Well, not literally. Truth is, the folks at Google HQ are very selective about who they let visit the company campus in Mountain View, Calif. For the rest of us — and especially anyone hoping to rank well in search — the best way to “get inside” Google is to understand how the company has come to dominate search and, in turn, influence so much of Internet users’ subsequent behavior.
A full explanation of how search works is way beyond the scope of this post but, as this infographic shows, the process entails using software (aka spiders) to crawl the web, index billions of pages and return results based on relevance, links to other sites and other factors:
As it turns out, the process described above has particular relevance for medical practices. According to the Pew Research Center, 72% of Internet users use it to look for health information and 77% of these so-called “health seekers” begin the process with a search engine. If they don’t find you there, that makes it just that much harder to find you at all.
If you can’t beat ‘em, attract ‘em
The major search engines employ thousands of computer engineers to develop and refine the parameters that power their search algorithms and the odds that you or your web marketing team is going to be able to outwit them are slim to none. The far better strategy is to understand what the system they’ve designed looks for and ensure that your practice website sends the appropriate signals. We’ll look at what some of those are (and how they’re changing) in next week’s infographic.