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The SEO world is full of classic concepts, new updates, and fun acronyms. This SEO glossary is here to provide a little clarity and help you learn the lingo.
10x Content refers to content that is ten times better than the best result currently found in the search results for a given keyword or topic, in terms of quality, depth, presentation, and usefulness.
A 301 redirect is a permanent redirection from one URL to another, often used when a webpage has been moved or deleted, in order to preserve its search engine ranking and guide users to the updated or relevant location.
A 404 error is an HTTP status code that means the webpage the user is trying to reach could not be found on the server, often because the page does not exist or has been moved without redirection.
Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP)
Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) are a Google-led open-source project designed to load web pages quickly on mobile devices by simplifying the HTML code and using a specialized cache system.
AI-generated content refers to text, images, videos, or other media created autonomously by artificial intelligence systems, often utilizing machine learning algorithms to mimic human-like creativity and understanding.
Alt text is an attribute added to an image tag in HTML, which provides a text alternative for visually impaired users or when the image can’t be displayed.
An anchor link is a type of hyperlink that directs the user to a specific spot (anchor) on a webpage rather than a new page entirely.
Anchor text is the visible, clickable text in a hyperlink that often gives users and search engines important context about the linked page’s content.
Article syndication is the process of allowing other websites to republish your content, often to enhance reach and generate backlinks, but it can result in duplicate content issues.
Auto-generated content refers to content that’s created using software or algorithms, without significant human input, which can range from useful (like automated news updates) to spammy or low-quality.
Backlinks are incoming hyperlinks from one webpage to another, indicating a vote of confidence, which search engines consider in assessing a site’s reputation and relevance.
Bing Webmaster Tools
Bing Webmaster Tools is a free service by Microsoft’s Bing search engine that allows website owners to add their websites to the Bing index crawler, view their site’s performance, and troubleshoot potential issues.
Black Hat SEO
Black Hat SEO refers to aggressive SEO strategies, techniques, and tactics that focus only on search engines and not a human audience, often violating search engine guidelines.
Bounce rate is the percentage of visitors who navigate away from a website after viewing only one page, often used as an indicator of the effectiveness of a website’s content or user experience.
Branded keywords are search terms that include a brand’s name or variations of it, reflecting searches directly related to a specific brand.
Breadcrumb navigation is a site design element that shows the user’s location in a website’s hierarchical structure, often displayed as a trail of links at the top or bottom of the page.
A broken link is a hyperlink that no longer leads to the intended content, often because the page has been moved, deleted, or has an incorrectly formatted URL.
A cached page is a snapshot or version of a web page saved at a specific time and stored by a web server as a backup copy.
A canonical tag is a piece of HTML code that helps prevent duplicate content issues by specifying the “canonical” or “preferred” version of a web page.
A canonical URL is the URL of the page that Google thinks is most representative from a set of duplicate pages on your site.
ChatGPT is a conversational AI chatbot developed by OpenAI based on the company’s Generative Pre-trained Transformer (GPT) series of large language models (LLMs)
Citation Flow is a metric by Majestic SEO which predicts how influential a URL might be based on the number of sites linked to it.
Cloaking is a deceptive SEO technique where the content presented to the search engine spider is different from that presented to the user’s browser.
Co-citation refers to the similarities found between two pages, based on a third-party page that successfully mentions the first two pages in correlation with each other.
Co-occurrence in SEO refers to the frequency and proximity of similar keywords appearing on a single webpage.
Commercial intent is the type of search intent that describes the user’s goal to learn more about a product or service before making a purchasing decision.
Content delivery network (CDN)
A Content Delivery Network is a system of distributed servers that deliver web content to a user based on the user’s geographic location.
A content farm produces large amounts of low-quality content created specifically for search engines.
A content hub is a centralized resource or landing page, hosting a collection of related content typically organized around a specific topic.
Content management system (CMS)
A content management system (CMS) is a software application that helps users create, manage, and modify content on a website without the need for technical knowledge.
Conversion rate is the percentage of visitors who complete a desired action on a website.
Core Web Vitals
Core Web Vitals is a set of performance metrics that measure the user experience of visiting a page.
Cornerstone content is the foundation of your website; it’s the most important, well-written, and explanatory content that you want to rank high in search engines.
Crawlability refers to the ability of a search engine to crawl through all of the content on a webpage.
A crawler, also known as a spider or bot, is what search engines use to discover and index web content.
A dofollow link is a hyperlink that helps in influencing the ranking of a website, as it passes “link juice” from one site to another.
Domain Authority is a score developed by Moz that predicts how well a website will rank on search engine result pages (SERPs).
