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    if a person is searching on the web, all the links they used are being used for what type of data?


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    How Google Search Works for Beginners

    Google gets information from many different sources. Learn how Google Search works and how to improve crawling, indexing, and serving of your site.

    How Google Search Works (for beginners)

    Google gets information from many different sources, including:

    Web pages

    User-submitted content such as your Business Profile and Google Maps user submissions

    Book scanning

    Public databases on the internet

    Many other sources

    However, this page focuses on web pages. Google follows three basic steps to generate results from web pages:

    Crawling Indexing

    Serving (and ranking)


    The first step is finding out what pages exist on the web. There isn't a central registry of all web pages, so Google must constantly search for new pages and add them to its list of known pages. Some pages are known because Google has already visited them before. Other pages are discovered when Google follows a link from a known page to a new page. Still other pages are discovered when a website owner submits a list of pages (a ) for Google to crawl. If you're using a managed web host, such as Wix or Blogger, they might tell Google to crawl any updated or new pages that you make.

    Once Google discovers a page URL, it visits, or , the page to find out what's on it. Google renders the page and analyzes both the text and non-text content and overall visual layout to decide where it can appear in Search results. The better that Google can understand your site, the better we can match it to people who are looking for your content.

    To improve your site crawling:

    Verify that Google can reach the pages on your site, and that they look correct. Google accesses the web as an anonymous user (a user with no passwords or information). Google must be able to see all the images and other elements of the page to be able to understand it correctly. You can do a quick check by typing your page URL in the Mobile-Friendly Test.

    If you've created or updated a single page, you can submit an individual URL to Google. To tell Google about many new or updated pages at once, use a sitemap.

    If you ask Google to crawl only one page, make it your home page. Your home page is the most important page on your site, as far as Google is concerned. To encourage a complete site crawl, be sure that your home page (and all pages) contain a good site navigation system that links to all the important sections and pages on your site; this helps users (and Google) find their way around your site. For smaller sites (less than 1,000 pages), making Google aware of only your homepage is all you need, provided that Google can reach all your other pages by following a path of links that start from your homepage.

    Get your page linked to by another page that Google already knows about. However, be warned that links in advertisements, links that you pay for in other sites, links in comments, or other links that don't follow the Google Webmaster Guidelines won't be followed by Google.

    Google doesn't accept payment to crawl a site more frequently, or rank it higher. If anyone tells you otherwise, they're wrong.


    After a page is discovered, Google tries to understand what the page is about. This process is called . Google analyzes the content of the page, catalogs images and video files embedded on the page, and otherwise tries to understand the page. This information is stored in the , a huge database stored in many computers.

    To improve your page indexing:

    Create short, meaningful page titles.

    Use page headings that convey the subject of the page.

    Use text rather than images to convey content. Google can understand some image and video, but not as well as it can understand text. At minimum, annotate your video and images with alt text and other attributes as appropriate.

    Serving (and ranking)

    When a user types a query, Google tries to find the most relevant answer from its index based on many factors. Google tries to determine the highest quality answers, and factor in other considerations that will provide the best user experience and most appropriate answer, by considering things such as the user's location, language, and device (desktop or phone). For example, searching for "bicycle repair shops" would show different answers to a user in Paris than it would to a user in Hong Kong. Google doesn't accept payment to rank pages higher, and ranking is done programmatically.

    To improve your serving and ranking:

    Make your page fast to load, and mobile-friendly.

    Put useful content on your page and keep it up to date.

    Follow the Google Webmaster Guidelines, which help ensure a good user experience.

    Read more tips and best practices in our SEO starter guide.

    You can find more information about how Search works, including the guidelines that we provide to our quality raters to ensure that we're providing good results.

    An even longer version

    Want more in-depth information about how Search works? Read our Advanced guide to how Google Search works.

    Source : developers.google.com

    How Search Engines Work: Crawling, Indexing, and Ranking

    If search engines literally can't find you, none of the rest of your work matters. This chapter shows you how their robots crawl the Internet to find your site and put it in their indexes.

    How Search Engines Work: Crawling, Indexing, and Ranking

    The Beginner's Guide to SEO

    Chapters PREVIOUS NEXT


    First, show up.

    As we mentioned in Chapter 1, search engines are answer machines. They exist to discover, understand, and organize the internet's content in order to offer the most relevant results to the questions searchers are asking.

    In order to show up in search results, your content needs to first be visible to search engines. It's arguably the most important piece of the SEO puzzle: If your site can't be found, there's no way you'll ever show up in the SERPs (Search Engine Results Page).

    How do search engines work?

    Search engines work through three primary functions:

    Crawling: Scour the Internet for content, looking over the code/content for each URL they find.Indexing: Store and organize the content found during the crawling process. Once a page is in the index, it’s in the running to be displayed as a result to relevant queries.Ranking: Provide the pieces of content that will best answer a searcher's query, which means that results are ordered by most relevant to least relevant.

    What is search engine crawling?

    Crawling is the discovery process in which search engines send out a team of robots (known as crawlers or spiders) to find new and updated content. Content can vary — it could be a webpage, an image, a video, a PDF, etc. — but regardless of the format, content is discovered by links.

    What's that word mean?

    Having trouble with any of the definitions in this section? Our SEO glossary has chapter-specific definitions to help you stay up-to-speed.

    See Chapter 2 definitions

    Googlebot starts out by fetching a few web pages, and then follows the links on those webpages to find new URLs. By hopping along this path of links, the crawler is able to find new content and add it to their index called Caffeine — a massive database of discovered URLs — to later be retrieved when a searcher is seeking information that the content on that URL is a good match for.

