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SEO Glossary

Term Definition
200 SEO status response code that means OK. The request will be successfully loaded.
301 SEO status response code that means the file that used to be available at one location has been permanently moved to a new URL.
302 This SEO status response code is given when a file has been found at another URI. When you receive this code it means the file has been temporarily redirected.
404 This is one of the most common status codes. It means the page or item is not found on the server.
Above the Fold This term is adapted from newspapers. For web marketing, the term refers to all content that can be seen without scrolling a webpage. Ads that are located at the top of the screen are referred to as above the fold. For best results with an ad, it is best to integrate the ad into the content. People skip over ads that are apart from the websites main content. So ads at the top of the page or on a sidebar are less likely to be viewed than ads that look like the page’s content. Also, Google penalizes websites that use above the fold ads excessively.
Absolute Link A full link to a page that shows the entire reference URL.  Absolute links are used over relative links to reduce the chances of canonicalization and hijacking issues.
Activity Bias When a website is retargeted to an audience who are more likely to participate in certain activity. This can influence the success or failure an ad has on a particular group.
adCenter Bing ads’ old name. It is Microsoft’s pay per click ad network.
AdSense This is Google’s contextual advertising network. You can use the network to publish ads that are relevant to your website’s content. If someone clicks on the ad from your website, you can share the profits from that click with Google.
AdWords This is Google’s advertisement and link auction network that uses keywords to target potential consumers. Advertisers buy keywords at a cost per click rate. In the future, Google will have l video ads, demographic targeting, affiliate ads, radio ads, and traditional print ads available through AdWords.
Affiliate Marketing Affiliate marketing is a program for merchants who want to expand their reach using independent agents who will charge them the cost per action. The agent is only paid when someone clicks your ad on their website.
Age Age can refer to one of four things.  It could refer to the site age, user account age, page age or any relevant historical data. Search engines and social networks use age to determine whether or not a website, document or person can be trusted. Age can also be used to boost the relevancy of web pages. For example, a blog search engine will show a more recent article first before an older article.
AJAX With Asynchronous JavaScript and XML, a web page can request additional data from a server without a mandatory page reload.
Alexa This is a voice-activated search service available on Amazon.com devices such as Echo, Fire TV, and Fire Tablets. Users can use it to make commands such as play a certain music playlist or to search the internet. The service also measures website traffic.
AllTheWeb AllTheWeb is a search engine that has been newly acquired by Yahoo. Yahoo is currently considering using the search engine to test new search technologies.
Alt Attribute Alt attribute allows you to give your images context.  Visually impaired people and search engines cannot always comprehend an image. Alt attribute sums of the image using text.
AltaVista Search engine from the 1990s who were owned by Overture until Yahoo bought Overture. Currently, AltaVista has become irrelevant due to an algorithmic update that dumped many websites from the search engine.
Amazon.com This website first started out as a bookseller and now it is the largest internet retailing website. Amazon.com specializes in consumer-generated media and owns a number of other popular websites, including IMDB, Goodreads, Audible and Alexa. Amazon also has a marketplace that allows merchants to sell their goods online.  Independent writers can also sell their books via Kindle Direct Publishing or Createspace.
Analytics Software that uses a JavaScript tracking code to track user paths, page views and conversion statistics by analyzing your websites log files. Analytics can be engaged once the JavaScript tracking code is embedded in your website.
Anchor Text Clickable text.  A user clicks on the anchor text to follow a link. An image or an alt attribute that is clickable could also be considered an anchor text.
Android An operating system from Google that is used to power most cell phones, tablets, and other electronic devices.
AOL American Online is a popular website that was once merged with Time Warner.  AOL offers the latest news via Huffington Post, and it still has an email service.
API API stands for Application Program Interface. It is a set of routines, tools, and protocols used to build software applications. API is used to specify how different software components will interact with each other.  API is very common among search products.
Arbitrage When you simultaneously purchase and resell a commodity for a profit, you are exploiting the market inefficiencies. In terms of SEO, this means buying traffic from major search engines to try to increase the ad clickthrough rate on your site. Arbitrage draws most of the traffic.
ASP ASP stands for Active Server Pages. It is a Microsoft programming language for dynamically generated web pages.
Ask Originally titled Ask Jeeves, Ask, is a popular search engine powered by the Teoma search technology, which uses hubs and authorities to decipher search results. Ask is owned by InterActive Corp.
Authority Authority is a search engine’s ability to rank a website. Link equity, traffic trends, site history, site age and unique original content are factors in determining how a page will rank.