Domain Rating is a metric developed by Ahrefs that shows the strength of a website’s backlink profile on a scale of 0 to 100.
Doorway pages are web pages created for spamdexing, this is for manipulating a search engine’s index to improve the rank of a target page.
Duplicate content refers to substantial blocks of content within or across domains that either completely match or are noticeably similar.
Dwell time is the length of time a visitor spends on a webpage after they’ve clicked a link on a SERP page, before returning back to the SERPs.
A dynamic URL is a web address that results from the search of a database-driven web site or the URL of a web site that runs a script.
An editorial link is a backlink from another website to your website that is placed naturally by an editor or author of the other website.
Email outreach is a process of reaching out to people via email, typically aimed at getting backlinks, guest posting, PR or any other objective.
An entry page is the first page a user visits during a session on a website.
Evergreen content is SEO content that is continually relevant and stays “fresh” for readers.
An external link is a hyperlink that points at any domain other than the domain the link exists on.
A Featured Snippet is a summary of an answer to a user’s query displayed on top of Google search results, directly below the ads.
Frequency in SEO usually refers to how often website content is updated, or how often keywords or phrases appear on a webpage.
Freshness in SEO refers to how recently a webpage has been updated or revised.
Gated content is online material only accessible to users once they fill out a form or provide their information.
A gateway page is a webpage designed to attract traffic from search engines and then redirect it to another site or page.
Generative AI is a type of artificial intelligence (AI) that can create new content, such as images, text, and music.
Google Alerts is a tool by Google that allows you to monitor the web for new content, articles, blog posts, or news on a certain topic.
The Google algorithm is a complex system used to retrieve data from its search index and instantly deliver the best possible results for a query.
Google Analytics is a web analytics service offered by Google that tracks and reports website traffic.
Google Autocomplete is a feature in Google Search that suggests search queries based on users’ typing patterns and popular searches.
Google Bard is a large language model (LLM) chatbot developed by Google AI.
Google Bombing is the practice of making a website rank for irrelevant, often humorous or negative search terms by building many links with anchor text for that term.
Google Business Profile
Google Business Profile, formerly Google My Business, is a tool for businesses and organizations to manage their online presence across Google, including Search and Maps.
Google Caffeine was an update to Google’s search engine system, which increased the speed of indexing websites and delivering results.
Google core updates
Google Core Updates are updates to Google’s search algorithms that happen several times a year and can significantly affect search rankings.
The Google Dance describes the volatility that new pages experience when Google is determining their rankings.
Google E-E-A-T (Experience, Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trust) is a set of factors that Google uses to evaluate the quality of websites and content.
Google Helpful Content Update
The Helpful Content Update is an algorithm update that aims to reward websites that produce high-quality content written for people.
Hummingbird was a major algorithm change in 2013 focused on understanding the intent behind a search query, rather than just the individual words in that query.
Google Knowledge Graph
The Google Knowledge Graph is a knowledge base to enhance its search engine’s results with information gathered from a variety of sources.
Google Knowledge Panel
A Google Knowledge Panel is a box that appears on Google when you search for entities (people, places, organizations, things) that are in the Knowledge Graph.
Panda was an algorithm update that aims to lower the rank of low-quality sites and return higher-quality sites near the top of the search results.
A Google penalty is a punishment imposed on a website whose content conflicts with the marketing practices dictated by Google, resulting in a downgrade in its search ranking.
Penguin is an algorithm update aimed at decreasing search engine rankings of websites that violate Google’s Webmaster Guidelines by using black-hat SEO techniques.
Google Search Perspectives is a new Search filter that helps you discover content from people who have shared their experiences on discussion boards, Q&A sites, and social media platforms.
Pigeon is an update to Google’s local search algorithm that aims to increase the ranking of local listings in a search.
Google Sandbox is a theory suggesting that Google temporarily reduces the visibility of new websites to ensure they deliver a good user experience.
Google Search Console
Google Search Console is a free service offered by Google that helps monitor, maintain, and troubleshoot a website’s presence in Google Search results.
Google Search Experience (GSE)
The Google Search Experience (GSE) is an experiment that uses AI to improve the overall user experience of Google Search.
Google Top Heavy Update
The Google Top Heavy Update penalizes websites that are “top-heavy” with ads, making it difficult for users to find the content they’re looking for.
Google Webmaster Guidelines
Google Webmaster Guidelines are a set of best practices provided by Google for webmasters to follow for better indexing and ranking of their websites.
Googlebot is the web crawler software used by Google, which collects documents from the web to build a searchable index for the Google Search engine.
Gray hat SEO
Gray hat SEO is a type of search engine optimization that uses techniques that are considered between White hat SEO and black hat SEO.
