4 Powerful Google Tool Tips

Google-Tool-TipsGoogle provides us with lots of tools (mostly free) but are you taking advantage of this to help with social media marketing?

There was uproar a couple of weeks ago when Google decided to shutdown Google Reader.  It’s a useful free app that I currently use daily.  But besides Google Reader there are many other useful apps that Google provides.

We have picked out 4 Google tools that are very useful with specific actions you can take in relation to them.  I hope you find them useful!

 

1. Optimize Web Pages with help from Google Webmaster Tools

Google Webmaster Tools is essential to set up for every website.  Google provides you with information on what it sees when it indexes your site.  Do you have duplicate titles on your web pages?  Are you getting lots of dodgy links from sites?  Which content is doing well or badly?

This information is a goldmine.

I know you like some action!   So go to the Search Queries section and see what keywords people are using to find your content.  Look for content that is getting clicks that are relevant.

In the example below, the search term ‘social media search’ was displayed 1,300 times and got 110 clicks.  These clicks brought you to an article on RazorSocial which is about searching social media.

That was a click through rate of 8% which is quite good (see last line item in the image).  But can we make that better…

 

Google Webmaster Search Queries

You can view what keywords are used to find your content

 

Oh yes we can!  One minor tweak we can make is to improve the page title and page description.  These are known as meta tags.  In search results this is how our post appears.

 

Google Search Results

Google displays the description and title within the search results

 

The words at the start of a page title are more important than the end so it would be worth our while changing the page title.  We could also consider changing the page description so ‘searching social media’ is mentioned instead of ‘social media search’ and also make it more interesting so that people will click on it.

New Page title: Searching Social Media – 4 Great Tools to help

New Page Description – Searching Social Media can be difficult.  Here are 4 powerful tools that will help significantly.

We could also optimize different elements on the page but that’s a whole new post that we’ll write!

Action:  Read this post on how to increase traffic to your site using Google Webmaster Tools and go through posts that are getting traffic already for relevant keywords and optimize this.

 

2. Link Webmaster Tools with Google Analytics

Google analytics is also essential to Social Media Marketing so you can check what traffic is coming to the site and what’s happening when they arrive.

Google analytics is not linked to Webmaster tools by default but linking them means you get information from webmaster tools displayed in analytics and vice versa.  This just saves a bit of time trying to view data in two different places.

There’s no good reason why Google doesn’t automatically link Webmaster Tools with Google analytics.  Maybe some day!

To link them logon to webmaster tools and under the manage site section select ‘Google analytics Property’ and on the next page specify the website you want to link to.  That’s it!

 

Link Google Analytics to Webmaster

You can link webmaster tools to analytics

 

Action:  Link up analytics with webmaster tools, it’s straight forward to do and well worth it!

3. Create an Editorial Calendar using Google Calendar

There are some editorial calendar software packages that I’m currently investigating and will be writing a blog post about. But if you wanted a quick solution up and running then why not use Google Calendar? You could use it to track the blog posts you are going to write, white papers you are going to release, etc.

In the example below we have color coded our blog posts that we are scheduling.  The ones in green are written already and the ones in red are planned but not written yet.

Over on the right hand side you can also see the tasks.  You can create tasks which revolve around the content you are creating.

 

Google Calendar

Create color coded calendar entries and use the task list

 

With an editorial calendar you can plan out your content much better.  When you see the content you have planned out for the next couple of months it helps you work out what content you are missing, gives you new ideas about content and gives you a better structure to your content marketing.

Action: Consider how you are planning out your content.  Start immediately using a Google Calendar and when I do the blog post about editorial calendars you’ll already be familiar with the process!

 

4.  Use Advanced Functionality within Google Search

The basic search facility provided by Google is great but the advanced search is even better.  Here are some examples of how it can be used.

a).  When you search Google you are displayed the local search results based on the country you are in, but sometimes you want to see what another country sees.  This works by typing in the country search you are interested in and appending ‘NCR’ at the end.  NCR means no country redirect so you want Google to use the search engine you selected which may not be the one that is more relevant for the country you are in!