Authorities Topical authorities are trusted and well-cited sites. Experts in the topical community use the website as a resource. A page is considered a topical hub when it references many authorities.
Automated Bid Management Software Most people are not working with an endless budget.  This software allows you to control your ad spend when you use pay per click advertising. The software can run analytics on your website and create more focused ads that increase your conversion rates, ROI and earnings.
Bait and Switch Marketing technique where you hook consumers using content that seems innocent. Once you have gained authority, you switch to the real purpose or intent of your website or content. For example, sharing a picture of a dolphin flipping to get people interested so you can sell hotel rooms.
Banner Blindness People have become blind to banners. When web marketing was in its infancy, most ads were placed above the fold or other common areas. Over time, people developed banner blindness and ignore ads in common areas.
Battelle, John the co-founder of The Industry Standard and Wired. He is also a popular media blogger.
Behavioral Targeting Uses people recent searches or intent to target ads to them. For example, if you search for bed linens, you may go on another unrelated website and see an ad for bed linens.
Bias A prejudice for or against something based on a person’s experience or point of view.
Bing Microsoft’s search engine. Yahoo! Search uses it to power organic search results.
Bing Ads Microsoft’s paid search program that also powers paid search results from Yahoo! Search. It is direct competition with Google Adwords.
Black Hat SEO Deceptive marketing techniques are labeled black hat SEO. These techniques do not follow search guidelines. Guidelines are always changing. A marketing technique can go from legitimate to deceptive. Keep up-to-date on the latest guidelines.
Block Level Analysis Makes analyzing a page easier by breaking down the page into smaller blocks.
Blog A web journal that is updated and formatted in reverse chronological order.  This means the newest entry appears first. Blogs can archive and categorize information using tags.  Blogs encourage feedback by providing users with a comment section.
Blog Comment Spam When a comment of low value or no value is added to a website.  This can be done manually or automatically using the software.
Blogger Google owns this website that provides a platform for bloggers.
Blogroll A link list of other relevant or similar blogs.  The blogs could be owned by the same person or by people friends with the blog owner. You could rent out spots on your link list to other bloggers.
Bold Bold is a typeface option that makes font wider and darker. Bold font draws attention to content.  Search engines give bold words more weight than regular text. So important keywords should be bold and placed in headings.
Bookmarks Bookmarks allow you to save and mark your favorite pages.  Bookmarks are used to determine the popularity and quality of the information from a webpage. If a page is bookmarked often, it is considered high quality. Search engines also use bookmarks to help garner relevant search results.
Boolean Search Using words such as AND, OR, or NOT in your searches, creates a mathematical formula.  AND is usually included in your query by default. Thus, all search results will be relevant for all words that make up your query.  For example, if I search “Writing AND publishing” all the results will be relevant to both.
Brand Consumers associate different emotions with different companies. A brand is that emotional response.
Branded Keywords Keywords or keyword phrases linked to a brand. These keywords are the highest value and highest converting. Most of these keywords are specific and only occur during the latter stages of the buying process.
Breadcrumb Navigation Navigational technique used to communicate how pages relate to one another.
Brin, Sergey Co-founder of Google.
Broken Link A nonfunctioning hyperlink. A link that does not click to its right location.
Browser Software or web client used to access the world wide web.
Bush, Vannevar WWII scientist and writer of As We May Think, a seminal research paper on the concepts of a memory extension device and hypertext.
Business.com An authority on business websites and information. It contains a directory of business websites. The site also huge for advertising using pay per click arbitrage.
Buying Cycle The cycle most consumers complete when making a large purchase. The first step is researching brands and products that fit their current needs and desires. With the right keyword, you can reach consumers at any point of the buying cycle. Branded keywords work best because they have high search volumes and conversion rates.
Cache Search engines store copies of web pages. They place the copies in a search engine index. When you search a term, the search engine references the cache and not the active website.
Calacanis, Jason Founder of Weblogs, Inc and is responsible for AOL turning Netscape into a Digg clone. This resulted in the launch of longtail SEO play Mahalo.
Canonical URL The URL that is the most authoritative version that prevents duplicate content issues. It is indexed by search engines.
Catch All Listing This list monetizes long tail terms and keywords that are not used in targeted ads. It is best to use this technique when you are dealing with common and competitive keywords. Most major search engines prevent this technique and only allows targeted keywords.
CGI CGI stands for Common Gateway Interface. It is a software interface that adds interactivity to a website by offering standard protocols that result in executable actions between the web server and software.
Chrome A web browser owned by Google. It is also the name of the Operating System for Google Chromebooks.
