Part III – Webmaster Tools – Advanced SEO Tips for Your Exponent CMS Website
If you're the webmaster of an Exponent CMS website that is undergoing a search engine marketing program, there are several metrics you'll need to analyze to measure the performance of your campaign.
Among those basic trends are web page indexation, as well as website traffic and its sources.
In this, the third part of my Advanced SEO Tips for Exponent CMS Websites series, I'll discuss how to verify and install Google & Bing Webmaster Tools. In later posts, I'll discuss how to create and upload XML sitemaps, as well has how to setup and install Google Analytics.
Webmaster tools allow you to manage the indexation of your website, as well as analyze its visibility in the search index. Before you can do this, though, you must first verify ownership of your site with both Google and Bing search engines.
Install Google Webmaster Tools
After logging into your Google Account, you'll want to go to https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/. To setup your website profile, you'll need to select the red “Add a Site” Button on the right hand side of your screen.
A popup box will then appear, where you'll type in your website's domain name.
You'll next be directed to Verify ownership of your website.
There are multiple ways to verify ownership including inserting a meta tag in the header of your theme file or selecting your DNS provider, but the method I like to use is uploading an html verification file.
Simply download your HTML verification file and then upload that file to your public_html directory through cPanel or FTP.
Once your file is uploaded, go back to Google Webmaster Tools and click the red verify button.
If you've successfully uploaded your verification file, you'll get a Green check mark letting you know you've retained ownership of the site.
Install Bing Webmaster Tools
Similarly to Google, Bing Webmaster Tools can also be verified multiple ways. First you'll go to http://www.bing.com/toolbox/webmaster and either sign in or create a new account.
Once you are logged in you'll see your Bing Webmaster Tools domain dashboard and immediately you'll notice the “Add a Site” box where you can quickly type in your site's domain and then click “Add”
You'll then be directed to a screen where you're given the option to declare whether an XML sitemap has been uploaded to your server:
If you don't have an XML sitemap already on your web server, you can simply click “Add” and move forward through the process. I'll discuss creating and uploading XML sitemaps in Part IV of this advanced SEO tips for Exponent CMS websites.
You can download your “BingSiteAuth.xml” verification file from Bing and then push that file up to public_html through FTP or cPanel/WHM. Once you've uploaded the file, click the “Verify” button to complete the process.
Once you've verified ownership of your website with both Google and Bing Webmaster Tools, you can then remove URLs from the search index, view any crawl errors experienced by search spiders, analyze the overall health of your site, as well as submit XML sitemaps - all of which are essential tasks for properly maintaining a website undergoing an advanced SEO program.
About the Author
This article was written by search marketing consultant Chris Everett of Captivate Search Marketing in Atlanta, Georgia.
Chris has worked with the Exponent CMS open source project since 2007.