After a long wait, Google is starting to roll out theirnew search console with a significantly updated UI and up to 16 months of data.
The Google Search Console has always been one of my favorite SEO tools.
Having had one of my sites in thebeta the last few months, I found myself relying on it even more.
It will be great to have this much data available for all websites in my Google Search Console account.
Even with the extended data in Google’s Search Console, the data is still normalized and averaged out over time; however, it is some of the best directional data available from any tool.
With appropriate filtering, you can find some really actionable insights that can’t be found anywhere else.
Here are some things you can start looking at right away as soon as you see the new Google Search Console in your account.
Understanding the breakdown of your brand vs. non-brand is critical on many levels.
Excluding brand impressions and clicks from your search metrics reveals the true visibility of your SEO efforts.
Likewise, viewing only brand search over the 16 months now visible in Google Search Console can shed some valuable insights as to the strength of a brand.
This metric can answer important questions, such as:
You can search for your brand name by choosing Queries containing and typing it into the field.
Tip:The query you are filtering should not be the full brand name as it should also pick up common misspellings.
For example, I truncate monkey down to “monk”.
Use the Queries not containing filter to exclude the brand name from search and only see non-brand keywords.
2. Homepage vs. Non-Homepage
Similar to the brand search filter, viewing homepage vs non-homepage traffic can illuminate the effect of an SEO campaign.
While for many larger brands a major portion of traffic will land on the homepage, it is important that non-homepage pages are also ranking and receiving search traffic.
You can come up with a homepage-only search report by choosing “URL is exactly” and typing in your homepage URL in the field.
You can also compare the traffic of two specific pages if you changed a URL during the last 16 months:
3. Brand Impact by Dimension
More than just clicks to the site, it is also important to look at the other dimensions of brand (and non-brand) traffic.
Within Google Search Console you can see countries, devices, and then view the impressions, CTR, and rankings.
Deep dive into these reports to see if there are any outliers which deserve attention.
Here is how you would get the country (and filter it for specific countries)
Here is how you look at device.
Within these reports, you can toggle on queries, CTR, impressions, and rankings.
As there is now 16 months’ worth of data in GSC, you can see YoY data for the last four months.
Look at clicks, impressions rank, and CTR by page and keywords.
Here is how to get 16 months of data:
You can also look at custom chunks of data with beginning and end dates.
Time period comparisons are also available. They are slotted into the dialog box for dates under Compare :
Google Search Console has an additional hamburger menu which allows you to create items to filter.
You can have multiple filters on at the same time and narrow down to specific scenarios.
Note: It’s hard to demo the power of this data without revealing sensitive data, so you will have to play with this menu on your own.
Here’s how to find that hamburger menu:
Now that you know how to dig through these reports, here are some key insights and action items that you should look for in your data.
Once the new Google Search Console is fully released, SEO pros should see that this new version is light years ahead of the old one when it comes to finding actionable insights.
In the meantime, there are a few things to note:
In-post Photos: Screenshots taken by Eli Schwartz, January 2018.