Search engine optimization is not a one-time task but an ongoing process. As your site grows and Google’s algorithm evolves, inevitable SEO issues will likely occur.
Access the Performance report to see top-10 rankings page-by-page or with a common modifier. Click image to enlarge.
Then sort by “Position” to see keywords with the lowest average ranking in the top 10 results. Look for queries with a decent impressions count, which indicates good search volume.
- Using redirects or canonical tags to point Google to the URL you want to rank,
- Linking internally only to the canonical URL,
- Including only the canonical version in the sitemap.
What competitors don’t have is your Search Console data, which often includes queries you were unaware of — a competitive advantage.
Search Console’s Pages section lists duplicates. Click image to enlarge.
Check the Enhancements reports quarterly to ensure you are not losing traffic over small things with quick fixes. Google will not list these as errors and thus will not notify you of these opportunities via email.
View the lowest ranking keywords within the first 10 results and analyze the number of impressions to assess search volume. Click image to enlarge.
Sort the report by click-through rate to see the queries with the lowest rate on top. Click image to enlarge.
Once you fix the errors, update and resubmit the sitemap to force Google to recognize the changes faster.
Clicking any of the items in the report will take you to a list of URLs linked internally (or in the sitemap) but not indexed by Google. Use the “Inspect URL” link to the right to discover which page Google is indexing instead and which page links to the duplicate.
Experiment with this report to see top-10 rankings page-by-page or with a common modifier. To do that, use the filters on top of the graph.
Don’t forget to review both mobile and desktop search result pages in your analysis, as they are often different.
You’ve worked hard to achieve first-page positions in Google. But that effort is wasted if searchers don’t click your listings.
Duplicate pages split link authority, meaning both pages have lower chances of ranking. Duplicate content is common for most sites for legitimate reasons. But you can negate the problem by:
Note an average position between 7 and 10 with a good amount of clicks indicates users are not satisfied with the top six results, representing a huge opportunity.
Find underperforming search queries in the “Performance” section and filter by “Position.”
The “Enhancements” section of Search Console lists all qualifying rich snippets. There’s no guarantee that a snippet will always appear “enhanced” (i.e., rich) if it’s listed in this report, but the chances are pretty good.
Rich Snippets Fails
Search Console identifies (in its “Pages” section) duplicate pages that have internal inbound links, noting “Duplicate without user-selected canonical” or “Duplicate, Google chose different canonical than user.”
To find underperforming searches, go to the “Performance” section and filter (using the funnel at the right) for queries ranking on the first page of search results, where the “Position” is smaller than 11.
You will see Enhancements only if you have structured data (e.g., Schema.org) on your pages.
However, these queries may not be generating traffic if you have not optimized for them. A minor on-page tweak will sometimes make a difference. For example, you may include a section on a page addressing the topic of the query or answering a related question. Alternatively, the queries could inspire a whole new page.