How Search Engines Work
THE SPIDERS ARE COMING
Search Engines use spiders to index websites. When you submit your website pages to a search engine by completing their required submission page, the search engine spider will index your entire site. A ‘spider’ is an automated program that is run by the search engine system. Spider visits a website, read the content on the actual site, the site's Meta tags and also follow the links that the site connects. The spider then returns all that information back to a central depository, where the data is indexed. It will visit each link you have on your website and index those sites as well. Some spiders will only index a certain number of pages on your site, so don’t create a site with 500 pages!
The spider will periodically return to the sites to check for any information that has changed. The frequency with which this happens is determined by the moderators of the search engine.
A spider is almost like a book where it contains the table of contents, the actual content and the links and references for all the websites it finds during its search, and it may index up to a million pages a day. Some examples are Excite, Google, Lycos, and AltaVista.
When you ask a search engine to locate information, it is actually searching through the index which it has created and not actually searching the Web. Different search engines produce different rankings because not every search engine uses the same algorithm to search through the index.
One of the things that a search engine algorithm scans for is the frequency and location of keywords on a web page, but it can also detect artificial keyword stuffing or spamdexing. Then the algorithms analyze the way that pages link to other pages on the Web. By checking how pages link to each other, an engine can both determine what a page is about, if the keywords of the linked pages are similar to the keywords on the original page.
WEB DEVELOPER - MANAGING DIRECTOR
Jon is a website designer in Flagstaff Arizona. He started with web design at the age of 17 where he created "Only the Best Apps" - a website where he would test and choose "Only the Best" software from around the internet. It was all hand coded with Homesite - at that time the best (in his humble opinion) HTML editor around. He believes in local economy, open source technology, and helps bring the best the internet has to offer.
Categories: Web Insights, Prescott Web Design Posted On: Monday, 19 September 2011 Tagged In: SEO, Search Engine Optimization, Flagstaff Website Design