Client A computer, program or process used to make information requests to other computers, processes, and programs. A web browser is a client.
Cloaking This technique has to be used with caution. Some search engines may consider displaying various content based on intent and strength of the company’s brand to be reasonable. However, some display discrepancies can lead to a site being banned from the search engine.
Cluetrain Manifesto, The A book that is a good resource to learn about how to use the web as a marketplace. The book also touches on how web marketing is different from traditional offline marketing.
Clustering This is a technique to make search results more diverse and organized. Pages from an individual site are clustered together because sites are limited to a certain number. Clustering is also used to group hubs and authorities together. For example, if someone searches on how to reduce clutter, they may get a group of websites clustered together.
CMS CMS stands for Content Management System. You use this tool to for easy content updates on your website.
Co-citation This occurs when topical authority based search algorithms links are associated with each other and are assumed to be related. It also refers to the frequency at which two documents or sources are linked together.
Comments User feedback.
Comments Tag A source code identifier for comments.
Compacted Information A product’s generally and widely associated information. For example, ISBNs are widely associated with books.
Conceptual Links Links which search engines attempt to understand beyond just the words in them. Some rather advanced search engines are attempting to find out the concept links based on context and co-citation versus using the anchor text to index the site.
Concept Search A search that uses the concept behind the query to give accurate search results.
Contextual Advertising A webpage’s content is used to generate relevant advertisements.
Conversion Conversion is when an ad desired goal is met. For example, if you create an ad to sell books, a conversion happens when an ad leads to a book sell.
Copyright This gives you the legal right to reproduce or publish certain content. All content is automatically copyrighted under US Law.
Cookie Data file trackers placed on a user’s computer to customize web content. Cookies are also used in affiliate programs to track conversions.
CPA CPA stands for cost per action. Cost per action is used to measure the effectiveness of online advertising. Most affiliate programs use the cost per action structure. Actions can vary from filling out a lead form, buying a product or clicking on an ad.
CPC CPC stands for Cost per click. Keyword ad services use auctions to sell keywords for a certain price per click.
CPM CPM stands for cost per thousand ad impressions. It is the price for a 1,000 advertisement impressions.
Crawl Depth This is the depth to which a website is indexted and crawled.
Crawl Frequency How frequently users crawl a website.
CSS CSS stands for Cascading Style Sheets. You can add styles to web documents using CSS.
CTR CTR stands for Clickthrough rate. This is the percentage of impressions that lead to a click. CTR is used to measure traffic and how effective keywords are in getting people to click a link.
Cutts, Matt He is the head of Google’s search quality.
Cybersquatting This acquires when you register a domain that is silimar to other trademarks or brands. The goal is to attempt to garner interest for your domain using people interested in the other trademark or brand.
Dayparting Making modifications to your ad campaigns based on your target audience availability. You can change an ad bid price, turn the campagin on or off or place budget constraints so that your ad is used when your target audience is the most active online.
Dead Link A link that is not functional.
Deep Link A link directs you to a website’s internal page.
Dedicated Server Independent server used by one website or owned by a single person who uses it for a small group of websites.
Deep Link Ratio deep links: overall links. How many deep links does a website have compared to overall links.
De-Listing A website is temporarily or permanently erased from a search engine or index.
Del.icio.us A website used for social bookmarking.
Demographics Statistical data or characteristics relating to the specific population.
Denton, Nick Publisher of Gawker, a closed website that posted contraversal topics in weblogs.
Description A summary of a website’s content. Most search engines provide a description in the search results.
Digg Determines what social news is popular through votes from users. Stories with the most votes get better exposure.
Directory A website catalog that separates websites into categories based on website topics.
Disavow If you are a webmaster and do not vouch for inbound links to your website, you can use a disavow tool to state this.
DMOZ AOL owns The Open Directory Project that uses volunteer editors to edit a directory or websites.
DNS DNS can stand for Domain Name Server or Domain Name System. It resolves any domain name/host name issue.
Domain A specifice website or a scheme used as a web address.
Doorway Pages Highly targeted search queries are ranked using these specified pages that redirect users to pages with advertisements.
Dreamweaver Adobe’s web development and editing software that gives you a mock version of your interface.
Duplicate Content Content that is copied or a close copy of other content.
Dwell Time How long a user stays on a website they click on from a search result. Dwell time is only counted when a user clicks back to the search results.
Dynamic Content Content that is rendered by PHP or other dynamic language to keep content changing over time.
Dynamic Languages Programming languages for building web pages.
Earnings Per Click An estimation of one’s salary based on how much one click earns.
