Sure you probably don't know what the Google Death Penalty is, but neither
did we at one point in time. Below is a glossary of terms (jargon, really) seen in the
Search Engine Marketing industry. Skim through and impress your friends when
they ask about Doorway Pages.
|200 Status OK|
A message that is displayed on a browser when a file or page is located properly. Although rare, it is possible to see this message even when a file does not exist. The correct response should instead be a 404 error
A website status code that informs a search engine robot that a page has permanently moved. 301 redirects may be set within certain page types, via a .htaccess file, or even by the web server application itself. A 301 redirect on a page passes along to the new page at least some of the benefits of links to the old page.
A website status code that informs a search engine robot that a page has temporarily moved. 302 redirects may be set via various methods depending upon one's web server platform.
|403 Error Message|
Prevents user access to a particular URL and states the reason why that access has been denied. Usually because the user does not have the authority to view the content. Also known as a "forbidden" message.
A HTTP error returned by a web server to a browser when the requested web page is not available.
A process which shows the user one web page (A) to compare with another page (B) for the purposes of tracking behavior based on which version the user has seen. Traditionally, the A page is the landing page that is currently in use and the B page is an entirely new page.
The creator of SEO Book. Aaron is also well known and respected for having stood up to a lawsuit from Traffic Power. SEO Book recently became a membership site.
|Above The Fold|
A search engine ranking is said to be above the fold if it is on the first page, and can be seen without scrolling. While screen resolutions of course vary, the fold is generally considered to be between the fifth and sixth place.
Traffic is much higher for listings that are above the fold. Traditionally, this term has been used to describe the top half of a newspaper.
A link which displays the entire URL of the page being linked to. Most links will only display relative link paths instead of displaying the entire URL.
A particular approach to designing a website, taking different browsers and search engines into account. This process helps ensure that all users can view the same web content on a website.
A lead or sale generated by a website.
Software that prevents a browser from displaying online advertisements. Ad blockers can unfortunately block other content that are not advertisements.
A common term used to describe the percentage of people or subjects who can recall or remember seeing an ad. Recall can be affected in several ways including the effectiveness (or lack of effectiveness of the ad) or the individual subject's memory or ability to recall.
The given amount of space on a web page for an advertisement. This ad can be in the form of text or an image.
The text returned for a particular keyword search in paid search advertising.
A service where advertisements are purchased centrally through one company and displayed on multiple affiliate websites. Revenue generated by advertisements served are then shared by both parties.
A form of malware specifically designed to deliver contextual advertising based upon the users surfing habits. Some types of adware are spyware, or privacy-invasion software.
The joking term used by many to describe the extremely short advertising copy used in Google AdWords.
An individual or organization that drives visitors to a website, and receives a bounty for certain actions the visitors perform. It is a method of online marketing.
The management of affiliates to maximize their effectiveness.
The promotion of one's website through affiliates.
|Agent Name Delivery|
A primitive form of cloaking where different page content is delivered based upon the agent name requesting the page. This is an excellent way to receive the Google death penalty.
an aggregator, also known as a feed aggregator, feed reader or news reader, is client software or a Web application which collects syndicated web content such as news headlines, blogs, and in one location for easy viewing.
An aggregator can be web-based, desktop-based, or on any Internet-connected device.
XML. AJAX is a web development technique that increases usability and speed. It allows specific sections of web page content to update without reloading an entire page. Use of it has led to an increase in interactive animation on web pages.
A service from Amazon.com that ostensibly measures a website's traffic levels. As the only data input for this service is from the tiny percentage of people who have the Alexa toolbar installed, the information is of questionable utility, at best. Good Alexa rankings are inanely easy to fake, but it should be pointed out that you "can't fake bad Alexa rankings".
A specific set of rules or standards that a search engine uses in order to rank listings in response to a query. Search engines typically protect their algorithms since they are unique formulas that are used to determine relevancy in search engine results.
A search engine launched in mid-1999. AllTheWeb gained some prominence by offering a significantly fresher index than its competitors. In February 2003, AllTheWeb was purchased by Overture, and later became part of Yahoo.
A modifier for the IMG tag (which causes images to be shown). It's primary purpose is to provide usability assistance to the visually impaired, but it has real uses in search engine optimization.
An improper term often used to refer to the ALT attribute.
The text placed in an ALT attribute.
One of the early search engines, AltaVista was started by Digital Equipment Coproration in December 1995. In February 2003, AltaVista was purchased by Overture, and later became part of Yahoo.
The words one clicks on within a text-based link. The anchor text of a link impacts the relevancy of the page to which it links. Too similar anchor text could be a sign of manipulation and could be filtered or discounted.
Formerly known as America Online, LLC, this popular web portal merged with Time Warner. AOL subscribers pay a monthly fee to receive and use many features, including email, instant messaging and multimedia news alerts, on AOL's online software suite.
An open-source web server and is considered one of the most popular web servers presently.
Acronym for Application Programming Interface. The API outlines what a software program does. Specifically, the API includes the functions and procedures the program can execute.
