Understanding what a site crawler is and how it indexes websites can be a confusing topic. While everyone does it a little differently, the overall concepts are the same. When you enter a search query into a search engine and get back a list of matches, you have benefited from the work of the site crawler. A site crawler is essentially a “bot” that is a vital component of the SEO ranking process. Here at Unwired Web Solutions, we are an SEO company with experts who can index your website so the crawlers can find and rank it more easily.
How They Work
Site crawlers are complex algorithms meant to scan and understand a large volume of information which is then used to determine if a search term is a connection. It works by crawling a website, scanning content, and visiting links (URLs). All of this information is stored on a massive database and indexed according to relevance and keywords.
Google uses this information to send the best websites to the top spots on search results. They give these coveted spots to the best, most reliable, most accurate, and most interesting content while others are shuffled down the list. However, not all websites will be “crawled” if they’re not “crawler friendly.”
Unable to Be “Crawled”
If a website is unable to be crawled, it may as well not even exist. Without getting crawled, it has zero chance of driving any organic traffic to the site. Organic traffic is an indicator of a quality website, so no traffic will be visiting the site without the parameters set up for web crawlers.
Two common types of crawlers can get content from a website:
- Site crawlers: these crawlers attempt to crawl an entire site at one time, starting with the homepage. It will simply grab links and continue to crawl the content on the site. This is often called “spidering.”
- Page crawlers: These crawlers specifically crawl a single page or blog post.
How to Optimize a Website for Crawlers
There are a few ways to build a site in such a way to ensure that search engine crawlers can get onto your site. The end result will mean more traffic to the site, enabling readers to find the content more effectively.
The first place to start is by adding new content and optimizing pages. Having an RSS feed can help when you create new content. The search software can recognize it and crawl it faster. By ensuring your document structure is consistent when constructing an HTML page, the crawler knows where to look for the new content. Try and keep it as consistent as possible in the same place and under the same content section.
As for content, it is extremely important to offer quality content. Crawlers can tell if the page is lacking pertinent information or if it doesn’t make sense. Also, having content and not just images on a page will help crawlers index the site more appropriately. Search engines are unable to find an image unless it has text or alt tag descriptions.
Links are important for web crawlers. Websites should have links between pages so the crawler can quickly learn those pages exist. For example, if you are running a blog, you will want to have an archive page with links to every post. A sitemap page is also another great way to let a crawler know about many pages at once. Also, the more people who link to content, the more trustworthy the site seems to Google.
At Unwired Web Solutions, we are an SEO company that takes pride in helping businesses of all sizes expand their online presence. To learn more about configuring your site for Google crawlers, contact us today!