Google Webmaster Tools

Are you looking to gather more information about your user base? Add some advertising to monetize your site, or perhaps to advertise your site on Google? Manage your site indexing and how it shows up in Google?

Well, you definitely can and here's how to do it with Google Webmaster Tools (GWT). Note that Google requires that your site be verified for some time before they allow you to change some settings.

Sections of this post:

  • Setting up GWT
  • Applying GWT to ActiveBoard
  • Verifying GWT
  • What you can do after verification

Setting up Google Webmaster Tools

1) Sign up for a Google account via GMail or any of their other services -- it's required to setup Webmaster tools.
2) Sign up for Google Webmaster Tools (GWT).

Once you have access to a GWT account, and have signed in:

3) Begin adding your site to GWT by entering the site URL. (ex. example.activeboard.com)

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4) Verify ownership of the site by clicking on the "Alternative methods" tab, and selecting the "Add a meta tag to your site's home page" option.

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5) In the content that appears below the option, copy the content value of the meta tag (example below), and then we'll go over to ActiveBoard to apply it!

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Applying the verification code

1) Navigate to your forum administration panel, and click on the Display section.

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2) Click on the SEO & Meta section tab at the top of the page.

3) Paste the copied content value from the previous section into the Meta Verification Key field, and then save the settings.

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Finishing verification in Google Webmaster Tools

Going back to GWT, we can now verify the site by clicking on the "Verify" button below the list of alternative method options.

If everything was entered correctly, you now have access to managing your domain in Google Webmaster Tools. However, if run into any problems along the way, feel free to contact Sparklit support and we can give you a hand sorting things out!

Things you can do once this has been setup

AdWords

AdWords ads are displayed on Google search result when someone's search include one of your keywords. Ads appear under 'Sponsored links' in the side column of a search page mostly and sometime in other places. The benefit to AdWords is that you'll be advertising to an audience that's already interested in your business. The cool thing about Google AdWords is that you can let contextual targeting match your keywords to content and show your business to the audience where appropriate.

AdSense

Google AdSense is a easy way for you to get started monetizing your site! You can display targeted ads from Google on your website. Combine this with our AdButler product, and you can sell and manage advertising inventory on your forum!

Analytics

Google Analytics can help provide additional information about your user base, and statistics about their browsing habits and location information. This way, it means you can have a more reliable investment on your website based on the data gathered for you by Google Analytics.

Apps

Google Apps is extremely affordable cloud based office collaboration suite that offers your business benefits such as flexible and effective communication as well as hugely reduced costs in maintenance. It offers web based applications such as Google Apps mail, Google Apps calendar, Google Apps sites, and many more.

Diagostics

Crawler diagnostics provide very useful information regarding the Googlebot's activity on your website. These stats take into account much of the information about about what Google sees and indexes on your site, including providing information that ties into AdSense, AdWords and other Google products.

Crawl Rate

The Googlebot processes indexes each of the pages it can find on your site to compile a list of keywords and importance which is then used in Google search results. Sometimes, however, you might not want to be indexed too frequently, as it does add some additional traffic (a trade off for having better search results). For example, if your site is very relevant to it's topic, but very small and doesn't require much updating.

Changing the crawl rate for your site can help reduce the amount of traffic you get from Google.

 

It's worth noting that some of the services provided by Google Webmaster Tools require you to have been using it for some time before you can change them. If one of the options you want to change falls under this category, just be patient and check back every so often until you have enough data to access it!

NOTE: This is a guide to setting up Webmaster Tools, but please note that we (Sparklit) cannot guarantee that the data collected by Google is identical to our own data collected as every service has slightly different methods and criteria for such data collection!

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