Running a French Holiday Gite in Rural Brittany

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Great new Google Webmaster feature to discover internal & external site links

Over on Google Webmaster Blog, Google announces new Webmaster features to view external and internal links to your website.

Previously you've always been able to use the link: operator to give a subset of the links that Google's found to your site (e.g. views links to my holiday home website), but I've always found the results are quite variable. In my case I've been confused for some time why Google only reports 1 link to our website (from this Blog) when I know there are many many more.

Things are improved somewhat now with new features in Google Webmaster tools to now give a much fuller list of external links to your site, and also detail all the internal links that it's discovered (i.e. from one page of your site to another). Firstly you get a list of all pages on your site that Google knows about along with how many inbound links to that page there are, then you can drill into each page and see details of the external links and when Google last visited each of them.

You can search for specific pages within your site, look at the links to subsets of the data, and download the results into a spreadsheet.

All excellent stuff for understanding what Google thinks about you.

So taking it for a quick spin on our main Gite website, Google reports 253 external links to the site:
All pages (total external links)253

Many of the links were ones I knew about but there were a few surprises, plus some I know exist that didn't appear.

Interestingly a few of the links haven't been visited since December 06 with the majority being visited at various dates in January 07. Most surprising is that only 4 pages are listed for my site despite there being many more than this and I know that Google has indexed some of them. Not really quite sure why this is, I doubt it's because the content is considered duplicate.

Maybe I need to create a Google sitemap and that will "encourage" Google to index more of my pages.

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