So previously I mentioned that meta descriptions were the suspected cause of why my page links for my forum in Google were showing incorrect descriptions (see here for this). Proboards continue to impress me as most of their panel/forum design is seo friendly. I discovered there was a global headers section for each forum in the admin panel which i’d entirely missed.
I’ve updated all the meta descriptions for all pages (bar some of the plugin pages which i’m still figuring out how to go about this) and now wait for google to crawl it’s way through my forum and update it……or so I was waiting but then thought, is there anything I can do to speed up the process?
In fact there are quite a few. From searching ‘personal google bot’ and navigating through a stream of related links, I came across something called ‘Fetch as Google‘.
Fetch as Google is a tool that can index your website if you have recently made changes and to test whether Google can crawl specific pages. Amongst this I came across google webmaster tools which opened the door to a whole list of sections which will help me further optimise my website directly with Google. I’m starting to realise, the more you reach out to Google, the more you discover they’ve already extended an open hand.
Here are some of the settings you can select using google’s search console:
- You can add all your website versions e.g. http://www.thesaplingforums.com or thesaplingforums.com with and without www. and all url variations.
- Choose your preferred domain to appear in Google (extremely useful when you use a free hoster like me and you essentially have 2 domains).
- Set your geographic preference if your site targets a specific country.
- Share access with co-workers so others can access your error reports or search analytics.
- Add a sitemap to help google better crawl your website.