The Google Search Console Insights email that drops into your inbox each month can be a powerful tool for understanding your website’s performance and informing your SEO strategy.
While some people may just take a quick glance at the numbers and move on, your Search Console Insights reports can provide vital insights into how users are interacting with your site and reveal data to help you optimize your website strategy.
Let’s take a look at what Google Search Console Insights is and how these reports can help you.
What Is Google Search Console Insights?
Google Search Console Insights is a feature within Google Search Console (GSC) that presents an easy-to-understand group of reports to help you understand site performance.
It pulls data from GSC and Google Analytics into one place to compile the reports.
Search Console Insights offers five distinct performance views. Each gives a general overview, while also enabling users to drill down to top-performing pages and gain insights into specific search queries.
The Insights reports offer a remarkable amount of easily understood and actionable information in the form of straightforward snapshots of website search performance – ensuring that every website stakeholder can review and understand how well their content is performing.
How To Find The Search Console Insights Report
The link to Search Console Insights is not in the left-hand navigation where one might expect to see it.
The Insights reports can be accessed from the search console Overview page, in a link at the very top of the page.
Clicking through to the Search Console Insights page shows a page that looks like this:
The Search Insights homepage shows the following reports:
- A link to the Achievements report.
- Performance on Google.
- Your Growing Content.
- Your Most Popular Content.
- How People Find You.
Insights Achievements Report
The top of the page contains a somewhat hidden link to the Achievements report. It’s easy to overlook.
The image of a trophy with the word Achievements is actually a link to the Achievements report.
Screenshot Of The Link To The Achievements Report
Clicking the link takes the user to the Achievements page, which lists milestones for the site.
There is also a link to a Search Console report containing more details.
Screenshot Of Achievements Report
The Achievement report shows data for the past 28 days against the background of data from the entire time data has been collected, archived as far back as 2019.
There are two reports in the Achievements section.
Achievements Report #1
The first report is an “in progress” Achievement report measured in clicks.
The In Progress report displays the number of clicks the site is currently attracting. A trend arrow shows whether the clicks are trending upwards or downwards.
For content trending downward, there is a link to a search console report showing which pages are trending downward.
Screenshot Of Link To Search Console
The In Progress report is useful for starting an investigation of why certain pages and search queries are underperforming compared to the previous 28-day period.
The Search Console report displays the underperforming webpages, number of clicks, clicks for the previous period, and the difference in clicks between the two periods in the comparison.
Achievements Report #2
The second report is called the Google Search Impact report.
This report shows the total number of clicks the site has attracted.
Performance On Google Report
Clicking back to the main Insights overview page, we see the Performance on Google report next.
The report is a graph that shows the daily fluctuations of site traffic in terms of clicks from Google.
The report shows the number of clicks for the past 28 days and an arrow pointing up or down, which indicates whether the clicks are trending up or down.
Your Growing Content Report
This report consists of a list of URLs corresponding to webpages receiving more traffic this period than the previous one.
The report lists the following information:
- A list of 15 URLs of pages that are trending upward.
- Number of clicks gained in comparison to the previous 28-day period.
- A percentage that represents the percentage of increase from the previous period.
- Top search queries associated with the webpage popularity growth.
The information provided in the Your Growing Content report can be used to identify whether a cyclical trend is driving the increase, an algorithmic change has improved rankings, marketing efforts have been successful, or content updates have provided positive validation.
Your Most Popular Content Report
The Most Popular Content report shows the 15 most popular pages from the entire website.
The data shown includes:
- A list of 15 URLs of the most popular webpages.
- A list of top search queries associated with each URL.
- Total number of clicks to each popular webpage.
The Most Popular Content report is useful for understanding what topics the site is authoritative for.
If the homepage is one of the most popular pages, this could be a good or not-so-good thing.
The list of search queries in this report that are associated with the homepage is meaningful.
For example, it’s good if the top search queries are variations of the brand name because that’s a signal of popularity, that people love the site so much they’re searching for it by name.
However, if the top queries are non-brand keywords, then this could be a sign that maybe the inner pages need work to get them ranking for more topics.
A site with the majority of non-brand keyword traffic to the homepage isn’t necessarily doing poorly, particularly if the site is a local business.
How People Find You Report
This report shows data about the top search queries used to drive traffic to the website.
The report shows the most searched queries and the upward-trending search queries.
The data is accessible through a dropdown menu marked like this:
- Most searched queries (past 28 days).
- Most trending queries (past 28 days).
Screenshot Of Dropdown Menu
The Most Searched Queries section displays the following data:
- Search query – The query used to find the site.
- Clicks – Total number of clicks by users.
- Avg. position – Average position in the search engine results pages (SERPs) for the query.
- Top search queries – Queries that got the most clicks.
The Trending Search Queries section shows which queries are trending upwards, measured by clicks.
As with everything else, the data is a comparison to the previous 28 days.
Tip For Understanding The Reports
Search Insights contains hidden tips explaining the data you’re looking for and how to use it.
But the links are hidden behind a school graduation cap icon that is located in the top right-hand corner of each report.
Below is a screenshot of one of the informational popups:
What Can You Learn From Search Console Insights?
Search Console Insights is a helpful tool for anyone who wants to master their website’s search performance.
Whether you’re an SEO consultant conducting a site audit or a site owner looking for a performance snapshot, these reports shed light on your overall site health and trends in performance.
By highlighting important metrics and insights, Google Search Console Insights enables stakeholders – regardless of their SEO knowledge – to understand the trajectory of their website and make more informed decisions about their SEO strategy.
While the report is still in beta and not yet a final product, what is currently offered is valuable for all stakeholders who want to understand their website better and boost its performance in search.
Featured image by Shutterstock/Luis Molinero