How to Leverage the Fetch as GoogleBot Tool

Online marketers know that although the way a user sees a webpage is most important, the way Google sees a webpage is a close second. Google bots evaluate webpages and see these webpages differently, which is why SEOs have to use Meta data and other little clues in order to help a Google bot understand what the webpage is really about. After all, Google bots can’t see pictures, and they can read a piece of text and use logic and reason to determine what it’s discussing.

For quite some time, companies were forced to research what Google bots saw and then try and do their best to optimize their page for both users as well as the bots—and the latter wasn’t easy because it was all based on assumption. Fortunately, a tool called Fetch as Google has come to the rescue.

How the Fetch as Google Tool Works

The Fetch as Google tool was created back in 2011 and is a way for webmasters to see their website the way that Google bots see the website (or mobile bots if that’s what you prefer). Google Webmaster Tools explained that there are a few different things that you’ll be able to see when using the tool:

  • The HTTP response returned by your server
  • The date and time of your crawl request
  • HTML code
  • At least the first 100KB of visible text on a page.

You can use Fetch as Google as long as you have verified your website on Google Webmaster tools. Then all you have to do is click the site that you want to check out, click “Fetch as Google” under the health section, select web, and finally click “Fetch.” It’s as simple as that.

Once your page is found (or “fetched” as the tool likes to call it), you’re set to go. The tool allows you to fetch up to 500 URLs per week. Assuming that you had a successful fetch, you can submit your URL to Google for re-indexing. You can submit just the URL or the URL and all the pages linked from it.

How Webmasters Can Take Advantage of the Fetch as Google Tool

Being able to see your website the way that Google bots see your website is definitely interesting, but it can actually serve a few important purposes. A few of the advantages include:

  1. Hackers. This is one of the biggest reasons that webmasters use the tool. It’s sometimes tough to know whether or not your site has been hacked, and even if you did know you’ve been hacked it can be tough to know whether or not you’ve fixed the issue. Using this tool will help you see what Google sees and decide if you have spammy terms in the back end of your website that you didn’t even know where there. Hackers like to do this because you will see normal content, but Google will not. Fortunately, now you can see what Google sees.
  2. Indexed Content – Websites are constantly switching content, and it’s important to feel confident that Google bots are following all of these changes. The Fetch as Google tool does not follow re-directs, but it should follow changes content and video.
  3. New Pages – Whenever you add a new page to your website it’s important to use the tool right away to make sure that page is being indexed correctly. In the majority of cases it should be, but it’s good to use the tool as a precaution.

The Fetch as Google tool is free to use, so it’s quickly gaining speed when it comes to popularity. Test it out and let us know your thoughts.

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