Affiliate Marketing – A marketing technique in which a web site directs web visitors to another site and receives commission for visitor’s purchases.
Back Links – also known as in bound links, the hypertext links from a page to your page. In bound links to your page from outside your site are highly valued by search engines performing link analysis when they rank search results by relevance.
Banner Ad – A promotional message, typically presented in a box in a prominent place on a web page, like an advertisement in a newspaper or a magazine. Clicking a banner ad takes the visitor to the Web site of the sponsor of the ad.
Bid – The price paid to a paid search engine for each referral to secure a ranking in paid search results. In its simplest form, paid search results show a link to the highest bidder’s page at the top of the list, and that bidder pays the bid price to the paid search engine each time a visitor clicks the bidder’s link.
Bid Gap – The difference between two bids in adjacent positions in a paid placement auction.
Bid Jamming – An aggressive paid placement auction bidding technique to raise your competitor’s costs.
Bid Limit – The highest amount that a paid placement bidder is willing to pay for a keyword term.
Bid Management – The technique used by websites to track and control the prices they pay to paid search engines to have their pages listed. Bid Management is crucial for large paid search campaigns comprising multiple search keywords over several paid search engines, usually performed with software tools that automate bids.
Blog – Short for “Web Log”. An online personal journal.
Body Text – Normal text written in paragraphs and lists on a Web page that have no special significance, as opposed to titles and headings. Search engines look for query terms in body text, but give them less priority than titles or headings.
Budget Cap – The maximum amount you are willing to spend in a paid search campaign within a defined period of time, ranging from one day to one month.
Campaign – A marketing term for a marketing effort of a relatively short duration with specific goals. A search marketing campaign may last a few months, during which certain keywords are targeted for paid search, with success measured by the number of sales made from visitors referred by the paid search engines.
Click – The action that web users take with their mouse to navigate to a new page. Web metrics programs capture all visitor clicks for measurement and analysis.
Click Fraud – The unethical act of clicking a paid search listing with the intention of causing the per click fee to be charged.
Clickthrough – The web metrics term for visitors clicking a link and navigating to a new page. For search marketing clickthrough rates are an important metric to show the effectiveness of ad copy in attracting traffic.
Content – A web term for the words and pictures shown on a web page. Search marketing depends on optimising content so that search engines can find a page for a relevant query.
Content Analyser – A software tool that examines your web page and makes recommendations on how to modify page tagging and text to improve search ranking.
Content Audit – The technique to analyse an organic search landing page to identify ways to improve rankings, referrals and conversions.
Content Management System (CMS) – System software that manages the process of creation, update, approval and publishing of web pages to a web site.
Conversion Rate – The ratio of web site visitors to web orders.
Cost per Click (CPC) – A method of calculating fees whereby money is owed to the search engine only when the searcher clicks through on the paid placement advertisement.
Cost per Thousand (CPM) – A method of calculating fees whereby money is owed for each impression of an advertisement each time it’s displayed. The term is usually used for fixed placement advertising not bid based advertising.
Cost per Action (CPA) – A method of calculating fees whereby money is owed only when the searcher converts. In practice CPA pricing is used only for fixed placement or shopping searches, not bid based advertising.
Crawler – Also known as a spider, the part of a search engine that locates and indexes every page on the web that is a possible answer to a searcher’s query. Successful search engine marketing depends on crawlers finding almost all of the pages on a web site.
Dayparting – A paid placement bidding technique that allows you to set your bids based on time of day to ensure your bids are higher at the times of highest conversion.
Description Tag – The HTML element that contains a synopsis of the page. Search engines sometimes match search queries to page descriptions therefore the wording for this tag must be carefully thought through.
Directory – A list of thousands of subjects along with links to Web sites about those subjects. Yahoo! Directory is the most well known. Most directories are lightly used in comparison to text search technology.
Directory Listing – One of many hypertext links about a particular subject. Site owners submit a page to request that it be listed in the directory and say that they have a “directory listing” when their submission is accepted.
Dynamic Pages – Web page generated at the moment the page is displayed. Used when the content must alter depending on the visitor e.g. an order page. Need to be handled carefully by Search Marketers.
Entry Page – Also known as a gateway page or doorway page. A spam technique by which a page is designed solely to achieve high search rankings with no value to visitors to your site.
External Link – A hypertext connection from one web site to another, allowing visitors to move to the new site. Search engines treat these links as endorsements of the receiving site by the sending site.