Guest blogging is the practice of contributing a post to another person’s blog in order to build relationships, exposure, authority, and backlinks.
The H1 tag is the HTML tag that represents the title of a webpage and is usually the largest heading on the page, often used by search engines to determine what the page is about.
Heading tags (H1-H6) are HTML elements used to identify headings and subheadings within your content from other types of text (e.g., paragraph text).
The Hilltop Algorithm is an algorithm used to find documents relevant to a particular keyword topic.
Holistic SEO is an approach to SEO that takes into account the entirety of a website’s ecosystem from the technical health to the user experience and quality of content.
Hreflang is an HTML attribute used to indicate the language and geographical targeting of a webpage, helping search engines understand which language you’re using on a specific page.
HTTPS (Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure) is a protocol for secure communication over a computer network, widely used on the Internet.
An inbound link is a link coming from another site to your own website, often seen as important for SEO as they represent a vote of confidence from one site to another.
Indexability refers to the ability of a webpage to be indexed by search engines.
Informational intent is the type of search intent that describes the user’s goal to learn more about a topic.
An internal link is a hyperlink that points to another page on the same website.
Keyword cannibalization occurs when multiple pages on the same website compete for the same or similar keywords, which can hurt the site’s SEO performance.
Keyword clustering is the SEO practice of grouping related keywords together to help in the creation or optimization of content for SEO.
Keyword density is the percentage of times a keyword or phrase appears on a web page compared to the total number of words on the page.
Keyword difficulty is a metric indicating how hard it would be to rank for a particular keyword, taking into account the competitiveness of the keyword among other factors.
Keyword ranking refers to a website’s position in search engine results in relation to other websites for a particular keyword search query.
Keyword research is the process of finding and analyzing keywords that people are using to search for information online.
Keyword stemming involves using different prefixes, suffixes, or plurals of a keyword in your content to improve SEO.
Keyword stuffing is an unethical SEO strategy used to overload keywords onto a web page so as to manipulate a site’s ranking in Google search results.
Keywords are ideas and topics that define what your content is about, and are used by search engines to categorize content for relevant search queries.
Link bait is content on your website that other sites find valuable enough to link to.
Link building is the process of acquiring hyperlinks from other websites to your own, improving your site’s credibility and search engine ranking.
Link equity, also known as “link juice,” is the concept that all links pass value and authority from one page to another.
Link exchange is the practice of exchanging links with other websites, where you link to a site and they link back to you.
A link farm is a group of websites that all hyperlink to every other site in the group in order to artificially increase the link popularity of the group’s websites.
Link popularity is the total number of webpages that link to a particular site, which can impact its ranking in search engine results.
A link profile is the makeup of links directing to your site, including the number and quality of backlinks, and is a major factor in how Google evaluates your site for SEO.
Link reclamation is the process of finding and fixing broken links pointing to your website, or reaching out to those who have mentioned your brand or content without linking to you.
Link rot occurs when a hyperlink no longer works, typically because the website it’s linked to has been moved or deleted.
Link schemes are various methods of manipulating links in a way that violates Google’s Webmaster Guidelines, often with the intent of artificially increasing a page’s ranking.
Link spam refers to any links intended to manipulate a site’s ranking, violate Google’s guidelines, or harm another site’s ranking.
Link velocity is the rate at which others are linking to your website, an important factor in SEO as it can signal natural or unnatural link building practices.
Local business schema
Local Business Schema is a type of structured data markup that site owners can use to provide search engines with additional information about their business, like address, phone number, and opening hours.
A local citation is any online mention of the name, address, and phone number of a local business, which can help web users to discover local businesses and impact local search engine rankings.
A Local Pack is a Google search results feature that shows local businesses related to a user’s search query, typically including a map and a list of businesses with their details.
Local SEO is the practice of optimizing a website to increase traffic, leads, and brand awareness from local search.
Log file analysis
Log File Analysis is the process of reviewing the log files that record the requests made when users visit a website, which can provide useful data for SEO audits.
Long-tail keywords are highly specific search phrases with low search volume, but typically with less competition and a higher conversion rate.
LSI Keywords (Latent Semantic Indexing) are keywords semantically related to your main keyword, which can help search engines understand your content’s context.
A Manual Action is an intervention by Google’s webspam team due to a site violating Google’s webmaster quality guidelines, often resulting in a penalty that affects the site’s search rankings.
A Meta Description is an HTML attribute that provides a brief summary of a web page that appears in search engine results.
Meta Keywords are a type of meta tag in the HTML source code of a webpage that are used to specify what keywords are relevant to that page.
