Most Commonly Used SEO Definitions

Looking online for SEO definitions can be time-consuming, not to mention problematic when trying to figure out which website link to click on! In order to continue with SEO Tips, I felt that bringing you SEO Definitions would be a great place to start for a better understanding of some of the terms you may hear every now and then. If you know of a definition that you have heard of, but don’t see here, let me know and I’ll put it here!

Below You Will Find the Most Commonly Used SEO Definitions!

Algorithm – is an effective method for solving a problem expressed as a finite sequence of steps. Algorithms are used for calculation and data processing, and have a list of well-defined instructions for completing a task. Visit the Google Algorithm article for a more in-depth explanation!

ALT Tags/Attributes – HTML tags that provide text as an alternative to the graphics on a web page.

Analytics – Measurement of website statistics such as the number of visitors, where they arrived from, and how much time they spent on a website.

Anchor Tags/Anchor Text – Text used to create links to other pages. Text is displayed as a link instead of the URL for the link being displayed. An anchor tag can point users to another web page, a file on the web, or even an image or sound file. You are probably most familiar with the anchor tags used to create links to other web sites.

Backlinks – Links that are directed to your site from another Web site on the web.

Black-Hat SEO – Unethical SEO Strategies! A great example would be Keyword Stuffing!

Blog – A web site where entries are written in chronological order and commonly displayed in reverse chronological order.

Blogroll – A list of links to other blogs or websites that the author of the blog regularly likes to read!

Bounce – The term used to describe a web site visitor landing on a web page and immediately clicking away from it.

Broken Links – URL’s or text-based links that do not lead to the expected page.

Call to Action – A statement that entices a potential customer to make a purchase, sign up for a newsletter, or take some other desired action.

Canonical Issue – When a Web site is accessible using both the www and the non-www versions of its URL. Search engines can treat these URL’s as separate sites altogether. This is known as a canonical issue. Matt Cutts of Google states it this way… “Canonicalization is the process of picking the best URL when there are several choices, and it usually refers to the home page.”

Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) – CSS is a style-sheet language used to describe the presentation of a document written in a markup language. Its most common application is to create a style for web pages (the look and feel of the web page) written in HTML and XHTML, but the language can be applied to any kind of XML document.

Container Tags – A set of HTML tags that contain a full command. Usually indicated by the opening and closing tags (e.g. b> Bold/

Cookies – Parcels of text sent by a server to a web browser and then sent back unchanged by the browser each time it accesses that server.

Crawlers – Search engine programs that crawl from one site to another, following the links given to them or included in the page they are examining.

A Database – A collection of information stored on a computer in a systematic way such that a computer program can consult it to answer questions.

Dynamic Content – Content that changes regularly — usually news, blog content, or other types of easily renewable content resources.

404 – A web site error that appears when a specific URL can not be found and no other indicator that the web site exists is apparent.

FTP – File Transfer Protocol (FTP) is a standard network protocol used to copy files from one host to another over a TCP/IP-based network, such as the Internet. FTP is built on a client-server architecture and utilizes separate control and data connections between the client and server.

Google Analytics – A web site statistics measurement program.

Google Sandbox – The Google Sandbox is an alleged filter placed on new websites. The best way to describe the Google Sandbox would be to say that the new website is given a probation period, so it is kept lower than expected for searches, prior to being given its full value for backlinks and content. In a nutshell, your site will have to prove itself worthy of being ranked by Google.

Grid Hosting – Grid Hosting Technology is a flexible hosting platform that distributes your website content among multiple servers as opposed to just one server (Shared Hosting). “

Header Tag – The HTML tag that denotes the header of a web page (represented by H1, H2, H3 etc.)

Hierarchical – The chain of command (ie the way authority is organized… the level of authority). Hierarchical systems are as popular in computer systems as they are in other walks of life. The most obvious example of a hierarchical system in computers is the file system, in which directories have files and sub-directories beneath them. Such a file organization is, in fact, called a hierarchical file system.

Htaccess File – When a visitor/spider requests a web page via any means, your web server checks for a.htaccess file. The.htaccess file contains specific instructions for certain requests, including security, redirection issues, and how to handle certain errors.

HTML – Which stands for HyperText Markup Language… It is the predominant markup language for web pages. It is written in the form of HTML elements consisting of “tags” surrounded by angle brackets within the web page content. It is the building blocks of all basic websites.

HTML Tags – Code elements on a web page that identify different parts of the web page so the web browser will know how to display them.

HTTP – Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) is an application-level protocol for distributed, collaborative, hypermedia information systems. HTTP defines how messages are formatted and transmitted, and what actions Web servers and browsers should take in response to various commands.

