If you have already launched your blog, it’s time to start tracking down the various factors capable of affecting your ranking in Google. If you’re just a beginner, it could be a bit difficult to realize your next steps. However, if you start using all the necessary tools, it might be much easier to move forward. But, as a rule, the most advanced instruments are hidden from your eyes, as only experienced webmasters know about them. These guys unwillingly share their knowledge with the newbies and especially with their clients. However, I’ll assist you to learn how to cope with all these tasks by yourself.
Let’s first take a look at the list of tools you need to survive in the world of SEO.
- Google Webmaster Tools (GWT) also known as Google Search Console
- Open SEO Stats
- Similar WEB
- Google PageSpeed Insights
- Google Mobile Speed Test
- Google Structured Data Testing Tool
- Google Mobile-Friendly Test
- Google AMP Test
- Google DMCA Dashboard
- Google Disavow Tool
As you may have noted, most of the services on the list belongs to Google itself. However, the company doesn’t inform you about the existence of such tools. On the other hand, also worth noting that not all of these services are perfect. As a result, as a rule, the webmasters use the most advanced analogs to reach their goals.
Without a doubt, you know about this tool from Google. Therefore, I won’t describe this instrument widely. Instead, I’d like to pay your attention to the details that you may have missed. Besides, I want to show you the most essential of them.
Generally speaking, Google’s native search analytics report isn’t perfect. The report doesn’t reflect the full picture of your actual ranking. As a result, I suggest you use other tools which I’ll describe below.
However, you need to take care of the following details:
- Structured Data
- Manual Actions
- Crawl Errors/Site Errors
- Fetch as Google
- Security Issues
Why are these options necessary? Each of them may danger your website.
Don’t play with Structured Data if you are not an experienced webmaster since the result of your experiments could be awful. Google severely punishes your project if it has at least minor errors in structured data. For instance, if you tuned up your five-star rating unproperly, you might be hit by another Google algorithm update. I suggest you use any WordPress (Joomla, Drupal, etc.) plugin which deals with schema.org syntax markup. It’s worth noting that Google prefers JSON-LD syntax markup. So, if you use WordPress like I am, I’d recommend you to install the “Markup (JSON-LD) structured in the schema.org” plugin.
I don’t think you got manual actions from Google. Anyway, however, you need to check this menu item occasionally. If you were unlucky to violate the rules, Google would notify you using this section.
Crawl Errors/Site Errors
This section shows you how many errors your website has. Each time you are witnessing something new in the section, try to apply all the necessary steps to avoid the further errors.
Fetch as Google
Many webmasters adore this tool. Fetch as Google allows you to gaze at your page as Google does. In addition, this feature allows you to force Google indexing your page immediately. But I don’t recommend you to play with this tool since it’s dangerous. The usage of this feature can’t affect your ranking or harm your website. I want to warn you against wrong expectations. The fact is that if you use Fetch as Google, you see your page in the Google SERP immediately. But the page position is not real. Google adds your page to the index. But the search engine doesn’t apply various filters. Within a day, GoogleBot recount the search results. Unfortunately, you won’t find your page at the same position in Google. In any case, it’s better to provide GoogleBot a chance to cope with its job as it wants.
However, if your niche is close to “news,” Fetch as Google might be a perfect instrument. Once your page appears in the SERP without filters, you’ll immediately start receiving the organic traffic. Such approach might allow you to get lots of backlinks. Later, when Google decides to reevaluate your page, the search engine would take these backlinks into account.
In fact, you need to use this section just once, to be sure that GoogleBot managed to index all the pages of your website. However, I’d suggest you submit your sitemap only when everything is done with your settings. Otherwise, GoogleBot will reindex your website for numerous times.
Finally, let’s talk about security. As a beginner, you might face various attacks, viruses, black holes, etc. To determine the issue in time, I’d recommend you to visit this section regularly.
SemRUSH & AHrefs & Similar WEB
These web apps were made for experienced webmasters. The goal of such tools is to allow you estimate your chances in comparison with your competitors. Besides, you could use these instruments to grab the data of your rivals. Both tools allow you to define what specific SEO techniques your competitors use. As a rule, the newcomers know nothing about these web services. But once you gain your experience, you’ll realize the full power of these tools.
In a nutshell, these tools do the following:
- Show the Domain Authority and Page Authority of any website
- Reveal its backlink profile
- Estimate the website’s organic keywords, organic traffic, and traffic value
- Showcase all the referring pages, referring domains, as well as new & lost referring domains and pages
- Illustrate position distribution history, the best organic keywords
- And much, much more useful things
I’ll write a review about both tools soon, and leave a link to the article here. For now, you can try to register in these web tools to try your hand.
