How to Use Google’s Free Testing Tools to Improve Your Site

By Pam Aungst

google testing tools

Google has a number of free testing tools that can be used to improve your site in various ways. There’s some you may not even know exist – or, if you are aware of them, you may not know how to use them to the fullest.

We want to help clear up that confusion by listing Google’s top free tools, as well as explaining the benefits they provide. Most importantly – they won’t cost you a single dime. Ready to learn how to use Google’s testing tools? Then let’s get right to it.

Google Analytics

Google Analytics is arguably the most important free tool the company offers. It’s a testing tool in the sense that it records all of your site’s incoming traffic, which makes it the most reliable way to measure how well your SEO efforts are working.

After inserting a unique code on all pages of your site, you can begin to view your traffic metrics in the Google Analytics dashboard. We recommend inserting the code somewhere that appears on every page of your site, such as the header or footer. It’s completely invisible to visitors, so you don’t have to worry about messing up your site’s design with a block of code.

Google Analytics’ dashboard breaks your traffic down into different categories, so you can see:

  • Real-time traffic
  • Overall traffic
  • Countries where your visitors are located
  • Referral sources
  • How long visitors stay on your site
  • Page views per session
  • Bounce rate (percentage of users that leave shortly after landing on your site)

In addition, you can set and track custom goals. For example, if one of your goals is to get people to sign up to your mailing list, you can track exactly how many people are landing on your “thank you” page after subscribing.

Once Google Analytics has collected enough data you can compare your metrics over time. You can track your site’s performance day-to-day, week over week, month over month, or virtually any block of time versus another block of time.

Keep in mind that Google Analytics is not retroactive, which means it will only begin to collect data after the code has been installed on your site. From there, you can monitor your site’s performance and make adjustments accordingly.

Google Search Console

Equally as important as Google Analytics is Google Search Console. It’s the only platform that Google uses to communicate directly to individual site owners. If there’s a critical error on your site, Search Console is where you’ll be notified.

Google Search Console is also useful in a number of other ways, such as:

  • Learning whether or not Google is able to crawl your site
  • Submitting new content for Google to crawl
  • Monitoring malware and/or spam issues
  • Finding out how many 404 errors (dead pages) your site has
  • Which queries caused your site to appear in search results

It couldn’t be easier to start using Google Search Console. Simply log in to your Google account after clicking on the link above, then claim ownership of your site.

Page Speed Insights

Page Speed Insights is literally the only speed testing tool that matters (well, for SEO anyway). Why? Go to the full article.

Source:: Business 2 Community

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