Google Webmaster Tools: How to Add a URL

Google provides the necessary webmaster tools to get the job done.

Source

Webmaster Tools Makes Managing Your Websites Easy as 1-2-3

The American culture is definitely an impatient society. All you have to do is look at the proliferation of fast-food restaurants, self-serve checkout lanes, microwave meals, and movies on-demand to understand that the ideal, "patience is a virtue," is fast becoming antiquated. If we can't wait more than one-minute for a hamburger, how then are we to wait days or longer for Google to find our newly minted or updated website?

Google Webmaster Tools is a bit like the fast, self-serve checkout lane in the local grocery store -- you might get your site crawled and indexed quicker, with the added bonus of feeling like you're a little bit in control.

Additionally, Webmaster Tools, a must for any website owner interested in gathering key information from the top search engine, is a one-stop shop for managing anywhere from one to multiple websites. Sure, it contains tools for the webmasters with more technical know-how, but it also provides easy-enough-to-understand data and tools that even the novice webmaster will find helpful.

This article will focus on how to submit your website to Google and how to submit newly updated pages (URLs) so that Google is aware of the changes sooner.


But first ... Is Webmaster Tools necessary for Google to find my site and updated pages?

In a word, no. Google bots already do a good job of crawling the web and adding new or newly updated content to their index if they think it is relevant. But by submitting a site or the URL of an updated page via Webmaster Tools, your site and/or page should get crawled to faster. Oftentimes, speed can have a direct impact on the bottom line.

Say for example, your company website sells widget A. Widget A receives no special prominence on your e-commerce website as it is one of thousands of items you sell. To your surprise, widget A is featured on Oprah's Favorite Things holiday special. At lightening speed you put widget A in the spotlight on your home page and you even update your website's description to include a mention of widget A.

The only problem: Google has your old pages indexed. In order to get Google to hopefully react more quickly and index your new pages and text focusing on widget A you can submit the URLs of your updated pages using Google Webmaster Tools. In theory, this could impact your bottom line.


Submitted updated article to Google with Webmaster Tools.

After updating my Lego article, I used Webmaster Tools to get it indexed more quickly by Google. It appears 6th in results.
After updating my Lego article, I used Webmaster Tools to get it indexed more quickly by Google. It appears 6th in results. | Source

Example of Webmaster Tools Making a Difference:

Recently I published the article: Lego Friends, The New, Girl-Themed Lego Set! on HubPages. The topic of the article is mainly about Lego's new Lego set marketed to young girls, with mention of a possible controversy over the toy in the final paragraph.

Since HubPages has a lot of clout with Google and my subdomain http://ktrapp.hubpages.com ranks fairly well with Google, my article managed to get indexed by the Google bots in less than 24 hours and on the first page of results.

I happened to notice through stats on HubPages, as well as Google Analytics, that my page was getting hits based on search terms about the brewing Lego for girls controversy, the bit I mentioned at the end of my article.

Based on the search queries, and the most likely temporary "hotness" of this story, I reacted quickly and updated my article's opening paragraph and summary (meta description) so as to capitalize on this unexpected traffic a little more.

In order for Google to recognize my updates more quickly, I submitted the URL of my updated page via Webmaster Tools. Now, I don't know how quickly Google would have re-crawled my revised page otherwise, but I do know that after submitting it through Webmaster Tools, my updated paragraph and description were indexed within hours. The article moved up a spot in Google's results and perhaps I got more traffic.


Webmaster Tools Dashboard

Step 5: An image of your site and the site's URL will appear for you to click on.
Step 5: An image of your site and the site's URL will appear for you to click on. | Source
Steps 6 & 7: Select Diagnostics and Fetch as Googlebot from the Webmaster Tools dashboard.
Steps 6 & 7: Select Diagnostics and Fetch as Googlebot from the Webmaster Tools dashboard. | Source

How to add a site or URL using Webmaster Tools

With an understanding of why submitting an URL via Webmaster Tools can make a difference, the next step is to learn where and how to accomplish this task.

Note: Wisely, Google places limits on the number of URLs that can be submitted. The purpose is not to submit pages with minor changes or typographical errors. The purpose is to submit new websites, new pages, or pages with significant changes that could affect how your page comes up in search engine results.

