Google Webmaster tools is an essential tool kit for website owners to analyze and improve their site’s performance on Google search engine. Basically, it tells you everything how Google sees your site. This means they provide you with insights on your data from their perspective.
Once you’ve launched a new website or blog, it’s essential that you add your site to all of the major search engines (Google, Bing and Yahoo search) to increase the visibility of your site. By verifying your site in webmaster tools, let Google confirms that you are the owner of the site, and enable you access to free reports, tools and resources for creating a healthy, Google-friendly site.
See also: How to Submit and Verify your WordPress Blog in Bing Webmaster tools
However, submitting your blog to search engines doesn’t necessarily mean you’re going to be on the first page of search results, but at least your blog will be added and will have the chance of being picked up by a search engine crawler.
Why use Google Webmaster Tools?
- Ensure that your site is properly indexed in Google.
- Detailed reports about your pages’ visibility in Google.
- Check your site’s health for potential issues that Google has detected.
- Understand your search traffic and learn how users are finding your site.
- Make optimizations to help Google better understand and represent your site.
- Control how your site appears in a search.
- Submit a Sitemap of your site to Google.
- Check duplicate contents.
- Get notification from Google if there are any crawl errors.
- Help you diagnose problems and improve the quality of your site.
- … and much more.
Steps to Add/Submit and Verify your WordPress blog in Google Webmaster tools
To verify ownership of a blog, you have a number of options. In this tutorial, we will use an HTML tag method which involves adding a small line of meta tag code to your website. You can do it in less than 10 minutes by going through these steps.
Adding your blog to Webmaster tools and get your meta tag verification code
Step 1: Log in to Google Webmaster Tools with your Google Account.
Step 2: Enter the URL of your blog and Click the Add a site button.
Step 3: You will be taken to a page that shows Recommended Methods and Alternate Methods of verification. Click on the “Alternate Methods” tab and select “HTML tag” option (There are other ways – but this is the simplest.)
A unique meta tag will be generated which looks something like this:
Step 4: Copy the meta tag. Now you need to paste this code in the header section of your blog. Leave this verification page open.
Step 5: Open a new tab/window and Go to your WordPress blog dashboard.
Adding meta tag to your blog
Step 6: If you are using SEO Plugins like WordPress SEO by yoast or All in SEO, you can easily add your meta tag in its settings.
If you are using WordPress SEO yoast plugin, follow these steps:
- Go to SEO » Dashboard » scroll down to Webmaster Tools section and paste the
Meta tagin the Google Webmaster Tools field. (You need to add the entire line of meta tag into the field – see screenshot below.)
If you are using All in one SEO plugin, follow these steps:
- Go to All in One SEO » General settings » scroll down to Webmaster Verification section and paste the
Meta tagcode in the Google Webmaster Tools field (Not full meta tag, just the content code – see screenshot below.)
Otherwise you will need to install ‘Insert headers and footers‘ plugin to insert the meta tag in the header section of your site. For this go to Settings » Insert Headers and Footers and paste the full line of meta tag into the header box. Save the settings.
Step 7: Clear your site’s cache if you are using any Cache plugin on your site.
Completing verification in Google Webmaster tools
Step 8: Go back to Google webmaster tools page that you left open on another tab and click on “Verify” button.
That’s it! Your site is now successfully verified with Google. Once your site is verified, Google bot will come and visit your site soon to gather data about your site. If your website is new, it can take a week or more for a search engine to show your site details. Once your data starts showing up, you can use it to improve how search engines crawl and index your site’s content.
Once you have verified one version of the domain ( example.com ), you may need to verify the ownership of other ( www.example.com ) by repeating the same verification steps. (It may seem like a silly but it’s a good SEO practice.) This way you can make your site more Google-friendly.
At this point, you can create and submit your sitemaps to webmaster tools that help Google crawl your website better.
- To stay verified, don’t remove the meta tag, even after verification succeeds.
- If you see a message that your site is not indexed, you may need to verify ownership of both the www and non-www versions of your domain.
- You can maintain multiple websites in single webmaster tools account.
If you have any doubts in above steps, feel free to leave a comment. I will be more happy to help. Happy Blogging!