Advertisers can create this program in order to manage their search engine marketing campaigns and bypassing search engines' interfaces.
A search engine.
Commonly referred to as Ask.
It is a business division of IAC Search & Media, and was founded in 1996 by Garrett Gruener and David Warthen in Berkeley, California.
Ask.com was originally known as Ask Jeeves, where "Jeeves" is the name of the "gentleman's personal gentleman", or butler, fetching answers to any question asked.
In fall of 2008, Ask.com underwent several changes and became the "new" Ask.com, providing faster, more relevant search results.
A major Google dance that occurred on or around January 23, 2004. Austin appears to have been an enhancement of the Florida update, and seems to have targeted a number of spam techniques, rendering such techniques at best useless.
The ability of a web page or a domain to rank well in search engines. Generally, there are five aspects of authority that contribute to the rankings which include the site age, link equity, trends in web traffic, site history, and the quality of the site's content.
|Automated Bid Management|
A software program that automatically limits ad spend on paid search campaigns. More advanced bid management tools can be integrated with other aspects of a paid search campaign including web analytics.
A shortened version of the term Google BackLinks. Sometimes used to refer to any link coming into a page.
The major search engine in China that provides over 740 million webpages, and is the first Chinese company to be included in the NASDAQ-100 index.
Also considered delisting. In a response to being spammed, a search engine will impose this penalty on a website. It can be an IP address or a specific URL.
An advertisement that appears in the form of a graphic image on a web page. Banner ads usually conform to standard sizes on a web page and can be animated.
Symbiotic advertising relationship involving businesses that promote one another's websites on an exchange rather than a paid basis.
Also known as link exchange.
The founder and editor of Search Engine Roundtable.
A term used to describe the technique that online publishers use to increase a campaign's effectiveness. Information on a user's search patterns and web-browsing behavior is collected. This data can be used alone or coupled with other forms of targeting such as demographics.
|Below The Fold|
A search engine ranking is said to be below the fold if it is on the first page, but cannot be seen without scrolling. While screen resolutions of course vary, the fold is generally considered to be between the fifth and sixth place.
Traffic is much higher for listings that are above the fold.
The amount an advertiser is willing to pay in paid search advertising.
A technique used in paid search advertising with fixed bids. Bid jamming allows an advertiser to pay less than his competition for similar ad positions while holding the competitor's costs high. An advertiser "jams" his competitor by bidding one cent less than them, thus forcing them to pay their entire bid price for each bid while the advertiser pays one cent more than the bid immediately below his. If the next bid is much lower, his competition can be spending substantially more for the higher ad position.
The highest amount one can profitably bid for a particular keyword in paid search advertising. Calculated using conversion rate and the value per transaction.
A major update to the Google system rolled out in the first half of 2006. While Big Daddy may have included some small algorithm changes, the greatest impact was on the way Google indexes sites.
A controversial and difficult to define concept in search engine optimization that ascertains that certain techniques are actually unethical. Black hat includes techniques such as cloaking, doorway pages, and invisible text. While such techniques are contrary to search engine guidelines, are certainly risky, and may cause one to receive the Google Death Penalty, it does not become a moral issue unless a company is not appraised of the risks of such techniques.
At the extreme, some consider black hat to be anything other than basic content creation.
The opposite of black hat is white hat.
Short for web log, a blog is a site (or a subsection of a site) that allows individual to publish musings and opinions on particular topics. Generally, readers can comment on the published posts.
Properly implemented and maintained, blogs are useful both for generating traffic and build links to a site for SEO purposes, but are subject to attacks such as blog comment spam.
|Blog Comment Spam|
A type of spam that consists of comment postings made to blogs for the sole purpose of acquiring a link to the spammers site. Such comments rarely have any real content and are automatically detected and blocked by many blogs.
Google's NoFollow was created at least partly as a way to curtail blog comment spam. In this goal, NoFollow has largely failed.
A blogging platform that is owned by Google that allows users to create and update blogs. Blogger.com is a free service. Users can publish on the Blogspot.com domain or FTP content to another domain.
Though Blogger is user-friendly, it lacks features that other blogging platforms have.
The all encompassing world of blogs, bloggers and blog postings. The blogosphere is a rapidly growing and evolving aspect of the Internet.
A linked list of blogs that are recommended by the blogger. They appear on a blog site, usually in the sidebar.
A search engine for forums and message boards that allows correspondences with multiple boards simultaneously.
The line or lines of text below the title field in a paid search advertisement. In Yahoo, there is one body field of up to 190 characters, although at most times only the first 70 characters are shown. In Google, there are two body fields of 35 characters each.
The list of websites that a user has selected to be saved in order to return to the site at a later date. In Internet Explorer, bookmarks are called "favorites"
The ability to combine words and phrases with AND, OR, NOT and NEAR in order to define or narrow search results. Most search engines use the Boolean Search method automatically, but it is a good practice for searchers to use this method.
The creator and publisher of Search Marketing Standard.
Alternative name for a robot.
The percentage or amount of users that visit a website and do not view any other pages within that site before exiting the site.
