SEO Glossary - Search Engine Optimization Techniques
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SEO Glossary - Search Engine Optimization Techniques

Search Engines | Keyword Research | Ranking Factors | SEO Techniques | SEO Submission | Link Building | Usability | Paid Advertising | Social Media Marketing | Email Marketing | Web Analytics

B C D F G H I M O P R S

B
Bad Neighborhood
a single website or a collection of websites that either use spam techniques or host material that is deemed to be of an unethical nature. To have your site associated with one of these types of sites can cause your site to slip in rankings, when requesting a link from a site or linking to a site make sure the site is what you deem to be ethical.
C
Cloaking
the art of delivering different content to different users based on their IP address or user-agent string. There are a few different uses for cloaking such as delivering content to people from different countries. It is also used to deliver different search engine optimized content to the search engines and then different content to the users. This is deemed to be unethical in the eyes of search engines as people stuff the cloaked pages with links and repeat keywords in order to rank highly, while giving the users standard looking pages.
Competition
the number of websites competing for the keyword or key phrase you are researching on the major search engines. Google is queried for the competition quantity, as it is a major search engine with a very large index.
Content
the information located on a web page. This includes text, images and any other types of information that a webmaster places on the page.
D
Doorway
a page that is specifically designed for the search engines to rank well. One would be designed for Google and one for Yahoo! The pages would be differently optimized to rank well on both. When a normal user visits the page it will either detect their IP address and redirect them to the correct page (cloaking) or it will have a large link for them click through to the full site. Either way it is not a great practice to use this type of tactic.
Duplicate Content
two or more separate web pages that contain substantially the same content are said to contain duplicate content. Google and other top search engines have set up filters to detect duplicate content when their crawlers are active on the web. When pages containing duplicate content are detected, they are often assessed a duplicate content penalty which means the lowering of the page ranking from what it would have received naturally.
Dynamic Page
a web page with information which changes or is changed automatically, e.g. based on database content or user information. Sometimes it's possible to spot that this technique is being used, e.g. if the URL ends with .asp, .php, .cfm, .cgi or .shtml. It is possible to serve dynamic content using standard (normally static) .htm or .html type pages, though. Search engines will currently index pages with dynamic content in a similar fashion to static content pages, although they will not usually index URLs which contain too many parameters after the '?' character.
F
Fake Copy Listings
sometimes a malicious company will steal a web page or the entire contents of a website, re-publish at a different URL and register with one or more search engines. This can cause a loss of traffic from the original site if the search engines position the copy higher in the listings. If you find that someone has stolen your site in this way, write to the company concerned and ask them to remove the stolen content. Also contact the hosting service used by the company, any company that benefits from the theft and any search engine(s) concerned. If the thieves refuse to remove the material or ignore you, obtain legal advice. It is also well worth having printed evidence to support your claim that your copy of the material was there first, and that you have the copyright! See also Mirror Site.
G
Gateway Page
a web page submitted to a search engine (spider) to give the relevance algorithm of that particular spider the data it needs, in the format that it needs it, in order to place a site at the proper level of relevance for the topic(s) in question. A gateway page may present information to a spider, but obscure it from a casual human viewer. The gateway page exists to allow a website to present one face to the spider and another to human viewers. There are several reasons why one might want to do this. One is that the author may not want to publicly disclose placement tactics. Another is that the format that may be the easiest for a given spider to understand may not be the format that the author wishes to present to his viewers for aesthetics. Still another may be that the format that is the best for one spider may differ from that which is the best for another. By using gateway pages, you can present your site to each spider in the way which is known or thought to be the best for that particular spider. Also known as bridge pages, doorway pages, entry pages, portals or portal pages.
Google Bombing
a method of getting a large number of backlinks targeting one key phrase in the link text so that a web page will come up for that keyword.
H
Hidden Links
unethical search engine optimizers may place links on a site and then hide them by making them the same color as the background or hiding them behind a CSS <div> block.
Hidden Text
the art of hiding text on a webpage to influence the search engine rankings.
I
Image Map
a set of hyperlinks attached to areas of an image. This may be defined within a web page or as an external file. If the image map is defined as an external file, search engines may have problems indexing your other pages, unless you duplicate the links as conventional text hyperlinks. If the image map is included in a web page, the search engines should have no problem following the links, although it's a good practice to provide text links too, to aid the visually impaired and those accessing the web with graphics switched off or using text only browsers.
M
MiniRank/Local Rank
a modification of the PageRank based on the link structure of your single site only. Since search engines rank pages, not sites, certain pages of your site will rank higher for given keywords than others. Local Rank has a significant influence on the general PageRank.
Mirror
a near identical duplicate website (or a page). Mirrors are commonly used in an effort to target different keywords/key phrases. Using mirrors is a violation of the Terms of Service of the most search engines and could be a ground for banning.
Mirror Site
often set up with the purpose of backing up a popular site if it ever has problems. Sometimes a mirror site will be used for load balancing. When a website becomes too busy the response times may slow down and a mirror site on a different server can be used to keep the service running as normal.
Multiple Titles
used to repeat the HTML Title tag in the header section of a page several times to improve search engine positioning. Most search engines now detect this trick.
O
Off-Page Factors
