Glossary

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A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z 0-9

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301 Redirect

301 redirect is a web coding that permanently sends or redirects search engine crawlers and human website visitors to a URL which is different than the one they originally sought. Of all of the different methods employed to redirect one domain or page to another, 301 Redirects pass the most page rank value, or link juice, from one page to another. The 301 redirect is also known as a Permanent Redirect.

404 error

This is a status code which means that there is no code on the URL being requested by a search engine or visitor.

A

Above the Fold

Above the Fold is taken from the old newspaper term which refers to the top half of the front page. This was the area of the newspaper which had the greatest impact because the area is visible from coin-operated newspaper stands. When referring to web pages, Above the Fold means much the same, as it refers to the area of a web page which is visible without scrolling down in a typical web browser. Since there are many different screen sizes and software combinations used by the general public, the content appearing in this area is only an approximate value. Typically, content in the first 600-800 vertical pixels is considered Above the Fold .

Having the most important and conversion-centric content above the fold is very important because that is where website visitors look first. This immediately directs visitors into the sales funnel and on their way to a conversion.

Adobe Flash and Adobe Flash Player

Adobe Flash is a software platform developed by Adobe which is used to create and render web content. Typically, Flash content is visually impressive, but has its drawbacks. Flash is difficult for search engines to read and index, it consumes a great deal of bandwidth and is often difficult to display on some computers. Additionally, and of increasing importance, Flash is generally not supported on mobile devices. Flash content should be avoided when designing your own website or having a website designed for your business if you intend to rank well in search engine results. Because Flash content cannot be read the way typical text/html content can be read, Flash content acts as a huge impediment to search engine optimization (SEO).

Visitors to your website need a Flash Player plugin for their Internet browser to be able to see Flash content. Unless it cannot be avoided, Flash content should be avoided at all cost.

Algorithm

An algorithm is a complex mathematical formula designed to solve a mathematical problem using a finite sequence of instructions. Search engines apply algorithms to decide which websites to return and in what order relevant websites are presented in search results.

Alt attribute

A part of the HTML code used to display an image on a web page. Alt-text is used to describe an image that cannot be displayed and gives search engines an idea of the content within the image. Utilizing the alt-text tag is a very important SEO strategy because it gives Google and other search engines a better hint at what is being visually represented in an image. Although Google is very good at recognizing what is in an image, they are currently not using this technology in their search engine.

Analytics

Software that reports users’ behavior on a web page.

Anchor Text Diversity

Anchor text diversity refers to having diversified keywords located in the anchor text of the links pointing back to a website. For example, it would be better for a site to have 100 links with a random distribution of anchor texts X, Y and Z than having the same 100 links with only anchor text X.

B

Backlink

A backlink is simply a link from an external website that points back to your website.

Bait and Switch Campaigns

A bait and switch campaign is executed by displaying two webpages from the same URL; one designed for search engine spiders and the other for users. It may also include a strategy where a specific webpage is used to get a site indexed into a search engine, then, upon indexing; a different page would replace it.

Black Hat SEO Techniques

SEO tactics which are against Google’s Webmaster Guidelines.

C

Call to Action

A phrase on a web site that asks a user to take a specific action or that tells a user how to proceed.

Camel Case

The word CamelCase is used to describe the practice of removing the spacing between words while capitalizing the first letter of each word. Example: CamelCase or SeeYouLater. This is often used in many computer programming languages.

Canonical

An original source.

Click-Through-Rate

The rate at which users, when presented with a link among other links on a page, will click on a specific link. Pages ranking higher on search engine results pages have higher click-through rates, attracting more visitors to their pages.

Cloaking

Showing different content to a user than is shown to a search engine. Cloaking is a black hat SEO technique.

Conversion

A website visitor’s action which results in a desired outcome, such as a purchase, a contact or signing up for communications or services.

Co-Occurrence

The term co-occurrence refers to the idea that when people write content on the internet about a certain topic, they use a certain vocabulary to talk about that topic. Using co-occurrence terms is very important for the success of an SEO campaign because Google and other search engines use co-occurrence terms to categorize and filter the web. This categorization and filtering process affects the way a website ranks for each topic. For example, a website about SEO that uses all of the above words would have a good chance of ranking higher than a site about SEO that uses only some of the above words.

Correlation

A statistical significance between two events. Positive correlation means the events coincide with each other. Negative correlation means the events are divergent, or one happens when another does not. Always remember that correlated events may not be a causal relationship.

Crawl

The action of a bot, or search engine spider, navigating and indexing the content of a web page.

D

Dofollow or Do Follow

Refers to an instruction issued by a website to search engine crawlers directing search engines The way for the SEO industry to convey the absence of a “nofollow” tag in a link.

