What is Google Search Console (GSC) and How is it Different than Google Analytics (GA)?
As a small business owner today, ensuring your website is fully optimized for search engines is critical for your success. While search engine optimization (SEO) can be a challenging concept to fully grasp, fortunately there are tools available to help you analyze and improve how search engines like Google see your website.
Google Search Console (GSC), previously known as Google Webmaster Tools, is a free tool that allows you to monitor, maintain, and improve your website’s performance in Google search results. Keep reading to learn more about Google Search Console and how to utilize this tool to help increase organic traffic to your small business.
Actions You Can Perform with Google Search Console
When you sign up for Google Search Console, there are different tools and reports made readily available to help you perform the following actions:
- Show sites that link to your website.
- Verify that Google can find your web pages and crawl your site.
- Submit a sitemap to Google to improve indexing and crawling of your website.
- Receive alerts when Google encounters spam violations or other security issues on your website.
- View and fix problems with indexing and crawling of pages on your website.
- Request new content to be indexed rapidly or existing content be re-index upon a major update.
- Analyze and troubleshoot mobile usability issues.
- Analyze and address page speed issues impacting your Core Web Vitals.
- View your eligible rich snippets (“Enhancements” section) created via using structured data (schema) and address errors as needed.
- Inspect how Google sees a specific page on your website.
- View the Google search traffic data and insights for your website.
How Google Search Console Differs from Google Analytics
Both Google Analytics and Google Search Console are invaluable (and free!) tools for website owners, each serving different functions.
What is Google Analytics (GA)?
Google Analytics addresses your website’s performance and offers information on segments such as traffic from online advertising, direct traffic, and traffic from website referrals. Using Google Analytics, you can view who your website visitors are and where they are from/how they are finding your website. You can also view how visitors are navigating your website and see insights on which pages are most popular, where do visitors commonly leave your website, how long are the spending on each page, and more.
How is Google Search Console Different Than Google Analytics?
Differing from Google Analytics, Google Search Console provides you high-level information on traffic from search engines, shows you who is linking to your site, and provides warnings regarding a myriad of technical errors on your website.
In a nutshell, think of Google Search Console as providing more technical data about your website’s performance in Google search and technical issues that are present, while Google Analytics provides data on your visitors and data on how they use your website.
Using Google Search Console, you can monitor and improve your search engine optimization (SEO) strategy via addressing technical issues and performance bottlenecks.
Need Even More SEO and Site Performance Info Than Google Search Console Provides?
While Google Search Console is great at giving quite a bit of raw information, it certainly still has limitations. Furthermore, Google Search Console may tell you what is wrong but rarely provides info on how to fix those issues.
If you are looking for even more detail and analysis capabilities to improve your SEO, we would recommend using a robust SEO tool like Semrush which can crawl and analyze your website with even more in-depth analysis. Semrush also pulls in relevant data from Google Search Console, Google Analytics, and Semrush’ proprietary SEO analysis data points.
Additionally, a tool like Semrush can provide more detailed recommendations on how to improve your website’s SEO and can systematically track your overall progress. Try out Semrush for free to see if it can take your SEO to the next level.
Improve Your SEO with Igniting Business
At Igniting Business, we strive to help you better understand search engine optimization and improve your small business’ search engine rankings. For more helpful SEO tools, view our recommended tools page. To learn more about our SEO services or schedule a consultation with our SEO specialists, contact us today!
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