How to Create Webmaster Tools Google Account and Add Google Verification Code
Every website owner would love to see a search engine traffic graph that never stops rising.
And if you are SEO expert, that’s probably an easy task for you. But unfortunately, most of us aren’t.
If you are just starting with WordPress, and you’re not so technical, there are a lot of things that may sound overwhelming or hard to handle, especially when it comes down to SEO.
Luckily, we have WordPress tutorials that walk us through the steps of managing almost anything.
Installing Yoast SEO plugin and submitting your site to search engines are only a few of the necessary things that will help you bring more traffic to your site.
In this step-by-step tutorial, I am going to show you how to create Google webmaster account and more importantly, learn to manage it.
Even though google tools for webmasters is not something you are going to use very often, you still need it for a couple of important reasons:
- More traffic – Creating Google webmaster tools account will give you access to more tools that will help Google better index your site, hence bring more traffic to it.
- Message or warnings – You immediately receive an email if there is an issue with your site, so you can act accordingly.
- Search queries – You have access to search analytics that will help you better understand your user’s search patterns.
- Google index – See how many pages have been indexed by google, what are you main keywords and are there any resources that are blocked.
- Crawl stats – See if there are any issues when google crawls your site. Submit a sitemap and test your robots.txt file.
Add to that 1.17 billion people using google for search engine and you really know how important is this.
How to Create Webmaster Tools Account and Enter Google Verification Code
First, of course, you will need a domain, hosting and WordPress installation. Make sure to check my getting started WordPress guide to begin with. Once these are all set, start by going to this page: Google Webmasters Login:
Access your google account, create one if you don’t have (it only takes a minute):
This is your webmaster google tools dashboard where all of your sites will be listed. As you can see on the screenshot below I already have a couple of sites listed. Click on Add a Property on the top right to proceed:
A pop-up will appear asking for your domain name. Type your main domain name. If you installed WordPress using non-www use that version to proceed. For example, I used https://buildp.com, when I installed WordPress, and I am entering that version in the screen below:
The next screen will require verifying your ownership to google by downloading HTML file. Click on the file and it will be automatically downloaded to your PC:
Now access your hosting provider and go to the Cpanel:
Inside your cPanel find the Files Section, more particularly the File Manager icon. It might look like this:
Or something like this:
Locate your WordPress installation. If you installed WordPress on your primary domain name the file you just downloaded should be uploaded inside the public_html directory. If not, simply click on the folder your WordPress is located and click on the Upload button on the top:
Extra tip: If you are not sure where you WordPress is located, simply look for these folders: wp-admin; wp-content; wp-includes. Remember, you look only under public_html folder, ignore all the other folders inside your File Manager.
Click on Choose File (disregard the numbers you see below 6;4;4) > Find the file you downloaded in the previous step > Click Open and the upload will automatically start:
A small complete message will appear on the bottom left > Click Go back:
Your work inside the File manager is finished. Go back to the google webmaster tools page.
Confirm the successful upload by pressing this link:
A new tab will open telling you that everything is successful : Click continue:
Click verify to finish the process. Congratulations, you’ve successfully completed the google ownership verification procedure.
After completing all the steps above, you will receive an email to your Gmail listing 5 important things you should go through:
Below I am going to show you how to achieve each one of the steps inside the email.
Select Preferred Version of Your Website
Choosing www or non-www while installing WordPress wasn’t so important back then, but choosing the preferred version of your website now is essential. If you don’t choose a version right now, google will read both of the version of your site, which will lead to duplicate content, and you don’t want that. Sites that have duplicate content are penalized by google and ranked low in search queries.
Access your webmaster tools account and click on the little wheel icon on the top right > Click on site settings:
Choose which version of your site you would like to use www or non-www. I will suggest using the one you’ve chosen during your WordPress installation > Choose one > Click save:
An error message like this will appear telling you that you will need to also claim ownership over all of the version of your site:
In short, you will have to repeat the same google website verification process with the www. version of your site. Go back and click Add a property again:
This time, choose the other version. In my case https://www.buildp.com > Click continue:
Since the file is already present in the file manager, just click on step 3 confirm successful upload > Click verify:
Now when you go to Sete Settings > Preferred domain > Choose the one you want and click save. You will have to see this successful message:
Extra tip: If you are using SSL certificate, you will have to add two more variants of your domain name. https://www. and https:// to be able to select a preferred domain name.
Target a Specific Country
One of the best options available in google website tools is to target a specific country. If you are a local agency or you are running local eCommerce, here is a great place to tell google people from which countries you are targeting.
Inside your webmaster account click on Search traffic > International targeting > Country > Choose one from the drop-down and click save:
Submit a Sitemap
Submitting a sitemap is also something you should definitely do. This way google will know what posts and pages your website already has and more quickly show them in the search results.
Before you submit your sitemap, you need to be sure if you have one. If you don’t have a sitemap, you can easily create one by Installing Yoast SEO plugin and enabling the function. Install the plugin > Go to your WordPress dashboard > Click on Yoast Icon> XML sitemaps > Enable:
Once you have you own sitemap, go back to google webmaster tools account and click on Crawl > Sitemaps > and add your sitemap URL inside the field. Most probably you will only need to add this: sitemap_index.xml > Click submit:
Besides submitting your site to Google, creating google webmaster tools account is another thing you should definitely do, in order to increase your organic traffic.
Like you probably saw, the steps are pretty self-explanatory.
Create webmaster tools account, upload a file and target a specific country.
Don’t get me wrong. You won’t start getting tons of traffic. Yes, this will surely help you in the future, but for now, it will tell Google that your WordPress is not some random site created to spam people with some low-quality content.
Comment below if you have any questions or you need assistance setting up your own webmaster account?