Search engines, like Google, aim to create a useful directory of the websites and businesses operating a valuable online presence and provide the user with handy resources that can expertly answer any question asked. The key word in the previous description is, “valuable.” To determine how to rank these endless web pages and listings, the search engines implement rules that assist with the ranking process, also known as algorithms.
Each algorithm, or set of rules, is created to assess a collection of related characteristics of a particular facet of the web page or listing, such as keyword usage, number and quality of links, or value of information presented. The results obtained by the algorithm will then affect how the search engine ranks the webpage or listing. While this is a simplified explanation, it provides a general idea of the complexity of search engines.
Now that you have a rudimentary understanding of the foundation of search engines, it’s time learn how search engines work and undertake the exploration of webpages and listings to calculate ranking. Each search engine sends out what are called, “spiders,” which is actually a program that examines all the information presented by each website. These spiders crawl through a website based on the pathways going to, within and going from a website. This behavior is akin to how a spider crawls along the threads of a web. If a thread of a web is broken the spider will stop and retreat to find an alternate thread to follow, this is the same way a search engine’s spiders will stop if a pathway is broken and look for other pathways to follow. While the spiders are crawling, they are collecting vast amounts of data and conducting an analysis of the information presented based on the currently available algorithms. Broken pathways, too extensive of pathways or pathways that are considered of low quality are some of the elements that will negatively influence the ranking. Quality content, accurate usage of keywords and clear coding will serve to increase overall ranking.
Tackling the mechanics of how search engines work and how to increase a particular webpage’s or listing’s ranking may seem daunting to a digital novice. However, there are extraordinarily talented professionals that can assist you in improving your rankings over time.
Have more questions? We’re here to answer those for you. Contact Local Search Titan today at (503) 468-3269 to see how your can improve your online visibility.