Search engines are tools used to provide the best possible matches for a particular online query or queries. The targets of the search are relevant information found on the World Wide Web. This information comes in different forms of files such as web pages and images.
Kinds of Search Engines
Contrary to popular belief, search engines do not only refer to crawler-based search engines but also to human-powered directories. Crawler-based search engines “crawl” the web with the use of a “spider” which visits a web page, reads it, and follows the link found within the site. Human-powered directories require sites to submit a short description which shall serve as the basis for determining search matches.
It is seldom that a single kind of search engine is used since it would usually need a combination of the two to come up with the best match. Hybrid search engines present crawler-based results or human-powered listings depending on which is more suitable for the search. Changes done on a web page will be detected and seen by crawlers thereby directly affecting a site’s listing rank. These same changes may not have a direct bearing in human-powered directories except when exceptional content manages to attract free reviews.
Importance of Search Engines
Search engines function only for one specific purpose on a site’s perspective which is to show users the path towards it. Unfortunately, sites are unable to do this by themselves alone because of the incredible number of web pages to choose from. Users will have no way of finding a site even with the most exceptional content without the help of search engines. Search engines have been developed precisely to make searches easier by providing the most probable matches instead of having to deal with sites with totally unrelated contents.
Search engine algorithms are continuously being updated and modified to address deceitful practices of some sites which aim to obtain high ranking in an unfair manner. All search engines make it possible for computer users to search the Internet using important words known as keywords. This can be done because search engines keep an index of words they find and where these words are found. Users are able to zero in their respective searches through the use of a word or a combination of words as contained in the index.
Elements of a Search Engine
Crawler-based search engines have three (3) basic elements that allow them to function as they should. These elements are the spider, the index, and the search engine software. Without one, an effective search cannot be obtained. Each element functions in relation to the other and cannot do the work on their own.
The spider crawls sites and places them in an index where search engine software can be used to sift through millions of possibilities. It should be noted that searchers are only given access to sites which have already been indexed and not merely crawled. Programs not only find search matches but also rank probable matches in order of relevance.
Even before a query is made by a computer user, the system has already prepared the possible answers through the work performed by search engines. As mentioned above, a spider crawls the sites and indexes them based on particular keywords and where they are found. Keywords are ideally located on titles, subtitles, meta tags, and other important positions. Any change done in the web page results to updating of the index because of the new information added. Search engines determine the probability of a search match among the indexed sites.
The path of an online query starts when the computer user decides to find required information through the Internet and keys in the chosen keywords. Results are obtained based on a search engine’s determination of suitability to the search. The site occupying the top positions have the most conversion potentials being recommended sites. Although algorithms have been placed to provide desired results, users will have to decide for themselves which site best answers their requirements.
High- level search engine ranking is considered advantageous since searchers seldom look beyond the top 10 results. An obscure ranking will not serve the purpose of being found. A top ranking does not necessarily equate to the best contents but it represents the best opportunity to be noticed.
Building a Site with SEO Sense
A site that has been search engine- optimized gains visibility through natural means. Natural in this sense means offering value-added contents to attract traffic as opposed to traffic obtained from making a payment. Being search engine- optimized not only involves attracting traffic through select keywords but also clearing the site of any possible obstacles that will prevent users from finding and accessing the site.
Not all website owners are able to do this on their own and may need to hire a professional to do it. The most basic steps however can be undertaken simply enough although finding the right keywords may not be as simple as it seems. The more “techy” side of SEO practice may also prove to be a challenge for some.
An optimized site is expected to get noticed specifically by the target market. The attention of one or more readers is expected to grow in line with the awareness created by being shared, linked, or referred. Increased exposure has the effect of attracting more followers and subscribers.
SEO success of a site is directly associated with trust-building for the site. By the very nature of SEO marketing strategy, it emphasizes practices that aim for long-term visibility which can only happen when a site manages to place itself consistently in trusted results. Trust-building is not only concerned with the inner circles of the site but also with the company it keeps externally. A top-ranking slot provided by a search engine which is not considered reliable could not be of much use when a solid reputation is desired.
The intricacies of SEO as a marketing strategy need to be understood so that it can be used to its maximized potential. Business owners have to gain a deeper understanding of the processes involved as well as the market place which they hope to penetrate. The actions undertaken should always take into consideration what works for the current time. The simplest SEO task of choosing the right keywords used by searchers and found by search engines can only be done when there is correct appreciation of the right market. People might be thinking of one thing but calling it in different names. Every task becomes easier when the site is in synch with buyers and the tool responsible for bringing them to the consumers’ attention – the search engine.