When you look for some information on the internet, you run a Google search. You type in your query in the search box, hit enter, and within milliseconds, Google presents you with hundreds of thousands of search results as per the relevancy of your query term.
Although, you can access the search results within a fraction of a second, have you ever wondered about what determines the order of the list? Moreover, how Google serves with the exact results according to your queries among several million other websites?
Google uses a myriad of factors in its algorithm to determine the results that will be the most helpful for the user. Without further ado, let’s look at the three primary process that determines the search results according to their order.
The procedures are known as crawling – which allows Google to find your site online,
Indexing – which index your website, and serving – determining if your website contains useful and relevant content corresponding to user’s search.
Though it might seem to be a simple task, there are a tremendous amount of precise calculations behind each of the three jobs. If you can understand the science and arts of what is crawling and indexing, it will help you to optimize your website in such a way that Google finds it quickly, and ranks your content higher to present in front of users.
So, let us now delve a bit into what Google crawling is and how does Google crawlers work.
What is crawling and the role of Google crawlers?
Among several terms that float around you regarding SEO optimization, the two words that are synonymous are crawling and indexing. They both are synonymous to each other but are different words with different functionalities.
Crawling is the responsibilities of Google crawlers, which are the Google bots. Google crawlers are sent by Google to “read” the pages of your website. It is the first step that a search engine takes, where it tries to recognize your site to display it when people search for it.
A visit by the Google crawlers does not mean that your website was indexed, and will be found instantly. Mostly, Google crawlers look for a few factors related to your site, and the most common among them is an XML sitemap that points to your website or webpage.
The XML sitemap, which you have to upload to Google Search Console, provides the roadmap for the all the contents you create. So fundamentally, the Google crawlers check everything on your page and are aware of your website.
However, as you can see, the Google crawlers do not index your page throughout the process of crawling.
When you submit your website for searching, you must remember that it is the first step in your attempt to reach the audience you want to target. A successful crawling by the Google crawlers makes your website ready for the next level – indexing.
Without further ado, let’s look at the process of indexing.
What is indexing?
After the Google crawlers have had a “look” at your page and have identified the elements of your website, Google needs to index your page. The indexing depends on the value of your page, and if Google deems it fit, it will index it.
After indexing your site, Google works on making your page available to people and how your site is found when users search for it. The order of search results does not depend on the Google crawlers but other factors.
One of the most critical factors here is the keywords, based on which, Google decide on giving your website a particular ranking, or order.
Another factor that decides the ranking of your page is the links you provide in your page to be crawled by the Google crawlers. Google bots crawl the links on your page, as well as up to five sites back.
It means the Google crawlers will check the website you linked, which is related to another page, which is linked to another site, and so on.
Why Google indexing your site is important?
While trying to rank up in the search engine, you might need the Google crawlers to crawl your website. However, the real result you want must be to get indexed by Google.
Therefore, after taking care of everything related to SEO, you should try one of the two methods of knowing if your site has been indexed by Google.
The first method you can try is to go to Google search and click settings to find the advanced search section. You can put your website URL in the “site or domain” section and hit search to see everything that Google has in its index.
The second method that you can choose is looking at the website information through the Google search console. It is very easy to set-up – all you need is to upload your XML file. Moreover, Google search console is a two-way communication channel, so even if you have a query, they can help you to overcome it.
What will determine what to be indexed, and your page rank?
Google search engine is deemed the best search engine for a reason. Google has maintained its reputation for being so by sticking to an underlying structure. When people search for certain things, they tend to be very picky and particular about the user experience.
So, Google indexes every new and fresh content that it believes will help in improving the user experience.
Therefore, if you are copying information from other websites, or providing similar content that is already present in the Google index, it will not be indexed. Your site will be heavily penalized too.
To take care of issues like these, you must try to create content or provide information which is better or different from what is already indexed. Moreover, you should do it by following the best SEO practices.
We are barely scratching the surface by understanding the work of Google crawlers, and the importance of crawling and indexing. There are several other factors, which depends upon the ranking of your page.
Making your website or the page SEO-friendly is one of them, which allows the Google crawlers to “look” through your page better and faster.
You should keep in mind that making your website Google-friendly is not a one-time task. It's essential to post useful content consistently because Google is always 'building a better mousetrap' by crawling the web and tweaking its page rank algorithm to update results pages.
Additionally, the Google indexing will determine your visibility on the search engine, which determines the number of visitors you can attract to your page.
Invariably, it comes to the ultimate need for setting up your website – to grow your business.
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