Google are asking its users what they would like to see added, improved, removed or changed in its Webmaster Tools application and in search results in 2015. You can read Google’s invitation to comment here, and join in the conversation here.
If you’re a little short on new ideas, you can also review the suggestions from other users and vote on them.
Among the most popular suggestions right now are:
* Increasing the amount of information and number of reports available from Webmaster Tools
* Clear reports to highlight any pages that have been penalised by Google’s algorithm, with actionable points on how to resolve the problem
* Better filtering in the backlinks report; for example allowing you to filter out links that are “nofollow” and therefore not passing on any value
* A better API for Webmaster Tools to allow people to build their own tools and reports
The request for user feedback comes hot on the heels of the announcement from Google’s John Mueller earlier this month that the Google Webmaster Tools team is working on updating both the layouts and the text of messages delivered to webmasters through its software. Webmasters have been complaining for some time that the messages from Google Webmaster Tools are less than clear, especially around new additions such as the Disavow Links option.
Some pundits are saying that 2015 could be the year that Google’s dominance in the search market slips, having already lost its position as the default search in Firefox and with both Yahoo! and Bing vying to replace Google as the default search engine for iOS and iPhone. That being the case, it makes sense for Google to turn back to their community of webmasters, SEO specialists, and web marketers to build some “brand loyalty” and make sure that the focus of these consultants, and crucially their clients, remains with Google.
The outreach certainly seems to be working, because suggestions are coming in thick and fast. Interestingly very few of the suggestions, if any, are for changes to the way that search results are displayed. It would appear that most Webmasters aren’t too concerned with how Google displays the search results, as long as they at (or near) the top of them!
If there are things that you find frustrating with working with Google today, this is your chance to let them know.