Filter – A constraint on a search that sets the scope of results e.g. country or language. Pages that are not included by the filters for a query do not appear in the results.
Fixed Placement – A technique by which a search marketer negotiates the appearance of an advertisement in a particular place on a page for a given search query, usually paying for impressions rather than for clicks.
Flash – A technology by Macromedia that provides a rich experience on the web through animation and other interactive features.
Frames – An old technique of HTML coding that can display multiple sources of content in separate scrollable windows in the same HTML page.
Gap Surfing – A paid placement auction bidding technique in which you scan the list of paid placement results, looking for significant differences between bids. You then adjust your bid to be just higher than the lower bid in the gap.
Geographic Targeting – A search engine technique to display paid search results from a particular geographic area. Search engines typically use the Searchers IP address to determine the correct location and then show the listings that their advertisers have requested to be shown. Geographic Targeting is different from “local search” in which searchers enter the location as part of their query.
Guest Book – A part of a web site that allows visitors to post their contact information and comments about that site.
Heading Tag – The HTML element that contains an emphasised section name that breaks up the body text. Search engines treat matches found in the heading tags as more important than body text.
Hidden Links – A spam technique in which hypertext links are designed to be seen by spiders but not by human visitors.
HTML – Hyper Text Markup Language. The mark up tagging system used to denote the precise document element of every piece of text on a web page. E.g. all paragraphs are marked with a paragraph tag and all headings are identified with heading tags.
Impression – A term derived from banner advertising that denotes each time your ad is shown to someone.
Inbound Links – Also known as back links, the hypertext links from a page to your page. Inbound links to your page from outside your site are highly valued by search engines.
Index – The list used by the search engine of each word on the web and which pages each word is on. The search engine looks for the words in that query in the search index and locates the pages that contain those words.
Indexing – The process by which the spider stores each word on the web along with what pages each word is on.
Internal Link – A hypertext connection from one page of a web site to another page within the same site, allowing visitors to move to the new page. Search engines do not treat these links with much importance.
Keyword – A specific word or phrase that search marketers expect searchers to enter frequently as a query.
Keyword Demand – The number of searches for a particular query across all search engines within a defined period of time. Keyword demand tells you how many total searches used that keyword at all search sites, whether the searchers clicked through or not.
Keyword Density – The ratio of a particular search query’s terms to all terms on a page. E.g. if you want your 200 word page to be found for the query “marketing” and your page contains 12 occurrences of that word the keyword density of your page is 6% (12 / 200). Search engines typically consider pages with about 6% keyword density to be high quality pages (higher than a spam page).
Keyword Effectiveness Index (KEI) – A mathematical representation of the popularity of a key word (the number of searches containing it) compared to its popularity in usage (the number of web pages it is found on).
Keyword Loading – Also known as keyword stuffing. A spam technique by which keywords are overused in content merely to attract the search engines.
Keyword Placement – Also known as term placement. A measurement of the value of the location of a word on a web page. All words do not have equal importance on a page.
Keyword Position – Also known as term position. A measurement of how close to the beginning of a web page element a word appears. E.g. words at the beginning of the body element are usually more important than those that show up later in that same element.
Keyword Proximity – A measurement of the nearness of different search terms to each other within a matching page. Words from a searchers query that are adjacent to each other would tend to be ranked higher than pages where the terms were a paragraph apart.
Landing Page – The URL on your web site where visitors will go when they click a particular link.
Link – E.g. A set of words, a picture that when clicked, takes the visitor to another web page.
Link Analysis – Also known as link popularity. Technique used by search engines to determine the authority of web pages by examining the network of connections between web pages.
Link Audit – Analysis of every hypertext connection to your landing pages.
Link Building Campaign – A plan to attract more hypertext connections to your site. Often done by contacting other web sites and making a request.
Link Farm – Spam technique by setting up sites that can be crawled by search engines, just so they can put in thousands of links to sites they want to boost in search rankings.
Match Type – The way that paid placement advertisers decide how their keywords correspond to searchers queries. Provides control over how closely the keywords must match the queries before displaying the ad.
Mega Keyword – A search query that is entered frequently by searchers.
Metasearch Engine – A search engine that sends the query entered by the searcher to several other search engines and collates into a single results list.
Metatag – A particular kind of document element that is “about” the document rather than an intrinsic part of the document. HTML tagging standards specify numerous metatags e.g. titles, descriptions, dates.
Microsite – A small website which is separate from your main site. Designed to make web metrics easier to collect for your search campaigns.
