7 Ways to Use Google Webmaster Tools to Increase Traffic To Your Website

Google Webmaster tools is essential for any website.  Google informs you of problems it identifies when indexing your site and it’s wise not to ignore this!

Do you have Google Webmaster tools installed?  Do you monitor it on a regular basis?

Here are 7 Ways to use Google Webmaster Tools to increase traffic to your website.

1. Add a Sitemap to help Google index relevant pages

A sitemap is like an index in a book.  It tells Google about the structure of your site.   You don’t have to build this sitemap manually, there are tools available that can do it.  For example, there are wordpress plugins that will build a sitemap.

Google Webmaster Tools - Google XML Sitemap

A Sitemap outlines the structure of your website

If you have video on your site you also need to install a video sitemap.  This allows Google to index video on your site instead of redirecting visitors off to Youtube or similar sites.

 2.  Optimise Existing Posts to Increase Traffic

In the traffic section under search queries Google shows you the keywords that are used to find your website and the position in the search results.  You can review this, improve it and generate better results.

Google Webmaster Tools - Google Webmaster Impressions

Google Webmaster displaying impressions

In the example above there are some search terms that are appearing in search results but not many people are clicking on these results.  For example,  Google Keyword tool appeared 2,500 times and got less than 10 clicks.   I have a blog post directly relevant to this so I should be getting clicks.

Blog post – How to use Google Keyword Tool to Increase Traffic to Your Blog

Title – How to use Google Keyword Tool to Increase Traffic to your blog

So there are a few things I can do to increase traffic to this post:

a). Linking from another post to this blog post.  In this post I have linked to the post using the keywords ‘Google Keyword Tool’, that will help Google understand what this post is about.

b). Change the title.  The words at the start of a title are more important than the words at the end so I’ve updated the title to the following which will help:

Google Keyword Tool – How to use to increase traffic to your blog.

With the keywords at the start that will help.

c). Get links back to this post.  The best way of increasing ranking will be to get links back from external (high profile) websites that have these keywords in the link!.

3. Tidy up your sitelinks

When Google starts liking your site it displays a few additional links within the search results as follows:


Google Webmaster Tools - Google Sitelinks

Google displays additional links to internal pages on search results


These site links are automatically created by Google but within webmaster tools you have some control over them. You can demote up to 100 different links so gives you a better chance of putting in  the best links.  By demoting links that are not useful this should help point out the better links and you’ll get more clicks.

Google Webmaster Tools - Demoting Site Links

Demoting site links in Google Webmaster

4. Resolve any HTML Errors

Google reports on some HTML errors that will effect the indexing of your site so it’s important to resolve these issues.  If you resolve these issues this will improve the chances of getting more traffic to your site.

Google Webmaster tools - HTML improvements

Some improvements required to Meta Descriptions

In the above example the description tag (which is displayed when someone searches) is duplicated on some posts. This needs to be resolved.  Quite often you will find some Titles that are duplicated which should be resolved also.

5. Resolve any server errors

It is not going to do you any benefit having server errors and it’s likely that it will cause your harm.

The following shows errors returned for content that should not be indexed.  So to resolve these issues I had to block access to this directory from google.

Google Webmaster Tools - Server Errors

Server Errors Displayed within Google Webmaster Tools

One way to tell Google not to index content is to update the file robots.txt.  This file is read by Google when it attempts to index that site.  If I wanted to remove access to the plugins directory I’d enter the following: disallow: /wp-content/plugins

6. Implement Geographic Targeting

If a website has a generic top-level domain (e.g. .com, .org) then you can inform Google what is your main country that you want to target.  This can improve the ranking based on this country.

Google Webmaster Tools - Geographic Targeting

You can target the main country you want to focus on in webmaster tools

Note:  If you really want to target a specific country ideally you should have your website located on a server in that country also.

7.  Remove Bad Links!

Google recently released an addition to webmaster which allows you to remove bad links to the page.  If Google has notified you that you have some unnatural links you need to consider removing them using the disavow tool.

Google Webmaster Tools - Disavow Tool

Disavow Tool allows you to remove bad links

Generally you would only use this tool if Google reports that you have some unnatural linking on your website.  If you login to Google and get a message similar to the following then using the disavow tool will help:

“We have detected that some of the links pointing to your site are using techniques outside of Google Webmaster guidelines”

So make sure to remove links to your site that Google doesn’t like otherwise this will reduce the traffic you get.   Deciding what links are damaging and worth deleting is another blog post!