The fee an affiliate receives for driving traffic that performs certain actions. Generally, this could include clicks, leads and/or sales.
A major Google dance that occurred on or around June 1, 2005. It appears Bourbon implemented either a filter or a penalty of over-optimization, especially in the area of gaining links "too fast". Many legitimate content sites, however, were adversely affected by Bourbon.
Creative messaging or imaging of a company that is consistent across all media channels, including search.
A major Google dance that occurred on or around February 15, 2004. Brandy seems to have returned some factors to the way they were before the Florida update. Some also believe that the importance of PageRank was decreased while the importance of anchor text increased.
A website interface methodology generally used with large, hierarchical websites such as directories
and e-tailers. Each page has links to its parent page, generally placed right before the page's actual
Bread crumbs are a cruicial design element for sights that are going to perform well in
search engine optimization. For instance, suppose someone
searches on the term "Microsoft Office". The resulting page is for Microsoft Office for Windows, and
includes a bread crumb structured like this:
Microsoft | Microsoft Office | Microsoft Office for Windows
If the website visitor actually needs Microsoft Office for Macintosh, he can click on the
"Microsoft Office" link within the bread crumb, then should be able to click on a link to take him
to the page he actually needs.
Bread crumbs also tend to improve a site's internal linking structure and its ability to be effectively
indexed by the search engines.
The creator of Webmaster World and PubCon.
Web pages that serve to link several doorway or gateway pages together on a website.
In Google AdWords, broad match means that an advertiser's ad will show when the ad's keywords are search in any order. It also means the ad may show for expanded matches such as synonyms and plurals.
Broad match traffic is generally less targeted than exact match or phrase match traffic.
A derogatory term for websites that are simply direct conversions of print brochure materials. Such sites are inherantly non-transactional and are rarely effective.
A hyperlink that is no longer functioning, or linking to the correct, intended web page. Links can become broken for several reasons, including a deletion or relocation of a web page or a website going offline.
A term for grouping related keywords, concepts and user behaviors that are directly associated to a company's product or service. This is considered a "virtual container" that can help in the process of determining keywords for PPC campaigns or other targeted advertisements.
The multi-step path or process that a consumer takes in order to purchase a product or service. This is also known as a sales funnel. The funnel can start with completing a lead form or accepting a sales offer and end at a finished contract or a deal transaction.
A copy of a web page that is stored by a search engine and used to index the page in search results. There are some search engines that provide links to cached versions of web pages for users to view in the search results.
|Call To Action|
Advertising intended to convince users to perform a particular action.
A US law regulating commercial email (e.g. email marketing). The acronym stands for Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing Act of 2003.
An abbreviation of "Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart". A CAPTCHA system contains a graphical representation of several letters and a field in which those letters must be entered. The intention is to prevent access to automated systems.
|Cascading Style Sheet|
A website language that enables website designers to attach style (fonts, spacing and aural cues) to structure that include HTML and XML applications.
Can be used in search engine optimization to remove design elements from a page's main file. As a result, the file is smaller, and the content aspect of the file makes up a larger percentage of the whole. Some believe that this will deliver higher rankings, but the evidence of this is suspect at best.
Cascading Style Sheets can also be used to create invisible text, although this is likely to result in the Google Death Penalty.
Often abbreviated as CSS.
|Catch All Listing|
A listing used by PPC search engines for the purposes of monetizing long tail terms that are currently not targeted by marketers. This technique is not ideal because most major search engines have editorial regulations that prevent bulk untargeted advertising. They are pre-qualified clicks.
A term that advertising and graphic design firms use to refer to landing pages.
A program or robot used to click on paid links or listings within a search engine. This process artificially and fraudulently boosts click amounts.
Clicks on paid search advertising that are not made by actual searchers, but by others with an incentive to cost and advertiser money. Click fraud can come from competitors trying to drive up an advertisers media spend or from website owners attempting to drive up their Google AdSense revenue.
The act of users clicking on a hypertext link and is then taken to the destination of that link. Usually the destination is the advertiser's web page.
|Click Through Rate|
The number of website visitors to a website divided by the number of potential visitors, expressed as a percentage. Generally calculated in connection to a particular advertisement or keyword. For instance, if 10,352 people view an advertisement, and 268 click on it, the click through rate is 2.59%.
Often abbreviated as CTR.
A program or application that makes information requests to other computers, processes, or programs. The client communicates through networks.
The highly risky search engine optimization technique of serving different content to website visitors and to search engine robots. The belief is that the text being served to the robots can be optimized for search engines, and the text served to actual visitors be optimized for website transactions. This is one of the more common causes of the Google Death Penalty.
Cloud Computing is an alternative method of storing data and programs that focuses on online storage. Originally, software, data, and other information that a user needed to access was stored on a computerâ€™s hard drive. For example, your word documents are saved on your computer as is the Microsoft Word software program.
The cloud is a metaphor for the internet as a location to store information, instead of the computerâ€™s hard drive. The concept behind cloud computing is that documents and software, even operating systems can be stored online.
