Search Engines: The Basics

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Monday, July 09, 2007

What Google's Today, I wanted to take a few moments to address the question of "how search engines work". However, instead of diving deep into every segment of the search engine process, I've decided to highlight only the few key areas... doing so will better assist those of you readers whom are in fact clients, potential clients, or the DIY kind of folks.

What Google's

It's quite common for my clients to question how search engines work... and that's completely "ok" with me. This is our industry, not theirs, and they certainly don't have the time to put in the extra hours needed each week to learn a new trade. If they did... they certainly wouldn't need us now would they. Instead... clients call on us for search marketing services and guidance.

Today, I wanted to take a few moments to address the question of "how search engines work". However, instead of diving deep into every segment of the search engine process, I've decided to highlight only the few key areas... doing so will better assist those of you readers whom are in fact clients, potential clients, or the DIY kind of folks.

So how does a search engine work? Well, in the most basic form, there are 3 major parts to a search engine: the crawl, the index, and the serving of content.

The Crawl

Search engines have technology commonly referred to as "spiders". This technology "crawls" the Internet (through the use of links) and searches for new or updated versions of web pages. As apart of the process, "spiders" will record a single copy of each page that it crawls, known as a cache copy, and will store it within the search engine's database... also known as the index.

The Index

Search engines maintain a tremendously large index... billions upon billions of web pages. With the use of filtering and cataloging technology, search engines decipher through their index (rather quickly mind you) and determine what each page is about. Each page is then labeled and cataloged accordingly.

The Serving of Content

Each search engine will employ its very own unique algorithmic formula for when determining which web pages show up in their results. When a user types a keyword or phrase into a search engine's search box, that engine instantly begins reviewing its index for web pages that best represent what the user has searched for and serves up its findings.

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1 Comments:

  1. Excellent. I just now finished an email to a client explaining how search engines work! Had I checked the klog earlier, I would have saved myself some time with some quick control C V action.
    By Blogger Jessica Guadiana on July 09, 2007

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