8 indispensable (and free) Google tools

By Matthew Royse | Posted: January 3, 2018

Google is so much more than just the world’s premier search engine.

Google has a bevy of helpful products—many of which are completely free. If you are a digital marketer, PR pro or just someone keen on learning relevant skills, Google is a priceless resource.

Here are eight gratis Google gems to take advantage of:

1. Google Page Speed

This helps your website pages load quickly on all devices—on desktop or mobile.

Google Page Speed

After you enter your URL, Google Page Speed spits out specific directions to optimize the desktop and mobile versions of your websites. You’ll receive a score and rating for mobile and desktop. Once you get your score, you can see which categories or areas require attention.

Here’s a handy guide on how to achieve a 100 out of 100 page speed score.

2. Google Mobile-Friendly Test

More and more people are accessing the internet via mobile devices, so it’s essential that your websites are optimized for mobile display. The goal is to create a seamless user experience across all types of mobile devices.

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Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test can show you how a visitor experiences your webpages on a mobile device. If you have a poor score, this is an urgent issue that could be harming your business.

3. Google AdWords

AdWords is Google’s vehicle for pay-per-click digital marketing and advertising. When people search for answers online on a topic that relates to your business, your ads appear, and you only pay when someone clicks on your ad.

There are options for display ads, YouTube video ads, text-based search ads or in-app mobile ads.

When you link AdWords to Google Analytics, you can see ad and site performance statistics, take advantage of enhanced Google remarketing capabilities and get richer data.

With Google AdWords, you can test your ads to determine what’s working and what’s failing. If you’d like to dig deeper into PPC possibilities, take advantage of these four AdWords tips.

4. Google AdWords Keyword Planner

Want to know what’s trending and what people are searching for?

Google AdWords Keyword Planner

Google AdWords Keyword Planner helps you stay on top of trends to refine your campaigns and make sure your content dovetails with relevant keywords.

This tool helps you see how often keywords are searched, how the volume changes over time and how competitive keywords are so you can target phrases that give you a better chance of ranking higher. Learn how to use Google AdWords Keyword Planner here.

5. Google Analytics

Monitoring a website’s health goes far beyond tracking traffic. Google Analytics offers a goldmine of metrics that can highlight every nook and cranny of your site.

Analyzing website data will help you better understand your clients and prospects, which can equip you to provide a better user experience and produce more relevant content. Studying Google Analytics can reveal your most profitable marketing channels.

6. Google Search Console

Google Search Console, formerly known as Google Webmaster Central and Google Webmaster Tools, helps you monitor website performance in the Google search index.

Google Search Consule

Through Google Search Console you can discover which pages on your website are the most popular, you can find and fix website errors, build and submit a sitemap and create a robots.txt file.

7. Google Trends

This underused, underappreciated gem reveals worldwide search volumes, including wonderful maps and visualizations you can embed on your website (like so):

This is a great resource to get a bead on what’s trending and how keywords evolve over time.

8. Google TAG Manager

This tool is a bit more advanced, but it’s extremely useful for those who are undaunted by a bit of code.

Google Tag Manager

Google Tag Manager helps you place, update and manage code snippets or tags in one convenient space. Tags are bits of code that enable you to track precisely what people do on your website, which is helpful for marketing and measuring purposes.

This is just a glimmer of Google’s wealth of handy goodies. You’ll be amazed at what you can find beyond the search bar.

Matthew Royse is a digital marketing director of Forsythe Technology, a global IT firm in Chicago. A version of this article originally appeared on his blog, Knowledge Enthusiast.

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