If you have a website and are not getting that much traffic – – I wanted to show you how you can see every time a Googler (google user/your potential future customer) sees your site in search results.
This will be in reference to a client I’ve recently been working with – they were not receiving much traffic in Google – however after some research I could confirm that their site was not penalised – so I wanted to see what their current status was – but also I wanted to create a seed list of keywords that I could target for that industry.
Google is a behemoth of a software company – with all the information it keeps. Not only does it keep a log of pretty much every website on the internet and who it links to – but it also keeps a log of every single Google user, and every single Google user’s search. Google also keeps track of which websites were seen by every Google user.
This means that if someone Googles your company – let’s say for example “air conditioning installation sydney” – and looks through the first 2 pages and decides to click on a specific result then Google will also keep a log of every website the user SEES on the search results (not just clicks on).
This is very useful information to have – for example let’s say you feel that you’re not getting any traffic whatsoever from Google search results – however unbeknownst to you users may still be SEEING your results in search engines – just not clicking on it (for example if you are on page 2 or 3).
Wouldn’t that be useful information to have?
Imagine if you are on page 2 or 3 for a high traffic keyword all ready – wouldn’t it be useful to then optimise your site for that particular keyword – a keyword you all ready have some success in – instead of starting brand new?
The other part of it is – people are searching for keywords where your site is showing up that you may not have even thought of yet – this will give you some ideas when deciding on what keywords you want to target and optimise your site for.
So – how do you see into Google’s eyes? The process is actually quite simple – it depends on if you currently have a Google Analytics account or not, below I will outline the step:
1) Make sure you have an Analytics account or a Google account
If you have an @gmail.com account – or if you all ready have an Analytics account then you are set. Otherwise you can create a Google account easily. Just go to the URL below and enter your first and last name, a password, a username that you would like. You may be required to verify your account using a mobile number so make sure you have your phone handy.
Also note that you don’t necessarily need a Gmail account and can use another email if you like – this may make things easier in that you receive emails to the email you check often by habit instead of having to check another email to see any updates on your site.
You’ll need to verify your email address by entering the code that is sent into the Google sign up step:
Google will ask you to enter some personal details – note that your mobile is optional.
2) Add Property
Once you click on ‘Next’ after Terms and Conditions you’ll be taken to a page where Google will ask you to enter the URL of the site you would like to see Google Search data for. Simply enter in the URL as http://www.yoursite.com.
Once you enter your URL you’ll need to verify your ownership of the domain – so Google can trust that you really are the owner (otherwise anyone could spy on someone else’s domain for free).
There are two main ways to verify your site – HTML file and HTML tag.
If your site is using WordPress then I suggest the HTML tag method – all you need to do is login to your WordPress and then click on ‘Appearance’ -> ‘Editor’
Once in the Editor page (dismiss the warning that you could screw the site up – you’ll only be making one small change so there’s little risk of damaging your site).
Find the theme header file on the right (it’ll usually be called header.php) and click to edit it
In the Verify Ownership page in Google Search Console click the drop down for HTML tag and copy the <meta> tag
Then paste the <meta> tag anywhere between the <head> and </head> text in the header.php file – you can see I’ve pasted it into the file below:
Click the ‘Update File’ button once you add the <meta> tag and then click on ‘Verify’ in the Google Search Console screen – you’ll get a message saying that your property has been verified:
Once you’ve done this you’ll have to wait about 24-48 hours to see any useful data in your console.
Get the data
Now when you come back in a couple of days and login simply click on ‘Performance’ on the left
Then click the download button and click on Download CSV.
You’ll now have a spreadsheet similar to this – with 5 columns:
The columns will let you know:
Query – the query Googlers searched for where you came up Clicks – the amount of clicks your website has received for that query Impressions – the amount of time your website appeared on a page that a Googler was viewing
CTR – the percentage of people that clicked your ad vs the people that viewed it – for example if on average someone clicks your ad once for every 3 times it’s viewed you would have a 25% CTR
Position – the average position at which your site appears under for a particular keyword, so if position is 74 for example – it means you show up as result #4 on page #7 (not the best place to start from)
Finding out what keyword is useful
This step will require some custom software – you can use Rank Tracker – which is a free download by clicking on the link below:https://www.link-assistant.com/rank-tracker/download.html
I have the paid version and I assume this will work in the free version (otherwise just send the .csv file over to me and I can do this for you) – simply open Rank Tracker – create a New Project and then paste the keywords from the .csv file into the text field:
Then click on the refresh button to get – this is not really that useful because you all ready have the average position that they keywords are at from the .csv file – however what you really want is the traffic for the particular keyword
So click on that one
Once you have a list of the searches you can sort by the most popular searches and see which ones you are ranking for all ready.
In the case of my client you can see he is ranked position 33 for ‘sound proofing material’ – a keyword that gets 10,000 – 100,000 searches a month. While position 33 is pretty much invisible in Google’s eyes – it’s still a starting point and I can use that to then research other keywords.
So there it is – looking through Google’s lens to see exactly where you are right now – what keywords you’re showing for and which keywords are the most powerful – a great way to start a campaign – and by the way all the software I describe above is absolutely free.