Google provides lots of valuable information in Google webmaster tools so it’s important to monitor it and make any relevant changes.  Making sure all issues are resolved and it’s configured correctly can help drive additional traffic to your website so it’s well worth spending the time doing it.

Has this post been useful to you?  I’d love to hear your feedback.




  • Kimberly Castleberry

    Solid list of must-know tools Ian!

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

      Hey Kim, thanks for your feedback. I really appreciate it! Ian

  • http://bestapplications4u.com/productivity Churchill Madyavanhu

    Looks like I have to dig a little deeper into Google Webmaster Tools. Thanks for the information.

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

      Hey Churchill, thanks for the feedback. It’s certainly worth it so hopefully it will benefit your business. Ian

  • Medma Infomatix

    I think i too have to dig a little deeper into Google Webmaster Tools. This is the tool with best and almost all types of tools :)

    Thanks for sharing.

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

      Thank you, it’s certainly well worth having a look! Ian

  • http://tvbmediahub.blogspot.com/ kelmen

    Great and useful topic, i love Google Webmaster Tools!

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

      Thanks, glad you found it useful!

  • zay

    Good tips and nice that you have some pro tips at the end! One thing
    that people should consider is revisit their existing posts. It’s
    great putting what you mention above in to practice for new posts but
    there’s also improvement that can be made to existing posts.

    I View Google analytics form y site ( http://www.irtouring.com ) and see which posts are getting traffic for
    relevant keywords and then optimise these posts more using the excellent
    tips above.

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

      Thank you, yes you’re right about optimizing existing posts already getting traffic, great point! Ian

  • Tharun

    Hello sir,
    You have given us such a great article. I was trying my level best to do everything about traffic… including the above mentioned tips. Let me ask on quick question..My blog is http://www.bloggerbulk.com when I log into Google analytics I found.. Audience overview is 230 could you help me.. whether this is good or bad…

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

      Don’t focus too much on the traffic number, focus on your conversion.

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  • Amais Bajwa

    Hello Dear,
    You have not mentioned about how to create rich snippet content and what is data highlighter.I think it also plays an important role in web traffic.

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

      Thank you! I need to spend some time with the highlighter! Ian

      • Amais Bajwa

        There is another thing missing, you have not shown anything about hatom and microformats. Also nothing about schema.
        You know google hummingbird algorithm is all about use of microformats and schema itemproperties. New bloggers have no idea what it is. .
        Your article is good but create another like it on the things i pointed.
        After all i like your way.
        if you want to hangout sometime

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

          Thanks, yes more posts still needed in this area!

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  • yellowandblackcab

    Amazing Post .Thanks a lot for sharing.

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    how to use and configure the google webmaster tools.


  • Hot Indian Dealz

    Sir, i own http://hotindiandealz.com and everyday, i update more than 10-20 new post. Why it is not taking my post everyday.. can you give me any answer for it?

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  • Alkesh

    Hi Ian,
    Some of the few tips above are really useful, especially the target country one.
    I have been striving hard to get conversions for my blog http://lifeinrandom.com/ and hope the above tips prove to be as helpful

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

      Thank you.

  • Adjat Sudradjat

    very nice and good post…

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

      Thank you Adjat.

  • Charles Smith

    Hey Ian, I thought this article was very well done and informative thanks you! I’m new to developing websites and want to increase traffic and conversion without spending a huge amount on advertising. I have over 11K followers on twitter (http://twitter.com/world6empire) which is good but want to increase my actually website traffic numbers and sales.

    My websites are http://www.world6empire.com + http://www.empiredesignz.com. My second website is brand new and I will be revamping http://world6empire.com very soon using http://www.drupal.org CMS. Any suggestions for beginners on the most important web development fundamentals to focus on? And what areas i should focus on to get the results I am searching for other than what you mentioned above?

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

      Hi Charles, the best way of bringing traffic to your site is writing really great content, optimizing and promoting it. It takes a while but when you write regular content over time traffic will build! There are some articles on this site about optimization and blogger outreach that will help. Ian

  • James Cruz

    I have been wondering how you get your sitelinks to display on the google search results. I really think it helps with getting more traffic because people then have the ability to choose links directly inside your website without having to navigate all the way through.

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

      Thanks James. You can demote site links you don’t like in Google webmaster tools also!

      • evento

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  • Michael

    Hi Ian, I am doing the SEO for a website http://www.jeruhomes.com

    Your tips are really helpful but what I have come across in the past couple of weeks are people who can increase the SEO for money. I am after a service which doesn’t require money. Does this exist?