the number of pages linking to you, the text used in links that point to you, the PageRank of linking pages, the page presence in directories under related categories, the link popularity score, etc.
Off-Page Optimization
in addition to on-page factors, search engines are increasingly using off-page factors to calculate relevance. This is because off-page factors are more difficult to manipulate artificially. The most important off-page factor is link popularity. Others include link text, link community and click popularity. Off-page optimization involves ensuring that these elements are in place to boost relevance for the targeted terms.
On-Page Factors
elements which actually appear on a page (page title, headings and body text) and contribute to the engine's assessment of the subject matter and relevance of a page. The search engines' programs will analyze the HTML code of a page to compute such essential scores as keyword frequency, prominence, weight and others.
On-Page Optimization
on-page factors are the elements which actually appear on a page and contribute to the engine's assessment of the subject matter and relevance of a page. On-page optimization involves ensuring that these factors are optimally included for the targeted search terms.
Optimization
changes made to a web page to improve the positioning of that page with one or more search engines. Optimization may involve design/layout changes, new text for the title tags, Meta tags, alt attributes, headings and changes to the first 200-250 words of the main text. A large image map at the top of a page should be moved further down the page. Frames should be avoided (unless navigational links are also provided within the frames).
Optimized Pages
unlike Gateway pages, the pages optimized for targeted key phrases, but integrated with the main website. They contain content relevant to a user and maintain brand consistency with the rest of a site. Optimized pages can be viewed as pages of the website which serve as landing points for users coming in from search engines.
P
Page Popularity
a measure of the number and quality of links to a particular page (inbound links). Many search engines use this number as part of the positioning process. The number and quality of inbound links is as important as the optimization of page content.
Positioning Technique
a method of modifying a web page so that search engines (or a particular search engine) treat the page as more relevant to a particular query (or a set of queries).
R
Redirects
when a server tells a browser to load another page instead of that requested.
S
Search Engine Optimization
the process of optimizing a website or web page to increase its visibility in the search engine results. Search engine optimization entails making sure that there is content relevant to the targeted key phrases on the website and that the search engine spiders can find this content easily. Good search engine optimization will ensure that this content is also useful to a user. Without relevant content, SEO techniques can only be partially successful and will probably stray into the wrong side of search engine Acceptable Use Policies.
Search Engine Optimization Writing
the copywriting that entails weaving keywords and key phrases into marketing or informational copy. The purpose of search engine optimization copywriting is to gain prime positioning for the desired key phrases, as well as increase page conversion rates.
Search Engine Positioning
the practice of positioning a website within the search engine results. A multitude of techniques are involved in successful search engine positioning. Not only must a web site be optimized, but its link popularity must also be built. See also Search Engine Optimization
Search Engine Spammers
the optimizers that consciously take excessive and other measures a search engine deem to be unethical to rank high on search engines.
Search Engine Visibility
the summary of all positions of your site in search results for certain keywords that people type in the search box to obtain these results. Mainly, you are interested not in all search engines on the Web, but only in those that actually bring you visitors (or have the potential to do so). Summarized search engine visibility score is useful in two cases: when you need to know how your Web visibility changes over time and when you need to compare your overall visibility to your competitors'.
Search Marketing
a part of business marketing efforts that is aimed at increasing the traffic (number of visitors) to your website from the search engines, as well as their conversion (the percent of visitors who become buyers). SEM strategies include: search engine optimization, pay per click advertising and paid inclusion.
Search Optimization
the tactics and techniques that make it easier for spiders to find your page, contributing to higher ranking on a list of search engine results. Basic optimization starts with listing relevant keywords in your Meta tags and building clear and descriptive words into page copy, title, text hyperlinks and image file names. It's also important to design your site in a logical link structure and follow standard HTML conventions, avoiding the use of frames, dynamic URLs, Image Maps and JavaScript for navigation.
SEM
abbr. Search Engine Marketing
SEMPO
abbr. Search Engine Marketing Professional Organization
SEO
abbr. Search Engine Optimization the process of manipulating the website pages to rank higher in the search engine indices. Successful SEO can result in a site, which features prominently on the major search engines (Google or Bing), delivering a significant amount of new visitors. SEO can contribute to the overall success of your website marketing. The process of SEO can involve changing a web page's content and HTML code so that a search engine spider can find specific information more easily. Additionally, SEO occasionally involves the recoding of a website's linking architecture. SEO combined with a set of targeted key phrases can result in your website gaining high positioning for your most popular products or services. SEO is a key element in the online marketing of a website as it can help potential visitors find the information they are searching for before discovering a competitor's site.
SEO Writing
Please refer to Search Engine Optimization Writing
SEP
the art of increasing a site's visibility within the search engine results. Search engine placement is achieved by a combination of on-page SEO, link building and ensuring the site is included in the correct search engine databases to reach the target market. It may also involve other strategies such as Pay Per Click campaigns or Trusted Feeds.
Spam
any search engine optimization method a search engine deems to be unethical.
Spamdexing
the alteration or creation of a document with intent to deceive an electronic catalog or filing system. Any technique that increases the potential position of a site at the expense of the quality of the search engine's database can also be regarded as spamdexing - also known as spamming or spoofing.

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