FAQ Friday: Search Engine Optimization - The Art of Mastering SEO


In Google’s own words, their mission is to “organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.” Although this is a fairly straightforward mission, the process by which this is executed is a bit more complicated, and can affect your site—and its search ranking—positively or negatively. Well, we’re taking out the guesswork when it comes to search engine optimization in order to make you the master of your SEO in today’s FAQ Friday.

What process does Google use to analyze and evaluate to determine a website’s rank?

Google uses crawling and indexing to search and evaluate pages and add them to its database.

Website evaluation and ranking is based on information gathered by Googlebot, also known as a robot, bot, or spider. This ‘bot’ uses an algorithm that aims to index the Internet and better the needs of the searcher. This algorithm is ever-changing and evolves along with the Internet. This process is referred to as ‘crawling.’ Information is gathered during the crawling process, but it is organized by indexing. When a site is crawled, it is fetched by the engine and reviewed, but when it is indexed, the information is saved and able to appear in search engine results.

When Google visits your site, it takes a lot of information into account. For example, the first of these factors are connectivity and load time. If your site is down or loads incredibly slow, bots won’t return as frequently and your Google ranking will fall, i.e., you will appear less often in search results. In fact, take it from Matt Cutts, who provides his expertise by letting us know just how search works in this following video:

When does Google crawl websites?

Google and its bots are working around the clock crawling and updating search results. As mentioned before, site rankings can be updated frequently if your website is up to the standard that Google’s algorithm is looking for.

How often does Google crawl websites?

There’s not one cut-and-dry answer to this question. The frequency with which Google crawls sites varies widely, depending on various factors. These factors are mainly, connectivity, load time, frequency of updates, site maps, and inbound links. For example, news sites that are constantly adding and updating content are crawled multiple times per minute. On the other hand, websites that are updated much less frequently will be crawled less, perhaps only a few times a week, which is why posting valuable content like blogging on a regular basis helps with your search ranking.

To find out how often your site is crawled, you can log into your Google webmaster tools and view your ‘crawl stats’ to get an idea of how often Google is indexing your site. Also, for more insight, Maile Ohye from Google Webmasters provides some common mistakes most businesses make when it comes SEO along with some good ideas on how to overcome them in under 10 minutes.

How does Google index results?

If a page is crawled and deemed worthy to be included in the search engine database, Google saves information about the page, including all the text on the page, title tags, ALT tags, and more.

How does Google serve search engine results?

When someone enters a search into Google, their servers access the massive database they have compiled from all the crawling and indexing, and attempts to provide the searcher with the most relevant results. There are several factors that will cue Google to display your site in these results. Your site will be more likely to appear in search results if:

  • Google is able to easily crawl and index your site.
  • You have more high-quality inbound links, i.e., other sites linking to your pages.
  • A searcher enters a keyword for which Google’s algorithm has ranked your site highly.

Why does Google put so much effort into search ranking?

Google services over 70% of desktop searches and over 90% of mobile search worldwide. In light of their mission statement, and their dominance in the search field, it is no surprise that Google puts so much effort into the search ranking process. Searchers place a huge amount of trust in Google to yield relevant results from the most authoritative sources. And if you need help impressing your audience with SEO, check out this video from video marketing guru, Amy Schmittauer.

To stay at the top of the game with effective search ranking, you have to put in a lot of legwork. Understanding Google is a process that will take time and effort. So if you need help getting started on your SEO strategy, we’ll leave you with this quick In-Sites video including SEO best practices to help you start incorporating them into your business.

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Until next FAQ Friday, keep your communication lines open. Don’t know the answer—ASK. If you have questions you would like to see featured in our weekly FAQ Friday, please submit them in the comments below or mention us @DirectImages on Twitter.

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Topics: SEO, Inbound Marketing

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