Google Retires OLD Search Console – Makes Bing Verification Easier

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Issue #144
September 10th, 2019

Hey, lunch buddies. I hope everyone had a great weekend. Mine was fairly low key allowing for some extra family time and the much-awaited kick-off of football season. It doesn’t hurt that the Vikings won too!

I recently read an article about making mistakes and how to prevent them. I thought it would be a great complementary read to all the SEO information provided further down this email. Whether we’re client-side or agency, we always want to provide error-free work. This article serves as a good reminder that making mistakes happen, but the process we take to make sure it doesn’t happen again is more important than the immediate fix to that specific mistake.

Let’s move on to this week’s goods…

What you need to know

Article: Google retires the OLD Search Console

What’s Important:
Google announced yesterday, that it’s officially retiring the old Google Search Console reporting suite. When you visit an old GSC URL you will now be redirected to a URL within the new GSC suite.

Nick’s Take: 
While the new GSC suite shows a lot of promise it doesn’t quite meet all the needs of the webmaster. For example, the new GSC noticeably removes the ability to submit a disavow file — some SEOs strongly believe there are instances where this can still add value. 

Article: Bing Webmaster Tools now verified through Google Search Console

What’s Important:
Bing announced that its Webmaster Tools suite can now be verified through an existing Google Search Console-verified property.

Nick’s Take:
I’ve admitted in the past that I’m guilty of not leveraging Bing Webmaster Tools as much as I probably should. Part of the reason is being lazy in going through and verifying the property. I’m optimistic that this easy to verify process will help myself (and others) leverage the tool more often. 

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Interesting Reads in Your Spare Time

5 changes to Google’s Search Quality Raters guidelines – Pathinteractive
Google’s search quality raters guidelines are considered a “cheat-code” into how Google values websites within its organic search algorithm. When updates to the document are published, many in the industry flock to read into what was updated, what example are included (or removed) in addition to the words used within the document. All with the hopes of getting one step closer to that #1 ranking.

Lessons learned from adding 1000+ instances of FAQ schema – SearchEngineLand
Luca walks us through his takeaways after reviewing 1000+ keywords leveraging the FAQ snippets in the search results. My key takeaway, if your niches SERPs support FAQ schema then you should be using it. It gives you a great opportunity to eat up more SERP “real-estate” that can ultimately increase your click-through-rates.

Duplicate content: SEO advice from Google – hobo-web
Remember Lily Ray’s post at the beginning of this list outlining changes in Google’s quality raters guidelines? This is a great example of someone reviewing the guidelines in detail and interpreting Google’s take on specific SEO components. In this case, Shaun hit a home run getting approval from Google’s own John Mueller. This article is a bit of a read but is definitely worth it.

GOOGLE: Headings won’t make or break your site’s rankings – SERoundtable
While this is 100% a legitimate article, I’m including it to troll a bunch of folks that have worked with me over the past years. I always caught flack for going out on an edge saying the text within the “header” value was more important than the use of the actual <h > itself. Would I go about removing all headers from my site? No. However, if your site requires dev support to implement headers I wouldn’t have it anywhere near the top of my requests. It looks like Google might agree too.  

Nick LeRoy
Nick LeRoy
Nick has 10+ years of SEO consulting experience building and executing strategies for clients ranging from multi-billion dollar consumer packaged goods to fashion entities with hundreds of physical store locations. He also writes the weekly SEO newsletter #SEOForLunch that allows you to stay up to date with industry updates in the amount of time it takes you to eat your lunch.

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