After this tutorial, you should have basic knowledge of what crawling, Indexing, ranking and rendering means. You will also learn how crawling, rendering and indexing affect Google, Bing and other search Engines.
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Back to the topic, “The difference between crawling, indexing, ranking and rendering”. What really are these terms about and does the knowledge help me? You will see them right here. But, note that this topic is more of technical concepts and as such may introduce you to strange terms. However, I will try to simple things as much as I can so that life will be easy for you.
Recommend : 15 Blogging mistakes to avoid as a Beginner
Crawling, Ranking, Indexing And Rendering
When talking about CRAWLING spiders and other crawling creatures come to mind right? You are not wrong at all. However, this topic takes you to another form of crawling mechanism.
Now, what Is Crawling? Crawling is the process by which search engines discover updated content on the web, such as new blogs or pages, changes to existing sites or blog posts, and dead links.
In simple terms; crawling is the process whereby search engines like Google, bing and yahoo uses their crawler or bots to go through the web to find new posts, new blogs, new links and updated posts and as well update the
cache version they have.
After crawling your pages, the Google crawler will now decide whether to index it or not. But when you use ROBOTS.TXT to stop bots from crawling your webpage, then they will not be able to search, index or rank your post.
What Is Indexing? Once a search engine processes each of the pages it crawls, it compiles a massive index of all the words it sees and their location on each page. It is essentially a database of billions of web pages.
This extracted content is then stored, with the information then organised and interpreted by the search engine’s algorithm to measure its importance compared to similar pages.
Servers based all around the world allow users to access these pages almost instantaneously. Storing and sorting this information requires significant space and both Microsoft and Google have over a million servers each.
What Is Ranking? Every bloggers Dream is to rank high on Google, Bing and other Search Engines. how Google ranks Speedyminds ? Let’s see…
Once a keyword is entered into a search box, search engines will check for pages within their index that are a closest match ; a score will be assigned to these pages based on an algorithm consisting of hundreds of different ranking signals .
These pages (or images & videos) will then be displayed to the user in order of score.
So in order for your site to rank well in search results pages, it’s important to make sure search engines can crawl and index your site correctly – otherwise they will be unable to appropriately rank your website’s content in search results.
What Is Googlebot, Crawling, And Indexing?
Kissmetrics ↗ was able to simplify terms as regards Googlebot crawling and Indexing. If Googlebot hasn’t crawled and indexed this Speedyminds page, you won’t have been able to see it as a result in Google search. It is crawling and indexing that makes your blog visible in Search Engines.
- The Googlebot is simply the search bot software that Google sends out to collect information about documents on the web to add to Google’s searchable index.
- Crawling is the process where the Googlebot goes around from website to website, finding new and updated information to report back to Google. The Googlebot finds what to crawl using links.
- Indexing is the processing of the information gathered by the Googlebot from its crawling activities. Once documents are processed, they are added to Google’s searchable index if they are determined to be quality content. During indexing, the Googlebot processes the words on a page and where those words are located. Information such as title tags and ALT attributes are also analyzed during indexing.
What is Rendering ? Rendering displays what you see on your screen while surfing the internet. It communicates with the networking layer of the browser to grab HTML code and other items passed from a remote server. The majority of web pages crawled are now being rendered by Google. This page you are reading now is a rendered webpage.
How A Web Page Is Rendered?
With every passing day, you search things on Google and Bing, you get results and then click to view the results. Then Speedyminds opens and you read what you have searched. Nice one right?, but have you ever wondered the process it takes for a webpage to open (render)? That what you are about to learn in the steps below as adapted from Friendlybit ↗:
There is need to search for something in Speedyminds and you quickly type an URL into address bar of your Opera Mini, Internet Explorer or Google Chrome.
- The browser parses the address you entered to find the protocol, host, port, and path.
- It forms a HTTP request and to reach the host, it first needs to translate the human readable host into an IP number , and it does this by doing a DNS lookup on the host
- Then a socket needs to be opened from the user’s computer to that IP number, on the port specified (most often port 80)
- When a connection is open, the HTTP request is sent to the host
- The host forwards the request to the server software (most often Apache) configured to listen on the specified port
- The server inspects the request (most often only the path), and launches the server plugin needed to handle the request (corresponding to the server language you use, PHP, Java, .NET, Python?)
- The plugin gets access to the full request, and starts to prepare a HTTP response.
- To construct the response a database is (most likely) accessed . A database search is made, based on parameters in the path (or data) of the request
- Data from the database, together with other information the plugin decides to add, is combined into a long string of text (probably HTML).
- The plugin combines that data with some meta data (in the form of HTTP headers), and sends the HTTP response back to the browser.
- The browser receives the response, and parses the HTML (which with 95% probability is broken) in the response
- A DOM tree is built out of the broken HTML
- Stylesheets are parsed, and the rendering information in each gets attached to the matching node in the DOM tree
- The browser renders the page on the screen according to the DOM tree and the style information for each node
- You see the page on the screen
- You get annoyed the whole process was too slow.(Lol)
The 7 Key Components Of Your Web Browser
Path interactive ↗ has the following to say as regards the 7 components of your web browser.
- Layout Engine: This is what you click or type into to expect a result. For example, you type into search box or the space to enter your web address and it passes to the rendering engine. This is what the layout engine does.
- Rendering Engine: This converts a mere code into beautiful pictures and visual displays.
- User Interface: This is what you see while using a browser. It is the interface through which you communicate with your browser. It is in the user interface you search for things or check your bookmarks and browsing history.
- Network Layer – This is a function of the browser that happens behind the scenes and handles network functions such as encryption, http and ftp requests, and all network settings such as timeouts and the handling of HTTP status codes
- Operating System Interface – The browser must interact with the operating system to draw out several elements of the page like drop down boxes and the chrome of a window (close, maximize, and minimize buttons).
SUMMARY : Google crawls your site and then indexes what it sees as a cached version of the page.
If your webpages are not crawled then they can’t be indexed. Make sure your site can be crawled by bots is a priority.
Hope you enjoyed today’s class about crawling, indexing, ranking and rendering. feel free to ask me any questions and don’t forget to share.
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I am Law P (Lawrence Patrick), Affiliate Marketer, Education Consultant, SEO Expert, Web & Software Developer.