How to Add WordPress Site to Google Search Console
If you are serious about growing your website then you need to add your site to Google Search Console from day one.
Why and How that we will see in this guide but before that let see what is it?
Table of Contents
What Is Google Search Console?
Google Search Console (also known as Google Webmaster Tool) is a free tool offered by Google that helps you in analyzing the performance and behaviour of your website in a search engine.
It identifies the issues of your website and can also let you know if your site is infected with malware.
If you don’t have a Google Search Console account, then you need to get one now.
How To Add Google Search Console To WordPress Website
First of all, go to Google Search Console and click on Start Now and sign up using your Google account.
Upon signup, when you click on the hamburger menu at the top right corner you will see an option of ‘Add a property’ click on that.
Now you will get two methods for site verification:
- Domain name
- URL prefix
We recommend using the URL prefix method because it is more flexible.
Enter the URL of your website make sure you’re using the correct protocols.
Because Google considers an HTTP and HTTPS as two different protocols. It also considers https://www.example.com and https://example.com as two different websites.
Once you add your website. You will get a few options to verify the ownership of the website you are adding.
You can go with the recommended method. However, I suggest you go with the alternate method (This is the most reliable way).
In the recommended method you need to download and then upload the HTML file to your website root directory using FTP.
If you are familiar with adding the file through FTP you can go with this process else choose the Alternate method.
To do so, go to other verification methods followed by ‘HTML tag’. Copy the meta tag and paste it into your header file (header.php) of your WordPress theme.
However, I don’t recommend directly editing header files because if you update or change your theme, then the HTML tag will disappear.
Google periodically checks for the HTML tag and will disable your access to the site data in the search console if it cannot find the verification tag.
Instead, I recommend using Insert Header and Footer plugin (it’s free and reliable) to insert code into your WordPress website. It is the safest way to add any kind of scripts.
Once you install and activate this plugin simply go to the dashboard of your WordPress admin panel click on ‘Settings’ followed by ‘Insert Header and Footer’and paste the meta tag into the header field.
Save the changes and get back to the webmaster console and hit the ‘Verify’ button.
Google Search Console will now look for the HTML tag in your website code and will show you a success message. That’s it simple as that.
If you don’t see a success message, then you need to clear your WordPress cache. This will ensure that Google can fetch the latest version of your website.
That’s all. You have successfully added your site to the Google Search Console (Webmaster tools). You can now click on the ‘Go to Property’ link to visit your Google Search Console dashboard.
From here you can see your website’s performance reports and index coverage.
Before you do that, let’s tell Google a little bit more about your website. This will help Google crawl your website a bit more efficiently.
How You Can Add Your Website To Google Search Console Using Yoast SEO Plugins
If you are using the Yoast SEO plugin. Copy the ‘Verification Key Code*’ from the meta tag, go to ‘webmaster tools’ under ‘SEO’ and paste the verification key in the ‘Google search console’ field. For reference check the below screenshot.
That’s all you need to do to integrate your website with Google Search Console. The next thing you want to do is to add your XML sitemaps.
Actually, sitemaps allow the search engine to crawl the site more intelligently and informs search engines about URLs on a website that are available for crawling.
To learn more, check out our guide on how to create an XML sitemap.
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Frequently asked questions
A search engine like Google uses an advanced algorithm to rank the web pages for their searchers.
But those algorithms still need your help to understand and rank the content of your web page properly.
If your content is not optimized, then the search engine will fail to rank your website and it won’t appear in the search result…
…because of this, you will miss out all the traffic related to your webpage.
So it is really important to do SEO for your website.
Before coming to this question it’s really important for us to understand what search engine exactly do.
A search engine like Google consists of :
- A crawler
- An Index and
- An algorithm
A crawler follows the link on the web 24/7 and saves the HTML version of a page in the database, called index.
The index will get updated automatically if Google comes to your website and found a new or revised version of it.
After indexing, Google will start showing your website in the search result.
Google has a complex algorithm that decides which pages are shown in which order.
How this algorithm works is a bit secret but you can start optimizing your website as per the new trends which will definitely help you in improving your web ranking dramatically.
(How exactly the search engine operates we will see in Chapter-1).
Yes, you can hire an SEO agency if they fit in below points:
- If you have enough budget – A good SEO agency will charge $100k for 12 months of project
- If they fit in your business model
- If they won’t lock you in contract
- If you are looking for long term success
- If you don’t have time for SEO
Of course, you can do it by yourself.
Depending on your commitment, learning enthusiasm, your willingness to learn, and how serious you are, you can do SEO of your website by yourself.
Even a small amount of knowledge can make a big difference.
Start learning now and believe me you will become a master in Search engine optimization.
A plugin like Yoast SEO has made things easier.
If you really want to learn and improve search traffic to your website I recommend you to read this guide completely (From chapter 1 to chapter 5).
Each chapter consists of valuable information skipping any topic may ruin all your effort.
In the next chapter, we will see how exactly search engine operates.