Google Search Console is an indispensable tool for SEO professionals and Webmasters alike. To make use of this tool, however, you have to connect your website with the Search Console. While you don’t have to be a programmer to accomplish this, it might be intimidating without a little bit of an introduction to what Google is asking for. In this video, Ross Barefoot takes a look at a few methods of verifying your website in Google Seach Console. Ross takes the “geek speak” and gives you clear language so you can walk through the website verification process and start using Search Console to help you maximize the results from your website.
Hi, I’m Ross Barefoot with Horizon Web Marketing and the Search Engine Academy, and this is one of our quick bite-sized SEO videos. We’re just going to focus on one subject, and that’s verifying a Google Search Console account. Let’s go ahead and get into it, and try to get this knocked out quickly.
Google Search Console, you probably already know what it is or you wouldn’t be here looking for ways to verify it, but I’ll just do a real quick review. The search console is a free tool from Google. You have to set it up. You can only set it up for sites that you have full access to, and it allows you to do all sorts of wonderful things like it can show you how Google is indexing and interacting with your website. It can help Google to understand your website better, you can see how you’re doing in search traffic, and you can use it to diagnose a variety of problems that could hurt you in search.
But the point of this video is not to explain what you can do with Search Console, it’s just to help you get going with it.
Down below, if you want to learn more about what Google Search Console is, you can take a look at the link I’ve got at the bottom of the page, teachseo.co, not .com, .co/google-what-is-gsc, and that’s separated by hyphens.
Let’s move on from that and talk about this whole process of verification. The reason verification is necessary is because Google won’t allow you to access GSC for any website unless you prove you have administrative rights to the website. Of course, you should be glad for that because you don’t want somebody else to be able to access your website.
Now Google offers a variety of options to be able to verify that you’re the owner of a particular property. The verification is really the hardest step in setting it up, and otherwise it’s pretty easy.
I’m going to tell you what you need before you get started. Number one, you need a Google account, so typically that’s a Gmail account, plus one of the following things. These next four bullet points are not ands, they’re ors. You need access to the registrar of your domain name. Now that’s the company where you originally registered the name of your website. That would be like GoDaddy or Network Solutions or Namecheap or any one of a hundred different registrars or companies that keep track of such things.
You also need to be able to go in, if that’s the case, at times and make changes to their DNS. Now we’re going to see how that’s typically not necessary, but sometimes you do need to have that. You also need full access to a Google … Let me back up, I said also, a mistake, or you need full access to a Google Analytics account that’s running on that website. The Google Analytics account has to be enabled on the website and tracking data for it. If you go to a Google Analytics account and you can see the data for the website that you want to track, that’s a good start. We’ll talk a little bit more about what else is necessary if you’re going to go that road towards verification.
Or you need full access to your website. Now by full access, I mean you need to be able to upload files to the place where your website lives. That’s the computer known as a web server, where all the files that make up your website, are running. If you have access to that, you can also use a method to verify you’re an owner of a property to Google’s Search Console.
Finally, if you have full access to a tag manager container that’s running on the site, then you can use that. Now most of you, I mean typically if you know what a tag manager container is and you’ve got it set up, you probably already know how to do this, so it’s not going to be typically the audience for this videos, and I’m not going to cover tag manager.
Where do you go to get started? Pretty simple, you go to google.com/webmasters/tools. Now this is a legacy from the old days because it used to be called Goggle Webmaster Tools, and as a matter of fact, Bing still calls their version of this Bing Webmaster Tools.
I’m going to go over to a browser now, and we’re going to go to that and see what happens. As you can see, it is Saint Patrick’s day when I’m doing this video, so we’ve got this cartoonish little doodle going up here. I’m going to type in the address I just showed you, google.com/webmasters/tools, and hit enter, and here we come to the first thing we need, which I had on the list, and that is you need to sign in with your Google account.
Let’s go ahead and do that. Fortunately this is a password that I actually remember, and this is the screen normally you would get if you have never used search console.