A Meta Redirect is a type of instruction that automatically redirects a user from one URL to another after a few seconds.
Meta robots tag
The Meta Robots Tag is an HTML code snippet that provides instructions to search engine crawlers about how to index or not index a page.
Meta tags are snippets of text in a webpage’s code that describe the content of a page, and are used by search engines in evaluating the page’s content for search results.
A Mirror Site is a website or set of files on a server that has been copied to another server so that the site or files are available from more than one place.
Mobile-First Indexing is Google’s practice of primarily using the mobile version of a website’s content for indexing and ranking in search results.
NAP (Name, Address, and Phone number) is a term used to describe the three pieces of information that are most important for local businesses to have listed consistently across the web
A Natural Link is a link to a website that occurs organically, without the site owner having to go out and ask for or pay for that link.
Navigational intent is the type of search intent that describes the user’s goal to find a specific page.
Negative SEO is a set of activities aimed at lowering a competitor’s rankings in search results typically by generating low-quality links to their site.
Nofollow is a value that can be assigned to the “rel” attribute of an HTML “a” element to instruct search engines that the hyperlink should not influence the ranking of the link’s target in the search engine’s index.
The Noindex Tag is a meta tag instruction for search engine bots not to include a specific webpage in their search results.
Off-page SEO refers to search engine optimization activities outside of your own website, including backlinks, social media marketing, and content marketing.
On-page SEO refers to the process of optimizing a website’s content, structure, and code to improve its ranking in search engine results pages
Open Graph meta tags
Open Graph meta tags are snippets of code that control how URLs are displayed when shared on social media, allowing the webpage to become a rich object.
Organic search results
Organic search results are listings on search engine results pages that appear because of their relevance to the search terms.
Organic traffic is the traffic that comes to your website as a result of unpaid search results, typically regarded as visitors who found a website through a search engine like Google or Bing.
An orphan page is a webpage that isn’t linked to by any other page on the same website, making it difficult for search engine bots and users to find.
An outbound link is a link from your website to another website, offering search engines a clear idea about your website’s niche and increasing the trust and quality of your site.
Page Speed is the amount of time it takes for the content on a website’s page to fully load, with faster speeds leading to better user experience and typically better SEO.
PageRank is a mathematical algorithm used by Google Search to rank web pages in their search engine results, based on the quality and quantity of links to a page.
A paid link is a link that is purchased, often with the intention of improving a site’s search engine ranking.
People Also Ask
“People Also Ask” is a feature in Google’s search results that shows questions related to a user’s search query, along with a dropdown box containing a brief answer and a link to the source.
A Pillar Page is a comprehensive resource page that covers a topic in depth, around which a cluster of related content or topic-specific pages are linked.
Pogo-Sticking describes when a user performs a search, clicks on a result, quickly leaves the page, and then clicks on a different result to satisfy their informational need.
A Primary Keyword is the main term targeted within your content, around which your page content is focused.
Private blog network (PBN)
A Private Blog Network (PBN) is a network of websites used to build links to a single website for the purpose of manipulating search engine rankings, often seen as a black hat SEO technique.
A query describes the keyword or group of keywords people enter into a search engine.
Resource Pages are webpages that link out to great content on a given topic, aiming to provide value to visitors and often used for building backlinks in SEO.
A Rich Snippet is a type of search result in Google’s SERPs that includes additional data such as ratings, images, and other details, enhancing the user’s understanding of the content.
Robots.txt is a file that tells search engine spiders not to crawl certain pages or sections of a website, allowing you to control which pages you want to keep hidden from search engine crawlers.
Schema markup is a semantic vocabulary of tags (or microdata) that can be added to your HTML to improve the way search engines read and represent your page in SERPs.
A search algorithm is a set of computational rules that search engines use to retrieve and prioritize matching results for a user’s search query.
Search engine results pages (SERPs)
Search engine results pages (SERPs) are the pages displayed by search engines in response to a query by a searcher.
Search Intent, also known as User Intent, is the primary goal a user has when typing a query into a search engine.
Search Quality Rater Guidelines
Google’s Search Quality Rater Guidelines are a set of guidelines that Google uses to train its search quality raters. Search quality raters are people who are paid by Google to rate the quality of websites and web pages
Search Results are the webpages, images, videos, or other content returned by a search engine in response to a user’s search query.
Search Visibility is the percentage of all possible organic clicks (impressions) that a website gets for a set of keywords.
Search Volume is the number of searches expected for a keyword over a certain period of time, typically used in keyword research to assess the potential traffic of a keyword.
Secondary Keywords are terms and phrases that support the primary keyword in a piece of content.
