Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Glossary

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.

# - A - B - C - D - E - F - G - H - I - J - K - L - M - N - O
P - Q - R - S - T - U - V - W - X - Y - Z - Show All


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
301 Redirect
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.
302 Redirect
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.
404 Error
A HTTP error returned by a web server to a browser when the requested web page is not available.
A/B Testing
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.
- return to top -
Aaron Wall
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.
Absolute Link
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.
Ad Blocker
Software that prevents a browser from displaying online advertisements. Ad blockers can unfortunately block other content that are not advertisements.
- return to top -
Ad Recall
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.
Ad Space
The given amount of space on a web page for an advertisement. This ad can be in the form of text or an image.
Advertising Copy
The text returned for a particular keyword search in paid search advertising.
Advertising Network
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.
Adwords Haiku
The joking term used by many to describe the extremely short advertising copy used in Google AdWords.
- return to top -
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.
Affiliate Management
The management of affiliates to maximize their effectiveness.
Affiliate Marketing
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.
Shorthand for Asynchronous JavaScript and 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.
- return to top -
A service from 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.
ALT Attribute
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.
ALT Text
The text placed in an ALT attribute.
- return to top -
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.
Anchor Text
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. 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, underwent several changes and became the "new", providing faster, more relevant search results.
- return to top -
Austin Update
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.
- return to top -
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.
Banner Exchange
Symbiotic advertising relationship involving businesses that promote one another's websites on an exchange rather than a paid basis. Also known as link exchange.
Barry Schwartz
The founder and editor of Search Engine Roundtable.
Behavioral Targeting
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.
- return to top -
Bid Jamming
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.
Bid Limits
The highest amount one can profitably bid for a particular keyword in paid search advertising. Calculated using conversion rate and the value per transaction.
Big Daddy
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.
Black Hat
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.
- return to top -
A blogging platform that is owned by Google that allows users to create and update blogs. is a free service. Users can publish on the 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.
Body Field
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"
- return to top -
Boolean Search
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.
Boris Mordkovich
The creator and publisher of Search Marketing Standard.
Alternative name for a robot.
Bounce Rate
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.
Bourbon Update
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.
- return to top -
Brand Messaging
Creative messaging or imaging of a company that is consistent across all media channels, including search.
Brandy Update
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.
Bread Crumbs

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 content.

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.

Brett Tabke
The creator of Webmaster World and PubCon.
Bridge Page
Web pages that serve to link several doorway or gateway pages together on a website.
Broad Match
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.
- return to top -
A derogatory term for websites that are simply direct conversions of print brochure materials. Such sites are inherantly non-transactional and are rarely effective.
Broken Link
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.
Buying Funnel
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.
- return to top -
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.
Catcher Pages
A term that advertising and graphic design firms use to refer to landing pages.
Click Bot
A program or robot used to click on paid links or listings within a search engine. This process artificially and fraudulently boosts click amounts.
- return to top -
Click Fraud
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.
Click Through
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
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 computer’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 computer’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 “cloud” but won’t actually store it.
- return to top -
Comment Tag
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.
Competitive Analysis
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.
Content Advertising
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.
Content Targeting
Ad allocation process that displays keyword triggered ads related to the subject or content of the website a user is viewing.
- return to top -
Contextual Advertising
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.
Conversion Action
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.
Conversion Rate
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.
- return to top -
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.
- return to top -
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.
- return to top -
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.
Daily Searchcast
The podcast of Danny Sullivan. As of summer 2007, it runs daily Monday through Friday and lasts approximately thirty to forty-five minutes.
Danny Sullivan
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.
- return to top -
David Naylor
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.
Dead Link
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.
Deep Linking
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
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.
- return to top -
Description Tag
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.
Destination URL
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.
An acronym for Dynamic Hypertext Markup Language. DHTML is a programing language used to create interactive websites. It combines the properties of several other programing languages including HTML, CSS, and JavaScript.
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
Digital Point Forums

One of the largest and most active search engine marketing forums.