Editorial Link Links affect the quality of your website. Search engines value editorial links (earned links) over bought or bartered links.
Emphasis Text is emphasized using an HTML tag.
Engagement Metrics An engagement measurement to determine if users find your content engaging.
Entities Nouns used in queries that search engines use to calculate search results.
Entry Page The page that lands your user first lands on. It is not automatically the home page. Some links will direct them to internal pages. If a person enters your website via a link to your about page, your about page is their entry page.
Ethical SEO SEO technique should be labeled as either effective or ineffective. Most search engines consider SEO unethical, but it is not.
Everflux Everflux is a Google term use for search indexes continuous updating and refreshing.
Expert Document Many non-affiliated topical resources are linked using quality pages.
External Link Link that directs users to another domain.
Fair Use This is the guideline to using copyrighted materials without permission. You can find the detailed exceptions for fair use in the Copyright code under section 107.
Favicon Icon that marks or identifies a URL. It is found on the URL tab in a web browser.
Feed Users subscribe to content and receive notifications when the content is updated. Feed can also be defined as the pay per click syndicated feeds that merchant use.
Feed Reader Users can subscribe to feed to receive update notifications. This software is used to notify them.
FFA FFA stands for Free For All. Anyone can add a link to a free for all page. These links have low to no value when it comes to search engine rankings.
Filter Certain activities or signatures which make a page or site appear unnatural might make search engines inclined to filter / remove them out of the search results.
Firefox Free open source web browser.
Flash Websites use flash to create rich graphics and designs as well as interactions. Flash is a vector graphics-based animation software.
Frames Multiple smaller pages are displayed using a single display. This creates easier and consistent site navigation. However, it does complicates creating deep links to relevant content.
Fresh Content Unique content that engages users and makes them pay attention to your website.  Recently published content.
FTP FTP stands for File Transfer Protocol. This is the protocal used to transfer data between computers.
Fuzzy Search Searches the correct spelling of queries.
GAP GAP stands for Google Advertising Professional. Google uses this to qualify AdWords marketers as being proficient marketers.
Gladwell, Malcolm Writer for The New Yorker who wrote The Tipping Point, which deals with how little things can become big trends.
Godin, Seth Best selling author, blogger, and viral marketer who specializes in standing out in a crowded marketplace.
Google The world’s most popular search engine created by Standard students, Sergey Brin and Larry Page.
GoogleBot Search engine spider for Google.
Google Base Google has created this free database filled with semantically structured information.
Google Bombing A specific website is ranked high when a certain phrase is searched by using a lot of keywords in the anchor text.
Google Bowling Lowering the rank of a competitor by pointing thousands of low trust low quality links to the website.
Google Dance The name of Google’s index updates.
Google Keyword Tool Google displays search results from Google News, Google Base and other google search services above orangic search results.
Google OneBox Webmasters use this program to index their website’s content.
Google Sitemaps Webmasters can tell Google and other search engines about the organization of their sites’ content by posting a sitemap file.
Google Sitelinks Google can deem some results more relevant than others. Hence, some links appear at the top of the search results as deep links to the relevant site.
Google Supplemental Index Google stores indexes for websites with lower trust scores in the supplemental index. A website that appears in this index will most likely have duplicate content, complex URL names or the site’s host is untrustworthy.
Google Traffic Estimator Tool used to estimate traffic so that bid prices can be determined. It estimates how many people will click on an ad based on a specific keyword or key phrase.
Google Trends  This tool allows you to look at keyword trends. You can see how a keyword performs overtime.
Google Webmaster Guidelines Forever changing guidelines Google uses. A website can be penalized for not adhering to guideline’s specifications.
Google Wallet Google’s payment service that helps with conversion rates. Merchants can also use Google Wallet to gain a better understand of markets and keywords.
Google Webmaster Tools Google tools used to analyze traffic trends, the geographic makeup of visitors, etc. The tools also help webmasters disavow links and respond to any penalty by requesting a manual review.
Google Website Optimizer Adwords advertisers can use this free multi variable testing platform to improve their conversion rates.
Guestbook Spam Search engines rank this type of low quality automated link very low. They do not trust it.
Headings The title or the subject of a section summarized in a few words.
Headline Search engine spiders can see a headline, but a human visitor does not. This is a popular SEO technique.
Hidden Text Unaffiliated expert citations are used in an algorithm to rank search results.
Hilltop Citations from topical authorities are used in an algorithm to rank relevancy scores.
HITS
Hijacking Tricking a search engine so it believes that your URL leads to another website. This can be done using meta refresh or 302 redirect.
