Crawling is the process by which search engines discover, retrieve, and index webpages on the internet. Search engine crawlers, also known as spiders or bots, systematically navigate the web by following links from one webpage to another, collecting data and information about each page they encounter. Crawling is the first step in the search engine indexing process, as it allows search engines to gather and analyze information about webpages and determine their relevance and importance for specific search queries.

During the crawling process, search engine crawlers visit webpages, analyze their content and structure, and follow links to other pages within the website and across the web. Crawlers use algorithms to prioritize which pages to crawl and how frequently to revisit them based on factors such as page authority, freshness of content, and crawl budget. Website owners can control how search engine crawlers access and crawl their website by using robots.txt files, meta tags, and XML sitemaps to provide instructions and guidelines for crawling.

Also see: Organic traffic, Paid search, Pay-per-click (PPC), Google Analytics, Google Search Console, Bing Webmaster Tools, Rich snippets, Canonical tags, Indexing