What Is Search Engine Indexing & How Does It Work?

Many business owners who have an online presence probably don’t know the term indexing in reference to search engines. Before the time of search engines, we would use dictionaries and encyclopedias to find our new information. Now, with the help of the three primary functions of search engines, we can type a query into the search bar and get the best results. Why is it important to understand indexing on your website? What can help your pages rank higher on search engine results pages? To get started, it is important to understand the three functions of search engines; crawling, indexing, and ranking. 

The 3 Functions of Search Engines

Crawling: In the first phase, search engines crawl through the internet looking for valid, trustworthy content. On top of this, the content should contain legitimate links and strong visuals. 

Indexing: In the second phase, and an important step if you have pages that google shouldn’t crawl, is the indexing step. This is when search engines store and organize the information and content they find. They then keep it in the index to be ranked for search queries. 

Ranking: The final step is when search engines decide just how valuable your content is. This helps them decipher where they should place you on the results page. When someone types in a keyword search, bots will crawl their index then list the content they find in order of relevance. 

Why Does This Matter? 

Why does it matter for you to know what pages have been indexed, and how high these pages rank? In order to gain more attention on search engines, it is important to have strong content. When search engines find keywords, links, and visuals on your page, the better it will rank. Have both strong backlinks directing to your site, and strong internal and external links within the content itself. Visuals are another great way to gain attention from search engines and to start ranking higher for different queries. 

Another important reason for you to understand search engine indexing is to tell search engines not to crawl certain pages that could potentially lower your ranking. Any temporary pages on your website, such as promotions or special deals, or a thank you page after contact forms, are all pages that should be marked as a “no-index” for search engines. Navigating this process can be tricky, and telling search engines not to index the wrong page can be devastating for your website ranking. 

Contact Us at Boston Web Marketing

We understand that this can be a confusing process and can feel meaningless among all the other things business owners need to deal with. Our team of experienced SEO representatives will take this off your plate, and build work with you to navigate search engine indexing and learn how to use this to rank higher on search engine results pages. 

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