Google’s site indexes (or “bots”) are an important part of the search engine optimization ranking process. If you want your website to rank, your site needs to be indexed. To be indexed, website crawlers need to be able to find and categorize your site.
This guide explores what a website crawler does and why they are important.
What is a site crawler?
Imagine the Internet as a massive library of unorganized content. Web crawlers are Internet librarians who crawl web pages and crawl useful content.
Search engines have their own crawlers; for example, Google has “Google bots.” These bots (also known as crawlers or spiders) visit new or updated websites, analyze content and metadata, and index the content they find.
There are also 3rd party crawlers that you can use as part of your SEO efforts. These crawlers can analyze the condition of your website or the reverse profile of your competitors.
How do crawlers work?
When you type a search query into a search engine and you get a list of possible matches – you’ve benefited from the work of site crawlers.
Site robots are complex algorithms created by massive computer programs. They are meant to scan and understand a large amount of information and then attach the found search term. But how do they get this information?
Divide it into three steps for each site crawler:
- Crawl your website
- Scanning the content of your site
- Visit your site’s links (URL)
All of this information is stored in a massive database and indexed by keywords and relevance.
Google then divides the top spots into the best, most reliable, most accurate, and most interesting content, while everything else is mixed up in the list.
Unfortunately, not all websites are crawled unless they are “crawler friendly.”
There 3rd party site indexing tools such as Site Audit Tool can help. The Site Inspector crawls your website, highlighting any errors and suggestions you can use to improve your site’s crawl.
In the past, SEO professionals joked that if you don’t have a website, you might not be in business either. If site crawlers can’t find your site these days, you may not have it!
If your site is not crawled, you have no chance of driving organic traffic to it.
Sure, you can pay for ads to get the best position, but – as any SEO professional says – organic traffic is a pretty accurate indication of a quality website.
To ensure access to search engine crawlers, you need to crawl your own website on a regular basis. Adding new content and optimizing your pages and content is one surefire way to do this. The more people linking to your content, the more trustworthy you will appear on Google.
Site Audit Tool can help:
- Using our specialized site crawlers to check the condition of your website
- We will review over 120 issues that may affect your website
- You show exactly what to fix for your website (and why it’s important)
You must configure a project for your domain before you can use the Site Verification Tool. If you already have a project created for your domain, read more to learn how to set up and run the tool.
log in Semrush account. If you do not have an existing account, you can create a free account.
Once logged in, you will be greeted on the main page: Under Administration, select “Dashboard” to be taken to the project dashboard:
If you have already assigned a project to your domain, you will see the project control panel. Select the Site Verification tab at the top of the page:
If you do not have a project, you can configure it by clicking Add New Project in the upper right corner of the page.
Enter your domain and project name. Select “create project:”
You can now launch the Site Audit tool by selecting the Site Audit tab in the new project control panel (see above).
Once the tool is open, you’ll need to configure your scan settings, including the crawl space, any website restrictions, and more. When you’re happy with the settings, click Start site verification:
Your website is now being indexed. It may take some time to complete the crawl if your site is large, so go ahead with your business and check back soon.
If Search Engine Optimization is new to you, don’t panic when you see your report! Don’t like to see site errors and warnings, but it’s important to fix them as soon as possible.
When completed, the Site Audit Tool will return a list of errors it has detected on your site. These problems are usually classified as follows:
- Mistakes: These are very impressive things, so keep them as a priority. These are important things that prevent your site from crawling or crawling.
- Warnings: These things are still pretty important, but not as much as mistakes. Plan to fix these next.
- Notes: These are not serious issues, but they can affect the user experience. Take care of these when all other issues are being addressed.
The tool explains each problem and provides suggested fixes. You can filter or sort specific issues on the Topics tab:
On the Overview page, you’ll see your crawl score. This thematic report provides an o-overview of indexed pages and issues that prevent bots from indexing pages.
Work through these until you have completed each list. If you are a Trello or Zapier user, you can assign any of the tasks to the whiteboard or task manager.
Once you’ve updated your site, run another review. When you’re done, you can select “compare crawls” to see if and how your efforts affect the quality of your website.
Check the indexability of your website
Make sure your search engines crawl your site by making your site as indexable as possible. You need to make sure it is configured effectively so that bots can examine all possible pages.
Google may change investment factors in the future, but we know that user experience and indexability are here.
Performing site checks helps you stay up-to-date on any errors that may affect the crawl of your site. Remember: website maintenance is your own process, so don’t be afraid to spend time!