8 Tips On How To Crawl The Web Successfully
Updated: Sep 24, 2019
What in the world does crawling mean?
When you first publish your website, you won’t instantly have a booming site with lots of hits and traffic. In fact, your web pages will take some time to be discoverable through search engines. This is because Google – as well as Bing and others – have to crawl your web pages before they index and rank them.
What in the world does crawling mean?
There are more than 63,000 search queries on Google, every second! But, in order for Google to deliver relevant results to every single search, it has to examine every page on the web to determine its content and how relevant it is to the search query. That’s a ridiculously tall order, so we won't hold it against Google for using artificial intelligence to handle the heavy lifting.
But what this means for you – the webmaster – is that you need Google to first recognize your website before it will even be indexed (where Google understands the page) and ranked (where Google determines how relevant a page is for search queries). This first step – the recognition – is called crawling. It’s the process where Google finds your site and then any new pages you add via your sitemap.
And, of course, you made your website so it can be found right? Not sit silently alone in the digital dark! So, here are eight tips you can use to speed up the web crawling process and put your web pages on the digital map!
Create a sitemap
Don’t worry, you don’t have to do anything technical here. You just have to use a sitemap generator to create an XML sitemap. My article on how to create and submit a sitemap contains loads of information!
Utilize free webmaster services
Take advantage of the free webmaster tools offered by Google and Bing. This is where you can submit your sitemap and look at up-to-date data on your crawled pages. You’ll be able to see how well your pages are being crawled rather than waiting in the dark biting your nails because you can’t figure out why your glorious new web page isn’t ranked yet.
Clean up any errors
The crawling process actually slows down if you have error pages, so you’ll want to make sure all your links are going to the correct URLs on your website. Also, it’s a good idea to regularly check for 404 error messages you may have on your website and correct the issue as soon as possible.
Add new content consistently
An abundance of high-quality content also contains one key important factor when it comes to the world of web crawling; WORDS. The more words and keywords associated with and attached to your website in your specific category and niche the higher the potential that Google bots will crawl your website to find any relevant information to share with the general public that is searching using keywords related to your website's content.
Update content regularly
One thing Google bots/ web crawlers favor and are trained for is to continually go out and search for recently UPDATED relevant web pages for relevant search inquiries. So the newer and up to date the content on your website is, the better it is for you to crawl and rank higher in search results.
Add quality pictures and/or videos
"A Picture is worth a 1000 words" so they say... Well, in this case, it could be worth 1,000's to you in the form of subscribers, followers, or even dollars. High-quality pictures, artwork, and videos can help to improve your website user's experience. It does this by giving people something to look at, enjoy, and is also very engaging. Improving your website's user experience is not only great practice, but it is also a high priority for Google when they rank and rate your website. They want to see if your website accomplishes the goal of providing a good user experience and also if it clear what the purpose of your website is. Is it to inform, to entertain, or is it a utility( bill paying website, job application website, etc…) So the clearer you showcase your website's purpose and user experience to search engines, chances are the higher you will rank and successfully crawl. High-quality Pictures, Photos, and Videos help you achieve this.
Start link building
Google tends to spend more time on websites that have plenty of high-quality inbound links. So, if no one is linking to your brand new website, this signals to Google that it may as well spend its precious time on more important new web pages first. To get your site crawled faster, work on building up high-quality backlinks. Quality really matters here, so only focus your guest blogging and business link trading efforts on well-ranked websites that are relevant to your niche.
Crawling does take time. While you’re waiting, make sure each page you have on your website is going to engage your visitors. Also, work on building up your website with more content via more blog postings, videos, etc… This in turn can help you gain even more of those golden backlinks you want!