Definition of a Search Engine Crawler

Written by Nick Stamoulis

A web crawler, also known as a spiderbot, spider, or crawler, is an Internet bot that browses the world wide web for the purpose of finding new and updated content. This content can include a webpage, video, image, etc. Search engines use web crawlers to crawl the billions of web pages that exist. When webpages are discovered, they are added to the index.

The index will include URLs and other important information about the URL including keywords that relate to the topic of the webpage, the type of content being crawled, how recently the page was updates, and how users interact with the page. Google, for example, will keep track of all these key signals in the Search index. The Google Search index contains the billions of websites with an entry for every word seen on every webpage indexed. As they index pages, they add it to entries for all the words it contains, similar to that of an index in a book.

What are the benefits of search engine crawling? For the website owner, search engine crawling allows you the opportunity to be discovered and be including in an index, list, or database. This can lead to your website getting more traffic. For search engine crawler operators, the benefit is being able to gather the data that they want.

Your business can benefit from using search engine crawling to monitor what people are saying about you online. If comments about your business are made, positive or negative, you’ll want to know what’s being said. If there is something you need to address, this gives you the opportunity to do it. A search engine crawler can monitor social media sites as well as news sites and forums. The information found through search engine crawling can be invaluable, especially if any concerns have not been brought to you or your team. A web crawler can also be set up to find information about your competition. This can be a good way to compare pricing of your products and services and how they are promoting their products. Web crawling can also be beneficial in finding leads. Using a search engine crawler may help you target leads in a faster, more efficient way. If you are looking for people who are interested in the types of products and services you offer, this can speed up the process.

When you hire a company to build your search engine crawler for these purposes, make sure you go with a company who has a good reputation.

What are the disadvantages of search engine crawling? For the website owner, search engine crawling may prove to be disruptive. For the search engine crawler, the disadvantages can include being blocked if your presence is noticed and seems to be suspicious.

There are a variety of search engine crawlers available used to collect and list URLs that users see when doing searches. Without crawlers, search engine results pages would not exist or be as organized as they are.

 

Search Engine Crawler Definition Sources:

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