I've been spending more time going over Google stuff and doing more things to help my sites after the big shake-up. One thing I just did was list one of my sites in Google webmaster tools.
It takes a few days for them to get all your stats, and today I could finally see some. However, the position of my pages on Google search for keywords is totally wrong.
They are showing the pages that USE to be on the first page as page one. Yet you actually can't find them at all. Then ones they say are on page 2 or 3 are actually on page 10 or 11.
I wish I ranked where Google is saying I do, but I don't. Why is all the positions they show for my pages and keywords so wrong?
Frankly, I opened it probably less than a handful of times during last couple of years. It has its uses, but as an everyday tool it's virtually useless because of inaccuracy and lag.
I use Google Webmaster tools for just two reasons:
a) to submit an XML sitemap
b) to check and change robot.txt files
I can't see any other reason to use it
Yeah I did submit a new sitemap, which is one of the main reasons I did that.
There is a lot of inaccurate data in webmasters tool dashboard. For example, there is no link from HP/squidoo/IB to my site but there are two links from xomba. That's enough to convince you for inaccurate data.
a) wordpress plugin does this automatically
b) you can write/edit robots.txt in any text editor if you know what you are doing. Though checking some fancy sequences may be of value, but I usually don't do fancy stuff.
Which Wordpress plugin is that Misha? I would be interested
Although, not everybody who uses Google Webmaster Tools is using a Wordpress platform
Google Webmaster tools allows you to set priority in robots.txt for the crawler which you can't do manually. This allows you to block crawler on some folders.This feature is very important for private forums/membership site forums.
I don't do such things, so I don't need that feature. But it certainly is useful for people who do it
Speaking of the robots.txt, I notice mine in Google WMT shows this:
I actually use the WP plugin for the sitemap, which is a different path than you see above. Does everything look right in that above? I assume any pages not allowed would show in there, right?
If you don't use ebay on that site your robots.txt is fine. As for the sitemap, the answer is to paste this url into a browser and to see what will come out of it.
Well, there are other reasons.
Their diagnostics report shows improper links - it is astonishing how many people fat-finger a nice organic link you could have had if they were not such lousy typists. I fix those with redirects and it is a regular monthly effort.
Of course I can also get that from my logs (and I do) , but that's less convenient.
Their HTML suggestions page has helped me in the long, long process of cleaning up ancient pages.
Their Site Performance area (and the Speed Tracer plugin) has helped me identify page loading issues.
There is more to your website than backlinks..
By the way this new feature 'parameter handling' for robots.txt looks something like this :
If its a static website and not a blog I use SEMRush.com it seems to be pretty accurate and quick at getting you the results.I think the thing only updates once a week to a month though which kind of sucks. I have yet to find a solid program to get the the results. For blogs and sites though I always use analytics. Yeah its got some iffy spots on it but for the most part it gives great details of where my traffic is coming from and what keywords.
Wow, reading this thread is like trying to understand a foreign language, lol...
Not to change the subject, but I'm curious--how did you guys learn all these things? Did you take classes, or learn on your own?
I am trying so hard to learn all I can, but I cannot seem to absorb it, no matter how hard I try. I read tons of hubs, print the info out, study it, and I still get overwhelmed...
What is the secret, from your perspectives???
I don't consider myself a slow learner at all, but I am really struggling to understand the online business...
Speaking only for myself, I simply browse forums and learn from all the vast online information. No schooling or anything at all.
As you can see I still have much to learn, even though I'm doing ok and have many websites. Nobody gets to a point where they know everything, as it keeps changing all the time.
Thanks, Bill...you are one hubber that I really admire--I've told my husband(who's also a hubber) about you, and how well you seem to be doing. I guess you've become a role model--whether you want to be or not, lol...
I guess I'll just keep plugging on, and hope one of these days the info will just "stick". I'm 51, and I know there are hubbers older than me that are doing well, and was wondering if they already had the knowledge, or if they are doing it the same way you did!
Good luck to you with all you do!
Thanks, good luck to you too.
I think some people just have a knack for tech learning and some don't. I keep trying to teach some friends what I know but they just don't seem to "get" it.
You also have to have a lot of patience to learn it all and let it sink in. It's a long term learning process for most, not something you can just read a book in an evening and get it.
Also lots of it is just educated guessing at what will work and what will not. It's a bit like the stock market.
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