Be sure to watch the video below after reading steps 1-11.


Step 1: Go to www.google.com/webmasters/tools

Step 2: If you do not have a Google account, create one. If you have a Google account, sign in.

Step 3: Add your site to manage using the big red "add a site" button. If you have more than one website, add them each separately. If you are the owner of a HubPages account you would add your subdomain like: ktrapp.hubpages.com

Step 4: Google needs you to verify that you are the site owner. There are several methods to choose from. For HubPage owners that don't have access to the web server, use this method:

  • click on the "alternate method" tab
  • select "Use your Google Analytics account"
  • click verify
  • follow the directions

Step 5: Now that you have verified that you are the site owner, your site will appear in the list and you can click on the site's URL.

Step 6: Click on "Diagnostics" in the dashboard

Step 7: Click on "Fetch as Googlebot"

Step 8: Enter your URL and click "Fetch"

  • If you want to update the home page just leave the text box blank and click "fetch."
  • If you want to update a significantly changed single page, then enter the remaining URL. For example, for my Lego article that I wanted Google to find quickly, I entered: hub/lego-friends-for-girls. (Google already knows about the http://ktrapp.hubpages.com/ portion of the URL.) Then click "fetch."


Step 8: Enter the URL that you want Google to fetch and index.
Step 8: Enter the URL that you want Google to fetch and index. | Source

Step 9: Wait a moment for the fetch status to say "success" and then click "submit site to index."

Step 10: You have two choices: submit only a single URL to the index or the URL and all the pages it links to. The latter should only be done for site-wide significant updates. For HubPage writers, selecting "URL" is appropriate.


Step 10: HubPages users should select URL and then submit to index.
Step 10: HubPages users should select URL and then submit to index. | Source

Step 11: Wait. You've done your best to bump your site up to the front of the line. Now all you can do is wait for Google to index your site in the first place, or index your updated page(s).


An Easy to Follow Video on Submitting URLs to Google

Additional SEO Help for HubPages

Keep in mind, submitting your site to Google and having it indexed sooner than later, is meaningless if the website or article will be buried in millions of search results. For organic search traffic, it is imperative to get listed on the first page of Google results. Understanding and implementing solid search engine optimization techniques is practically the only way to accomplish this goal. Be sure to read the articles below to get a better understanding of SEO and HubPages.


Do you want to write about what you know or what interests you?

Join HubPages now. It's free, simple to use & you can publish now.

More by this Author


Comments 55 comments

Arlene V. Poma 4 years ago

k, I appreciate your Hubs, and have bookmarked all of them to help me with my HubPages writing. Anything related to tech, Google, SEO, etc. is a big, big DUH for me, so I need all the help I can get. Happy New Year to you and yours. Voted up and everything else. Looking forward to reading more of your work in 2012. Thank you!


writeronline 4 years ago

You really do understand this SEO stuff, don't you? It's extremely generous of you to share your knowledge and insights with those of us to whom it's more like rocket science.

Like Arlene, I've bookmarked all of your hugely informative Hubs on the topic, and (as soon as I stop getting sidetracked reading everyone else's hubs and start writing a decent volume of my own..articles instead of stories..about stuff people actually want to know...)I intend to take full advantage of all of them. Maybe quite soon..:)

Thankyou ktrapp, thankyou very much.


JBBlack profile image

JBBlack 4 years ago from California

Wow! Really cool. I sure do appreciate the knowledge! May 2012 bring many blessings to you.


ktrapp profile image

ktrapp 4 years ago from Illinois Author

Arlene - I'm so glad to be able to help you with SEO. You know, all these tips I give are like fine-tuning. It all begins with solid content, an area in which you are very talented. Let me know if you ever need any specific help.


SusieQ42 4 years ago

Thanks for the useful info! I'm going to try your suggestions.


ktrapp profile image

ktrapp 4 years ago from Illinois Author

Writeronline - I am more than happy to share whatever SEO knowledge I have. Of course, writing on topics that people actually search for and want to know about is the first step. No sense in worrying about SEO and being "found" if no one is interested in the content.


