Learn all about digital marketing, we have built this glossary to help you understand everything to thrive in online marketing and promoting your website or business.
What is Indexing?
The term 'indexing' refers to the process through which search engines like Google collect and store information about a web page to provide the most relevant results to users' queries. This process involves crawlers or bots that visit new pages or updates on existing pages, store the important information, and add them to the 'index', which is a huge database of discovered URLs.
Once your page is in the index, it’s in the running to be displayed as a result of related queries. It’s like the giant, digital library where once a book (your page) is included, it could be read (displayed in SERPs) by the audience.
Its importance is analogous to a library's index - without it, finding specific information would be nearly impossible. Similarly, a site with high-quality content may remain undiscovered if it's not properly indexed by search engines.
Indexing's Role in Digital Marketing
Indexing is fundamental to effective digital marketing. A website cannot gain organic traffic from search engines if its pages aren't indexed. This is why marketers consistently check and troubleshoot their site's indexing status.
This process also guides search engines in understanding what your website is all about. When Google indexes a site, it checks its keywords, meta tags, alt tags, and more, inferred against search queries to determine the site’s potential relevancy.
Effective indexing helps in enhancing a website's search engine ranking, thus making it easier for targeted users to find your site. Effective indexing also boosts overall online visibility, so marketers must focus on it while deploying their SEO strategies.
In digital marketing, indexing is demonstrated through the inclusion of pages in Search Engine Result Pages (SERPs). For instance, when Googlebot discovers a new page through various methods, such as backlinks, XML sitemap, or directly submitting a URL to Google Search Console, it crawls the page to understand its contents.
The bot then stores important details like keywords, images, videos, and overall context of the text in the 'index'. When a user types a related keyword query, the search engine sifts through its index to display the most relevant results.
An example of good SEO indexing is when a website ranks on the first page of Google for its chosen keywords. This shows that Google had not only indexed these pages but also deemed them valuable for related search queries.