Example:  www.google.co.uk/ncr – This will show you what somebody in the UK will see when they are searching in the UK.

b).  Use some of Google’s advanced extensions to produce better results.

Facebook has a really bad search facility so if I wanted to search for a company page name it’s hard to find.  But you can tell Google only to search specific sites.  For example, if you went to google and typed ‘razorsocial site:www.facebook.com’ you get much more extensive results than going to Facebook.

There are many possibilities for this.  For example, everybody on LinkedIn is indexed on Google unless they specifically turn this off.  When you search on LinkedIn you are restricted to search results based on what level you have paid for in LinkedIn, however, these full search results are available in Google.

Action – Read this article on Google Advanced Search which will give you more detail on how to get the best out of Google search.

These are just some of the useful tools that we use.  What tools have you found useful?  What other tool tips would you like to share?

We’d love your comments!

photo credit: WilliamMarlow via photopin cc

  • SmartCloud

    For more Advanced Search tips for Google you could check out this blog post I wrote some time ago

    http://www.smartcloud.ie/1/post/2012/12/advanced-search-in-gmail.html

    • http://www.www.razorsocial.com/ Ian Cleary

      Thanks for sharing!

  • http://twitter.com/Andreas_Riha Andreas Riha

    Thanks for sharing the information on Google NCR. To be honest I had thought that once you searched on .co.uk you got the same search results as somebody in the UK.

    • http://www.www.razorsocial.com/ Ian Cleary

      Hey Andreas, thanks for stopping by! Nope, Google detect you are in Ireland! Also, if you are logged in to Google they are starting to personalise results so always log out also if you want to check ranking of search results! I hope all is going great with the business. Ian

  • http://twitter.com/JBBC Marie Ennis-O’Connor

    Good tips Ian. I’d add Google Alerts (while we still have the tool!) to help keep updated on emerging trends in your industry.

    • http://www.razorsocial.com/ Ian Cleary

      Thanks Marie, if you want a more powerful tool than Google alerts check out mention.net! I hope we get to meet in person some day!!!

  • Nitter Natter

    I love your suggestion for using Google Calendar as an editorial calendar. This is what we’ve been doing recently and it’s a great way to keep track of your content, across all platforms. Mine currently looks like a very colourful version of a chess board.

    Totally agree with your comment about the Webmaster Tools and Analytics – there definitely should be some synchronisation in place!

    Grace, Nitter Natter.

    • http://www.razorsocial.com/ Ian Cleary

      Thank you Grace, glad you liked it! Sometimes you don’t have to spend money and you can make better use of the tools you have!

  • http://warrenwhitlock.com/social-media-expert Warren Whitlock

    Your graphics showed the best tip that you didn’t mention. AUTHORSHIP. Currently Google says it doesn’t affect SERP, but having your photo next to a post will get more clicks for sure.

    Putting your blog in your Google + profile certainly can’t hurt either.

    • http://www.razorsocial.com/ Ian Cleary

      Yes, I certainly agree. I included that in another post I wrote specifically about authorship! Thanks for stopping by Warren.

  • Prabal Chowdhury

    It’s feeling good to know about these tips. Thanks for your effort. I want to introduce you with my favorite SEO tool, its colibritool. I like the way it works. It you want to be a good SEO expert, you must have this tool. Wanna try? here it is for you.

    • http://www.razorsocial.com/ Ian Cleary

      Thanks Prabal, I’ll certainly take a look, it looks interesting!

  • Portman

    I follow all your nice advice since I installed Mystique 3 for my blog.

    Unfortunately on mystique plug-in Google Analytics for WordPress by
    Joost de Valk seems not working. When I access Google analytic page says
    not installed even if I configured correctly the plug-in. Should I
    switch plug-in? or even better install code by manually as you
    explained? in this case do i need to install on every post or once is in
    footer.php it is enough go here

    Thanks

  • john

    Surely I established your effective google tool tips. But using these tools we can’t improve our site keywords into top list of search engine result page. I suppose…

    internet marketing