Everyone is familiar with Google as a search engine and free email client, but you may not be aware of the many free web tools available through Google. Tech-savvy webmasters rely on tools like Google Analytics to maximize their online audience. Here is a quick look at our favorite Google apps you should be using.
Google AdWords is Google’s pay-per-click advertising program that allows website owners to place ads based on keywords to drive traffic to their sites. Customers who are searching for your product or service are displayed ads on Google and their content network. Site owners pay a fee when people click on your ad. This type of advertising can be extremely effective when paired with the right mix of keywords, product and cost can be achieved.
AdSense is Google’s advertising program that allows web owners to make money through their website with Google administered ads. Web admins are paid on a pay-per-click basis. Ads can be personalized to fit the look and feel of your site and Google provides real-time reports that let you know how your ads are doing and how much you are making.
YouTube having your own YouTube channel is the best way to catalog and store videos online. Why hog your hard drive when you have free and virtually unlimited access to YouTube. Most sites will benefit from having some types of videos on their site to lure in traffic. Every day millions of people search YouTube for video how-tos. If you are selling a product, use a video to show how to use it. If you are marketing a service, show examples of how you have helped other customers. The possibilities are endless!
Google Docs is Google’s online office suite. Use it to create and share text documents, spreadsheets, presentations, and more. Docs is especially useful to organizations that need to have many people work on and review a project across different operating systems.
Google Webmaster Tools gives you the tools to control how Google sees your site. Add, delete, and update URL’s so old and inaccurate information is not being indexed, let Google know when you have added content and how to index it.
Google Analytics Arguably the single most important tool in your web developer’s box is Google Analytics. This is how you find out who is viewing your site, where the traffic is coming from, how individual pages are performing, and more. In fact, the many reports available are too numerous to name here. If you only use one Google product-this is the one.