Natural Language Search Engine – A search designed to accept natural language queries (e.g. where is Thailand?) and obtain an answer rather than just a list of documents containing the words. E.g. www.ask.com
Natural Search – Also known as organic search. The technique by which a search engine finds the most relevant matches for a searcher’s query from all of the pages indexed from the Web. Contrasts with paid search where bidders vie for the highest rankings by topping each other’s bids.
One Way Link – A hypertext connection to a page with no corresponding reciprocal link back.
Optimizing Content – A search marketing term for modifying the words and pictures shown on a web page so that search engines can more easily find that page for a relevant query.
Organic Search – Also known as natural search. Technique by which a search engine finds the most relevant matches for a searcher’s query from all of the pages indexed from the web. Contrasts with paid search where bidders vie for the highest rankings by topping each other’s bids.
Outbound Link – A hypertext link from your page to a different page on the web. Within your site or to another.
Page Ranking Factor – Any characteristic of an organic search match that is not related to the terms in the search query e.g. which pages link to the page, the site that contains the page. These factors are used in the organic search ranking algorithm to sort the best results to the top of the list.
Page Submission – A method of telling a search engine about the existence of a URL that you would like crawled.
Page View – The web metrics term used to count how many web pages on a site have been viewed by individual visitors.
Paid Inclusion – Also known as pay per click. A service offered by some search engines that guarantee a web site’s pages are stored in the search index in return for a fee. Paid inclusion does not guarantee high search rankings for those pages, just that those pages will always be present in the index and the spider will frequently re visit.
Paid Link – A hypertext connection to a target site that has been purchased from the source site.
Paid Listing – An entry in a web directory.
Paid Placement – The technique by which a search engine devotes space on its search results page to display links to a web sites page based on the highest bid for that space.
Paid Search – Any service offered by a search engine in return for a fee, including paid inclusion, paid placement and directory services.
Phrase – A search term within a search query containing multiple words enclosed in double quotation marks. The quotation marks tell the search engine to search for the exact words. Without the quotation marks individual words are searched.
Query – The words that a searcher types into a search engine to identify what information should be searched for.
Query Dependent Ranking Factor – Any characteristic of an organic search match that is related to the terms in the search query e.g. prominence, density, and frequency
Ranking – The technique by which a search engine sorts the matches to produce a set of search results. The software code used is called the ranking algorithm.
Ranking Algorithm – The software instructions which control precisely how search matches are sorted into the order in which they are displayed on the search results page.
Ranking Checker – An automated tool that analyses where a particular URL or set of URLs appear in the search results for a query.
Ranking Factor – Any characteristic of an organic search match that can be used by a ranking algorithm to sort the matches for presentation on the search results page. The algorithm uses factors such as the location on the page of the query, the number of links to the page, the proximity of different words.
Reciprocal Link – Also known as two-way link. A hypertext connection to a page that has a corresponding link back to the source.
Relational Link – An inbound hypertext link to your site based on an existing business relationship e.g. suppliers, resellers and customers.
Robot – Also sometimes known as spider or crawler. The part of a search engine that locates and indexes every page on the web.
Search Engine Marketing (SEM) – All the activities designed to improve search referrals to a web site using either organic or paid search.
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) – The techniques and methodologies devoted to improving organic search rankings (not paid search) for a web site.
Search Index – A database of every word found on every web page, along with the list of pages that each word was found on. When a searcher enters a search query, the organic search engine consults the search index to find the list of pages that match the query.
Site Map – A page consisting of spider friendly links to the rest of your web domain.
Spam – Unsolicited illegal email usually containing a sales pitch or a fraudulent scheme. Also known as spamdexing.
Spider – Also known as crawler. The part of a search engine that locates and indexes every page on the web that is a possible answer to a searcher’s query.
Static Page – A web page whose HTML is stored in a file for display by a Web server. Static pages typically do not change based on the visitor.
Style Guide – The rules governing the look and feel of the web site. Includes page layouts, color schemes, information architecture and many other areas.
Title Tag – An element of an HTML document that stores the main heading of the entire page, which will be used on the title bar or bookmarks for its page. Search Engines pay more attention to the content of the title tag than any other tag on the page.
Uniform Resource Locator (URL) – The address of a Web page that a visitor can enter into a browser to display that page.
Web Conversion (Visitor Conversion) – Any measurable, successful outcome of a web visit.
XML – eXtensible Markup Language, a standard for a markup language, similar to HTML, that allows tags to be defined to describe any kind of data you have.