Google Webmaster Tools is a specialised suite of tools to help Google and website owners, designers and optimisers to work together.
Screenshots on this page are copyright © 2016 Google Inc.
Okay, okay half of this information is out of date since a lot has changed in webmaster tools since Oct 2011. So... I promise I will update these pages in Oct 2012...which leaves me about 2 months.
If I am not enlightening you then you must seek help from the masters...Google Webmaster Tools Help (new window).
Also click if you want to have your own Webmaster tools account (new window) for a website or more than one website that you manage.
Google webmaster tools is made for ensuring your website is being "crawled" or "viewed" correctly by the Google "crawlers" or "spiders" or "robots".
Crawlers are progams that visit websites and store their information and use the information to "index" or "classify" and also to "give a ranking" to the website in relation to "keywords" or "search queries" that users input into a search engine to find information via relevant websites.
Each of the categories in the webmaster tools interface (left is a screenshot of how it looks within a webmaster tools account) is important and if you leave even one thing out you might railroad your attempts to get your website to rank well in Google searches.
That is why I created my own index to explain which ones are useful and which ones are not as useful.
Click on a page (below) to see where I have prepared screenshots of each category within webmaster tools. The various webpages I created also try to answer "What is it?" and "What is it for?" and "What can it do for me?" regarding the (currently) 23 categories of webmaster tools.
There is also some extra information based on my experience on each page for most of the current categories which are in a structure (below) which duplicates the actual structure of the account that you see when you are in it (left).
More Google webmaster resources (all open in new windows)
Google calls Webmaster Central the Companion site of Google Webmaster Help Forum.
Help on 4 topics related to +1 metrics.
Help for the Site Configuration master category within Webmaster Tools.
Author: David Thatcher