The Magic and Mystery of Google:
How search engines find your website
There are 1,208,097,165 websites online as I write this. To see how fast that number changes, check out Internet live stats on new websites, one-by-one as they increase. Crazy, huh?
Google now processes over 40,000 search queries every second on average which translates to over 3.5 billion searches per day and 1.2 trillion searches per year worldwide (check out more mind-boggling data).
So, when clients ask how they can get found at the top of search results, it’s not necessarily a simple answer.
SEO is an ongoing investment. Not a single step, one and done project.
Slow and steady wins the race, but a good SEO partner will reflect increases in the first few months. As an example, one client with a small consulting business recently contracted with P4 Sales Consultants and experienced a 260% increase in traffic after the third month.
Understanding how Google and other search engines work is a good start
Search engines follow links from one page to another. Google consists of a crawler, an index, and an algorithm.
Google’s crawler goes around the Internet 24/7 and saves the HTML-version of web pages into a massive database – what’s known as the index. The index is updated if the Google crawlers come to your website and find new or revised web pages.
Based on your site’s traffic site and the number of changes you make to it, Google crawlers come around more (or less) often. That’s why you need fresh content.
A lot of businesses put their website up and leave it. It’s not enough to have a website, you need new content at regular intervals.
First and foremost, for search engines like Google to know your website exists, there must be a link to your site from another site – one that’s already in the index. Once a Search Engine’s crawler follows the link, it will lead to the initial crawl session on your website and the first time your site is saved to the index.
Congrats… Your site has now been “indexed”! From there on out, your website could appear in Google’s search results. Note the word “could.”
Search Engine Results Page (SERP)
If your site is showing on pages beyond the second page, people aren’t likely to find your site, or as some funnyman once said: the best place to hide a body is after page 2 of Google search results!
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) refers to a series of coordinated steps that increase the chance of your website showing in the search engine results page (SERP). People also refer to this presence in the SERP as organic rankings. Presence on the SERP for terms important to your organization leads to increased traffic and leads from your website.
While the organization does not pay for each visitor to the website from organic search results, there is ongoing effort and time required to optimize the website and achieve top rankings.
The algorithm Google uses is top secret
No one knows exactly what factors determine the ordering in search results. Google’s algorithm is constantly changing. While they don’t reveal all of its mysteries, they do tell us what’s important for us to get our websites found.
The importance of links
How do Google and other search engines use links to show your website in searches? The more relevant links a specific site has, the more important search engines will think it is. That goes for internal links (those coming from the same website) as well as external links from other websites.
A good balance of high-value backlinks, quality content, and relevant information will result is the highest possible ranking.
Backlinks from authoritative websites with a lot of incoming links are generally more beneficial than links from smaller websites that have only a few incoming links. That’s why active link building is part of any good Search Engine Optimization (SEO) strategy.
SEO is simply the practice of optimizing a site so it appears in a prominent position of organic search results.
There’s a whole lot to write about SEO, but the important thing to note since we’re discussing search engines and Google, is they want to show users results that best fit their query – and they’re onto all the tricks.
“Black hat” tactics which focus on techniques to fool search engine algorithms, go against SEO guidelines and you just shouldn’t do it. For example, you can’t copy and paste entire pages of content and think it’ll give you an SEO boost. Search engines watch for copies and duplicates.
In other words, if you want people to find your website – if you want search engines to serve your site up for queries – it’s as simple as making sure your website fits that search term.
Return on Investment
SEO generally has a very high ROI because people using search engines have high intent to purchase. Visitors have already indicated their interest by searching for keywords that match your business category.
SEO typically shows up as one of the lowest cost lead sources in annual surveys of marketers.
Need help making sense of search engine optimization? We’re here to help.
Let’s schedule your FREE consultation. Call me directly at 888.904.2168 x101 or drop me an email today and we’ll discuss how our team will help your website get found by search engines and the customers using them to look for your services!
Since data like this can often make even my eyes glaze over, I’ll close with an interesting tidbit about Google.
Do you know their original name in 1996 was BackRub?! True story. In 1997 the name Google was born – a play on the word “googol”, which is a mathematical term for the number represented by the numeral 1 followed by 100 zeroes. You probably knew that part!