How Search Engines Work

13 Mar How Search Engines Work

What legal issues are your clients and prospects searching for online? Will they find your website? To increase the visibility of your firm online, content is still king.  Consider how search engines work.

In general, there are 3 basic parts to search engine software: SPIDER, INDEX, QUERY.

How Search Engines Work

How Search Engines Work

1. Many think the SPIDER “crawls the web,” when in fact, spider software requests pages from the web as you do every day; but it looks for TEXT, LINKS and the URL, and it doesn’t pay attention to flash intros or gorgeous pictures.  (That’s why image “alt” tags are important).

2. The INDEX utilizes a complex set of mathematical formulas (ever changing) to make sense of all of the data the spider tosses it. Index software analyzes the content of each website to determine what it’s about, and “judges” the relevancy of the content of the site to the words or phrases searched to determine a “score.”

3. QUERY.  After the spider and index do their jobs, and an internet user types in the keywords “nj  lawyer,” for example, then the “QUERY” software fires up. Many people think when they type in the search terms (keywords) in the Google or Bing search box, that the search engine is actually searching the web.  But that’s not the case exactly.  The search engine is actually checking the INDEX for records (pages) that best match the user’s search terms.

How is your website performing in search engines?  A Google Analytics report can tell you:
<<What Queries
(keywords) users typed to reach your site
<<The number of impressions of your website’s URLs in search results pages
<<The number of clicks on your website’s URLs from search results pages
<<The ratio of clicks to impressions for your website’s URLs
<<The average position of your website’s URLs in search listings
<<The pages visitors landed on when clicking on search results listing your site

Moral of the story? Your content counts.  Fresh, relevant content counts most.  Weinmann Marketing can help. For a free summary report on the latest trends in search engine optimization, please call or visit

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