Web Crawling in SEO is an essential strategy for easy access to information. Crawlers are the reasons for searching for the best results for the users. Web crawlers are used in every application today. For instance, looking for the best restaurant or booking a plane ticket you receive the best results because of the web crawler. Web Crawling tool is popular for data scientists and in Search Engine Optimization.
What is Web Crawling in SEO?
Web Crawling is a process in which the crawlers in the search engine crawl the webpages to collect data. Search engine crawlers are the search engine programs that contain details from each page like images, titles, keywords, etc. It automatically searches the web for documents, web pages, RSS feeds, and email addresses. It then indexes and stores the information.
The website crawler derives its name from the way it crawls through a website, one page at a time, following links to other pages until all the pages have been viewed. Every search engine has its web crawler. For instance, Googlebot is the web crawler for the Google search engine.
The crawler rates the website in the index by several algorithms on the basis of the content value and quality. Every webpage consists of a robot.txt file. This file restricts the unlimited access of web crawlers. For instance, it contains information on the URL’s the crawlers should crawl and information about which webpages to be crawled and which to be ignored.
Each webpage contains some internal and external links. Crawlers add this page to the visiting list. The crawler repeats this process until the are no links left on the web pages to visit.
Google first used the web crawler to search and index content as a quick way to find webpages using keywords and phrases. Many IT systems and other search engine create their web crawlers using different algorithms. Due to these web crawlers, we can find any data or information on the internet.
With the help of web crawlers, users can collect some specific type of information. For instance, finding a review of a food application, finding the best jobs, looking for a service at a specific location, etc.
Your website needs to be indexed if you want to rank your website in the search engines. Therefore, if your website is not crawled at least once, it cannot rank.
Your site must have content that can reach the audience to increase organic traffic.
There are various tools in the market with different features. But there are two main categories of Web Crawling tools. They are:
Desktop Tools: The Web Crawling tools are installed on your local systems.
Cloud: These tools are stored and installed on the cloud to be accessed from anywhere.
Most organizations choose cloud-based web crawler tools to increase collaboration and they can be accessed from any system without having it installed the system.
After the installation, the crawling tools can automatically run and provide reports.
Web Crawling is very essential in SEO. Here are some benefits of using web crawling tools.
- Web Crawlers work on the background of the site. Users will not face any issues on the website while the site is being crawled. Crawlers do not slow down the websites or affect anyone browsing the website.
- Many Web Crawlers tools automatically generate the report of the website. User can access their report with an excel spreadsheet. These features save time that is utilized in manually generating the report.
Every search engine has its own crawlers. These search engine bots are also known as ‘spiders’. Here are some of the web crawlers of some popular search engines:
- Amazon has an Amazon bot that crawls for web content and backlinks.
- Google has a Googlebot.
- Yahoo! Is a bot for the Yahoo search engine.
- Yandex Bot Slurp for Yandex.
- Microsoft uses Bingbot for their Bing search engine.
It is possible that the search engine can find some web pages of your website by crawling and might be obscured for some reason. However, it is very important that the search engine crawls and indexes all the content on your website.
Here are some of the mistakes made that will prevent your web page from visiting by a crawler.
- Many websites are responsive to mobile view and desktop view. However, the navigation of mobile view is different from the navigation of desktop view.
- Crawlers follow the new pages via the links available on the content. Therefore, if you have forgotten to add the link to your homepage in the navigation. Then the crawler will not be able to revisit the website.
There are different types of crawl errors that might occur while crawling the URLs. Therefore, it is important to understand and solve the errors. Here are the two common errors crawlers face while accessing the URLs.
- 400+ Codes: These errors occur when the search engines are unable to access the content due to the client-side error. The most common error is “404 – not found”. This error is displayed because of issues like the deleted web page, incorrect redirection, incorrect URL, etc
- 500+ Codes: These errors occur when there is some issue with the server. Therefore, the crawler cannot access the content. To fix the server’s connectivity issue, Google has presented documentation.
Robot.txt and how bots work with Robot.txt files
Robot.txt files are present in the root directory of the site. For instance, if your website is xyz.com, you can fetch the robot.txt file in xyz.com/robots.txt/. This file suggests to the web crawlers which part the crawler should visit and which parts the crawler should not visit. Similarly, it also suggests to the crawler at what speed it should crawl the website. You can go through the complete introduction and guide of the robots.txt file in Google documentation.
A web crawler is responsible to crawls the web pages for searching and indexing the web content. They follow an algorithm that filters the web pages and sorts them according to the content. In other words, Web Crawling is an important part of SEO. If your web pages are not crawled at least once, the search engine will not index that web page.