Getting started with Google Site Kit

In 2019 Google released a WordPress plugin called Site Kit, intended as a quick and easy way to add Google services to your site, including:

  • Google Webmaster Tools integration
  • Google Tag Manager
  • Google Analytics 
  • Google Web Page Insights
  • Google Adsense

If you are using any of the above services on your WordPress site, and specifically if you have a plugin for these services, then you might want to check out the plugin.

One of the nice things about the Site Kit is that it has been designed with setups like our WordPress Hosting in mind, making it super easy to configure and ensuring it will work alongside our staging system.

Installing Google Site kit

Installing Google Site kit on your main site is just like installing any other plugin. Go to plugins -> add new, then search for Google Site Kit, click on install and activate.

Once installed, make sure you remove any plugins that manage the Google products Site Kit is replacing. You can set up each individually so if you have Monster Insights connected to Google Tag Manager, you can disable the Monster Insights plugin then activate the Google Analytics option in Site Kit. 

Installing on your staging site

If you have Site Kit installed on your main site, and want to also run it on your staging site, but don’t want the “stats” and other features there, you can install Site Kit as above but do not go through the setup steps. Instead go to the Google Site Kit homepage and download the staging helper plugin and activate. Then on your staging site, go to Site Kit -> Developer Settings and add:

  • Custom Site URL as your live site
  • If you don’t have Google Developer Credentials there is link to create them
  • Add the client ID and secret to the relevant fields

Once that’s done, enter your setup flow.

IMPORTANT

If you push your Database to live from staging, you need to reset on the live site (once pushed) by going to Site Kit -> Settings -> Admin Settings and click reset then readd your credentials. 

If you don’t do this it all gets a little messy.

So why should you use Google Site Kit?

Site Kit is by far the smoothest integration of Google Analytics with per page insight; the ability to start-up experiments within your site directly. Likewise getting Google Adsense on a page is just a couple of clicks if you are already enrolled. It also comes with Google backing and support; Google themselves have partnered with reputable WordPress agency XWP.

All this to say this is actually a well-engineered plugin that provides a lot of benefits, and will not be slowing your site down unlike many of its competitors.

If you’re using Google products on your site, take a look at Site Kit.

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