- Search Console – as we recommended last year, the Google Search Console account should be an essential addition to your website marketing tools, and is free to create. Once verified, you can access a range of valuable information, recommendations and reports about your website activity on Google, with some key reports being the search analytics reports, link reports and crawl error report. Read more here.
- Robots and Sitemap – as part of the Search Console settings, as well as a best practice technique, make sure your site is using the robots.txt file to provide search engine spiders with the access commands for your site, and that linked to this, you have a sitemap.xml file to get your pages found and indexed by Google. Remember to keep this updated as well with any changes to your website structure. Read more here.
- WordPress Updates – we’ve covered this issue in a previous newsletter, but if your site has been built with WordPress and uses a range of plugins, make sure these are kept updated and you regularly check for new updates to prevent the chance of the site being hacked. Read more here.
- Google My Business – whether you are targeting a local market or not, your business should ensure that you have a Google My Business listing set up and this is owned and updated as necessary. These listings have gone through a number of confusing and often frustrating changes in the past few years, but they remain a key marketing tool for local or brand name searches. Read more here.
We hope you find the above checklist useful to compare how your search engine marketing and website activity is set up ready for 2017. As usual, if you have any questions or need help with any of these items, please contact us now for further information.