Home Page Users and search engines can navigate your website using the navigational schemes found on the main page (home page) of your website. This page is responsible for displaying your brand front and center.
.htaccess Files can be password protected or redirected using this Apache directory-level configuration file.
HTML HTML stands for HyperText Markup Language. It is the language used to code websites pages.
HTTP HTTP stands for HyperText Transfer Protocol. HTTP communicates between web browsers and servers. The hypertext is a transfer protocol that transfers data from the server location to an active user browser.
Hubs A central connection point for devices in a network. It is most commonly used to connect LAN segments.
Hummingbird Conversational search is improved by this Google’s search algorithm update.
IDF IDF stands for inverse Document Frequency. It is used to figure out a term’s position in a vector space model.
Inbound Link When you link another website from your site.
Index A search engines query. It collects and stores data from websites. The data is cataloged and used as search results.
Internal Link When a link takes you from one page of a site to another page on the same site.
Information Architecture Organizing, structuring, categorizing and designing content so it can be used in a meaningful way.
Information Retrieval The science of finding relevant information by sorting and searching through large data sets.
Inktomi The paid inclusion business model was implemented by Inktomi, a search engine owned by Yahoo since 2002.
Internet A network of TCP/IP connected computers.
Internet Explorer Microsoft’s web browser that has now been updated to Microsoft Edge after Firefox forced them to update the browser to be more competitive.
Invisible Web Search technology limitations, information architecture issues and copyright issues make parts of the worldwide web hard to access. This portion is called the invisible web.
IP Address IP Adress stands for Internet Protocol Address. This works like your internet connections mailing address. Every internet service provider gives a connection to an IP address. A website or a server can have an unique IP address. However, most host use an IP address for multiple websites.
ISP ISP stands for Internet Service Providers. They are the companies that provide the on ramp to the internet.
JavaScript Client-side scripting language used to embedded dynamic features into a website.
Keyword A word or phrase associated with a certain mindset of searchers look for a specific or general item.
Keyword Density An obsolete measure of the relevancy of a keyword.  It used to measure how often a keyword is used in a webpage’s content.
Keyword Funnel Some keywords are naturally linked. This could be from spelling errors, automated refinement or poor search relevancy. The keyword funnel is that relationship between related keywords.
Keyword Not Provided A way for Google to make it harder for SEO to use keywords.
Keyword Research Research to discover what keywords or keyword phrases will work for your SEO campaign.
Keyword Research Tools Tools to help with determining search trends, search volumes based on certain keywords, bid prices and page content from pages similar to yours.
Keyword Stuffing Keywords are used excessively in content.
Kleinberg, Jon Scientist who studied hubs and authorities search relevancy algorithms.
Knowledge Graph Third party information Google displays in an extended format in search results.
Landing Page The page the users lands on when they click on an advertisement or link.
Landing Page Quality Scores Google’s measurement to filter out noisy ads in the Adwords Program.
Link A citation that connects one web document to another web document or another position.
Link Baiting Using links to target your audience via social media and bloggers.
Link Building Building high quality linkage data process by evaluating your website as authoritative, relevant, and trustworthy.
Link Bursts A website gets a sudden and rapid increase in the quantity of links directing to it.
Link Churn A site’s link loss rate.
Link Equity  Using inbound link popularity and the authority of the sites to determine how strong a website is.
Link Farm When websites choose not to control linking to other sites. FFA pages are link farms.
Log Files You can find out how people find your website using log files. They are server files that show where most of your traffic is generated from.
Link Hoarding Keeping link popularity by not linking out to other sites or link to other site using JavaScript or redirects.
Link Popularity How many links direct people to a website.
Link Reputation The combination of your anchor text and link equity.
Link Rot A measurement of how many links on a website are broken.
Link Velocity A website accumulation rate for new inbound links.
Live.com Microsoft portal that was replaced by Bing.
Long Tail A large number of occurences that happen away from the head. Your marketing strategy has long term effects that goes beyond the initial campaign.
Looksmart Formally a directory service that is now a paid search provider and vertical content play.
LSI LSI stands for Latent Semantic Indexing. Mathematical search system that looks at language to find relevant results. Some results do not contain the keyword, but it has similar content to high quality pages with the keyword. Thus, it is put into the search results.
Malda, Rob  Slashdot.org founder, a popular news forum that uses editorially driven technology.
Manual Penalty Google Webmaster Guidelines are not followed and a Google engineer penalizes the website. Manul penalties can last for years unless a person requests a review using Google Webmaster Tools once the guideline problems are addressed.