Google Docs is a good example of cloud computing. With Google Docs, if a user wanted to edit a document, they would open it up from an online location and edit it without ever having to download anything.
This means computers will need less memory space because the computer will function as a portal to the information in the internet â€ścloudâ€ť but wonâ€™t actually store it.
A HTML tag that is hidden from users (unless they look at a page's source code). In theory, search engines could read a page's comment tag and use it in its relevancy calculation, but it is not believed that any of the major search engines currently do so.
|Comparison Shopping Engine|
An alternative name for a price comparison engine.
In SEO, it is the analysis or assessment of a site's attributes as compared to their competitors. This also identifies site traffic patterns, major traffic sources or referrers. Can also be useful in identifying relevant keywords.
Paid search advertising that is served via third-party website, rather than through a search engine. The two largest content advertising offerings are Google AdSense and Yahoo Content Match.
|Content Network |
Group of websites that a search engine has partnerships with to display paid search ads. Examples include the Google content network and Yahoo! contextual search.
These paid search ads are displayed based on the content of each specific site.
This is also referred to as a Contextual Network.
Ad allocation process that displays keyword triggered ads related to the subject or content of the website a user is viewing.
Delivering customized advertising to a user based upon his/her behavior or preferences. Paid Search advertising is a form of contextual advertising.
Contextual advertising also describes the class of advertising delivered by malware applications.
The desired actions that advertisers want users to make once they arrive on a landing page or website. This can include making a purchase, completing a lead form, commenting on a blog posting, or signing up for a company newsletter. Also can include signing up for offers or requesting more information about the company's product or service.
The number of website transactions (generally either sales or leads) divided by the number of website visitors, expressed as a percentage. Often calculated for particular advertisements or keywords. Conversion rate is a critial piece of determining bid limits.
Also referred to as HTTP cookie, Web cookie, or tracking cookie.
A message sent to a Web client (usually a browser) by a server. The Web client will store this message as a text file. This message is sent back (unchanged) to the server by the Web client each time it requests a page from that server.
Cookies are used for authenticating, session tracking, and for identifying users and maintaining site preferences or preparing customized Web pages for them.
The name "cookie" is derived from UNIX objects called "magic cookies."
Ownership/protection of works or expressions including words, images, art, sound and music. The copyright allows the owner to display, copy or license their work. They also cover almost any original expression.
|Cost Per Acquisition|
The cost of a marketing method divided by the number of customers it generated.
Often abbreviated as CPA.
|Cost Per Action|
The cost of a marketing method divided by the number of actions it generated.
Often abbreviated as CPA.
|Cost Per Click|
The amount paid per time a user clicks on your ad in a Pay Per Click campaign.
Often abbreviated as CPC.
|Cost Per Impression|
The cost of an impression of an advertisement. The cost of one thousand impressions are often grouped together to give a cost per thousand.
Usually abbreviated at CPM.
|Cost Per Lead|
The number of leads generated by a marketing method, divided by the number of visitors, expressed as a percentage.
Often abbreviated as CPL.
|Cost Per Sale|
The number of sales generated by a marketing method, divided by the number of visitors, expressed as a percentage.
Often abbreviated as CPS.
|Cost Per Thousand|
The cost for one thousand impressions of an advertisement. Cost Per Thousand is a standard unit in the purchase of impression-based advertising.
Often abbreviated as CPM.
An abbreviation for either Cost Per Acquisition or Cost Per Action.
An abbreviation for Cost Per Click.
An abbreviation for Cost Per Lead.
An abbreviation for Cost Per Thousand.
An abbreviation for Cost Per Sale.
Alternative name for a web crawler.
An abbreviation for Cascading Style Sheet.
An abbreviation for Click Through Rate.
A search engine launched in 2008 by founders Anna Patterson and Tom Costello. Cuil (pronounced cool) boasts having the world's largest search index and only analyzes web pages, not clickthroughs.
The act of registering several domains related to other trademarks or brands to profit from said particular brand or trademark.
The podcast of Danny Sullivan. As of summer 2007, it runs daily Monday through Friday and lasts approximately thirty to forty-five minutes.
The original analyst in the search engine space. He founded and previously ran Search Engine Watch, and is the creator of and currently runs Search Engine Land and Sphinn.
A UK-based SEO and regular co-host on Daily SearchCast.
The ability to schedule an ad display for different times of the day, or different days of the week, in order to target a more specific audience. It is also an option that will limit the visibility of the ad based on time/date.
A link that points to a page that cannot be found, either because the page no longer exists, the page has moved and a 301 redirect was not put in place, or because the page's web server is down.
The concept in search engine optimization of linking to pages other than the site's homepage (e.g. pages "deep" in the site).
A popular social bookmarking website that allows users to tag, link, and share web pages from a centralized source.
Update: now found at Delicious.com
The removal of a website from a search engine's index, whether due to the behavior of those promoting the website or from a bug within the search engine. Also considered a Ban.
The information contained in a META tag and holds a short description of the web page that it is located on. The information in the tag is usually the sentence that is displayed directly after the main link on search engine results pages.