Hyperlink – A hyperlink (or link) is a word, group of words, or image that you can click on to jump to a new document or a new section within the current document.

IMG ALT Tags – An HTML tag used to define alternative text in place of a graphic in the event that the graphic can not be displayed.

Impressions – The number of times that people see a web page or advertisement.

Inbound Links – Links to your web site from someone else’s site.

Indexing – A method by which web pages are classified in search engine databases… a method of organizing your information.

Internal Links – The links that lead from one page to another within the structure of a single web site.

Javascript – Javascript is a client-sided script that can interact with HTML source code, enabling Web authors to spice up their sites with dynamic content. It allows greater interactivity in a document by responding to user events. An Example (one of many): Javascript can be used to enable a rollover image to appear when you mouse over an object.

Keyword Density – The frequency with which chosen keywords or phrases appear on a web page compared to the other text on the page.

Keyword Prominence – This means how close to the beginning of the page’s title, heading tags, or meta description your keyword or keyword phrase is placed.

Keyword Proximity – Refers to how close two or more keywords are to each other. You will achieve higher rankings if you place your keywords close together.

Keyword Research – is a practice used by search engine optimization professionals to find and research actual search terms people enter into search engines when conducting a search.

Keyword Spamming – The practice of overusing keywords in an attempt to trick search engines into ranking a web site higher in search results.

Keyword Stuffing – The repeating of your keywords too many times on a web page, either in text or in HTML tags, than is appropriate.

Landing Page – The web page to which visitors are directed when they click through an advertisement.

Linkbait – Web content that is placed on a blog or a website to attract inbound links (backlinks) from other websites to improve your Search-Engine Rankings.

Link Tag – An HTML tag that defines a hyperlink within a document. The HTML code used is as follows:

a href=”URL HERE” > Text Link Here/

Long Tail Keyword Research – Highly targeted, niche keywords. “Broad” vs. “Long Tail”… Example: Broad Keyword – Identity Theft; Long Tail Keyword – Internet Identity Theft Statistics. What you’ve done is narrow down the search by giving the specific information you are looking for about “Identity Theft”.

LSI – Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI) is an indexing and retrieval method that uses a mathematical technique called Singular Value Decomposition (SVD) to identify patterns in the relationships between the terms and concepts contained in an unstructured collection of text, in other words, multiple words that have similar meanings.

Meta – The prefix meta is used to mean about its own category. For example, metadata is data about data (who has produced it, when, what format the data is in and so on).

Meta Tag – To put it briefly, the meta tag is used by search engines to allow them to more accurately list your site in their indexes. The tag provides metadata about the HTML document and is typically used to specify page description, keywords, author of the document, last modified, and other metadata. The tag always goes inside the head element.

Metadata – Web pages often include metadata in the form of meta tags. Description and keywords meta tags are commonly used to describe the Web page’s content. Most search engines use this data when adding pages to their search index.

NoFollow Tag – An HTML tag that tells search engine crawlers that they should not follow a specific link or set of links on a web page.

Off-Page Optimization – strategies for search engine optimization that are done off the pages of a website to maximize its performance in the search engines for target keywords related to the page content. Examples can be: Obtaining links from high-ranking publisher sites; Search-engine submission; directory submission; social media and bookmarking sites; anything to gain traffic back to your site and show your site as an authority.

On-Page Optimization – Factors that have an effect on your web site or web page that will be listed in the natural search-engine results pages. A few examples of on-page optimization include the HTML code, meta tags, keyword placement and keyword density, along with performing other tasks to create a search-engine friendly site.

Organic Keywords – Keywords that appear naturally on web pages and draw decent search engine rankings. These are usually keywords for which no paid keyword advertising programs or other paid advertising efforts are involved.

Organic SEO – Strictly speaking, SEO efforts that are integrated with Web site design and do not require a monetary investment.

PageRank – A method by which Web pages are ranked in Google search results.

Ping – A method of notifying blog directories and search-engines that your blog has been updated.

Plug-ins – A mini-application that performs a specific function after it is installed as a part of a larger program.

Protocol – A protocol is a set of guidelines or rules. Examples: The Communications protocol is a set of instructions for transferring data. | Internet Protocol (IP) is the principal communications protocol used for relaying datagrams (packets) across the internet using the Internet Protocol Suite.

Reciprocal Link – When two Web sites link to each other. It is usually a consensual linking relationship, though reciprocal linking can also occur naturally for web sites in the same topic area.

Robots – Computer programs that visit a web site based on links and other criteria set by the search engine algorithm.

Robots Meta Tag – A simple mechanism to indicate to visiting web robots whether a page should be indexed, or if links on the page should be followed.

