Now that your website has the minimum items required to Protect Your Referrals, we need to make sure that Google knows that it exists. We also want to setup Google Analytics so that you can track different metrics about your websites performance.
There is a lot of advanced data analysis that you can do with Google Analytics. It is a very powerful tool, and ten years ago you would have had to spend tens of thousands of dollars a year to have the level of analytics that Google provides to everyone for free now.
However, for this challenge, we are just going to focus on making sure you have things set up correctly and we will not get into the actual Analytics reporting.
Google Search Console
Google Search Console provides a number of services that allow you to make sure your website is running properly, and that Google is seeing your website the way you want them to see it.
Google Search Console used to be called Google Webmaster Tools and although the name change was three years ago, you may still hear many digital marketers refer to it by that name.
Google Search Console is also where Google is able to provide any warnings about your website. If there are issues with pages being indexed or if there is concern from Google about spammy links, this is where Google communicates that information. If you don’t have Search Console setup, you will never get those warnings.
Time needed: 20 minutes.
How to Set Up Google Search Console
- Go to https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/home
Make sure you are signed into Google with the account you want to use to manage your website. We recommend you use the same Google account to set up your Search Console and Google Analytics.
- Once you are logged in, you can enter your website to start setting it up.
- Enter the URL of your website and select ADD PROPERTY button
It will start the process to add your website to Google Search Console. But, we have to verify to Google that we can control this website. This is a good thing, because we don’t want someone to be able to see all the data Google has about our website if someone just knows our URL.
- Verify the website
There are a few ways to verify the website. The easiest way if you are using a standard CRM like WordPress is to us the HTMLtag. Google will give you a snippet of code and you just need to place that in WordPress on the page that allows you to enter information in the <HEAD> tag. For our website, because we use the Genesis framework, this is located in our Theme Settings for Genesis.
Once you save this to your website, double check the code on the website (typically, you can inspect the source of the page in your browser by right clicking on the page and selecting view source). Now go back to Search Console and click “Verify”.