Domain Name

A domain name is a unique identifier for locating a network resource using the Domain Name System. It is also known as a website’s address. For example, our Domain Name is lexingtondevelopment.com.

Duplicate Content

Duplicate content is content on one page on the web which can be found on another page or other pages around the web. Duplicate content is dismissed from pages in small amounts on a domain. In egregious cases, duplicate content can be cause for penalty for an entire domain. According to Google disclosures, some 20% to 30% of all content on the internet is duplicate content from another source.

Duplicate content shouldn’t be used as the content for your website. Instead you should concentrate your efforts on writing original, compelling, well written content for your website.

E

External Links

A link on one domain that points to a different domain.

F

G

Google Bomb

Using anchor text unrelated to a page to rank the page for the unrelated term. This was made famous by political bloggers in the mid 2000s when they ranked George W. Bush’s biography page on whitehouse.gov for the term “miserable failure” by linking to the whitehouse.gov page from their blogs using that text. Today, Google Bombs are much harder to execute due to advances in the ranking algorithm. Also known as “Google Bowling.”

Google Bot

The name of the robot Google uses to “crawl” a web page.

Grey Hat

SEO practices which are not specifically mentioned within Google’s webmaster guidelines.

H

Historical Content Changes

Historical changes refer to just that: how many times has the content on the site been updated, how often has it been updated and how recently it has been updated. A continually updated website looks very authoritative to a search engine because in order to have fresh content, a webmaster must put in time and effort. The more time and effort a webmaster puts into a site (in legitimate, non-spammy ways), the more authoritative and trustworthy that company seems. Also, reports of Google’s May Day update highlight the fact that having a website that is being constantly updated is possibly more important than having unique content.

I

Indented Search Result

A search engine listing in which multiple pages can be accessed from the same domain within the same search result in an engine.

Index

The database of information from which a search engine returns results.

Indexation

The act of adding content from a website into the database from which it is later withdrawn.

Indexation Budget

The total amount of pages a search engine will index on any given domain. This number is different for every site and is mostly based upon page authority.

Infographic

A visualization of data which helps its audience better understand the topic.

J

JavaScript

A code language which is primarily used to move information within a website.

K

Keyword

A word or phrase for which a website wishes to rank highly when a search engine user queries it.

Keyword Density

Keyword density refers to the amount of keywords on a page relative to all other words on the same page. This can be roughly calculated by dividing the amount of occurrences for the targeted keyword by the total word count of the page (multiplying by 100 will yield a percent).

L

Link Farm

A website or page which offers little or no value that was created for the sole purpose of linking to other pages for SEO. These types of sites are easy to manipulate and are considered a black hat technique. Links from link farms are discounted or penalized, depending on a site’s authority.

Link Profile

The links around a web that point to a particular page or domain. Some aspects of link profiles include the types of pages on which the links are found, the quality of the pages on which the links are found, and the sheer number of links pointing to the page, among other factors.

Link Spam

Content generated for the sole purpose of linking to a page for SEO value that is left on another site.

Link Bait

A piece of content so popular that it attracts a massive amount of links via the merit of others’ enjoyment. Having the most intriguing, interesting and authoritative content that people want to naturally link back to is very important for a website to have because a site’s backlink profile is one of the most important SEO aspects of a website.

Linkscape

An index of links created by SEO Moz. Since Google does not allow access to its index, Linkscape is the largest, most authoritative source of link data available to the public.

Long-Tail Keyword

Any search query that has limited traffic due to the extensive nature of the search.

M

Matt Cutts

Sheriff of the “Google Police,” Matt roams the internet, banning sites that violate the Google Webmaster Guidelines. Matt is the most active Google voice to the SEO industry, causing SEO practitioners to dissect his sentences over and over in their sleep.

Meta Description

The description of a page. It’s usually only visible to search engine users as the black text under the link to the page in a search engine results page. The text within the description has no bearing as a ranking factor, but can entice click-through rate.

Meta Keywords

Lists of keywords which the webmaster believes are relevant to the page. This was used as a strong ranking indication in the late 90s and early 2000s, but is no longer of any value to a page’s ranking score.

Meta Tag

Indicators and instructions to search bots and spiders, typically unseen by a visitor to the page. These various tags are found in the top (or,) portion of a website’s html code.

N

Nofollow

An indication to a search engine that the link on the page is not to be taken as an editorial endorsement. Nofollow is a tag which can be placed in the link code which is invisible to the page visitor.

O

Off-page

Any variable not found within your site. Example: Link profile.

On-page

Any variable found on your site. Example: Title tag.

Outbound Links

A link on your page which points to a different domain.

