How the Search Engine Works

The Health Science Center uses the Google Custom Search Engine to search the domain. Google uses a proprietary method of evaluating web pages called PageRank.

"PageRank performs an objective measurement of the importance of web pages by solving an equation of more than 500 million variables and 2 billion terms. Instead of counting direct links, PageRank interprets a link from Page A to Page B as a vote for Page B by Page A," Google says.

"But, Google looks at more than the sheer volume of votes, or links a page receives; it also analyzes the page that casts the vote. Votes cast by pages that are themselves 'important' weigh more heavily and help to make other pages 'important.'"

How do you make it easy for Google to search your web site?

  • Make a site with a clear hierarchy and text links. Every page should be reachable from at least one static text link.
  • Offer a site map to your users with links that point to the important parts of your site. If the site map is larger than 100 or so links, you may want to break the site map into separate pages.
  • Think about the words users would type to find your pages, and make sure that your site actually includes those words in it.
  • Try to use text instead of images to display important names, content, or links. Google doesn't recognize text contained in images.
  • Make sure that your "title" and "alt" tags are descriptive and accurate.
  • Check for broken links and correct HTML.
  • If you use dynamic pages (i.e., the URL contains a "?" character), be aware some search engines don't crawl the pages as well as static pages. It helps to keep the parameters short and the number of them small.

The Health Science Center's search index is updated continuously so new content is recognized within minutes. Your content also is recognized for the worldwide Google index but the company makes no guarantee about when the new content will be added to its worldwide index.