners: Owners have full control over their Search Console properties, can add and remove other users, change various settings, see all data, and use all tools.

    There are two types of owners: Verified Owners and Delegated Owners. A verified owner is an owner who has taken action to verify ownership of the property.
    A delegated owner, on the other hand, is an owner granted ownership by a verified owner (a delegated owner can also add other delegated owners).

  • User: There are two types of users: “Full User” and “Limited User”. Full users can see most of the data and can do some operations, while restricted users can only see most of the data. Also, neither type of user can add new users.

    Be careful about who you give what privileges to. Granting full owner rights to everyone can lead to disaster if someone inadvertently changes an important setting.
    Give team members only the privileges they need and need.

    For example, at HubSpot, Technical SEO Manager Victor Pan is a verified owner. I’m an SEO Content Strategist, so I use Search Console a lot and don’t need permission to change settings. As such, it is a delegated owner.
    Members of the blogging team use Search Console to analyze the performance of their blogs and articles, so they are set to full users.

    Additionally, by associating your Google Analytics property with your Search Console account, you will be able to see your Search Console data in your Google Analytics reports.

You will also be able to access your Google Analytics reports in two sections of Search Console: Link Reports and Sitelinks.

Only one Google Analytics property can be associated with a site, and only one site can be associated with a property.

Verify Site Ownership in Google Search Console

Search Console gives you sensitive information about your site or app’s performance (and even allows you to set how Google crawls your site or app) so you know you own it. You must first prove that you have the right.

The user who verified ownership has administrative rights to the properties you set. Each Search Console property must be verified by at least one owner.

Also, keep in mind that verifying property ownership has no impact on Google search rankings or performance.

Of course, the more information you have, the easier it will be to rank higher in search results, but adding your website to Search Console does not automatically improve your ranking.

How to verify ownership

  1. If you are uploading an HTML file: Follow the instructions on the Verification Details Page to upload your verification HTML file to a specific location on your website.
  2. Check with your domain name provider: Log in to your domain registrar, such as Onamae.com, and add a DNS TXT or CNAME record.
  3. Using HTML tags: Add a verification meta tag within the <HEAD> section of your site homepage.
  4. If you use the Google Analytics tracking code: Copy the Google Analytics tracking code you are using on your website (this method requires Google Analytics “edit” permissions).
  5. Using the Google Tag Manager container snippet code: Copy the Google Tag Manager container snippet code associated with your website (this method uses Google Tag Manager to view, edit, and manage containers). permissions required).

Pages hosted by Google, such as Blogger and Google Sites, are verified automatically.

About domain www

“hubspot.com and www.hubspot.com are the same domain”.

Now, is this sentence correct?

Actually, this statement is wrong. The two domains represent separate servers, and although the URLs may look similar, they are technically very different domains.

However, when you type “hubspot.com” into your browser’s address bar, the page you see is “www.hubspot.com”. What does this mean?

HubSpot has “www.hubspot.com” as its preferred domain (canonical domain). In other words, we are asking Google to standardize our URLs in search results to “www.hubspot.com/…”.

And when other sites link to our pages, the URL should be treated as “www.hubspot.com/……”.

About domain wwwIf you don’t specify a preferred domain in Search Console, Google may treat domains with and without www as separate domains. And as a result, pageviews, backlinks, and engagement can be split between two domains. This is not desirable.

(If you haven’t already set up a 301 redirect from your non-preferred domain to your preferred domain, we recommend doing so now)

We also have a blog post that explains domains in more detail, so be sure to check it out.

Use Google Search Console to improve the experience value of your site

There are various ways to provide value to prospective customers, one of which is information dissemination on the website.

If you send valuable and high-quality information to potential customers who have visited your website, it will become a touch point, and then use more intimate communication tools such as email and chat to continuously build relationships of trust. It leads to things. And by providing professional and courteous support there, customer satisfaction will increase further.

One of the channels you use to reach potential customers is SEO. If you want to send information on your website, it is essential to send information that anticipates the needs of prospective customers, and SEO is an important means to achieve this.

If you are doing SEO, it is no exaggeration to say that it is essential to use the search console, which allows you to check the performance of your website and how it is displayed in search results.

By using the search console, you can improve the articles you are currently publishing and consider what kind of articles you should publish in the future, so you can provide higher value to your customers .

Search Console also provides a wealth of information about how your website is viewed.

Furthermore, by linking with Google Analytics, you can comprehensively obtain the data that is essential for website operation , so let’s know what kind of data you can check.

On top of that, please read this article many times, review it many times while actually touching the search console, and master the usage, views, settings, etc. while practicing the 24 ways to use it introduced this time.

 

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