How Do Search Engines Categorize Each Piece of Content?


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SEO spelled out in colorful letter tiles.

SEO spelled out in colorful letter tiles.

Last year, 90% of online searchers used the internet to find a local business. Did they find yours? If you’ve invested in search engine optimization (SEO) and rely on analytics to make strategic decisions about your digital marketing campaign, you can probably answer that question with ease. You’re probably well aware of your business’s increased traffic thanks to your SEO initiatives and you may even have experienced a nice boost in sales of your products and services.

For many businesses, however, SEO remains a mysterious set of measures that only tech-savvy gurus seem to understand. Many still wonder if investing in SEO is the best use of their limited marketing dollars. It is, but we’ll get to that in just a bit. First, let’s sum up SEO like this: it’s a set of measures, both on-page and off-page, designed to increase a business or organization’s online visibility and, most importantly, to achieve a higher rank in search engine results.

To understand how these measures work requires an understanding of how search engines ‘decide’ what information to display when matching a searcher’s query. Here, we’ll explore how search engines like Google categorize content and what that means for your business, and its plans for SEO.

A cartoon image of a laptop and a crawler bot that looks liek a spider crawling various webpages to index them.


Search engines use robots to ‘crawl’ online content. The process of crawling is the first measure that search engines take before indexing content in virtually any form–videos, text, images, webpages, etc..The content may constitute newly uploaded content to the internet or content that features updates or changes to its material. These robots, also known as crawlers or bots, record the information along with its links. Once the material has been crawled, it can be stored in a massive URL database. It’s this database that generates internet search results.


After the bots crawl content, it can be indexed in the database and arranged in terms of its relevance. If internet content has not been crawled or indexed, it is unlikely to appear in the search results when someone makes a query no matter how relevant that content may be. After the content has been crawled, each of its words is indexed. The search engines also pinpoint where words are located on the crawled pages. During the indexing process, the search engine compares the content to other content with similar ‘words’ and decides how to organize it within its index.


Ranking is a complex process that is dependent on search engine algorithms. When a searcher makes a query on Google looking for anything from 19th century British landscape painters to New York City plumbers, the search engine will generate a list of good matches to that query. How these matches appear in the list relates to its rank. The search engine lists what it ‘thinks’ are the best answers to the query early in its search results.

Google and other search engines rely on algorithms to interpret the searcher’s query, identify the websites and pages in its index that are related to the request, and it then ranks them in terms of relevance in its presented search results list. What’s important to search engines is to provide searchers with the most relevant matches to their queries as possible.

Hey Google: This Content Is Relevant! (SEO Explained)

A large desktop computer that reads "online presence" on the screen.

In essence, SEO refers to measures that marketers use to demonstrate their relevance to search engines. Relevance is a bit of an umbrella term because it is more involved than it seems. A business’s location may make it more relevant to a query than another business. The fact that a business has more engagement on social media than another similar business may make it more relevant when it comes to ranking. A business with poor quality website content or negative online reviews is going to make it less relevant to the search engine even though it may well offer the services a searcher is looking for.

So, SEO involves many measures that can be used to make a business’s online presence as relevant as possible to search engines like Google. The more relevant it is, the more likely it will feature early in the search results when someone conducts a search. If its listing doesn’t appear until page three or four of those results, it’s simply not going to get the same number of clicks as listings that appear on page one. Those businesses enjoy a better rank and will win more traffic to their websites.

SEO Measures

SEO specialists use many measures to boost their relevance (become optimized) for search engines. Many of the measures they use, of course, are highly technical. They are dealing, of course, with bots and algorithms. So, they’ll perform technical work like ensuring that a website’s code and structure are updated and will fix any dead links.

On the other hand, they’ll also rely on non-technical measures like posting high-quality, keyword-rich content to web pages. They’ll evaluate the company’s online reputation and establish a more robust social media presence. They’ll also make sure to optimize the content for local searches by updating online directory listings with relevant local tags.

While the process of SEO may seem mysterious, it’s actually just very involved and includes many different measures. Depending on each business’s needs, they may need more of one type of measure than another. They’ll all require ongoing maintenance to ensure that they stay optimized–and relevant to search engine queries.

SEO for Improved Rank and Increased Website Traffic

A cartoon graphic of digital marketers holding a magnifyinf glass up to website traffic statistics.

If your business wants to achieve more website traffic, which invariably results in more leads, it should get optimized. When partnering with a digital marketing firm such as Romain Berg, your business will enjoy SEO solutions tailored to its specific needs. The firm’s SEO specialists will assess your company’s online presence, its industry, and competition in order to develop a plan for optimizing its search engine relevance and improving its page rank. With these strategic steps, you can expect a greater degree of digital marketing success.

Contact Romain Berg to learn more about our digital marketing solutions like SEO. We offer comprehensive digital services that are always tailored to our client’s needs and marketing goals.

About the Author

Sam Romain

Sam Romain

Digital marketing expert, data interpreter, and adventurous entrepreneur empowering businesses while fearlessly embracing the wild frontiers of fatherhood and community engagement.

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