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

      Hi Michael, the only way of doing it for no money is doing it yourself!

  • guptaabhijit318

    Wow! What a great post! Your article is very informative. I’ll try to practice from this post for my blog. Keep it up! Thanks.

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

      Thanks for the feedback, glad it was useful!

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    Thanks for sharing knowledge regarding some essential steps for Off Page Optimization. I read your blog post and learn something new. I appreciate your hard work.

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

      Thanks Abhiram.

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    Overall great article but I want to confirm one thing that you mention in last point about bad links that you receive message from Google about unnatural links it it necessary that you must receive any message from Google about unnatural links or If I say that my all Keywords are disappear from Google then it is also the signal that my website is hit be penguin kindly share your experience about this matter because I lost my organic traffic very badly and now analyzing my backlinks and some different On Page factors where I made a mistake. Website which was I am thinking hit is eCommerce website and mostly of traffic is coming from US so please give your suggestions to me so I can also work on that.

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  • Hemant Gupta

    Really helpful article, I will implement some of the ideas on my blog. Thanks

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

      Thank you Hemant.

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    great post ,,, really helpful.

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

      Thanks Deepak.

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    really help me a lot thnks frnd keep doing that great work…….


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    EXTREMELY Helpful with helping my friend launch their new site, http://www.underdogsupplies.com – they were having trouble with traffic, and this opened the flood gates. Thank you!

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    Thanks for post, I really appreciate it! I’m glad you liked the article
    as well. You had all the good ideas written how to increase traffic . thank
    you very much for the list. I will really need to re-read again this post
    slowly. Thanks sir.

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    Great and nice way to increase traffic vis google webmaster Tools but One more point I would like to point out here is one should also check broken links.If you keep your website free from any broken links then google crawlers will crawl more pages without error and your search engine traffic will increase

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    Hello sir,
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  • Manpreet Garcha

    am doing all you mentioned in your post but not getting more than 50 visits per day on http://www.weeklytechfocus.com

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    This is a fantastic article that has done wonders for our site http://www.passionsecrets.co.uk Thanks Julie x

  • Dialo Gua

    10 ways to increase traffic

    Think I might have seen up here a couple of days ago but I’ll put it down here anyway. If someone could point me to the original would be appreciated,

    1. Create Extra Links

    You can improve the rank of a post or page just by putting out links of that post or page. If you have a post about “the coolest shoe design,” for example, put a group of links around the web leading to “the coolest shoe design” page. It is possible to use this technique for any keyword.

    2. Modify Post Tags

    Find out which keywords result in being directed to your post. Add these keywords to your tags and this will increase your search engine rankings substantially. In other words..Continue

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    Great article. Getting laser-targeted traffic is definitely something to die for and not that difficult to get. In fact I just discovered how to rank on top of Google. It’s not about keywords, internal links, meta tags, backlinks, guest blogging, social media or site maps. But after reading the post I love to use these webmaster tools now.. Here are some helpful suggestion too, http://goo.gl/56ZcCL

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    hello sir,
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  • Mukesh Kumar

    Ian this is good post but i want to know if other person making bad links for you, so how we delete those negative links from Google

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  • http://techcloud.in/ Arpit Roy

    Great Article I must say ! Will definetly take home a tip or two. Thanks.

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

      Thank you Arpit.

  • Becky Smithe

    When you own a small web app and it has nearly zero page content, what are the best methods to increase traffic? kind regards from http://tempnote.com

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

      Hey Becky, you can still add content! You could have a blog which is focussed on productivity in the work place or something similar!

      When I open up the note I assume I can look at it for as long as I want but as soon as I close it it disappears?


  • http://www.letsdnd.com/ Sandeep Likhar

    Great Article! i never knew about this that we can use webmaster tool like this. I am gonna remove some links from search engine. Thanks!

  • Asad Rehman

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  • http://adventedesigns.com advent_geek

    Great Article Bro,

    Specially About Demote Links, I knew about disavow and other options on Webmaster.

    Even Disavow Links can help us when the webmaster won’t remove the link which was pointing to our blog. So Better you have to tell first contact the webmaster to remove the low quality links, at last use disavow links. :)

    Any Idea About Search Appearance for Business Site, and Data Highlighter.

    Thanks a lot For Your Valuable Post Bro. am going to mark as Favourite

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

      Thanks. Data highlighter is a useful feature but you’ll need to go through the google docs to go through exactly how to set it up. It’s not that compicated!

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