Google Infographic Reveals How Search Works
Just a few days ago, Google released a very handy infographic entitled How Search Works. Even if you already consider yourself well versed in search engine optimization *SEO) and marketing, the infographic is certainly worth a read.
In fact, this Google infographic is just one component of a new "How Search Works" section of Inside Search that explains in real-world terms what every web site owner and SEO marketer should know about how their web site is actually crawled, indexed, how various algorithms work, and how to prevent and avoid spam.
One of the most stunning bits of information conveyed by the new infographic is displayed prominently at the top: the internet now contains over 30 trillion individual web pages, and it continues to grow (by thousands, if not millions) every day.
Crawling, Indexing, Algorithms, Oh My!
The infographic walks the user (and by the way, this is targeted more towards search users as opposed to SEO pros, but the information is still invaluable) through each step of how Google crawls and indexes pages, and how they use search terms to generate the most appropriate possible list of results.
Of note is the fact that Google mentions that 200 separate ranking signals are used to determine the ranking of pages for a given keyword query. No, they're not providing a comprehensive list of what those ranking signals are, but they all deal with ensuring that the highest quality, most relevant content is delivered to the user for a given keyword phrase.
The Battle Against Spam
Part 3 of Google's new infographic should be even more interesting to site owners and content developers, as it deals with fighting spam (or more appropriately, how to ensure your site isn't considered spam). Especially useful is the link within the line "See what we've removed lately." This opens up a window with live, almost-real-time examples of pages that Google has actually removed from search results. This is a great way to see the types of pages and content you should never include on your site.
Google also explains how they take manual action against sites, and how site owners have a chance to remedy the problem in order to get their pages re-indexed with Google.
Important Google Policies to Know
Once you make your way through the infographic, scroll back up to the top and click the "Policies" heading. Here you'll find a convenient list of some of Google's most important and sweeping policies when it comes to filtering search results. As a site owner, you should make yourself familiar with every item on this list and ensure you're not violating any of Google's policies.
Did Google's infographic improve your understanding of search, or is this all old news to you? Let us know in the comments below.