Seven Free Google Tools for Webmasters

Managing any website or websites can be a constant effort on any given day. Have a list of tools in your arsenal can not only help you accomplish your work faster, be more efficient, but also result in a better end product for your customers. I use most of these tools myself but have also learned a few new ones, such as Tag Master

PageSpeed Insights

Google PageSpeed Insights

PageSpeed Insights measures the performance of a page for mobile and desktop devices. It fetches the url twice, once with a mobile user-agent, and once with a desktop user-agent.

PageSpeed Insights checks to see if a page has applied common performance best practices and provides a score, which ranges from 0 to 100 points, and falls into one of the following three categories:

  • Good: The page applies most performance best practices and should deliver a good user experience.
  • Needs work: The page is missing some common performance optimizations that may result in a slow user experience. Please investigate the recommendations below.
  • Poor: The page is not optimized and is likely to deliver a slow user experience. Please prioritize and apply the recommendations below.

Mobile-Friendly Test

Google Mobile Friendly Test

The Mobile-Friendly test tool is easy to use; simply type in the full URL of the web page that you want to test. Any redirects implemented by the page will be followed by the test. The test typically takes less than a minute to run.

Test results include a screenshot of how the page looks to Google on a mobile device, as well as a list of any mobile usability problems that it finds. Mobile usability problems are issues that can affect a user that visits the page on a mobile (small screen) device, including small font sizes (which are hard to read on a small screen) and use of Flash (which isn’t supported by most mobile devices).

Adwords

Google Adwords

With text-based search ads, graphic display ads, YouTube video ads, or in-app mobile ads, you have plenty of ways to reach your target customer with AdWords. Search ads appear next to Google search results when people look for products and services you offer. And, you only pay when people click to visit your website or call your business.

We have Adwords running on this site and it helps to pay for our hosting costs and running our website. When done right, it can be a good source of income!

Here is a link to the Guide for Google Adwords if you are a beginner.

Keyword Planner

Google Keyword Planner

Start by searching words or phrases related to your products or services. Keyword Planner works to find the keywords that are most relevant to your business which you can then choose to add to your plan. This tool is essential for determining what key words are being used in businesses. This can help you plan your SEO and have better results in your customers finding you online.

Analytics

Google Analytics

Analytics is simple, keeping track of the visits to your website. This is also essential if you want to know who your audience is, what they are interested in and where they are coming from, along with many other useful details (like are they on a desktop or smartphone etc).

Google Analytics works by the inclusion of a block of JavaScript code on pages in your website. When users to your website view a page, this JavaScript code references a JavaScript file which then executes the tracking operation for Analytics. The tracking operation retrieves data about the page request through various means and sends this information to the Analytics server via a list of parameters attached to a single-pixel image request.

Because your website configuration and reporting needs might differ from a standard setup, it’s a good idea to understand the general tracking process to ensure that your reports deliver data as you expect. In this way, you can decide how to configure Analytics tracking to best suit your own website

Webmaster Tools Console

Webmaster Tools Console

Google Search Console is a free service offered by Google that helps you monitor and maintain your site’s presence in Google Search results. You don’t have to sign up for Search Console for your site to be included in Google’s search results, but doing so can help you understand how Google views your site and optimize its performance in search results. You can also link up your Console property with your Adwords and Analytics to integrate your website. This is how you first submit your site to Google’s Index. You also submit your website’s sitemaps here and see the status of crawls, view 404 errors and other handy information about your website.

Tag Manager

Google Tag Manager

Google Tag Manager is a tag management system that allows you to quickly and easily update tags and code snippets on your website or mobile app, such as those intended for traffic analysis and marketing optimization. You can add and update AdWords, Google Analytics, Firebase Analytics, Floodlight, and 3rd party or custom tags from the Tag Manager user interface instead of editing site code. This reduces errors and frees you from having to involve a developer when configuring tags.

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Patrick O'Keeffe

Patrick is the founder and chief blogger of Victoria Web Solutions. Passionate about technology, design and customer satisfaction. Read more about Patrick on his Team page.

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