In paid search advertising on Google, the destination URL is actual page users see when they click through an advertiser's ad. This allows the display URL to reference the homepage while the ad directs users to a specific page.
A popular social news website in which users can vote on which stories receive the most exposure. News stories, images, and videos can be submitted by users. There is also a discussion board where users can discuss the latest and most popular submissions.
The process of creating content for the purposes of getting more web traffic from Digg.com.
|Digital Point Forums|
One of the largest and most active search engine marketing forums.
Digital Point Forums can be found at
A technology that stores credit cards and addresses for a consumer, and automatically gives the appropriate information to an online merchant when checking out. Several companies worked on digital wallets in the late 90's, but found a catch 22. Such technologies will not work reliably without assistance from the merchants. The merchants, however, have no incentive to help until/unless there is a large base of consumers using the technology. And consumers certainly aren't going to use the technology unless most merchants are compatible.
As a result, digital wallets all but died out during the first half of the 00 decade.
The announcement of Google Checkout has reinvigorated the idea, and perhaps given it the first real chance of success.
A website that links to other website via a system of contextual, and generally hierarchical, pages. Listings in directories may be either free or for a fee, and sometimes require a reciprocal link.
In paid search advertising on Google, the display URL is the text located under the body field. It is supposed to represent the URL of the advertisement, but can actually be customized as desired.
A network of websites or search engines and their partner sites on which paid ads can be distributed. The network receives advertisements from the host search engine.
A nickname for the Open Directory Project. DMOZ is short for Directory Mozilla.
A specific website address. For example, the domain name for the Apogee Search website is apogee-search.com. A domain name can be thought of as the location of the Web site on the internet.
Domain Squatting is a process in which users purchase cheap brand- or product-related domains for the purpose of selling at a higher price in the future. Their target tends to be larger businesses who would be willing to spend money on owning their corporate, brand, or product name.
This is similar to Twitter Squatting in that there is little risk but the possibility of high profit.
The technique of purchasing large numbers of sites in order to generate material traffic from randomly or accidentally entered domain names by users. This traffic is generally monetized through Google AdSense.
The highly risky search engine optimization technique of creating hundreds or even thousands of virtually identical pages that are optimized for specific keyword variants. In many cases, these pages will automatically redirect a visitor to another page on the site that is more likely to result in a website conversion. This is one of the more common causes of the Google Death Penalty.
Also known as gateway pages, and sometimes confused with landing pages.
An open-source community management system, built around the use of news feeds and user-based code, that is becoming one of the most popular tools for creating community and social networking sites.
Drupal allows an individual or a community of users to easily publish, manage and organize a wide variety of content on a website.
Pages of content, within the same website or across different domains, that are identical. While search engines do not typically penalize for duplicate content issues, they prefer to offer their users unique content. Therefore, search engines will likely choose one of the pages containing duplicate content and rank only that page; effectively â€śfiltering outâ€ť the other pages from the search engineâ€™s index. There are certainly exceptions to this, namely when Press Releases are submitted across different wires. Content translated into different languages is typically viewed as unique content.
Web pages generated on demand by databases or similar technology. In the past, dynamic HTML caused serious problems in indexing by the search engines. Currently, however, none of the major search engines have problems with dynamic HTML as long as the URL is not too long or containing too many variables.
The opposite of dynamic html is static HTML.
|Dynamic Keyword Insertion|
The process which allows advertisers to insert a keyword automatically into their paid search ad. Google Adwords can automatically insert the word in the advertisers' keyword list that was matched to and not the actual search term.
|Dynamic Landing Pages|
Web pages in which users click-through to a changeable page with content that reflects their keyword search.
The action of conducting commercial transactions online, typically through an online store, where information, goods, and/or services are being sold. Amazon.com is an example.
Arguably the very first search engine, although it was really more of a web directory. Created in 1994 as part of the MCC Research Consortium at the University of Texas.
The practice of contacting prospective or actual customers via email. While sending unsolicited bulk email (e.g. email spam) is contemptible, email marketing can be a very effective method of working with prior customers to retain mindshare.
Similar to the traditional print newsletter, an email newsletter is sent electronically, usually to subscribers or members on a particular email list. Email newsletters can be sent weekly, monthly, bi-monthly, quarterly, or annually.
A set of mathematical algorithms that are used to encode data in order to protect it from unauthorized users. This is a security measure.
Any page within a website that a user uses to enter that website. Can also be considered a Landing Page.
Google's CEO and Chairman of the Board. Dr. Schmidt was previously at Novell, Sun Microsystems and Xerox PARC.
A web page that contains an error message to the visitor. Common error messages include 404 Error.
In Google AdWords, exact match means that the search query must exactly match the advertiser's keyword in order for the advertisement to show.
Exact match traffic is generally more targeted than either broad match or phrase match traffic.
The last page that a visitor views before leaving a website. The opposite of an entry page.
|eXtensible Markup Language|
A flexible way to create common information formats and share both the format and the data on the Web, intranets, and elsewhere.
