How Does Google Crawl and Rank Sites?

How Does Google Crawl and Rank Sites?

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Did you know that 40% of social marketers agree that social media marketing has become more difficult in the past year? Although marketing goods and services through social media is in its relative infancy, almost half of all marketers are having a tough time keeping up. However, in spite of the difficulty in managing a social media campaign, 89% of social marketers have noted that it has brought about exposure in ways that would otherwise not have been possible.

Today we are going to discuss why people search for things on the internet, what happens when someone enters a search query, what is the first thing a search engine does when prompted with a search, and finally, conclude with what really happens when someone enters a search request.

What are some of the reasons people search for things on the internet?

The internet has turned into one of the greatest tools for human consumption ever invented. When people are sitting in the living room debating the age of Mick Jagger, how many times has Clint Eastwood been married, or how many Popes have there been, someone will invariably shout, “Google it!”

If someone has a washing machine that does not work, a simple Google search will bring about more content than anyone could look at in 100 lifetimes. During this hot political climate, people may be searching for information pertinent to their political persuasion. People search for one of three reasons: answers to burning questions, solutions to difficult problems, and useful or useless information.

A search query is carefully and creatively devised and typed into the Google search bar. It usually takes less than a second to present the searcher with millions of websites relevant to the search. With Google algorithms such as they are, most users will find what they are looking for on the first page. Sometimes people will take a quick look at the first few sites in the search and decide if they need to revise their search query.

SEO marketers need to be aware of the psychology of why people are searching for whatever it is they are searching for. Are they looking for something to do? Such as listening to music, watching a video, or playing online games? Are they seeking to satisfy their intellectual curiosity and need some advanced knowledge in calculus? Are they searching for somewhere to go on the web? If a visitor happens on to your site, will they like what they see? Search engines are nearly faultless in their effort to discover similar sites with inbound links that provide relevance and popularity.

What happens when someone enters a search request?

“Hey Spider, we got a request. Can you stop your snooping and crawling around and help me out with this search request?” In less than a blink of an eye, Spider was hovering on a silken thread just above Zoom.

“Spider, I am trying to send you a search query but the connection is so slow.

“I can’t stand slow connections,” Spider said, “I’ve got so much to do and I need to do it all right now. But I’m faster than the speed of light. I can go anywhere just as fast as a thought in my head.”

“This dude’s internet connection is as slow as dial-up and might as well be megabits per hour instead of megabits per second,” Zoom said. “Like, I can see his search query and I have what he wants but I can’t punch it through until his connection fires up. I mean, like I have links from all over the world waiting on me to give the go-ahead.”

The waiting went on and on. It seemed to Zoom and Spider that this search would never pan out. At this rate, whatever this person was searching for will be out of stock, outdated, and moved to the Broken and Dead Link Cemetery.

What is the first thing that a search engine does when prompted?

Search engines are on constant vigilance to discover like-minded nuggets of content that are at once both relevant and popular. Links are like pheromones — spiders crawl from one link to another seeking relevance and strength in numbers. Each link leads to another and so on. Spiders crawl through billions of links seeking common pages. The pages are quickly indexed for easy access whether a search is in progress or not. As soon as a website goes live, its pages are evaluated and indexed according to the hundreds of subtleties considered for its future page ranking.

The Mechanics of a Google Search

How does Google find web pages prompted by your search request? And then determine in what order they are ranked. Think of searching the web as similar to searching your public library. Non-fiction is arranged by topic and fiction is arranged alphabetically according to the author’s last name. Search results on the web take in other factors but if I am searching for a topic, such as boating, I will be presented with millions of results about boating in less than a second. The order of results will be based on such things as popularity, inherent authority, and relevance.

According to Google, three processes are active during a search, crawling, indexing, and serving.

  • Crawling – Googlebot is the spider that crawls over billions and billions of web pages. The spiders have specific guidelines (called algorithms) that tell them which websites to hit, which pages to search, and where to put them in the batting lineup. The method of travel is inbound, outbound, and internal links.
  • Indexing – Google spiders gather and garner massive amounts of information from every page they visit with the purpose of storing it away for later search requests. Websites are frequently prioritized as content is updated. Just a couple of changes in keyword selection and link integration could make all the difference between popping up on page 4 or somewhere on page 1.
  • Serving Results – Users type their inquiry into the Google search bar and that is when the Google computers go to work on your behalf searching for the index with matching pages and what is most relevant according to your search request. Relevancy is determined by over 200 factors that frequently change as needed.

Knowing why people conduct searches on the web and having a basic understanding of how results are presented should point you in the right direction.

Do you have more questions about how Google crawls and ranks sites? Let us know in the comments below.

Much success,

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