SusieQ42 4 years ago

I'm going to link this to one of my hubs about getting more traffic to our hubs. I've followed all the above steps successfully, not we'll wait and see if my views increase. Thank you!


randomcreative profile image

randomcreative 4 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Great resource and tips! Thanks! Bookmarking this to revisit later.


ktrapp profile image

ktrapp 4 years ago from Illinois Author

JBBlack - Cool it is, especially since being able to submit updated articles with Google's Webmaster Tools gives us writers a measure of control. Thanks for commenting.


ktrapp profile image

ktrapp 4 years ago from Illinois Author

SusieQ42 - I think the biggest compliment one can make is implementing the suggestions of another. Thank you for not only trying out Webmaster Tools, but for letting me know that you did it successfully. I hope your results are rewarding.

I had another article about an author and discovered peoples' search queries were for her biography. I made sure to rewrite my title to include the word biography, as well as the summary. I already had the word in other text within the article. It was taking a while for Google to pick up my adjustments so I submitted them through Webmaster Tools and the changes appeared really fast. It also appears that I am now getting more traffic based on that adjustment.


brittanytodd profile image

brittanytodd 4 years ago from Kailua-Kona, Hawaii

Wow, ktrapp. So many people ask about this in the forums and answers section. I'll be sure to bookmark it so I can easily share it with them. Great work, voted up, etc.


thougtforce profile image

thougtforce 4 years ago from Sweden

Great article and very useful information! It saves both time and struggle to get it served and explained in this fantastic way! Voted up, and all appropriate buttons. Thanks, Bookmarked

Tina


ktrapp profile image

ktrapp 4 years ago from Illinois Author

Thanks Randomcreative. I am so glad we are able to bookmark hubs and am glad you did so with this one so you can easily follow the steps to have Google fetch your new or updated hubs.


ktrapp profile image

ktrapp 4 years ago from Illinois Author

brittanytodd - Every now and then I've noticed this question in the forums and answer section, as well. I happened to mention webmaster tools in a comment and homesteadbound asked me about it. This hub was actually generated as a way of giving her an answer. Thanks for bookmarking it and your willingness to share it again when you see the "indexing our hubs" question pop up again in the future.


ktrapp profile image

ktrapp 4 years ago from Illinois Author

Hi Tina. Thanks for the votes and bookmark. I certainly helps this saves you time and eliminates struggle. It's really a straightforward process, but feel free to let me know if you have any questions.


DonnaCosmato profile image

DonnaCosmato 4 years ago from USA

The thing I like the most about your hubs on SEO and article optimization is how user friendly they are for readers of any experience level. I've bookmarked this one for easy reference when I need it, and voted it up.


ktrapp profile image

ktrapp 4 years ago from Illinois Author

Donna - Thank you so much for such a genuine compliment. Optimizing articles for search engines really is easy, it is just sometimes the explanations make it seem far more complex than it is. I'm glad to know I have been able to communicate in a user-friendly way for you and others. Much thanks for letting me know and for the vote.


homesteadbound profile image

homesteadbound 4 years ago from Texas

What a great hub! And like writeronline said, it is so nice of your to share your knowledge because SEO is one of those subjects that seems to plague many of us. I will be moving this hub into the special little bookmarked folder I have set up just for you. Thanks so much!


ktrapp profile image

ktrapp 4 years ago from Illinois Author

Homesteadbound - I'm very to happy to share any SEO knowledge I have with all of you guys. What I really enjoy seeing is when someone like you implements what they have learned. I've seen it a number of times and in general have noticed a ton of SEO improvement for so many online writers. It's great to see.

As always, it is flattering to know that you have a bookmark folder with my name on it. I would love to hear back if you use webmaster tools.


A.CreativeThinker 4 years ago

Very informative and useful hub ktrapp. Many good tips to keep in mind. Thanks for sharing. :)


ktrapp profile image

ktrapp 4 years ago from Illinois Author

Thanks A.CreativeThinker. There is a lot of good information within Google Webmaster Tools, in addition to being able to add URLs to be crawled - a very useful tool.


Charu Bhatnagar profile image

Charu Bhatnagar 4 years ago from India

Thanks it is really very informative.


ktrapp profile image

ktrapp 4 years ago from Illinois Author

You're welcome Charu. Plus you can do so much more with Webmaster Tools in addition to adding and URL or submitting a site. It's great for looking at search queries for your hubs too!


artsofthetimes profile image

artsofthetimes 4 years ago

Im so loving your hubs Ktrapp because the way you write is so easy to follow and assimilate. And i even get additional tips in the comments too. Thank you.

