Helping people and businesses learn how Search works

A one-stop shop

Today, we’re launching a fully-redesigned How Search Works website that explains the ins and outs of Search — how we approach the big, philosophical questions, along with the nitty-gritty details about how it all works. 

We first launched this website in 2016, and since then, millions of people have used it to discover more about how Search works. Now, we’ve updated the site with fresh information, made it easier to navigate and bookmark sections and added links to additional resources that share how Search works and answer common questions.

The website gives you a window into what happens from the moment you start typing in the search bar to the moment you get your search results. It gives an overview of the technology and work that goes into organizing the world’s information, understanding what you’re looking for and then connecting you with the most relevant, helpful information.

On the site, you can find details about how Google’s ranking systems sort through hundreds of billions of web pages and other content in our Search index — looking at factors like meaning, relevance, quality, usability and context — to present the most relevant, useful results in a fraction of a second. And you can learn about how we go about making improvements to Search. (There have been 4,500 such improvements in 2020 alone!) As you’ll read about, we rigorously test these changes with the help of thousands of Search Quality Raters all around the world — people who are highly trained using our extensive guidelines. These rater guidelines are publicly available, and they describe in great detail how Search works to surface great content.