The act of building properly structured links from third party sites for search engine optimization. The opposite of external linking is internal linking. All else equal, external links are more powerful, but internal links are often easier to control.
An example of the power of off page optimization can be found through the Google bomb.
A URL that is outside of a particular website, but refers visitors to that website.
A social media network that was originally available only to K-12 and higher education students. In September 2006, it was made available to anyone with an email address.
The "fail whale" is an illustrated image of small birds lifting a whale from the ocean.
When Twitter crashes, users are directed to an error message that reads, "Too many tweets! Please wait a moment and try again." The fail whale accompanies this message.
The artist of the original fail whale illustration is Yiying Lu, who had posted the image to the stock photo web site, iStockPhoto.com. Many people have formed an affinity for the fail whale, resulting in a multitude of fan dedications such as www.failwhale.com and www.whatisfailwhale.info.
A web document that is a shortened version of a webpage that was created for syndication. Typically, a feed is served by user request through a subscription. This can include ad feeds to shopping engines and/or paid inclusion ad models.
|File Transfer Protocol|
A commonly used method of transferring file(s) from one computer to another. It is also a way to connect to a website in order to upload or download files. Usually, it is used in its abbreviated form: FTP
Website technology from Macromedia (now owned by Adobe). Sites built in Flash can cause significant problems with indexing by search engines as the elements are binary, not text based. While the search engines can be fed text alternatives in order to assist with indexing, it is extremely rare to see a Flash site perform well in the search engines. Flash used in particular spots on a page (as opposed to encompassing the entire page), can perform adequately in the search engines.
An image and video hosting website, web services suite, and online community platform. It is widely used to share or store photos.
A fake blog, generally created to advocate for a particular company, product, or idea.
A major, and notorious, Google dance that occurred on or around November 15, 2003. Florida rolled out several techniques to discover and penalize over-optimization of websites. Many sites lost top search engine rankings that they had held for years, although quite a few such rankings returned over the following weeks and months.
An online discussion group that is typically centered around a specific topic, such as politics, technology, gaming or gossip. Any number of users can participate in discussions.
Website methodology that uses multiple, independent sections to create a single Web page. Each frame is built as a separate HTML file but with one "master' file to identify each section. When a user requests a page with frames, several pages will be displayed as panes.
The usage frames can cause significant problems with indexing by search engines, and should be avoided by those who wish their sites to perform well in the search engines.
Another name commonly used for homepage.
A price comparison engine from Google. Froogle is currently in beta testing and is available for free to advertisers.
An acronym for File Transfer Protocol.
Another name for the highly risky search engine optimization technique known as doorway pages. This is one of the more common causes of the Google Death Penalty.
Sometimes confused with landing pages.
Also seen as "geotagging."
The practice of adding geographic information to various media such as websites, photos, RSS feeds and videos. This data usually consists of latitude and longitude coordinates, though it can also include altitude, bearing, and place names.
Geo-tagging is useful for finding various location-specific information using a geo-tagging enabled search engine, such as images taken at a given location, local news, websites, and more.
The advertising method of determining a physical location (geolocation) of a visitor and subsequently delivering content to that visitor that is related to his/her location. This can be based on a visitor's state, county, region, zip code, IP Address, or other information.
The most popular search engine on the web.
Google began in January 1996, as a research project by Larry Page, who was soon joined by Sergey Brin, two Ph.D. students at Stanford University in California. The domain google.com was registered on September 15, 1997. The company was incorporated as Google Inc. on September 4, 1998 at a friend's garage in Menlo Park, California.
Today, Google attracts at least 135 million U.S. visitors every month.
Google's system that places paid search advertising on third-party websites. AdSense traffic is much cheaper than that from the regular search offering, but it tends to be much lower quality. Many believe that most click fraud occurs through AdSense.
Paid search advertising offered by Google. Advertisers can use a pay-per-click or pay-per-impression pricing structure. Advertisers create ads, and display them in search results and in the Google content network. Advertisers choose keywords and Google displays the ads when those keywords are searched for. Advertisers participate in a bidding system to determine which ads will be displayed most prominently.
Google's rebranding of the web analytics tool Urchin, which Google purchased in March 2005.
Google Analytics is currently a free service that generates detailed statistics about the visitors to a website. Its main highlight is that the product is aimed at marketers as opposed to webmasters and technologists from which the industry of web analytics originally grew.
Google Analytics' approach is to show high level dashboard-type data for the casual user, and more in-depth data further into the report set. The tool allows the user to pinpoint pages that are not performing through funner visualization, referrers, and custom visitor segmentation.
Initially, this number indicated links to an individual page that Google considered particularly valuable, as shown by the link: command. Currently, it represents a subset of the total links coming to a site. It is not believed that the number of BackLinks that Google currently shows reflects the actual number that it uses in its relevancy calculations.
A Google bomb (or Googlebomb) is an attempt to influence the ranking of a given site in results returned by the Google search engine through the use of external linking. The most famous (or infamous) Google bomb is miserable failure.
Update: In late January 2007, Google took steps to remove Google bombs from its index.