I have been significantly updating a lot of my hubs lately (and not only for typos, etc.), trying to improve on the earlier crappy ones. Will it be of no use to submit to Google, say, hubs i updated a week or two ago? Of course from henceforth, every time I do any major upgrade to my hubs, I know what to do.

Thanks for sharing this VERY useful article. Bookmarked and voted up.


ktrapp profile image

ktrapp 4 years ago from Illinois Author

Thank you artsofthetimes. If you want to see if hubs that you updated a couple of weeks ago are current with Google, first find them in Google results, then hold your mouse over the arrow that shows on the right side of results until you see a snapshot of your page. Then click on the word "cached" above the snapshot and you can see the date your hub was last indexed. If Google hasn't indexed your latest version then you could submit your URL via webmaster tools.

Thanks for your comment and the vote.


artsofthetimes profile image

artsofthetimes 4 years ago

Thank you so much for this Ktrapp, i have always wondered how to do that.

I have learnt so much more from you in the past few hours and still intend to learn more after reading more of your hubs tonight.

GodBless


ktrapp profile image

ktrapp 4 years ago from Illinois Author

Thanks again artsofthetimes. I am glad I could help you out with Google Webmaster Tools.


Keith Engel profile image

Keith Engel 4 years ago from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Ktrapp,

I have a question, I saw something about creating a sitemap via the webmasters tools? Would this be beneficial doing this with hubs since basically the way hub pages is constructed it is your username.hubpages.com with the subdomains of the rest of your hubs being then filed after this as well.

Just curious as I am now trying to learn this aspect of my online writing. The writing aspect so to speak I have down, but it is trying to improve the online matters that I need to learn.


ktrapp profile image

ktrapp 4 years ago from Illinois Author

Keith - The type of sitemap Google is talking about in Webmaster Tools is actually an xml file that would have to be uploaded to the server that your site is on. This is not possible for us to do with HubPages, but I have done it with websites I have created where I have access to the server. This sitemap they are discussing is not the same thing as a sitemap web page that a user might use for navigation purposes. I hope this answers your question.


Keith Engel profile image

Keith Engel 4 years ago from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Okay I see, yes it does, I don't have any background in web stuff so I wasn't sure. It seemed from what I read of it,.that it could help google track better information about the site.as well as help.google find matters.

Sorry for the various mistakes and random commas and periods typing on my nook color and it can be difficult. I have anotjer question for you but will ask on appropriate hub and when I am at my normal keyboard


ktrapp profile image

ktrapp 4 years ago from Illinois Author

Keith - Sometimes various terminology in Webmaster Tools can be tricky for the non-webmaster. Adding the URLs as described in this Hub, though, is a good way of sending the info. to Google that you have something new for them to crawl.


Keith Engel profile image

Keith Engel 4 years ago from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Aye, I have been going back and editting many of my hubs after reading your great advice filled hubs.So I have been resubmitting them to google. The one other questions I was going to ask has to do with URLs and Titles.

Yet, I will ask on that hub pertaining.


ktrapp profile image

ktrapp 4 years ago from Illinois Author

Many times my Hubs are crawled fairly quickly (within days) after submitting them via Webmaster Tools. Good luck.


MyWebs profile image

MyWebs 4 years ago from Sheridan, WY

Thanks ktrapp for this very useful hub. I have used Webmaster Tools for years with my own websites but had no idea that there was a way to use it with my hubpages account. Mainly because most of these tools require you to upload an HTML file, add Meta tags. code or make DNS changes. None of which we can do here.

Voted up and as useful.


ktrapp profile image

ktrapp 4 years ago from Illinois Author

MyWebs - I know what you mean. I've used Webmaster Tools a lot in the past for my clients' sites, and usually verified that I was allowed to add them by uploading a file named whatever it was they told me to name it. So I was pleasantly surprised to see that Google provides and alternate method for people without access to their web server. Thanks for your comment and votes. They're both appreciated.