Manual Review Manual review process to catch spam and to help train automated relevancy algorithms to catch similar spam. Manual reviews may occur because a website is flagged because of link growth patterns and abnormal usage data.
Mechanical Turk You can hire humans for easy tasks that computers cannot do. This is an Amazon.com program.
Meme  “A unit of cultural transmission, or a unit of imitation.” A viral idea, picture, video or story that brings awareness to an issue.
Meta Description Aa sentence or two description about the content of the page.
Meta Keywords Targeted keywords and keyword phrases are highlighted using a meta keywords tag.
Meta Refresh A browser refresh to another URL location via a meta tag
Meta Search A new result set that is comprised of the top ranked results from multiple other search engines.
Meta Tags Another name for meta descriptions and meta keywords.
Microsoft Brand of computer software and owner of Windows operating system.
Mindshare A measure of how many people think of your brand or product when your category is on their mind. For example, how much do a person think of Coke when they think about soft drinks?
Mirror Site Content from one website is mirrored or duplicated on another website.
Movable Type You can host a blog on your website using this blogging software.
MSN Search Internet Explorers default search engine.
Multi Dimensional Scaling  Latent semantic indexing of snapshots to create topical clusters to provide a more efficient ranking.
MySpace One of the first social media websites that focuses on discovering new music. Musicians can connect with fans and users can blog.
Natural Language Processing Search engines try to go beyond the keywords using algorithms to attempt to understand a user’s true intent when searching for a query.
Navigation Scheme to navigate website users. They use it to figure out where they are, where they have been, and how your website is mapped out.
Navigation Search Visiting a specific website or business based on a search query.
Negative SEO Trying to adversely influence a third-party site rank.
Netscape Social news site that used to have a web browser with the same name.
Niche A website’s theme. It is the topic or subject in which the website focuses on.
Nofollow A link is stopped from passing link authority.
Ontology An exhaustive conceptual domain schema. It focuses on the relationships the domain has.
Open Source Software that allows anyone to modify it.
Opera A web browser.
Organic Search Results The unpaid search results.
Outbound Link A link from one website directing someone to another external website.
Overture The company, under the name Goto, who began selling targeted searches on a pay per click basis. They are not branded as Yahoo Search Marketing.
Overture Keyword Selector Tool  Yahoo! search statistics is used for this research tool for commercial searches. This tool also searches for singular and plural terms.
Page, Larry Co-founder of Google.
PageRank A logarithmic scale which estimates web documents importance using link equity.
Paid Inclusion Websites buy relevant exposure when they pass editorial quality guidelines.
Panda Algorithm A Google algorithm uses perceived quality to sort websites into buckets.
Pay for Performance Affiliated sales workers work on commission. They only get paid if a consumer performs a certain action. For example, if the action is to get an upsell, the worker gets paid for every upsell they get.
Penalty A punishment for spamming or neglecting guidelines to get a higher ranking. Penalties can be automated or manually given.
Penguin Algorithm Google algorithm that looks for unnatural link profiles. When one is found, the site is penalized.
Personalization Search engines such as Google will alter the search results to accommodate the user’s location, search history and recently viewed pages. For example, if you look for a restaurant, the search results will show you restaurants in your location.
PHP Web pages are rendered using this open source server side scripting language. Also, if you want to add interactivity to a webpage, PHP can help.
Pigeon Update An algorithmic update to local search results on Google which tied in more signals which have been associated with a regular web search.
Piracy Update Search algorithm update Google performed to lower the rankings of sites with an excessive number of DMCA takedown requests.
Poison Word Words  that poison a website, because they are associated with the low quality content. Rankings are demoted because content contains poison words.
PDF PDF stands for Portable Document Format. Created by Adobe Systems a PDF is a universal file format lets a printable version of files be store and viewed.
POGO Rate User percentage based on the user’s action of clicking on a link from the search results only to quickly click back to the results.
Portal  Any website that offers consumer services such as email, news, search and other content.
PPC PPC stands for Pay Per Click.  It is an advertising price model where the advertiser only pays when someone clicks the ad.
Precision A measure of how precise the search results are to the query. Precision is given in a percentage.
Profit Elasticity Using adjusting price, supply and other variables to measure the profit potential of different economic conditions. This measurement is used to create a different profit potential where the supply and demand curves interact.
Proximity How close words are to each other. Search engines measure this to help determine if a website is keyword stuffing.
QDF QDF stands for Query deserves freshness is an algorithmic signal that places priority over fresher, newer content than older content. Thus, search results will rank fresh content higher than older content.
