Understanding the working mechanism of Search Engine Algorithms


Conglomerating several individual algorithms, each having their specific task and purpose, is called a Search Engine Algorithm. 

Easy to understand, right?

But how do all these algorithms work together to give a collective result? This is what we’ll be going over in this article. 

Good ranking is the result of not one but several aspects of SEO coming together. We need to understand how these individual ranking algorithms help bring good rankings. 

You may already know what kind of tactics work to get better ranks on SERPs. But how these tactics work is the question that we will be addressing today here. 

Consider it as a cause and effect relationship. We know what the effect of using the right keyword or inserting backlinks or even what kind of structured data processes work best is.

But, how these tactics bring about a change is paramount to understand the entire spectrum of possibilities.

Let’s start with the basics first. 


Is an Algorithm a recipe for better ranking?

Here’s what Google has to say about Algorithms;

“A process or set of rules to be followed in calculations or other problem-solving operations, especially by a computer.”

So, here is what you can take out of this definition. There are some processes and rules pre-set. These rules and processes have a basic function, a role, or an effect. When the computer or machine needs to calculate something, it does that by leveraging these rules and processes. 

So, if you are looking to rank an article, you look at the URL, the content, links (internal and external), images, page load speed, and so on. And these are just a few things that you consider. 

Going even further ahead, there are different formulas or tactics to utilize the best of URL. The same goes for content, images, and the linking part. 

These formulas help set the right precedent for each of these factors, an algorithm in itself. 

Hence, you are looking at different algorithms that connect together to form a bigger algorithm. Each of these retains their individual character and also augment the related algorithms to give a positive result. 

And the motive of the topmost algorithm is to check the performance and structuring of the underlying algorithms. 


What does all this mean?

The framework of algorithms under algorithms is meant to provide the desired results. For that, we need to monitor the performance of each algorithm and the formula used to execute them. 

Imagine a flow chart with one core algorithm leading at the front, and all the other algorithms are directly or indirectly connected to the leader. 

That “Leader Algorithm” is what we can call Google’s Algorithm. Whereby the different algorithms under the Google Algorithm execute one specific function. 


Example of a few algorithms:

Google has created a subset of algorithms and named them to understand the entire network better. 


  • Panda Algorithm: Panda keeps a check on the content part. It checks, filters, rewards, and penalizes content. It looks after the specificity of the content and a massive load of other things in the content. 



  • Penguin Algorithm: This algorithm reads the links and spam. However, the catch is Penguin must be fed data from other algorithms that look after the value of the links and segregate the characteristics of the spam links. 


Some other sorts of algorithms include Task-specific algorithms and Organizing algorithms. 


Understanding Entities in Search Algorithms

Another concept that you may have come across earlier are Entities. 

If you have neglected knowing what entities are and how they work, you are not alone.  The majority of the people undermine the importance of entities, but we won’t. 

First, let’s take Google’s view:

“A thing of concept that is singular, unique, well-defined, and distinguishable.”

The purpose of entities is to make it easier for Google to get a hold of any particular page. 

Just like it is with algorithms, the entities can also have subsets of entities. Each of them having their own unique identity and also having some connection to the other entities. 

For instance, take a web page. It has content, images, URL, links, and whatnot. Each of them is a different entity in itself. Still, they come together to form a bigger entity that is a web page. 

Ultimately, when you collate all the web pages, we get a website, which is also “you guessed it right,” an Entity. 

Google names these entities to make it easier to build a connection and simplify things for better understanding. 

The naming of entities and separation of different elements into entities makes it easier for Google to judge a website. 

Since there are billions of websites on the web, Google needs to understand each one of them uniquely. And know how many entities come together to build one website. 


Search Algorithms also use Entities, How?

First, why do you think it is important for Google to understand what a website is all about?

Why should Google know that you have a website that shows the daily news of your city? More importantly, why is it essential to know that all the tabs on your website are connected to each other?

In other words, Google should know that two different blogs or web pages are drawn from the same entity, i.e., your website. 

To help Google know that two entities are, in fact, related and are sourced from a common entity, we need to ensure their connectedness. 

Entities have streamlined the whole process of making a connection between different pages. Since manipulating the entities is not feasible, Google can understand the status of a page with distinction. 

When different search engines crawl through the websites and pages, they try to find out the common links between the entities. Due to this, these search engines can also predict which connections of entities are prominent and which are not that strong. 


Enough of Side Talk, Let’s know how Search Algorithms Work

The understanding of these related topics is essential to get the final picture. 

Context of the Update:

When an algorithm is updated, you need to know the context of that update. By now, you must understand that the comprehensive algorithm does not get updated. 

It is a smaller part of the algorithm that receives a makeover. So, you need to understand which aspect of your content or website is effectuated by an update. 

Changing the affected parts according to the update will help you stay updated and up to the mark. 

Entities are also essential:

We know that entities play a huge role in understanding how search engine algorithms work. 

More importantly, entities help you understand which part of your website is more important and how to ensure a connectedness with each other. 


It all boils down to User Intent

This colossal network of algorithms and entities comes to fulfill one thing, User Intent. 

The importance of User Intent can be judged by the fact that Google has set a separate algorithm to identify the results shown to the user. This algorithm makes adjustments to conform to the user’s search query to its best. 

To further satisfy the user intent, algorithms are set to understand the entities and the relationship between the entities. In the end, they help provide relevance to the algorithms, along with ensuring the appropriate context.