I am a big lover of Webmaster Tools from Google. As with everything I recommend on Dive Marketing Tips, I don’t get paid for referring you to online services, this is simply my opinion on things that can help your scuba business.
What Are Webmaster Tools
Webmaster tools from Google provides a number of functions for you if you are a website owner. You may know from previous posts that I am also a lover of Google Analytics for monitoring website traffic but Webmaster Tools is helpful in other ways that Analytics is not.
Webmaster tools from Google gives you access to information based more on how Google views your website as opposed to Analytics which provides information on visitor numbers.
Keeping Your Website Healthy
An important tool within Webmaster Tools which I probably monitor most is the health of my websites and learning if Google has experienced any problems “Crawling” my websites.
This is vital information for a website owner for one simple reason. If Google can’t access your site, your potential customers can’t either. Many website owners don’t actually browse their own website and in many cases there is no reason to anyway. The problem here is that if your website is experiencing problems you may be the last to know. Remember that no one is going to remember a website that they could not access!
Use Webmaster Tools to see how Google is viewing your website and if there are problems accessing specific areas of your website you can address them before they start to cost you money.
Targeting Your Customers
Obviously we all want traffic, and as much traffic as possible but visitors who are in the wrong location or the wrong demographic are wasted. It will look good when you see how many visitors you receive but unless you target the right people, this is purely a vanity exercise.
With Webmaster Tools you can target a specific country you would like your website to be prominent in. This is important if for example you are a dive shop in Manchester, England. Do you really want open water enquiries from people in Las Vegas? If you are shipping diving equipment do you really want customers who have to pay more for shipping than they do for the item they have purchased?
Obviously if you are in a tourist resort like The Red Sea or Thailand this is a little bit different because you are happy to attract divers from all over the world, but if you are a local dive shop catering to local people, worldwide enquiries are completely wasted!
There are many more features within Webmaster Tools which I will cover in more detail in future posts but for now, if you are a website owner or webmaster and you don’t yet have a Webmaster Tools account yet, stop what you are doing and get one now. After all it is free and it will help you put your website in front of the right people.
Learn more about Webmaster Tools at: http://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/
If you are already a user of Webmaster Tools I would be interested to hear your thoughts on how it has helped (or not helped) you and your scuba business.
If you would like any help or advice on any aspect of managing your website or monitoring statistics please do not hesitate to contact me