    What is a search engine index?

    Search engines process and store information they find in an index, a huge database of all the content they’ve discovered and deem good enough to serve up to searchers.

    Search engine ranking

    When someone performs a search, search engines scour their index for highly relevant content and then orders that content in the hopes of solving the searcher's query. This ordering of search results by relevance is known as ranking. In general, you can assume that the higher a website is ranked, the more relevant the search engine believes that site is to the query.

    It’s possible to block search engine crawlers from part or all of your site, or instruct search engines to avoid storing certain pages in their index. While there can be reasons for doing this, if you want your content found by searchers, you have to first make sure it’s accessible to crawlers and is indexable. Otherwise, it’s as good as invisible.

    By the end of this chapter, you’ll have the context you need to work with the search engine, rather than against it!

    In SEO, not all search engines are equal

    Many beginners wonder about the relative importance of particular search engines. Most people know that Google has the largest market share, but how important it is to optimize for Bing, Yahoo, and others? The truth is that despite the existence of more than 30 major web search engines, the SEO community really only pays attention to Google. Why? The short answer is that Google is where the vast majority of people search the web. If we include Google Images, Google Maps, and YouTube (a Google property), more than 90% of web searches happen on Google — that's nearly 20 times Bing and Yahoo combined.

    Crawling: Can search engines find your pages?

    As you've just learned, making sure your site gets crawled and indexed is a prerequisite to showing up in the SERPs. If you already have a website, it might be a good idea to start off by seeing how many of your pages are in the index. This will yield some great insights into whether Google is crawling and finding all the pages you want it to, and none that you don’t.

    One way to check your indexed pages is "site:yourdomain.com", an advanced search operator. Head to Google and type "site:yourdomain.com" into the search bar. This will return results Google has in its index for the site specified:

    The number of results Google displays (see “About XX results” above) isn't exact, but it does give you a solid idea of which pages are indexed on your site and how they are currently showing up in search results.

    For more accurate results, monitor and use the Index Coverage report in Google Search Console. You can sign up for a free Google Search Console account if you don't currently have one. With this tool, you can submit sitemaps for your site and monitor how many submitted pages have actually been added to Google's index, among other things.

    If you're not showing up anywhere in the search results, there are a few possible reasons why:

    Source : moz.com

    Internet Safety: Understanding Browser Tracking

    Learn all about browser tracking and better understand how tracking browser history works in this free Internet safety lesson.


    Internet Safety: Understanding Browser Tracking

    Understanding browser tracking

    Whenever you use the Internet, you leave a record of the websites you visit, along with each and every thing you click. To track this information, many websites save a small piece of data—known as a cookie—to your web browser. In addition to cookies, many websites can use your user accounts to track browsing activity. While this type of browser tracking doesn't pose a serious risk to your online security, it's important to understand how your online data is tracked and used.

    Watch the video below to learn more about browser tracking.

    Why do websites track browsing activity?

    There are many reasons a website might track your browsing activity. In some cases, it's simply to make your browsing experience faster and more convenient. But this data can also be used to determine your browsing habits and preferences—information that is frequently used by advertisers in determining what ads to show you online. Here are a few common examples of when a website might track your online activity.

    Video sites like YouTube and Netflix collect information on the videos you watch, which helps them suggest more videos you might like.

    Online stores like Amazon and eBay keep a record of the different items you view and purchase, which helps them suggest other products you may want to buy.

    Search engines like Google keep a record of the things you search for. This can help them suggest more relevant searches, but it can also be used for advertising purposes. For example, if you search for a coffeemaker on Google, you might see ads for coffeemakers on other websites in the future.

    How do cookies work?

    Cookies can store specific information on the websites you visit and the things you click on different sites. If you don't have an account on a particular site, this information is typically saved in a cookie to your web browser. For example, a news website might use cookies to see if you've previously visited its site—and what articles you read on your last visit—so it can suggest more articles based on your previous choices.

    Watch this video from Adversitement to learn more about cookies and how they work.

    Should I be worried about cookies?

    Generally speaking, cookies don't pose a serious risk to your online security—you're unlikely to acquire malware or expose sensitive financial information by using cookies. Still, if you don't like the idea of websites collecting information about you this way, there are options for limiting cookie tracking on your computer.

    How to avoid cookie tracking

    There are a few different ways to avoid cookie tracking. Some websites actually give you the option to disable cookie tracking on their site, although this may also disable certain site features.

    If you want to opt out of cookies entirely, you could try enabling the Do Not Track setting in your browser. Most web browsers disable this feature by default, but it can usually be activated from the privacy settings.

    Note that participation in the Do Not Track program is voluntary, so some sites may not honor this request. If you'd prefer to avoid cookies altogether, you could use a private browsing mode whenever you go online. This will prevent any cookies from being saved to your web browser.

    Private browsing mode won't protect against every kind of browser tracking. To learn more, check out our lesson on Browsing Privately.

    Account tracking

    Even if you never allow websites to store cookies, there are other ways your browsing habits can be tracked. For example, when you create an account with a site like Facebook or Google, you're also giving them permission to track and save information on your activity. Instead of saving this information in a cookie, it's stored by the company and associated with your account.

    In many cases, this information is then provided to third-party advertisers, who can use this information to deliver personalized ads across the Internet. And while you can usually disable these tracking settings, they will be enabled by default.

    Check out our lessons on Adjusting Your Facebook Privacy Settings and Understanding Google Privacy to learn more about controlling the information you share with these service providers.


    Source : edu.gcfglobal.org

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