P

Page Rank

Page Rank, which is also known as PR, is an important search engine optimization term.  Often misunderstood, the term is named after Larry Page, one of the co-founders of Google, and not after the rank of a web page.  Page Rank is a substantial part of Google’s vaunted search algorithm that determines placement of web pages in search results.  Page Rank is expressed as an integer between 0 and 10.  Every web page that has been indexed by Google has a Page Rank.  Most web pages – in fact, about 90% of all web pages – are a PR0.  About 9% of all web pages are a PR1, 0.9% are PR2, and so on.  I’m not precisely certain how many PR0 web pages exist, but it’s about one trillion.  I do know there are 127 PR10 web pages, which gives us a pretty clear picture of how important each increment of Page Rank is.

Page Rank is Google’s determination of the authority or importance of a web page, bearing in mind that each incremental step is 10x more important than the prior rank.  Page Rank has always been the key ingredient in the formula Google uses to determine your placement in search results.  The most impactful ranking factor in Page Rank is the number of hyperlinks from other web pages to yours, with each inbound link weighted based on its authority.  The analysis of links is calculated recursively, with the analysis spanning backwards several layers deep.

See also Author Rank.

Permanent Redirect

A web coding that permanently sends or redirects search engines and website visitors to a URL which is different than the one they originally thought. Of all methods employed to redirect one domain or page to another, 301 Redirects pass the most value from one page to another. This is also known as a 301 Redirect.

Q

Query

A term typed by a search engine user or the action of searching for information using a search engine. Google estimates that 20 to 30 percent of all queries have never been searched for before.

R

Recency

Recency refers to the “newness” of a site’s content. The newer, more updated the content, the better.

Why it’s Important

It is important to create a constant flow of content to a website because search engines include recency in their algorithms. Also, the more updated a site is, the more users will want to return to the site for information.

Reciprocal Link

Two websites linking to each other to boost rankings.

Relevancy

Part of Google’s ranking algorithm, relevancy refers to how well a page relates to a query.

S

Search Engine Results Page

The page of search results which is returned to you when you perform a search on Google, Bing or some other search engine.

Search Vertical

A search on a search engine designed to filter out certain sites for further relevancy. For example: A Google Blog, Image, or News search.

SERP

Acronym for a search engine results page. The page of links displayed to a user once a query has been entered.

Sitemap

A list of all the pages on a domain. Search engines sometimes use site maps to discover new pages on a domain. Users may navigate a site using a sitemap which is typically organized into a hierarchy for ease of use.

Social Media

A reference to any medium in which internet users interact with each other by creating content. Most common examples are Facebook and Twitter.

SPAM

Term used to describe unwanted or useless content.

Spider

Also called a “bot” or a “crawler”. Spiders are computer-driven content collectors.

Static Page

A page with content that does not change.

Status Code

A code produced by a web page which conveys the status of the page to a user’s browser or a search engine spider. Common status codes are 200 (available) 301 (redirected) and 404 (page not found). Several other status codes exist for more unique situations.

Subdomain

A subdomain is used to further uniquely identify a domain name. Example: hello.goodbye.com

T

Title Tag

The title of a page. The title tag is the text displayed as a link to a site in a search engine and is shown at the top of a user’s browser while they are viewing a site. It is also the default text that appears when a user bookmarks a page.

TLD Diversity

TLD Diversity refers to having many different top level domains (TLD’s) linking back to a site. For example, it would be better for a website to have 10 different TLD’s pointing back to it than to have 10 links from the same TLD.

U

URL

A Uniform Resource Locator (URL) is used to identify a specific page on a website. It contains the site’s domain name, followed by the respective file name. An example of a URL is: http://lexingtondevelopment.com/packages/

URL Length

The length of a URL may affect the ranking of a website. Matt Cutts has been noted to say that only the first three to five words in a url are counted as significant, the others will give little ranking value to the page.

URL Structure (Flat or Deep)

According to reports about Google’s May Day update, the flatter a site’s structure is, the better. A page should be no more than two clicks away from the homepage of the site to be considered highly authoritative. Site architecture can affect the amount of trust an engine places on a page. The closer a landing page is to the root domain, the more likely it is to be indexed often and rank higher. Linking to important landing pages directly from the home page will also help raise the Page Rank of the landing page, which often helps to boost rankings in search engine results pages.

URL Rewrite

Changing the URL of a site.

User Data

The sum collection of user behavior within a given web page.

V

W

Website Age

The age of a website affects the ranking of a website. In short, the older the website, the more legitimate the website looks to search engines. Think about it, anyone can start a website, but it takes a lot of effort to maintain a website at a high level.

White Hat

SEO practices endorsed by Google’s Webmaster Guidelines.

X

Y

Z

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