Earlier this week, Google launched a new feature that allows verified site owners to grant limited third-party access to their website data within Webmaster Tools.

The ability to grant third-parties full verified access to Webmaster Tools data has been around for a few years now, but as any user will know this scenario isn’t always ideal. The new feature allows site owners more control by restricting what data third-part users can see.

Not only is this good for websites that require access from multiple parties, but it also means that site owners no longer have to share their personal login details, meaning others can login without being able to modify account settings.

Managing user restrictions

On the Webmaster Tools homepage you will see the ‘Manage Site’ drop-down menu to the right of the page. When you click this you will see an ‘Add or remove users’ option (previously this read ‘Add or remove owners’)


Selecting the “Add or remove users” menu item will take you to the new User administration page where you can add or delete up to 100 users. This is where you can specify each user’s level of access.

There are three levels of access available; ‘owner’, ‘full’ or ‘restricted’:

  • Owner – have complete control over their sites. They can view all site data and perform all site actions. New owners are added on the Site verification page. Once you’ve added a new owner, that owner will need to add your site to their Webmaster Tools account.
  • Full – will be able to view all data and take most actions, such as changing site settings or demoting sitelinks
  • Restricted – only have access to view most data, and can take some actions such as using Fetch as Googlebot and configuring message forwarding for their account. Restricted users will see a “Restricted Access” indicator at various locations within Webmaster Tools.

Visit the Webmaster Tools Permissions page to see a complete list of features available to each level of user.

If you have any questions about this new feature, checkout the Webmaster Central help forum.