Google Webmaster Central has officially come out of beta, about a year-and-a-half after Google Sitemaps – core of the service later renamed Google Webmaster Central – launched. To celebrate, a new era for Google. The Official Google Webmaster Central Blog becomes the first official Google blog to gain comments. Google announces both news items here, including a tidbit that Google Webmaster Central now has more than one million users.
The Google Webmaster Central team already actively monitors a number of third-party discussion forums such as Digital Point Forums, Search Engine Watch Forums and Webmaster World. They also actively participate by commenting on blogs across the web. In addition, they also participate in Google’s own Google Webmaster Help group within Google Groups.
Still, people like to comment on blog posts directly. We saw Google come under renewed criticism (see here, here and here) earlier this year for not allowing comments in association with official blog posts, in the way that Yahoo, Microsoft and Ask do. So in what’s now billed as a "Valentine’s Day gift," comments finally come to Google via at least one official blog.
Want to comment or see comments? Find the "Permalink" link at the bottom of any posts on the blog’s home page. That jumps you to the post itself, where you will see a "Post a Comment" link at the end of the post. If there are comments, you’ll see these as well. To comment, you have to be registered through Blogger.
One more tip. Not understanding why your links to particular Google posts fail to show up? Perhaps you’ve been finding errors like I was getting similar to this:
Ping ‘http://adwords.blogspot.com/2007/02/meet-click-quality-team.html’ failed: HTTP error: 405 Method Not Allowed
Here’s how to see your links show up. The "Links to this post" that are shown for Google blog posts are powered by Google Blog Search. Your link will show up if Google Blog Search discovers you’re linking to a particular blog post on one of the Google official blogs.
Next, the most important point. Google Blog Search only looks at what’s in your feed, not what’s on the page you’ve written. This is crucial for those who only put out partial feeds. If your link to a blog post is "buried" in a story and doesn’t show up in the partial feed (usually the first few opening paragraphs of a story), then Google Blog Search won’t find it. Ping all you want – that link won’t be a trackback item on an official Google blog. Instead, you need the link to show up within the feed you put out.