Quality Content Natural linkworthy content.
Quality Link This is a measurement of a link’s quality.  Link votes of trust are counted by search engines. Quality links will count more than a low quality link.
Query The actual words or string of words a user puts in the search box.
Query Refinement Chaging your query to get more accurate results. Some search engines provide suggestion to similar queries to give you more relevant information.
Rankbrain A relevancy algorithm signal used by Google to leverage user clickpath information that will improve less commonly searched for related search terms relevancy.
Recall Retrieval of a portion of relevant documents from all relevant documents.
Reciprocal Links Low quality link schemes whose goal is to create false authority through trading links or using three way link trades with other websites.
Redirect An alert for browsers and search engines that a URL has moved its location. 301 redirects are for permanent change of location and 302 redirects are used for a temporary change of location.
Registrar A company that specializes in the registration of domain names.
Reinclusion After a site has been peanlized for spamming, they can ask for a reinclusion to the search index. The severity of the infraction determines whether or not the site will be added back to the search index.
Referrer A website vistor’s source. It is the website or person who referred the user to the link.
Relative Link A link that works as a reference to show the relation of the current URL to the URL page the link goes to.  Usually, these are short links that are easy to remember. They do not contain numbers. Hijacking and canonicalization makes relative links less desirable. Most people prefer absolute links. For example, food.com/desserts is a relative link to food.com.
Relevancy A measure of how search results are actually useful to searchers
Repeat Visits Visitors of a website that returns to it.
Reputation Management Reinforcing your brand by ensuring search results display keywords related to your brand.  Negative attention from hate sites rank highly so you have to make sure that your branded keywords rank higher in brand related queries.
Resubmission It is a program that is not worth consumers time.
Retargeting Advertising programs that uses people’s internet history to create ads based on what they viewed or put into a shopping cart on a website. For example, when you go to Facebook, you may see an ad for a tool that you researched online a few days ago. This is because they use retargeting to personalize ads.
Reverse Index A keywords index which stores files of matching documents that contain certain keywords.
Robots.txt This file can stop search engines from crawling your website files. The robots.txt file is placed at the root of a site. Some search engines will still list the URL as URL only listing.
ROI ROI stands for Return on Investment is a measure to see if you are getting the money you put in marketing back plus a profit.
RSS RSS can stand for Rich Site Summary or Real Simple Syndication. Peole can subscribe to a channel via RSS, because it feeds syndicated information to a feed reader or other software.
Safari A web browser owned by Apple.
Salton, Gerard Scientist crucial in the information retrieval field.
Scumware Intrusive software and programs which usually target ads and violate privacy. Most of the time, the owner is not aware this is happening.
Search History The data from your previous searches. Most search engines keep a log of people’s previous queries.
Search Engine A tool or device that uses a spider, index, relevancy algorithms and search results to help you find your query.
SEM SEM stands for search engine marketing. This is when you buy traffic for your website through paid search listings.
SEO SEO stands for search engine optimization. This is the art of earning traffic through unpaid and free listings by posting content that makes it easier for search engines to understand the language.
SEO Copywriting Making copy relevant to search queries by formatting and writing it to make the content appear relevant to a wide array of keywords.
SERP SERP stands for Search Engine Results Page. This is the page of your query search results.
Search Marketing This is another name for SEM. This is when you market a website in search engines.
Server A computer that acts as a host to websites by feeding the sites files located on the server.
Server Logs Website traffic trends and source files hosted on servers.
Singular Value Decomposition Comparing document vectors to breakdown a large database.
Siphoning Spyware or cybersquatting is used to steal another websites traffic.
Site Map Your site navigation that helps guide search engines.
Slashdot A Rob Malda founded community news site that focuses on technology and other nerd related topics.
Social Media Websites which allow users to create their own content. The most popular social media sites are Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr and Instagram.
Spam Email messages that are unsolicited
Spamming The act of creating and distributing unsolicited information and messages.
Spider Search engine crawlers who creates a search engine’s index by creeping through websites.
Splash Page Pages that are aesthetically pleasing but do not have any real value when it comes to content for search engines to index.
Splog Spam blog that generates content by stealing it from other websites or rewording articles. They are very low quality.
Spyware Software programs used to spy on people for consumer research and targeted ads.
Squidoo  Seth Godin website about topical lenses.
SSI SSI stands for Server Side Includes which makes updating websites easier by calling portions of a page in from another page.
Static Content Content that rarely change or does not have a dynamic programming language. For example, a webstite’s about page will rarely change.