P.S.: Similar WEB is a simple tool that allows you to compare your indicators with those of your rivals. This tool is minor compared to AHrefs & SemRUSH. However, Similar WEB is very useful for a beginner.
Open SEO Stats
Open SEO Stats is a plugin for Google Chrome which might allow you to climb onto the new level of SEO. This tool assists you to evaluate any rival in just one click.
In short, you can do the following:
- Count up how many pages a website has in the Google index
- Define geolocation of your competitor
- Look up the website’s rank in ALEXA
- Get access to the website’s cache
- Estimate your competitor’s organic traffic
- Learn more about your rival’s domain, DNS, hosting provider, security issues, and other technical data
- Look up the data about a single page
- Evaluate the website’s speed
- Get access to the links to other web tools
This web app allows you to accomplish the in-depth analytics of your website. In other words, WooRank aims to assist you in avoiding the common mistakes. This tool is useful for a webmaster if he wants to create a checklist of his website’s errors and issues. This instrument is beneficial for a beginner.
Using this tool you can:
- Look up at your SEO issues
- Define your website’s mobile friendliness
- Check your project’s usability
- Learn more about your rival’s technologies
- Detect your website’s crawl errors
- Learn more about your backlinks, social profiles, local settings, etc.
- Estimate your organic traffic (or define those of your competitors)
Google PageSpeed Insights, Pingdom, and GTMetrix
Now it’s time to talk about your website’s speed. Of course, you know already about the Google PageSpeed Insights tool. This tool allows you to determine the most notable issues of your project, which relate to its speed. However, this instrument doesn’t show you the full picture. To learn more about your website’s performance, I’d suggest you use the most advanced tools such as Pingdom and GTMetrix.
The primary functions of these tools are the following:
- Performance insights
- Response codes
- Content size by content type
- Requests by content type
- Content size by a domain
- Requests by domain
- File requests
- DNS health, etc.
GTMetrix also allows you to accomplish the in-depth web page analyze to define the most hidden issues.
Google Structured Data Testing Tool, Mobile-Friendly Test, AMP Test
The following instruments allow you to estimate how your website fits the most advanced Google requirements. GoogleBot is very focused on the mobile-friendliness and structured markup. Therefore, if you want to succeed in the Google SERP, you will have to tune up your website to fit the rules.
Google Structured Data Testing Tool
There are a lot of microformats that allow GoogleBot to index your web page correctly. As a result, it’s essential not to violate the rules. Google Structured Data Testing Tool assists you with such a task.
This instrument will show you the errors in you microdata such as:
As a rule, your platform or PHP framework uses itemprop or JSON-LD microdata formats. So take care of the respective plugins.
Mobile-Friendly Test & Mobile Speed Test
Since Google is very concerned about the mobile-friendliness, you need to tune up your website in such way that it has become friendly for a visitor. Google Mobile-Friendly Test will assist you with this task.
There are two tools from Google that help you to estimate your website’s mobile readiness.
Mobile-Friendly Test is targeted to showcase your website’s usability
Mobile Speed Test is to define your website’s mobile speed
If your website managed to pass through both tests, you’re a lucky webmaster who follows the rules made by Google.
Google AMP Test
The Accelerated Mobile Pages or AMP is a new technology introduced by Google in 2015, which is designed to improve the performance of your page. This approach to optimize your website is useful if you spread news content. However, the webmasters who work in other niches also use the AMP technology to speed up their projects.
If you use WordPress as your platform, I’d suggest you install the AMP for WordPress plugin by the Automattic team. In that case, you have all the chances to pass this test. AMP is a fresh technology. You can learn more about it by following the link (link).
DMCA Dashboard & Disavow Tool
Both tools could be useful for you if some ill-wisher is trying to affect your website ranking. However, it’s worth noting that Google hides these tools from your eyes. Therefore, I’ll give you two direct links to these instruments.
If you were unlucky to discover that someone has stolen the content from your website, it’s time to write a DMCA complaint as early as possible. It’s the only legal way to avoid duplication of your content. Otherwise, you might be hit by Google Panda.
In the case of someone has put several undesirable backlinks to your website, it’s time to use the Disavow Tool, which will allow you to decline all these harmful backlinks. Otherwise, you might be hit by Google Penguin.
As you may see, there are a lot of useful tools for SEO hidden from your eyes. I’ve tried to show you the most essential of them. I’m sure that if you use these tools, you’ll be able to raise your SEO experience to another level. In any case, most of the SEO tools are vital! Don’t avoid to use them. In fact, the data described above is the must-have webmaster toolkit. You can’t move forward in SEO without these useful instruments. These tools are applicable both to avoid mistakes and increase your ranking in Google. All you need is to use them all together. Over time, such approach would turn into your everyday routine. Good luck and thank you for reading!
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