Using Google Webmaster Tools to Find Low Hanging Fruit

You can use Google Webmaster Tools to uncover some “low hanging fruit” for getting a bit more traffic to your website. The First step of course is you have to get a webmaster account in Google and verify your site. You can put the keyword “Google webmaster tool” in the Google search bar and find out how to register for your webmaster account. You can then also follow the instructions to verify your site.

One of the features of the webmaster tool is that it will show you all the major search terms that your site appeared in over a selected time period. In addition to the search terms justmyfitness it will show you the following for each term:

Number of impressions: The number of times someone searched using that search term in Google over the specified time period
Click through rate: How frequently the visitor clicked on your search engine listing
Average position: Your sites average ranking during that time period.
You also can drill down for each term and see specific data for each range of rankings. For most search terms, your site ranking will move up and down, so sometimes it is helpful to see the data for each specific ranking.

I use the average ranking to sort my results. For most sites, you will see that you rank in a lot more search terms than what you optimized for (assuming you did some optimization). What I am specifically looking for is search terms that:

Have not been optimized
Are ranking in the top 20
Have a fair amount of impressions
And are relevant to my business
Yes, these terms are in all probability going to be longer tail search terms, but these can be a gold mine for your business.

I am going to pay particular attention to terms that rank in positions 2-5 and terms that rank near the top of the second page. The reason for this is that these are the areas that get the greatest gain in traffic when you improve search engine ranking. For example if you go from the top of the second page to the bottom of the first, you can expect your click through rate to triple or even quadruple. Granted, in most cases we are talking about long tail search terms that don’t have huge volumes. Likewise any movement from the fifth position up will generate significant traffic increases. Going from 5th position to 3rd position will double your traffic, going from 3rd position to 1st position will more than quadruple your click through rate.

The key factor is that these are terms that were not optimized for, so in theory, it may not take much to improve their ranking. By using the Google webmaster tool, you can discover what web page to review. Perhaps all you have to do is modify the title tag, add some content or maybe just create a deep text link. For most long tail search terms, the result should be a slight improvement in rankings. I previously used this method by Google Analytics and manually putting terms in the search bar, but with some of Google Webmaster tools newer features, the process is a lot easier.

Example: For an ecommerce site, we discovered that the site was currently ranking #12 in a long tail search term. There were about 24 visits a month to the site for that search term. By some very rudimentary optimization of the webpage we got the term to rank #9. The monthly traffic increased to over 120 visits, and resulted in one additional order per month at average sales of $350.00. We generated about $4000.00 dollars of additional revenue per year. Thanks to Google Webmaster Tools this method becomes very easy.

Stephen Petersen is a WSI Internet Consultant that has specialized in search engine optimization for over 5 years and is the owner of SP Business Solutions. SP Business Solutions also does custom websites for businesses.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *