Whatever role you play on this digital world, having a clear understanding of how search engine works, can help you make better websites. Moreover, it’s going to be a website that search engines can clearly understand. For this to happen, you should start with knowing how search engines work.
Tips in ensuring that web crawlers can discover your website
In Understanding How Search Engines Work (Part 1), I already explained the concept behind crawling. For the crawlers (or spider) to access your website without any problem, here are some tips to follow:
- First, the easiest way to do expedite the crawling is to use the webmaster tools. Every top-notch search engine has their own set. In fact, Google has Google Search Console, and Bing has Bing Webmaster Tools. Use this to your own advantage, and provide the basic website information so that the crawlers won’t have to look for it.
- Next, create an XML sitemap and list down all the web pages with the highest priority. This way, you are making sure that the web crawlers don’t skip any essential pages on your website. They can’t simply ignore what you specifically stated on your sitemap. To learn on how to build a sitemap, refer to this sitemap tutorial on Google Search Console.
In this post, I will discuss indexing, and after the indexing process, you will have to deal with ranking.
The Second Step: Indexing
Now that crawling is done, let’s proceed to the next step, which is indexing. Because crawling only deals with the discovering of websites, the information that they found needs to be sorted, and organized them in a way that the users can understand. Indexing is the correct term for this process.
The truth is that search engines don’t store every bit of information they discovered. Instead, Google lists important details such as the time when the page is created, content type, page title, meta description, keywords, and links associated to it.
The indexing process is important too.
Remember, indexing is a step you can choose to ignore. If your website is not on Google’s index, it will NOT show up in any search result. So, if your goal is for more people to discover your website, then, you have to take this step seriously.
The more of your pages are indexed, the more chances for your website to appear every time someone uses a search engine. Moreover, being part of the search results does not automatically mean you’re on the top results. That is another hurdle for you… so for your website to be visible on the first few pages of the SERPs, you have to optimize your website. This is where Search Engine Optimization (SEO) comes into play.
How to check if your website is part of the Google index?
There are 2 simple steps:
- Do a Google search, type in site, and then, add your domain name. For example, site:www.stevemapua.com.After the search, you will find out the specific pages included in the Google Index.
- Next, you can also create an account on the Google Search Console and input your website link. Check out the Coverage report, specifically the section on VALID AND INDEXED pages.