Search Engines and Algorithms

Today almost everyone is familiar with search engines and everyone uses in their everyday life. Here we are going to talk about the search engine algorithms in more details so you can find out how to make this information work for you. The six major ones are AOL Search, Google, Yahoo!, AltaVista, MetaSearch, and AskJeeves. You use one of them when you want to look up some very needed information online.

You have probably used at least one of them but have you ever compared the search results of different search engines you might have noticed how different they were. Why does it happen so? Firstly, people submit different information to the database, and search engine indexes are different. Secondly, all search engines use different algorithms to determine the relevance of the information for the user.

Why are search engines so different ?

A search engine algorithm is a math formula that solves a problem. It takes keywords as the input problem and gives the relevant information links as the solution, after comparing those keywords to the ones on database. Based on this formula the search engine determines the most relevant information based on the users keywords search. The algorithms are different in different search engines and so are the search results.

All search engines would usually implement a couple updates every year, you can follow patent filings to receive the heads up about them. Also search engines use different technology filters to sort out spam. Some search engines get rid of some links some leave them.

Information that factors into search engine algorithms

  • Time spent on a webpage by users
  • Analyze the links between pages on the web
  • Human classified data
  • Frequency and location of keywords
  • Meta tags

Use search engines in your favor

  • Do a thorough keywords research
  • Use more of specific phrases that are often searched on the net
  • Use unique titles for your site content
  • Post only high quality and unique content
  • Acceptable site navigation: site code, architecture and everything should not violate a search engine rules
  • High quality in-bound links so the search engine algorithm works in your favor
  • Update all info
  • Be familiar with how the search engines work

AOL Search

AOL claims to have a “clustering technology”, which clusters search results into relevant topics displayed along the list of general results. It mostly uses Google database so the search results are very similar to the ones on Google.


Google is known as the hilltop algorithm, because it considers some websites as more important and puts them on the top of the search results. Link popularity is important in Google algorithm.


On AskJeeves the result are presented as questions for which there are answers. The re-index is kinda sporadic and the sponsored listings receive more attention than any organically listed site. To put your site on the top of the list you will have to pay. It’s good for PPC ads.

(No Ratings Yet)