I spent the better part of a Sunday afternoon trying to submit a site to Google’s Webmaster Tools. Not knowing the ins and outs of how to do certain things like submitting a blog; I dug into Google’s website.
Google offers 3 ways for you to prove a site is yours by inserting code into your files. You’ll need Google Analytics to track your site visitors, plus all the other slick features Webmaster Tools has to offer. It is imperative to get this part of your blog correct. Here are Google’s 3 options to insert the verification code:
- Insert meta tag,
- Insert HTML, or
- Configure your DNS Server with verification code.
The problem is, these methods do not work for a WordPress blog. They work great for a regular static website, but not a blog. I tried all the above insertion methods to frustration. Hours of it! I also did a lot of reading and research. I tried to use option #1. It won’t work. You can’t use option #1 because of the dynamic nature of blogs, there is no “home page”.
There goes my blood pressure …
Next method seemed the easiest and the most promising, it goes something like this: Create a page with the verification code as the heading of the page — option #2. Inserting the HTML code in this way is easy, right? Click publish. I go back to Webmaster Tools. I Click verify. Error Messages: “Cannot be verified” . “Wrong verification information”. I check over everything I did. Again and once more. Chit.
The third option I didn’t even try. Google’s message on their site goes like this: “Submit your site with the verification code to your DNS nameservers. Results may not show for a while, we will periodically check your nameservers for the code”.
“Say what chicken butt?”
Most of us need stuff done right away, needless to say this wasn’t an option for me.
So what did I do wrong? There are LOTS of websites that say this method of creating a page with the HTML code as the page title works. HUH?! I don’t mean to piss in their Cheerios; but that is just plain misinformation! After hours and hours of reading and trying things with frustration, I went looking into plugins that are available. I’ve built regular websites and I know how to verify those; I started thinking that there must be some plugin that I could use that would incorporate a “page properties/HTML” window just like most website creatin’ software has. The window allows you to insert a page title, description, keywords, and other relevant info.
I finally found a way to do it with NO PROBLEMS. It’s a plugin called, “All In One SEO Pack” Here are the steps:
1. Download the plug in, All In One Seo Pack. To find it, login to admin panel >> go to plugins tab >> click add new >> search box, type “All In One Seo Pack” >> Download.
2. Next, configure your settings. Copy the meta code option from Google, go down to the options configuration panel (found on your plugin list page), and fill out these edit boxes:
- Home title — Title of your blog
- Home description — What your blog is about
- Home keywords — related keywords for your blog
- Additional home headers. This is where the magic happens so it is very important to copy the meta code correct. Insert it in this box.
3. Highlight the meta code. Paste the meta code into box labeled “additional home headers”.
You are immediately taken to your stats page. You’re in! Yey!
Next, submit a sitemap. The purpose of submitting a sitemap is to let Google index your web pages and file them so they can be found in the search engines. You do this by downloading the plugin Google XML Sitemaps. Once you download this, click build a sitemap. Less than a second later (I’m not kidding!) this plugin notifies and automatically sends your sitemap to Google, Bing, Ask, and a few others. Make sure you look at all the page details. You have to configure Yahoo with your ID info.
After your sitemap is built, you should manually submit the newly created sitemap to Google in Webmaster tools also. The plugin page states that Google has been notified; however, to help speed up the process, you should do this too. Here’s how:
Sign in to your Google account >> go to Webmaster tools >> Click your site’s link >> bottom of the page, click “submit a sitemap” >> specify the folder: [yoursite.com/sitemap.xml] >> that’s it!
Just to be on the safe side.