Select Page

How Search Engines Work

How Search Engines Work

Search engines can essentially be broken down into two main sections. The first part is all behind the scenes where a search engine crawls and indexes content, next there is the part that we all see when search engines deliver results based on importance and relevancy to a user’s search query.

The World Wide Web is a busy, complex system full of various content including web pages, PDF documents, images, audio and video files. Search engines digest what web pages are about by crawling the content and drawing the information it can from those files, the second part involves the search engine crawling and following links to identify what each piece of content is about.

Search engines crawl the web through automated bots called spiders and these bots index millions of documents each day. Bots find and crawl pages and store the file on hard drives which are used once a user submits a search query.

Since there are billions of web files across the globe, data centers have been constructed to hold all of this information. These files are ordered and indexed using an algorithm so the search engine can deliver relevant files in split seconds.

Web Page Importance

The importance of a web page is built upon various factors; one of the main characteristics affecting the results nowadays is popularity. This is determined largely by social signals through social interaction, but also by brand related search terms and links – hyperlinks from one web page to another.

These are only two key measurements that search engines follow, nevertheless probably the most important ranking factors. Another factor for consideration is page speed – how quickly a web page loads, as search engines want to make it quick and easy for people to find accurate information.

How to Increase Your Search Ranking

Unfortunately search engine manufacturers do not promote nor release all information on how search engines rank a website. However over the past 15+ years search marketers have been able to conduct various tests on how web page A compares to website B. It’s these tests that enable us to identify and assess what affects a pages search ranking, using this proven data we are then able to optimise web pages to outperform other pages and increase your websites visibility over your competitors.

The key point that all search engines highlight is that web pages should be built for users before search engines. It’s paramount to bear this in mind whilst creating your web pages, this clearly highlights that even a well-engineered web page will not be successful if it does not engage visitors.