How Search Engine Crawlers (Bots) Work
(And What They Look For In A Good Website)
You probably might have asked how Google search results are determined or how the search engines work. With over 1.8 billion websites on the web, one would wonder how Google, Bing, Baidu, and the other search engines manage to rank all of the billions of web pages emanating from these websites.
Search engines deploy crawlers (bots) to scour the internet for web pages and rank them accordingly to generate search results. While this is not as simple as it seems, in this post, we’ll shed some light on how these search engine crawlers (bots) work behind the scenes to generate search results for users.
How Search Engines Work
There are three key steps involved in how search engines work – crawling, indexing, and ranking/serving. The first step involves the search engines deploying bots referred to as crawlers or spiders to scour the internet for new and updated web pages via URLs.
These spiders/crawlers then try to analyze each of the pages crawled to discover what each page is all about as well as determine how relevant the pages are to online searches. The results are then indexed based on relevancy, using a set of ranking factors that are dependent on the algorithm of the search engine in question, and then served up to users searching online.
How search engines work.
Image Credit: Black Tusk Web, Instagram
What Search Engine Crawlers Look For On Websites
Google doesn’t accept payments to rank your websites high on search engine results pages (SERPs). So, how do you get your website pages to rank high on SERPs?
The answer, in this case, is knowing how to optimize your website for high ranking.
This in turn can only be successful when you have a good grasp of what search engine crawlers want to see on your web pages. Here are some of the most important things crawlers want to see on your web pages;
2. Internal links
Internal links on website pages make them easily navigable and crawlable for search engine crawlers.
3. Content structure
Site and content structure plays a role in how search engines crawl your website. Content on your website should therefore be organized in a way that should make it easy for both human users and search engines.
Along with these three (3) things, others such as the actual content quality as well as the searcher’s location, search history, search medium (desktop or mobile), can also influence what content they are served as well as how the content is ranked.
Now that you know how search engines work, it’s important to translate this knowledge into creating an easily crawlable and indexable website.
From getting your site structure right to properly formatting your website’s HTML codes, proper use of internal links, and a commitment to high content quality, it will become much easier to get your web pages to rank well on searches that are relevant to your brand and business.
In doing this, your website’s lead generation and conversion will also get a significant boost.