Seed Keywords are the foundation of your keyword research and define your niche, representing a starting point for expanding keyword lists.
Search engine optimization (SEO)
Search Engine Optimization is the practice of increasing the quantity and quality of traffic to your website through organic search engine results.
An SEO audit is a process of analyzing how well your web presence relates to best practices – it is the first step to creating an implementation plan that will improve your rankings in search results.
An SEO silo is an internal website linking structure that organizes your website content into themes or topics, improving the relevance and authority of your website in the eyes of search engines.
SERP features are results on Google’s Search Engine Results Pages that go beyond the traditional ’10 blue links’, including paid Google Ads results, Featured Snippets, Knowledge Graphs, and others.
Share of voice
In digital marketing, Share of Voice is a metric for understanding how prominent your ads, organic results or social media engagements are within a competitive landscape.
Short-Tail Keywords are search phrases with only one or two words, typically broad and competitive.
Sitelinks are links displayed below the description of your snippet in Google Search Results that point to other pages on your website, providing shortcuts to relevant content.
Sitemaps are files that provide information about a website’s content and organization, giving search engines a roadmap for discovering and indexing content.
A sitewide link refers to a link that is present on all pages of a website, commonly found in website footers, headers, or sidebars.
An SSL certificate is a digital certificate that establishes a secure connection between a web server and a web browser. SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer, and it is a security protocol that encrypts data transmitted between the two systems.
Structured data is a standardized format for providing information about a page and its content, helping search engines understand the page, and can also enable special search result features and enhancements.
A subdomain is a subdivision of a main website, used to organize or navigate to different sections of the website.
A taxonomy refers to the categories and tagging structures used to improve the visibility and usability of a website.
Technical SEO refers to the process of optimizing your website for the crawling and indexing phase, helping search engines understand and interpret your website without problems.
Thin content is low-quality content that provides little or no value to the user, often light on text and lacking in-depth information.
A title tag is an HTML element that specifies the title of a web page, displayed on search engine results pages as the clickable headline for a given result.
Top-level domain (TLD)
A top-level domain (TLD) is the highest level of domain names in the root zone of the Domain Name System (DNS), such as .com, .org, or .net.
Transactional intent is the type of search intent that describes the user’s goal to make a purchase.
TrustRank is a link analysis technique used in SEO for separating useful webpages from spam, based on measuring its distance from a manually selected set of trusted seed pages.
Universal Search, also known as Blended Search, is a type of search result that includes different types of content like videos, images, news, maps, and web pages.
Unnatural Links are links that were not editorially placed or vouched for by the site’s owner, often a result of link schemes or manipulative tactics.
URL Rating (UR)
URL Rating (UR) is a metric used by the SEO tool Ahrefs to measure the strength of a webpage’s backlink profile, taking into account both the quantity and quality of backlinks.
A URL Slug is the exact address of a specific webpage or post, used to describe the content of the page in a user-friendly way.
User experience (UX) refers to the overall experience a user has when interacting with a website or webpage, including its ease of use, the relevance and quality of its content, site speed, and mobile-friendliness, all of which significantly influence a site’s search engine rankings.
Vertical Search refers to a search that is limited to a specific industry, sector, or type, providing more targeted results than a general search.
Voice Search is a technology that allows users to perform searches by speaking into a device, such as smartphones, computers, or smart home assistants.
Website authority, often measured as Domain Authority or Domain Rating, is a search engine ranking score that predicts a website’s ability to rank on search engine result pages (SERPs).
Website structure refers to how your website is set up or how its pages are interconnected, which can affect user experience and search engine crawlability.
Webspam, also known as Search Spam, refers to manipulative tactics used to deceive search engines and gain higher rankings that a page wouldn’t naturally achieve.
White-hat SEO refers to the use of optimization strategies, techniques, and tactics that focus on a human audience as opposed to search engines, strictly following search engine rules and policies.
WordPress is a free and open-source content management system used by millions of people around the world to create websites and blogs.
An XML sitemap is a file that helps search engines understand the structure of a website and find its content, serving as a roadmap that lists a website’s pages along with metadata about each page to inform search engines when a page was updated or how often it changes.
YMYL (Your Money or Your Life) websites contain content that could potentially impact a person’s future happiness, health, financial stability, or safety, held to the highest standards of quality and credibility by Google’s guidelines.
Zero click searches
Zero-click searches refer to search engine queries where users find their answers directly on the search results page, without needing to click through to a website or another source.
Zero search volume (ZSV) keywords
Zero search volume keywords are search terms that reportedly have no monthly searches according to keyword research tools, but can still be valuable for SEO as they may represent unique or highly specific queries that could bring relevant traffic.