Create an XML Sitemap for Google
A sitemap is a file that is created at your website specifically for Google to find and index (i.e. register in its database of websites).
It is a file that includes of all the pages and images at your website, usually in a .xml file format. Like most “maps” it shows where everything is and how to get to it.
By creating a sitemap you’ll make it easier for Google to find, index, and ultimately rank your website content.**
Google recommends the use of a sitemap and it can help you achieve optimal search visibility and better rankings for your website.
** By itself a sitemap will not get your website better ranked at Google, but helping Google find your content is a very important factor in getting a website top ranked. Creating and registering a sitemap is part of a successful search engine optimization (SEO) strategy.
Register Your Sitemap with Google Search Console
Once you’ve created a sitemap for your website, you’ll want to tell Google where it can find it. Google may find the file by itself, but why take the chance? When you make it easier for Google to “crawl” your website you’ll get more of your website pages indexed and better ranked.
After you’ve created a sitemap for your website tell Google you have one by registering it using the Google Search Console.
Google My Business (GMB)
Google My Business, formerly Google Local Places, is an important part of getting the maximum exposure and visibility for your website at the world’s most frequently used search engine (5.6 billion searches per day, 63,000 searches per second). It also has an impact on local search.
Think of it as a “profile” or mini website for your business that may appear on a Google search engine results page (SERP).
A Google My Business profile page has information about your business including your physical address (if you have one), a link to your website, a phone number, and other information about your company.
A Google My Business profile is 100% free, all you have to do is claim it.
If someone searches for your company name directly, your Google My Business profile is likely to show up on the right side of the search engine results page.
If you haven’t claimed or registered your Google My Business profile, or maybe you are not sure that you have, visit this link:
Google Analytics is another free tool from Google that tracks information about your website visitors and what they are doing while there. It is a very powerful and sophisticated tool.
It tracks dozens of data points including visitor sessions, time spent on website, “bounce rate” (how many people visited your website and left after viewing only one page), what websites are sending your website traffic, top pages viewed, top entry pages, top exit pages, and much, much more!
Google Analytics is fairly easy to install at any website. My philosophy has always been that the more Google knows about your website the better, and Google Analytics is another way for Google to understand what you’re doing at your website.
Google Search Console
The Google Search Console is another valuable internet marketing tool, free from the folks at Google. It also is an important tool in your search engine optimization (SEO) toolbox.
As the name states, it’s an online console where Google helps you monitor, maintain, and troubleshoot your site’s presence in Google Search results.
The Google Search Console will help you understand and improve how Google sees your website, and then use that information to optimize your site for increased findability.
The Google Search Console proactively identifies issues that may adversely impact your visibility and rankings at Google, with suggestions for fixing such issues.
Once you’ve registered as a website owner it will send you email messages with warnings that likely require your attention.
In the event your website is hacked or compromised with malware, or penalized by Google and dropped from the index, the Google Search Console is the tool you’ll need to get back into the good graces of Google.
You’ll find the Google Search Console at this link:
100+ Internet Marketing Best Practices (6-10)
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Practical Online Marketing