Yesterday in class we used the website Ranks.nl to compare and contrast search engines. It’s a pretty simple site to use: You choose what search engines you want to see (up to 5) from a lengthy list, and then type in what you’re searching for.
I compared Google, Altavista, Yahoo, and Bing and I chose to search for puppies- Here’s a screen shot of the results for my search. When I compared all the different results, I realized that they all had almost the exact same top sites but their layouts were completely different. Google and Altavista had similar layouts- image results at the top followed by the different web pages, while Bing and Yahoo had similar layouts- video results at the top followed by the top results, and image results a few links down. It was interesting to me to be able to see the similarities and differences in the search engines since I usually do not use anything other than Google. By looking at different search engines and being able to compare and contrast them on the same page, I was able to see what I like and don’t like about them. Surprisingly, I was impressed by Bing and I was pretty entertained by the video results- (they play when you put your cursor on them!) Although Bing and Yahoo had the exact same image results and page ranks, I liked the layout on Bing more than I did on Yahoo. Google would definitely be my second preference because it is more orderly to me than Yahoo or Altavista, and if you scroll down they also have the video results.
I did find one thing more interesting than the comparison of search engines: how to get your website to the top of their lists. I always assumed that page ranks were based on how many people click on your site after searching, but there is much more to it.
SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization: SEO considers how a search engine works and what people are searching for in order to improve a websites visibility and promote a higher search engine ranking.
Here is a list of three ways to get your website a higher ranking, it’s called the Three Step SEO Strategy:
1. Make a list of targeted keyword phrases.
2. Create an optimized page for each keyword phrase on your list.
3. Obtain quality back links to each of your pages.
So if you are interested in being the #1 ranked page on Google, keep these three steps in mind.
Our homework this week has been to not use any sort of search engine and just in one day I have realized how much I use Google’s search bar- enough that I have had to break the homework rules a few times. However, I probably rely on the page ranks more than I rely on the search engine itself: thats the whole reason for using a search engine, to get the best results fast. So although the process of ranking pages is long and difficult to fully understand, it is good to know that they take it seriously and are interested in ranking pages accurately– that way I can see the cutest puppies first, without having to go through a strenuous search process.
Goodbye for Now!
Screen shot photo is off of my screen.