3 Reasons You Should Use Google Webmaster Tools

There are a number of tools that I use to better understand and improve my SEO. No tool has been more effective for me over the years than Google Webmaster Tools. Still I’m surprised by how few Domainers I speak with use this tools themselves or have even heard of the tool.

First let me define my audience here – Google Webmaster Tools is useful for anyone developing/monetizing domains – if you’re just buying and selling you can skip this post.

Google Webmaster Tools helps you see exactly how Google is indexing your site as well as which keywords you rank well for and a host of other great features. In the future I plan on doing a video walk-through of the service but to start I thought a top-three list would help get people started that aren’t yet using the tool.

So without further ado here are three reasons that you should be using Google Webmaster Tools:

  1. You can see exactly what page/position your site appears on for all the search terms it is ranking for. I can’t tell you the number of Domainers that tell me they sit on Google typing different keyword phrases and then searching through page after page to see where they show-up. With Google Webmaster Tools you can see this information in front of you all on one screen. This is definitely the most useful and time-saving feature that I use myself daily.
  2. Find and fix crawl errors. If Google has trouble crawling your site you may never know – which means you may never get to the first page of Google. Google Webmaster Tools shows you any crawl errors Google encountered when indexing your site so you can be aware and fix them right-away.
  3. Geo-Targeting. Want your .me domain to give preference to Google US rather than Google Montenegro? You’ll need Google Webmaster Tools to do this – in fact you can have any TLD, a .mx, a .de, etc. target Google US just like a .com, .net, and .org.

{ 15 comments… add one }

  • Mojito Recipe May 27, 2010, 6:50 am

    They provide some great tools.

    Reply
  • Fero May 27, 2010, 10:38 am

    Nice post Morgan .

    I am from Montenegro and would like to here from you what do you think about .me extension when compared with .com .

    I prefer to register domain names with .com extension they are also chipper to register also for renewal .

    Fero

    Reply
    • Morgan May 28, 2010, 9:45 am

      Thanks for your comment @Fero – I’m a HUGE fan of .me and am currently buying a lot of .me domains. As long as you target Google US you can rank great with a .me!

      Reply
  • Wufuquan May 27, 2010, 5:40 pm

    Google Webmaster Tools is a must…. Great tools and free… 🙂

    Reply
  • Abe May 27, 2010, 7:23 pm

    at some point you start to get suspicious on Google since everything you do, has a “FREE” tool and YES my AdSense account was disabled this week, no hard feelings. I am appealing..

    Reply
  • Al May 27, 2010, 11:08 pm

    That’s not exactly my point, but I’ve heard that some webmasters were concerned about telling Google this way that their sites belong to the same person. E.g. this could affect the value of some links between them. May be it’s naive to think Google doesn’t know that, it can use a number of other factors for ownership detecting, but thus it becomes somewhat easier for Google.

    Reply
  • Morgan May 28, 2010, 9:57 am

    @Al – Google knows which sites you own whether you have them in Webmaster Tools or not 🙂 They’re Google!

    Reply
  • Mike May 28, 2010, 9:53 pm

    Wait a minute @Al……….. I thought that Google “does no evil” though. :-/

    Reply
  • Fero May 30, 2010, 4:23 am

    @Morgan , still when I am searching for the sites in Montenegro the .com is always ahead of .me , if you searching for the web site with the .me extension without typing the full addresses , there is little chance that you find them on first pages of goggle .
    I still think the .com is the king !

    Reply
    • Morgan May 30, 2010, 1:30 pm

      @Fero – I completely agree that .com is king – I’ve never said otherwise! That being said you can still rank well with a .me site – the reason you see .com’s showing up with searching on Google Montenegro is because obviously there are FAR more .com sites out there than .me sites! Just think – a majority of the website online are on a .com domain – less than 1% are on a .me. Thus – no matter where you search .com will probably be dominant domain on the first page of Google…but that doesn’t mean you can’t out-rank a .com with another TLD 🙂

      Reply
  • Al May 31, 2010, 2:13 am

    @Mike – Well, actually it doesn’t 🙂 But it seems to me that Google isn’t delighted as well with all that we are doing. I mean that having Google knowing you own a hundred of thin affiliate sites isn’t cool (and we don’t know what is actually ‘thin’ for Google – today a few pages of content are OK, and tomorrow they can be considered as made for ads). On the one hand, Google wants providing the quality results for its searchers. On the other hand, it wants making money as well (and we are helping them in this either). So, they at Google need balancing between these two sides, changing rules from time to time – that’s why caution can be reasonable in long term if we want to keep balancing with them further 🙂

    Reply
  • Al May 31, 2010, 2:19 am

    Please don’t think I’m discouraging from using Google tools and suggest putting on a foil hat 🙂 Just some quite common thoughts.

    Reply
  • Juegos de Motos June 20, 2010, 6:41 am

    “– in fact you can have any TLD, a .mx, a .de, etc. target Google US just like a .com, .net, and .org. ”

    Wrong!! An advantage dot me has over other ccTLD’s is that Google later gave the option to optimize it for a country of choice.

    Other ccTLD’s like .de, .fr. etc can’t be directed to other countries via webmaster tools.

    Try it and see.

    .me was marketed to the whole world by the registry and Google saw that people who bought the domain under the impression that it meant the name extension were having problems and gave the country choice via webmaster tools so that the users benefit from this. That is a huge advantage for .me. Almost every other ccTLD is fixed to their corresponding region and can’t be edited in the webmaster tools.

    Reply
    • Morgan June 20, 2010, 4:08 pm

      Very interesting – thanks for sharing @Juegos – I know that I can re-target .mx and .ca both to Google US…do you know how Google determines what you can Geo-target?

      Reply
  • Juegos de Motos June 20, 2010, 5:27 pm

    .mx and .ca are both countries that I would not expect to be targeted to another country even though US makes sense from both.

    I know that .tv can be currently targeted to a country of choice and almost positive that .co will be targeted in a couple of months. I already mentioned DOT ME.

    Quick question: Can you target .mx and .ca to US only or to any country of your choice?

    I would not expect Google letting only a few options like US or MX since all I have seen this far is that they either treat an extension like a generic (.com or .org) or they limit it to one single country.

    How they determine: In my experince, the choice is only given if registrants are likely to target specific different countries while they are registering a single extension. If the user is under the impression that they will rank well and target a specific market, Google lets it happen.

    Reply

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