Or Googlebot, uses several user-agents to crawl and index content in Google.com. The term Googlebot describes all Google spiders. All Google bots begin with "Googlebot"; for instance, Googlebot-Image:crawls pages for Google's image index.
A term for attempts to damage a competitor's website. It is based on the belief that Google will penalize a website that has gained links too quickly. By this theory, if one finds a way to point a large number of low quality links to a competitor's site, Google will consider the site as engaging in SEO spam and will lower the site's rankings.
While a number of individuals have stated they have seen proof of the effects of Google Bowling, no one has published any actual proof (other than "proof by assertion"). Even those who do believe in Google Bowling believe it works in very specific situations.
Google has stated that there is no way for a person to affect the rating of a competitor's website, although there are some indications that they have softened this stance. At worst, Google bowling is likely to affect only brand new sites with little to no previously existing links.
A newly annouced service that provides digital wallet and credit card processing functionality for consumers and online merchants, respectively. The initially annouced processing rates are significantly lower then that which most merchants currently pay.
In addition, merchants who us Google AdWords will receive a $10 processing credit for every $1 they spend in Adwords.
A term dating back to the days that Google would make occasional, substantial changes to its algorithm. During such changes, one's search engine rankings would generally dance all over the place. Google Dances were often named after locations, with the most infamous one being the Florida update.
Google Dances were initially named after locations, but for the last couple of years have been named after liquors.
Recently, Google seems to make continual small changes to its algorithm, with major changes being made rarely, such as the release of Big Daddy.
|Google Death Penalty|
The complete, and potentially permanent, removal of a website from the Google index. This can happen for any of a number of techniques that run afoul of Google's guidelines, but the most common activities to cause a Google death penalty are cloaking, invisible text, and doorway pages.
Most famously, the German website of BMW was removed from the Google index for the usage of doorway pages with redirects. Unlike most websites, they were able to be reinstated into the Google index after only one week.
The website directory offered by Google. Google Directory is powered by the Open Directory Project.
Google Docs is a suite of software applications that allow users to create, edit and share documents, spreadsheets and slideshow presentations. The documents are stored online on a server hosted by Google and are accessible via any internet connection. Users can access their documents by logging into their Google account.
Google's web crawler.
Google Grants is free AdWords advertising provided by Google through grants.
Google awards these grants to non-profit organizations that it chooses. These organizations are given funds to bid for keywords in the AdWords system. Google Grant recipients can bid up to $1 a keyword with the grant money.
This lets non-profits use the paid search functions within the Google search engine to have their ads displayed when users search for relevant keywords.
A term popularized by (and possibly created by) Andy Greenberg of Forbes. Google Hell refers to the state of having most or all of one's pages trapped in the Supplemental Index.
|Google Hot Trends|
An addition to Google Trends.
Hot Trends displays the top 100 hot searches of the past hour. It provides 24-hour search volume graph as well as blog, news and web search results.
Topics often include current news, events and pop culture references. Hot Trends also has a history feature for those wishing to browse past hot searches.
A term popularized by (and some claim created by) Leslie Walker of The Washington Post. Google juice refers to one's search engine rankings within Google.
The benefit provided to one's search engine rankings from links, particularly within Google.
|Google Local 10 Pack|
A group of ten local search results, including a map, returned as part of Google's universal search. The 10 pack is returned in results with or without a geo-term ("bakery austin" versus just "bakery," for example), depending on the non-geo term in the search query.
|Google Personalized Search|
A new feature introduced by Google in 2008 that provides search results to users based on a number of factors including, but not limited to, geographic location and user search history.
An addition to Google's user interface that gives a user more control.
It allows one to edit and personalize search results. Users can reorder, delete, add, or annotate search results for any query. When logged in to Google, it saves the changes enabling repeat searches to be customized.
Google emphasizes that SearchWiki will not impact page ranking at this time.
|Google Site Targeted|
An offering from Google where advertisements are places on particular website, rather than against individual keywords as with Google AdSense. Site Targeted ads can be purchased on either a CPC or a CPM basis.
Apogee Search has published information on running a successful
Google Site Targeted campaign.
A new, XML-based system from Google that allows one to automatically submit a list of pages for later crawling by Googlebot. It does not have any effect on the ranking of pages and/or keyphrases, beyond simply ensuring that a page is in the index.
Please be aware that if a page has indexing problems (from an extraordinarily long URL, for instance), Google Sitemaps will not force the page into the Google index.
A term referencing the feeling given to many when Google released its Quality Scoring system in the summer of 2006. Many advertisers saw such an increase in advertising costs that it felt like a slap in the face.
A downloadable toolbar extension for Internet Explorer and FireFox that allows a user to do a Google search without visiting the Google website. The Google toolbar is also one of the better methods of determining a page's PageRank and viewing a page's indexing.
|Google Universal Search|
Universal search is a system used by Google that blends a variety of different types of media into search results, not just text links to websites.
Among listings Google gathers from crawling web pages, Universal search results also include listings from Google's various search engines, such as news, video, images, local and book searches.
