A list of SEO Terminology and what they mean
Algorithm – A mathematical equation used by the search engines to determine what pages to suggest for a given search keyword or key phrase. Several factors are used in these equations and are kept mostly in secret by search engines for obvious reasons.
Alt Text – A text description of a graphic used to help google and other search engines better understand your content as they cannot read images at this time.
Analytics – An often complex data gathering program which assists in gathering and analyzing data about visitor website usage. Google analytics is popular, feature rich and free analytics program.
Anchor Text – The user visible text of a hyperlink. For instance for the link Utah Web Design Agency “Utah Web Design Agency” would be the anchor text. Search engines utilize anchor text to see the relevancy of the referring site and the link to the content on the landing page. Ideally all three will share keywords in common which would create the most “link juice”..
Authority – The amount of trust google or other search engines place on a site for a particular search query. For instance a search query for “pet food” would see petco.com and a trusted authority & therefore would be very high in the search results. Authority/trust is derived from content related links from other trusted sites pointing to a site.
Back Links – A clickable or hyperlink(either stand alone or in an image) into a page or website site from any other page or site on the web.
Black Hat SEO – Tactics that are considered unethical and not kept to the best practices listed in Google Webmaster Guidelines.
Keyword Density – This refers to the amount of times your target keyword or keywords is referenced in a given page. Most industry experts now believe your keyword density should be somewhere around 3%.
Bounce Rate – The percentage of users who enter a site and then leave it without viewing any other pages. Bounce rate helps SEO’s understand user behavior to know which pages to increase valuable contend & thus reduce bounce rate which increases conversions.
Conversion – Achievement of a quantifiable goal on a website. For instance if you’re looking to achieve a certain number of clicks, sign ups, or sales of a product/offering. These all would be examples of conversions.
Conversion Rate Percentage of users who convert – see conversion.
Google Juice – This is typically a pages authority flowing through outgoing links to other pages and thus giving them increased credibility due to the authority of the 1st.
Googlebot – Google’s spider program.
Impression – The event where a user comes upon & views a webpage one time. If 25 people viewed your website today you would have received 25 impressions.
In Bound Link – Inbound links from high quality, content related pages are a key source of trust and page rank from the search engines. An inbound link allows you to click a link from one site and be taken to another sites page, often used to build valuable content by linking to other related material.
Keyword Or Key Phrase – The word or phrase that a searcher enters into a search engine to find what they’re looking for.
Keyword Research – The work(and art) of determining which keywords are appropriate for a given SEO campaign.nFor instance when we are working with a new client, this is always our first step. This helps us locate opportunities in a given niche to help our clients gain new customers and increase revenue. I often tell them its like fishing with a fish finder. We don’t just close our eyes add try our luck, we find out what keywords & key phrases their customers(fish) are searching for to find products or services like theirs and then build our SEO campaigns targeted at those words/phrases.
Keyword Stuffing – Inappropriately high keyword density. This used to be a somewhat common occurrence and actually worked at one point as a method to increasing search engine rankings. However the more the search engines evolve and look for value adding content for searchers, the less and less this will work and now you run the risk of landing in Googles “sandbox” with this technique.
Landing Page – This is the page that a user lands on when they click any link to your site. SEO’s often use highly targeted landing pages to increase visitor conversion by providing them exactly what they were looking for in relation to the link they clicked.
Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI) – As Google and other search engines become smarter, they look for more “keyword related” words and phrases to be sure a page or article is correctly indexed. This is very common sense and basically means that a page written about “golf” wouldn’t just have that exact phrase listed approx. 3% of the time, but would include all of the various industry words phrases you would find in a well written & researched article about that topic. For instance our above mentioned “golf” article would have words and phrases like putter, golf course, Tiger Woods etc. to make up a quality article about golf. What this means to all of us is we really need to focus on high quality, value adding writing if we want to rank high on the search engines.
Link – An element on a website page which can be clicked to jump to another page(whether located on the current site or an external site) or another part of the current page.
Link Bait – A webpage or blogpost with the designed purpose of attracting incoming links, often mostly via social media. This can have a negative connotation, however if you accomplish this by producing extremely high quality, value adding content then
Link Building – actively cultivating incoming links to a site through various methods including guest blogging, infographic submission, article submission, directory submissions and many more.
Page Content – This is the “meat” of what everything is built around in good SEO. This is the text, video and images which make up the inherent value of your page to its viewer. Always be sure to ad page content that gives the maximum possible value & benefit to your target audience.
Pagerank (PR) – A value between 0 and 10 assigned by the Google algorithm to quantify link popularity and trust of a website page.
Reciprocal Link – This is when two sites which link to each other, usually as a sort of helping agreement. Because this is not completely “natural”, search engines usually do not value these links especially high in link juice.
ROI (Return On Investment) – A term used to specify the analysis and quantification of the return on investment for a given marketing campaign expenditure. This helps understand the overall cost vs. benefit of the financial commitment/investment.
Search Engine – A program, which searches a document or group of documents for highly relevant matches to a users keyword search phrase with the purpose of returning a list of value adding matches. Internet search engines such as Google and Yahoo search the entire internet for relevant matches to its users search queries.
Sandbox – There has been debate and speculation that Google puts all new sites into a “sandbox,” preventing them from ranking well for anything until a set period of time has passed. The existence or exact behavior of the sandbox is not universally accepted among SEOs.
SEO(search engine optimization) – The process of increasing the number of visitors to a Web site by achieving high search engine ranking for industry keywords and phrases. The higher a site ranks in the search results, the greater the percentage of clicks, which turns into conversions & sales. Quality SEO also helps to ensure that a site is always accessible to and indexed properly by search engines. This greatly improves the chances of a high search engine ranking position.
On-Page SEO – On-Page SEO is the process of optimizing a websites pages AND/OR adding additional pages(per industry best practices) to improve the overall value adding content/search relevancy of your targeted keywords.
Off-Page SEO – Off Page SEO is the optimization strategies outside of your website’s content, pages & design such as link building through various methods including guest blogging, infographic submission, article submission and many more.
Site Map – A page or structured group of pages which link to every user accessible page on a website. Used to improve site usability by clarifying the data structure of the site for users. A site map is also used to help search engines find and index all of a sites pages.
White Hat SEO – Tactics that are considered ethical and kept to the best practices listed in Google Webmaster Guidelines.