Security warnings in Google Search Console (GSC) can be scary. Really scary. Whether your site was flagged for being hacked, serving malware, unwanted software or worse, security warnings in GSC can cause serious problems for your organization. First, your site can be harming users. That’s bad enough. Second, your organic search traffic can plummet as Google takes action against your site (either manually or algorithmically). For example, your site can be labeled in the SERPs as being hacked or being a site that can harm your computer. In addition, with Google Safe Browsing, users might see the red screen of death in their browser as they try to visit your site. As you can guess, this can create serious barriers between users and your website content. And with all of the buzz in the news about hackers, malware, phishing and more, you can bet that many users will not break through those security barriers and visit your site. They will often simply move on to another site that … [Read more...] about The terrifying connection between malware, Google Search Console, rogue subdomains and AdWords
Google Search Console (GSC) is powerful and provides a boatload of data directly from Google. One of my favorite reports in GSC is the Search Analytics report, which enables you to drill into queries that your site ranks for and the landing pages ranking for those queries, then slice and dice that information by device, country, date and more. You can also compare queries, pages, countries and devices by date, which is extremely helpful when diagnosing surges or drops in traffic. When analyzing websites, I often export data from GSC to Excel for further analysis. For example, when helping companies with website redesigns or CMS migrations, it’s important to have a solid understanding of all landing pages ranking for queries and receiving Google traffic. You can find that data in the Search Analytics reporting by selecting the Pages group. See below. There’s a nifty Download button at the bottom of the report which enables you to export a spreadsheet with your landing page … [Read more...] about How to download all of your landing pages from Google Search Console via Analytics Edge — and I mean ALL of them!
Google recently made some under-the-radar changes to sitelinks in the organic search results. The first change removed small sitelinks from below regular organic blue links that render for high search volume queries (Google has since fixed this glitch). The second change adjusted the number of large sitelinks being displayed for branded searches (this is most likely a test). Even though it does not look like either of these changes will have a significant impact on traffic, they have caused dramatic fluctuations in impressions and average position in Google Search Console (GSC). If you experienced that moment of panic when you did your last GSC check-in, take a look at this article to better understand: what happened with sitelinks in the search results. what effects the changes had on GSC data. how to check your site for declines. what the changes mean for SEO. What happened to sitelinks? Google made two changes that reduced the number of sitelinks being shown on search engine … [Read more...] about Recent changes to organic sitelinks cause major drops in impressions in Google Search Console
Last month I wrote a comprehensive guide on how to use Google Search Console, covering every aspect of what is essentially a giant toolshed full of useful stuff for all webmasters to use. It was exhaustive, and probably exhausting. Don’t read the whole thing in one sitting, just dip in and out when you come across something you’re unsure about. While wading through Search Console’s huge amount of features, I noticed a few elements that deserved to be highlighted, not only because I had no idea they existed or were even accessible to webmasters, but also because they may be able to help raise your click-through rate (CTR) on search engine results pages (SERPs), or at the very least, show you where to improve. The first thing you need to be aware of is this… You can see all the search queries that bring traffic to your site in Search Console. Yeah it was a massive pain when Google encrypted your search terms Google Analytics and replaced them with the ambiguous … [Read more...] about How to improve your CTR using Google Search Console
The Search Console (or Google Webmaster Tools as it used to be known) is a completely free and indispensably useful service offered by Google to all webmasters. Although you certainly don’t have to be signed up to Search Console in order to be crawled and indexed by Google, it can definitely help with optimising your site and its content for search. Search Console is where you can monitor your site’s performance, identify issues, submit content for crawling, remove content you don’t want indexed, view the search queries that brought visitors to your site, monitor backlinks… there’s lots of good stuff here. Perhaps most importantly though, Search Console is where Google will communicate with you should anything go wrong (crawling errors, manual penalties, increase in 404 pages, malware detected, etc.) If you don’t have a Search Console account, then you should get one now. You may find that you won’t actually need some of the other fancier, … [Read more...] about Google Search Console: a complete overview