This is now the primary display method that Google uses for its search results pages.
|Google Webmaster Central|
A system of tool and reports created by Google to assist in the management of a websites presence within Google's index. Originally founded by Vanessa Fox.
|Google Website Optimizer|
Google Website Optimizer (GWO) is a testing tool that performs A/B and Multivariate testing on websites, landing pages and other web properties to help online advertisers increase their conversion rates and achieve optimal performance. The results from these tests can determine the most effective combination of content and landing page design.
The headquarters of Google in Mountain View, California.
The very first paid search engine, and the creator of the pay per click advertising model. Won a landmark trademark case against Disney's Go.com.
Later changed its name to Overture.
An acronym for Graphical User Interface which is the visual representation of the functional code. Visual icons are used to interact with the computer rather than test. It provides the user an opportunity to interface with a database, program, etc.
Short for "HTML vCard", an hCard is a type of microformat used in order to publish contact details. It uses a 1:1 representation of a vCard's properties and values. It also ensures that the markup remains legible and allows for the inclusion of the semantic content within the markup.
Search terms or keywords that are short and popular. These terms received the name "head terms" because it was based on a bell-curve distribution of user generated keyword usage. The usage displayed the most popular or most-used words at the "head" end of a bell-curve graph.
The opposite of a head term is a long tail term, named for the long end of the bell curve. These terms are searched by fewere people and are thought to be used by specific niche marketing segment.
Elements used to define headings and subheadings on a webpage. Web crawlers regard headers with the lowest number as most important, so H1 tags are of given greater value than H3 tags. Using key phrases in H tags is necessary for effective SEO.
Website copy that is purposefully formatted so that it cannot be seen by users, but can be read by robots. The intention is to increase a page's keyword density without making the page less attractive to users.
Most hidden text techniques are very easy for search engines to detect, and can result the Google death penalty.
An algorithm that provides contextual analysis to be tied to search engines. Hilltop was originally devised by Google engineer Krishna Bharat when he was at the University of Toronto. Hilltop is used to drive the Google AdSense system, and some believe it is used in Google's natural search relevancy calculations.
A homepage is the first page of the website. The function of the homepage is to welcome visitors and direct them to other pages on the site.
The homepage typically collects the majority of PageRank Score since its URL is where most other sites will link to.
Other names for the homepage include main page and front page.
An abbreviation for HyperText Markup Language.
An acronym for Hypertext Transfer Protocol. This is a set of rules that govern how files are transferred via the internet, particularly when displayed on web pages.
|HTTP Referrer Data|
Allows webmasters and PPC advertisers to discover new audiences or sites to target. Also, enables them to calculate conversions and ROI for future ad campaigns.
Included in most web analytics packages.
Stands for "Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure."
A link from one web page to another, and a great opportunity to improve one's search engine rankings.
Later changed its name to Overture.
|HyperText Markup Language|
The basic software language of the World Wide Web, HyperText Markup Language defines and places the elements of a web page. Originally based upon SGML, HyperText Markup Language was created by Tim Berners-Lee as the Organisation EuropĂ©enne pour la Recherche NuclĂ©aire (commonly known as CERN), a particle physics laboratory on the border of France and Switzerland.
Usually abbreviated as HTML.
One view of an Internet ad. Generally, ad reports will display how many impressions or views a particular ad received. This data releaves how many times a search engine served the ad when users entered in specific search keywords. It will also record how many times a user has viewed the content on a webpage containing those specific keywords.
A link coming into a site from another site. The opposite of an inbound link is an outbound link.
How well a search engine can crawl or index a website. Search engines must be able to index a site in order to included it in search results. If a site is not "indexable", or if a site has experienced a reduction in indexability, it becomes extremely difficult for getting its URLs to be included in search results.
A shortened form of the term search engine indexing.
The first provider of a pay per call advertising system.
A search engine technology firm acquired by Yahoo. Inktomi technology now drives the natural search listings within Yahoo Search Marketing.
The act of building properly structured links from within one's own site for search engine optimization. The opposite of internal linking is external linking. All else equal, external links are more powerful, but internal links are often easier to control.
The highly risky search engine optimization technique of making text on a page invisible either through color changes within HTML, the placement of graphics, or adjustments to one's cascading style sheet. This is one of the more common causes of the Google Death Penalty.
The term that describes the amount of information on the web that is not indexed by search engines. Another term to describe this is "Deep Web".
The Deep Web is not a part of the surface web, and it is speculated that the invisible web is substantially larger than the surface web.
A specific Internet Protocol number for computers on the Internet. IP addresses are generally unique for an individual computer, computers behind a firewall may share an IP address for the purposes of machines outside the internet.
|IP Address Lookup|
The process of determining an IP Address.
The act of hiding a computer's actual IP address and reporting another address to other computers being accessed. This is generally done to hide the source of nefarious activities.
A major Google dance that occurred on or around November 5, 2005. Some believe that Jagger implemented a penalty or filter for site wide links. There are also indications that the weighting of authority sites was increased.