Understanding how Google works

Change in Google: title tag will also be applied to image results
Did you see that? Google increases the number of meta description characters from 160 to 320

One of the first steps to success with Digital Marketing is basically to understand how Google works in relation to indexing sites. Even before working with SEO (ie optimizing a website for search engine), it is necessary to find out how Google works and how it presents your search results.

Currently, Google users perform over 3.5 billion searches every day. The number of sites indexed by search engine since its founding in 1998, has surpassed 60 trillion.

With so many exorbitant numbers, how your business can stand out? How to be on the first search page in the midst of so many competitors?

Searches are divided into two types of results:

1 – paid results

They are those that appear in the search through ads produced via Google AdWords and are located above and below the organic results.

They are classified differently from organically through (CPC Cost Per Click), quality score of the ads and other factors.

To learn how to create effective ads, you can read our eBook on the subject .

2 – Organic results (free)

They are those that Google ranks according to their search algorithm and lists which are the most relevant sites and suitable to your search. Here there is no cost to the owner of the site.

They are located in the center between the paid results.

Works as Google (2)

Example paid to search results (above) and organic (bottom).

As the Google algorithm works

Let’s say you entered a large library looking for a book about “Digital Marketing”. In this place there are thousands of issues, themes and various authors at your disposal. At that point you follow the following steps:

  • Limits the topic related to the subject
  • Notes the title, subtitle, the cover, the index, the summary and some of the content
  • Identifies the best works and the most recognized authors
  • Remember the information already received
  • Ranks the best according to relevance
  • Choose one or more books after this selection

In Google’s case, the goal is the same: choose the pages and define the theme and sort according to relevance. What changes is the qualification process to select the results.

Understanding how Google search works

Google has a system of “crawlers” to discover the public pages available. Basically it will going from link to link and not only tracks pages that contain the code “nofollow” or “noindex”, an indication that those sites are not found.

The best-known crawler is called “Googlebot.” These robots scour the pages read all the content available there, going in various addresses and bringing data on these pages to Google’s servers.

Another way to find out the Google content is with the very company that owns the site creating a  sitemap – a list of all the pages of your site that is sent to search engines, making it easier indexing.

Information, search and indexing

The crawl process begins with a list of sites that underwent previous crawls and sitemaps provided by the websites. When visiting these addresses, the crawlers look links to other pages areas visit. Google gives special attention to the indexing of new sites, changes to existing sites and dead links. So he keeps the database updated.

Robots determine which sites to crawl, how often and how many pages to fetch from each site. You can not pay Google for your site to be crawled more frequently or to gain advantages in the organic search results. The main browser goal is to identify the best possible results to provide the best user experience.

When Google finds a page, it makes a kind of copy on your server. This means that the page has been indexed, ie, in the Google list and may appear as search results if Google so desired.

How the indexing and organizing information

Once Google enters all of these pages in your library, comes the most sophisticated part of the tool, which is to assess, from over 200 different signs, which is one that will better serve the user.

When you do a Google search, the algorithm can process in milliseconds an analysis of various criteria seeking to understand which pages of content are ideal to meet the search terms (keywords).

The first striking point, therefore, is whether there is indeed a correlation between the page and what user searched. With that fall under the first pillar: content

1st Pillar – Content

Within a page, there are some “noble spaces.” As well as the cover of a book says a lot about the subject of the book, there are elements such as the title of a page, for example, which are very strong indicators of the correlation with the matter.

These are specific parts of a page that have greater weight in seeking and deserve special attention.

Work them means having a better chance to consider Google as good result for a desired search.

  • Title (Page Title) – It is the most important element of the page in Google ‘s eyes. It is the text that appears in the browser tab.
  • Headers (Headings) – are markings on the code indicating the subtitles of the page and its hierarchies. The markings will H1 (most important) to H6.
  • Texts – is the site’s content. The key word appearance and synonyms throughout the content is very relevant.
  • URL – is the link’s web address – Optimize always Ex: www.site.com/palavras-chave
  • Alt Attribute – is the text that appears if the image is not displayed and what Google uses to “understand” what is in the picture.

All the above topics are compared with the words searched, thus seeking to recognize any relationship.

Google also tries to look for other items such as the context in which the page is displayed. For example, an ecommerce have a page that sells balls benefits and gains correlation when a sports website that talks about different ball models puts the article a link to the page.

Pillar 2 – the Authority site and user experience

It is common that Google find several pages with good signals responsive to the user’s question. Comes into play then the second challenge: which one is better?

Google needs to understand how each page is relevant to be able to order them and the main parameter for this is the number of times the page and the site as a whole are indicated by third parties.

On the internet it takes the form of incoming links, which act almost as votes. The more links and sites with greater authority a page has, the more likely it reach the top Google positions.

Within the site itself also gives to understand if your company considers important or not page. If she is several clicks away from home, for example, Google might see it as an indication that perhaps it is not so relevant.

There are also other items that show the user had a good experience: page loading speed, the fact that the visitor come back or not to Google after entering the page (if return is because did not find what you were looking – bad experience).

Currently there are also Google tools that help you analyze the performance of your site. An example is the PageSpeed Tools , which optimizes the site according to best practices for web.


What we talk about so far is only the beginning of the way compared to Google and SEO. It is important to be aware of all these ranking factors to rank well on Google, but the main factor about all these strategies is still the quality content.

Produce unique, information relevant to your audience, even if you’re not among the first, this content can create a great engagement, generate visits and make you get great results.

Now that you know how Google works it’s time to learn how to turn Google into a traffic machine for your company’s website. Download the free eBook “The Complete Guide to SEO” and find out!