TND West

Understanding Search Engines & SEO

Most of us use search engines on a daily basis. We search for the latest news and information, research locations for an affordable summer vacation, and dig up the latest gossip on celebrities. Search engines play an important role in our Internet immersed lives. Without them we would surely be lost. However, as much as we use them, most of us don’t really understand how they work or how they sort all of the information and websites available in cyberspace.

To begin search engines use automated programs with ‘spiders’ that ‘crawl’ over all of the websites, pages, and documents that exist on the Web. It is through this process that all of the information is stored and indexed in giant databases. The result is that when someone makes a query the search engine sorts through the database and displays the results that match. Using an algorithm , the search engine sorts the results and ranks them according to the calculation.

With this knowledge we can begin to understand how search engine optimization (SEO) works. In broad terms, SEO is understanding and influencing the ranking for a given site or search term; however, there is much more to it than that. When the spiders are crawling through the many hyperlinks and pages on the web, there are certain things that make it easier, or more difficult, to index. When you understand what slows down or blocks the spiders, you can work on using hyperlinks that the spiders can easily traverse; thus increasing the ranking. There are some SEO tool s now available that can provide reports on a websites ranking and visibility as well as identify problems and provide possible solutions.

As much as we use the Internet these days, it is important that we understand how it works. For it is then that we can use it to our greatest advantage.

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