Stemming Using the stem word to make sure results are relevant. For example, watching a movie query will also include results that have to watch a movie in them.
Stop Words Common words that are removed from the query, because they do not impact the results.
Sullivan, Danny Founder and lead editor of SearchEngineWatch.com and SearchEngineLand.com.
Submission The act of presenting the information from your website to search engines.
Supplemental Results Lower rank documents in the search engine index.
Taxonomy  Controlled vocabulary classification system used to place a hierarchy on topical subjects.
Technorati  Popular stories and link relationships are tracked using this blog search engine.
Teoma  Kleinberg’s concept of hubs and authorities at work to create a topical community based search engine. The best example of this is Ask.com
Telnet  Internet network protocol that lets a remote compture gain access and log in to another computer.
Term Frequency The frequency of a term in a collection of documents.
Term Vector Database A weighted index of documents which aims to understand the topic of documents based on how similar they are to other documents, and then match the most relevant documents to a search query based on vector length and angle.
Text Link Ads Text links that work as formatted ads.
Thesaurus  When you look up a query, search engines use a synonym directory to make the search results more accurate.
Title Contents of the document summed up in a title.
Toolbar Toolbars are a feature in web browsers that help search engines track usage data. Toolbars also help with blocking pop-up ads, filling in forms and spell checking.
Top Heavy Google algorithm who looks at the placement of ads on a page. It penalizes websites that have ads concentrated above the fold.
Topic-Sensitive PageRank Topic related PageRank scores are produced by computing PageRank based on topics.
Trackback A feature in most popular blogging software programs which automatically notifies you when another website mentions your site.
The Tragedy of the Commons Give up a few rights for security. Google applies this principle to advertising by finding ways to distribute ads that make it less annoying for the user.
TrustRank Search relevancy algorithm which places an additional weighting on links from trusted seed websites that are controlled by major corporations, educational institutions, or governmental institutions.
Typepad Hosted blogging platform provided by SixApart, who also makes Movable Type.
Unethical SEO Unethical practices in SEO. Most SEO practices are either effective or ineffective. Most do not involve ethics.
Update Keeping an algorithm fresh with new content to make sure search results are relevant and accurate.
URL URL stands for Uniform Resource Locator. It is a web documents unique web address.
URL Rewrite A technique to make URLs more unique and descriptive so that site indexing is easier.
Usability Ease of use of a website for users. Can the user perform an action with little difficulty?
Usage Data How much data is your website using? How much traffic is it garnering? Are there a high percentage of repeat visitors? How long do they stay on the site? These are all examples of usage data.
Usenet A search service which uses a collection of newsgroups to provide information about a particular subject.
Vertical Search A search that focuses on a specific segment of information and online content.
Viral Marketing  Marketing techniques that are self propagating in nature. This usually includes email, word of mouth and blogging.
Virtual Domain  Virtual server hosted website.
Virtual Server A server which allows multiple top level domains to be hosted from a single computer.
Wales, Jimmy  Wikipedia’s co-founder
Whois The recorded owner of a domain.
White Hat SEO SEO campaigns that stick to the guidelines.
Wiki Collaborative editing is possible thanks to this software that allows anyone to edit information that is published via the software.
Wikipedia A free online encyclopedia comprised of information gathered using wiki software.
Wordnet Search engines understand word relationships using this lexical database of English words..
WordPress Open source platform for blogging. Users can download the blogging program or use wordpress as a host.
Wordtracker Feature rich paid keyword research tool which collects data from a couple popular meta search engines, like Dogpile.
Xenu Link Sleuth Webmasters can audit their website by using this free software to find any broken internal or external links. This software can also be use to create a sitemap.
XHTML XHTML stands for Extensible HyperText Markup Languag. XML formatting is accomplished by this class of specifications that allows HTML to conform to XML.
XML XML stands for Extensible Markup Language that can be read by both humans and machines. It is used to make things simple, easier and more usable across the internet.
Yahoo! A portal and popular website which as the popular Yahoo! Directory as its foundation.
Yahoo! Answers A platform where users can ask or answer questions.
Yahoo! Directory Founded David Filo and Jerry Yang in 1994, this is one of the most popular directories in the world.
Yahoo! Search Marketing Yahoo!’s paid search platform acquired from Overture.
Yahoo! Site Explorer Explore Yahoo index to see what pages link to your website.
YouTube A popular website owned by Google where people can create their own video channels and upload videos. Youtube is also used to upload syndication content.
Zeal Non-commercial directory which was bought by Looksmart for $20 million, then abruptly shut down with little to no warning.

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