Robot.txt – The file that is used to tell robots and crawlers what not to crawl on your site.

RSS Feed – RSS stands for “Really Simple Syndication”. It’s a syndication feed that grabs news, blogs, or other activities and presents the reader with up-to-date content.

Scraping – Known as Web scraping, is the process of automatically collecting Web information. Web scraping (also called Web harvesting or Web data extraction) is a computer software technique for extracting information from websites.

Search Algorithm – A mathematical equation used to define what words or phrases someone is looking for and how the collected results should be returned to them.

Search Directory – A listing of the different web pages available on the Internet, divided by category and subcategory.

The Search Engine – is designed to search for information on the World Wide Web and FTP servers. The search results are generally presented in a list of results and are often called hits. The information may consist of web pages, images, information, and other types of files.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) – is the process of improving the visibility of a web site or a web page in search engines via “natural” or un-paid (“organic” or “algorithmic”) search results.

Sitemap HTML Version – HTML sitemaps are actually HTML pages with links to internal pages. They are used to list all hyperlinks to different sections and pages of your blog/website. Although an HTML sitemap is primarily created for human visitors, it acts as a proxy for internal pages and its primary scope is to reduce the number of steps the crawler must follow to reach the final target (the url).

Sitemap XML Version – An XML file that lists URLs for a site along with additional metadata about each URL (when it was last updated, how often it usually changes, and how important it is, relative to other URLs on the site) so that search engines can more intelligently crawl the site.

Social Bookmarking – A way for Internet users to store, classify, share, and search for Internet bookmarks.

Social Media – A group of web-based applications that enable people with similar interests to share those interests and other parts of their lives through participation in an online community.

Spiders – Web crawlers that examine and index web pages.

Static Web Pages – are web pages that are delivered to the user exactly as stored, in contrast to dynamic web pages, which are generated by a web application through user interaction.

Stemming – The growth of one related word from another, using prefixes and suffixes, e.g. “game”, “gamer”, “gaming”, “endgame”.

Stop Words – Forbidden words that will cause a search engine to stop crawling your website.

301 Redirect – A search-engine friendly snippet of code to move your entire Web site from one domain to another. The 301 redirect is your best bet to keep your current search-engine rankings. You can also use the 301 redirect any time you move a page from one location to another on your Web site.

Tags – In the HTML syntax, most elements are written with a start tag and an end tag, with the content in between. Tags are composed of the name of the element, surrounded by angle brackets. For example, a paragraph, which is represented by the p element, would be written as:

p > In the HTML syntax, most elements are written… /

TCP/IP – The Internet Protocol Suite is the set of communications protocols used for the Internet and other similar networks. It is commonly known as TCP/IP, named after two of the most important protocols in it: the Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) and the Internet Protocol (IP), which were the first two networking protocols defined in this standard.

Title Tags – HTML tags that define the title of a web page.

URL – Stands for Uniform Resource Locator, which means it is a uniform (same throughout the world) way to locate a resource (file or document) on the Internet. The URL specifies the address of a file, and every file on the Internet has a unique address.

URI – Stands for Uniform Resource Identifier, and it’s the official name for those things you see all the time on the Web that begin with ‘http:’, ‘FTP’, or‘mailto:’, etc. A URI is a standard global identifier for an Internet resource that may be local or remotely-accessible. URIs follow the same general syntax as URLs; in fact, URLs are one type of URI. Whereas URLs always refer to network addresses (including a protocol specification, host name or address, and local path), a URI does not necessarily refer to a remote resource. For example, the URI file:///c:/specifies a local directory. Because this file does not refer to any specific network protocol, this URI is not also a URL (an easy way of looking at this is to just think ‘URL’ whenever you see ‘URI’).

Weblog – A blog (a blend of the term web log) is a type of website or part of a website.

XHTML – eXtensible HTML The HyperText Markup Language (XHTML) is a family of XML markup languages that mirror or extend versions of the widely used Hypertext Markup Language (HTML), the language in which web pages are written.

XML – Extensible Markup Language (XML) is a set of rules for encoding documents in machine-readable form. Maybe it is a little hard to understand, but XML does not DO anything. XML was created to structure, store, and transport information.

XML Sitemap – A file that lists all the URL’s for a web site. This file is usually not seen by site visitors, only by the crawlers that index your site.

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My name is Nohman Habib and I am a web developer with over 10 years of experience, programming in Joomla, Wordpress, WHMCS, vTiger and Hybrid Apps. My plan to start is to share my experience and expertise with others. Here my basic area of focus is to post tutorials primarily on Joomla development, HTML5, CSS3 and PHP.

Nohman Habib


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