2008 Guide to Google & Webmaster Communication

Sep 9, 2008 • 10:05 am | comments (1) by | Filed Under Other Google Topics

Following another Google Popular Picks thread, a forum member asks about the effectiveness of Google communication with the general public. How do you enable two-way communication with Google about your web site? The first suggested step is to register your site with Google Webmaster Tools.

Now that you're registered, you may want some insights into what that Webmaster Tools account privilege will afford you. You can be informed from Google about malware that may be inadvertently hosted on your site, for example (see here). You may also receive messages about infinite space (too many links with no real original content as explained here).

Google's tools also let you report paid links and report spam instances in the index.

If your crawl rate has changed, you will receive a notice from Google.

Finally, if you have violated Webmaster Central guidelines, you may also receive a message.

It's great to use the Google Webmaster Tools for this communication, but one forum member (and I) feel that Google should take advantage of the RFC2142 requirement to contact webmasters via the necessary support mailbox names. By default, those names are postmaster, hostmaster, usenet, news, webmaster, nntp, uucp, and ftp. Obviously, you don't need to maintain all of those accounts; I'd prefer correspondence to go to my webmaster@domain.com address. Otherwise, you're somewhat held responsible to check your Google Webmaster Tools page every so often to see if any alerts come in -- but when a problem arises, you shouldn't necessarily be going to Google; they should be coming to you.

Forum discussion continues at Google Groups.

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