Google Basics: Understanding the #1 Search Engine

First off, Google is basic. From the front end, what you and I see, Google is one of the most simplistic websites out there. With its characteristic white background and contrasting colorful logo, Google is a staple for all our online, informational retrieval. It’s easy to become consumed by your own website’s placement with Google, but the easiest way to understand Google is to evaluate how you use it for personal use.

You go to
You type in something basic in the search bar such as “Used Cars.”
Press Enter.

Within a matter of milliseconds, you are given thousands of search results. Sometimes you are given search results in yellowish boxes. Sometimes your results start off with a Google Map. And then there are side columns. Do you understand all the information that is provided to you?

Google’s Center Column
Perform a simple search such as typing in ‘crockpots.’

The middle column (not including the sometimes apparent yellow box) are all the websites that Google finds relevant for the search. The order in which the results are given are set as a priority that Google finds the most reliable for my search. Meaning, Google considers the website to be the #1 most appropriate result for the search.

This is the main area of focus when discussing ‘Organic’ Search Engine Optimization. It means that you have properly optimized your website for Google to naturally appear on the first page of Google results.

Google Sponsored Ads/The “Yellow Boxes”
Perform a more detailed search such as typing in ‘discount countertops.’

Right away you’ll notice the yellow box located above the natural search results. The websites found in the yellow box are paying to be in that golden area. This is through the work of Pay-per-click advertisement. Paying x-amount of dollars for the #1 placement on results means, each time we click on’s link, we are charging their account. These Sponsored Ads area also, almost always, located on the far right column. Pay for your result placement doesn’t ensure that your website is well optimized. Meaning, when you stop paying for a term, you may not appear anywhere near Google’s first page of results.

Other items to keep in mind:
Ever notice how Google seems to give you results in your neighborhood? – Google can auto-detect your location to give you a more refined search by noticing where your IP Address is coming from.  Click here to learn more about this or to turn it off.

How does Google find websites? – All search engines use ‘bots’ or ‘spiders’ to crawl around the internet to find websites and index (store) information about websites. This stored information is then held onto until there is a search that pertains to the information Google found on your website. If you have a new website or made any significant changes, remember it takes anywhere from 1-3 for the changes to be noticed by Google. Click here to speed up the process.

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