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Chapter 2. How Search Engines Work > Ranking the Matches

Ranking the Matches

Merely displaying the list of all the pages that contain the words in the query is not much help when there are more than a dozen pages. And with Web search, that is almost always the case. So, one of the most important parts of a search engine is the ranking algorithm—the part of the search engine that decides which pages show up at the top of the results list.

Both organic results and paid results must be ranked, but the organic ranking algorithm is by far the most complicated, so we tackle that first.


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