Tracking keywords' performance with Search Console

Learn how to build a report that tracks the keywords' performance, combining Google Search Console and Rows.

Intro

Processing over 40,000 search queries every second, Google is by far the world's favourite search engine. As a result, building your business' presence on Google involves a deep analysis of how your website’s content matches what people are searching for. In this context, users' intent is represented by the keyword(s) they use, and your goal is to optimize your content and positioning accordingly.

Google offers you this opportunity through Search Console, a free tool that can be used to break down per keyword all the most important search KPIs of your website, such as impressions, clicks and position.

In this short guide, we’ll walk you through everything you need to generate a dynamic actionable report, that shows how your website performs per keyword searched. With the power of Rows, it will all be on a single spreadsheet, saving you time and effort in exporting from the Search Console dashboard.

This is a sneak peek of what you will get:

keywords intro

What is Google Search Console

Google Search Console is a free tool designed by Google to help any website's owner to track and troubleshoot its appearance among Google search results. Among others, it allows you to quantify the amount of search traffic and monitor the keywords that led it to your website, along with the respective click-through rate.

Five are the most important sections of Search Console:

  • Submit sitemaps. A sitemap is an XML file that serves as a table of contents of your website. It is used by Search Engines to index your website correctly and know what to crawl. Submitting and keeping it updated is important to optimize the so-called crawling budget, the time Google devotes to analyzing the content of your website.
  • Error report. You should monitor this section frequently, as too many errors, such as 404 error or 500 error, among your website's pages can result in a sudden drop in valuable web traffic.
  • Links report. This section is very relevant to monitor the results of your link-building activity: it offers you an overview of all main backlinks to your website together with anchor texts and other details.
  • Performance report. Check all the main search KPIs, such as impressions, clicks, and position, breaking down data per page, keyword, device, etc
  • Mobile usability report. Discover here if there are major flaws in your mobile usability or appearance, such as content wider than the screen, clickable elements too close to each other, text too small, ...

Let's go!

To understand how we’re going to build it, let’s go step by step.

First, you need to enable the Search Console integration. Click on the "Connect" button and follow the instructions

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The typical Google Auth page will open: enter your credentials and authorize Rows to retrieve your data. Make sure your account is correctly linked to your Google Search Console.

Now you are ready to set up your report. Click on the + icon on your dashboard.

Once you land on your spreadsheet, first of all, rename it: click on its title in the top left corner and type the new name. Use it also as a title for the first page, by pasting it on the page title. It'll be easier to find it later on.

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Then, click on the Action icon in the tool bar, and look for our GET_WEBSITE_PERFORMANCE_SEARCH_CONSOLE function. On the right-hand side of your display, the function wizard will show up. At the top, you can see the name of the integration you turned on in the first steps of this guide.

Simply type the domain of the website you want to examine as it's been registered in Search Console, pick property type, Domain or URL, as well as the time frames you want to search in. In the 'Dimensions' field, pick "Queries": this will breakdown your report by the keywords used by users to land on your website

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Once you added the function, cell A1 will turn into a data cell. In Rows, a data cell stores more than a string or a number, the typical content of standard spreadsheets' cells. Here, it encloses all data retrieved from Search Console. In the formula bar, you can see the in-line output of the function wizard

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Now you need to turn this data cell into a readable table. To do it, click on the "..." icon in the right corner of the cell, and chose "Create a table".

A wizard will open to the right. Choose the columns you want to show: the first will be the list of Queries, the dimension we chose in the previous step, then pick the metrics you are most interested in, such as impressions, clicks, and position. Then set the table orientation - usually, the header is the first row - and the table behavior when new data are available. Finally, choose the destination.

While choosing the columns you want to show, a table preview will show on the spreadsheet.

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Et voilà! Your dynamic report is ready. Whenever you need to edit any parts of the table, click on the "..." icon in the table's top right corner.

You can rename the table's columns by simply double clicking on the column label:

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In case you need to reorder the table's column, just click on the "..." icon in the table's top right corner and drag and drop the headers:

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Finally, you can use Filters to exclude and sort your table results.

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