Posts Tagged ‘Search Algorithms Definition’

Search Algorithms

A search algorithm is an algorithm that finds a file with specified properties within a database of files that are stored on a computer system. In its most basic form a search algorithm is a procedure or set of steps for solving a particular problem by using the problem as input and returning a solution. In relation to search engines, search algorithms are used to rank information on the Web.

In the past, search algorithms were based on complex mathematical formulas. By using search algorithms, a search engine could determine how many links a website had, how long users typically spend on the website, the number of times a keyword or phrase appears on a website and the density of those keywords or phrases. The search engine then uses the output of search algorithms to give the website a ranking.

The problem with search algorithms that are solely based on mathematical formulas is that once the formulas are revealed to the public, people can abuse the system by tricking the search engine into thinking their website is relevant. To counter this, search engines began using search algorithms that employ a combination of mathematical formulas and human input to determine the website’s ranking. These types of search algorithms are the focus of SEO Today.

These days, search algorithms are able to derive a ranking by looking at everything, from how long the website has been on the Web to how many errors are encountered. New search algorithms are even able to derive relationships between keywords, for example, the algorithm knows that the keywords “Ferrari”, “sports car” and “automobile” are all related, and ranks the website accordingly.

It’s important to understand that each search engine uses different search algorithms and that these algorithms are usually kept secret, due to the competitive nature of the industry. Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) experts are constantly trying to discover exactly how a search engine determines a website’s page ranking, which leads to a lot of speculation, assumption and guesswork.

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