Keith Engel profile image

Keith Engel 4 years ago from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Hey Ktrapp,

A question, I have deleted some hubs and now I am getting crawl errors, is there any way to stop this from happening from telling google to completely nix the url or a way we can redirect such matters to perhaps our profile instead?


ktrapp profile image

ktrapp 4 years ago from Illinois Author

Keith - You can remove the URLs through Google Webmaster Tools. Go to "optimization" and then click "remove URLs." Once on the page click "create a new removal request." I hope this helps.


Keith Engel profile image

Keith Engel 4 years ago from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Ktrapp,

Yes indeed it does. Thanks.

Keith


ktrapp profile image

ktrapp 4 years ago from Illinois Author

No problem Keith. You're welcome.


unknown spy profile image

unknown spy 4 years ago from Neverland - where children never grow up.

Ktrapp..thank you.. this answers perfectly the question i posted awhile ago :)


ktrapp profile image

ktrapp 4 years ago from Illinois Author

Well I'm glad this answered your question unknown spy. Thanks for letting me knw.


moonlake profile image

moonlake 4 years ago from America

I have used this information so often. I think it really helps. You know lots more than I do about this kind of thing. Shared and voted up .


ktrapp profile image

ktrapp 4 years ago from Illinois Author

Well thanks moonlake. I'm certainly glad to help where I can.


OanaBoteanu 3 years ago

Thank you, this is great content. I am a complete newbie to google analytics and webmaster tool. I just followed your article step by step and I got it all done. Thanks so much for the help!

Should I be doing this every time I publish a hub, or only if I make changes?

Thanks so much. Voting up and sharing.


ktrapp profile image

ktrapp 3 years ago from Illinois Author

OanaBoteanu - Thanks for letting me know these steps worked for you. You only may want to do this if you revise a Hub and want Google to recrawl it sooner. Even if you don't do this, it will be recrawled automatically in time, maybe just not as soon. There's no need to do it for a new Hub and since new Hubs are temporarily coded as no-follow until they pass quality guidelines, you wouldn't want to submit one in that state. FYI - As soon as the Hub becomes featured on your profile page then you will know it is coded as "follow."


OanaBoteanu 3 years ago

Thank you ktrapp, all this makes more sense now :)

I must admit, it can get a little overwhelming, so much to learn. I look forward to the day I decode the science of SEO and all this google analytics :)

Thanks again for the hub and for the advice.


dragonflyfla profile image

dragonflyfla 3 years ago from South Florida

Great insight on when to submit your URL to Google. Voting you up and useful. Thanks


ktrapp profile image

ktrapp 3 years ago from Illinois Author

dragonflyfla - Glad you found this useful. Thanks for the vote up.


PurvisBobbi44 profile image

PurvisBobbi44 3 years ago from Florida

Hi,

I am still learning the sequence of otaining more traffic, Thanks for this article--it has helped answer the question about adding Hubpages to Google Webmaster Site.

Thanks again,

Bobbi Purvs


ktrapp profile image

ktrapp 3 years ago from Illinois Author

You're welcome Bobbi. There's a lot of really useful information in Webmaster Tools so I'm glad you got your HubPages subdomain added to it.


PurvisBobbi44 profile image

PurvisBobbi44 3 years ago from Florida

Hi,

As it turns out I have my Blogger.com Blogs on the Webmaster Tools and I cannot get it to accept the Hubpages.

Hubpages was the first account I am sure I would not have a problem. If you have any suggestions for please let me know.

Thanks,

Bobbi Purvis


ktrapp profile image

ktrapp 3 years ago from Illinois Author

Are you entering purvisbobbi44.hubpages.com (no www)? At what point in the process are you having trouble? Here's a link to the Learning Center on how to set up your subdomain with Webmaster Tools: http://hubpages.com/community/Learning-Center-How-...


Sushma Webber profile image

Sushma Webber 2 years ago from New Zealand

This article is very helpful especially since I am in the process of starting a blog. I can now submit the URL once it is ready to Google Webmaster tools.


Barack James profile image

Barack James 22 months ago from Green City in the Sun

Ktrapp: Thanks for this informative article..heading to Webmaster tools now:)


Jacobb9205 profile image

Jacobb9205 19 months ago from Gloucestershire

Thank you for the tutorial, much appreciated

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