Digital Point Forums can be found at

- return to top -
Digital Wallet
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.
Display URL
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.
Distribution Network
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.
Domain Name
A specific website address. For example, the domain name for the Apogee Search website is A domain name can be thought of as the location of the Web site on the internet.
- return to top -
Domain Squatting
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.
Doorway Pages
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.
Duplicate Content
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 “filtering out” the other pages from the search engine’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.
Dynamic HTML
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.
- return to top -
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. is an example.
EINet Galaxy
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.
Email Marketing
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.
Email Newsletter
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.
- return to top -
A set of mathematical algorithms that are used to encode data in order to protect it from unauthorized users. This is a security measure.
Entry Page
Any page within a website that a user uses to enter that website. Can also be considered a Landing Page.
Eric Schmidt
Google's CEO and Chairman of the Board. Dr. Schmidt was previously at Novell, Sun Microsystems and Xerox PARC.
Error Page
A web page that contains an error message to the visitor. Common error messages include 404 Error.
Exact Match
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.
Exit Page
The last page that a visitor views before leaving a website. The opposite of an entry page.
- return to top -
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.
External Linking
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.
External Referrer
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.
Fail Whale
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, Many people have formed an affinity for the fail whale, resulting in a multitude of fan dedications such as and
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.
- return to top -
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.
Florida Update
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.
- return to top -
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.
Front Page
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.
Gateway Pages
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.
- return to top -
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 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 AdSense
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.
Google AdWords
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 Analytics
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.
Google BackLinks
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.
- return to top -
Google Bomb
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.
Google Bot
Or Googlebot, uses several user-agents to crawl and index content in The term Googlebot describes all Google spiders. All Google bots begin with "Googlebot"; for instance, Googlebot-Image:crawls pages for Google's image index.
Google Bowling
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.
Google Checkout
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.
Google Dance
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.
- return to top -
Google Directory
The website directory offered by Google. Google Directory is powered by the Open Directory Project.
Google Docs
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 GoogleBot
Google's web crawler.
Google Grants
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.
Google Hell
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.
- return to top -
Google Juice
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.
Google Link
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.
Google SearchWiki
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.
- return to top -
Google Sitemaps
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.
Google Slap
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.
Google Toolbar
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.
- return to top -
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

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.
Head Terms
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.
Heading Tags
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.
- return to top -
Hidden Text
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 Cookie
See cookie.
- return to top -
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 Européenne pour la Recherche Nucléaire (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.
Inbound Link
A link coming into a site from another site. The opposite of an inbound link is an outbound link.
- return to top -
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.
Internal Linking
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.
Invisible Text
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.
- return to top -
Invisible Web
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.
IP Address
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.
IP Spoofing
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.
Jagger Update
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.
Jason Calacanis
Creator of Mahalo and outspoken critic of the search engine optimization industry.
- return to top -
A scripting language that can be embedded into the HTML of a web page to add functionality. Links provided in JavaScript cannot generally be crawled by search engines, and can cause major issues with search engine indexing.
Jennifer Slegg
The founder and editor of JenSense and regular contributor to Search Engine Land.
Blog covering contextual advertising systems such as Google AdSense.
Jeremy Zawodny
Jeremy Zawodny is an engineer at Yahoo! Finance and a prominent blogger on search engine marketing issues.
Jerry Yang
Founder of Yahoo and its current CEO.
John Battelle
Prominent online and print journalist who wrote The Search: How Google and its Rivals Rewrote the Rules of Business and Transformed our Culture. John is the co-founder of The Industry Standard and Wired. John also publishes Searchblog.
- return to top -
John Dvorak
American columnist and broadcaster who concentrates on technology and computing industries. Dvorak is also the Vice-President of Mevio (formerly PodShow) and well known for his work for Tech TV.

He is a contributing editor at PC Magazine and has won eight national awards from the Computer Press Association. He also contributes to various publications.

He is well known for voicing his dissenting opinion with respect to SEO and Apple Inc.
An abbreviation for Keyword Effectiveness Index.
Key Performance Indicators
Metrics used to quantify objectives and provide data to assess the performance of online marketing campaigns.
Key Phrase
An alternative term for keyword, although key phrase generally suggests a term that uses multiple words.
The basic unit in search engine marketing. Ads are attached to specific keywords in paid search, and one attempts to achieve rankings for keywords in search engine optimization.
Keyword Density
The ratio of the number of occurrences of a particular keyword or phrase to the total number of words in a page. In theory, each individual search engine has a preferred keyword density, but unfortunately, web pages written to such keyword densities rarely perform well with human beings. Keyword densities are often quoted by those who are overly concerned with on page optimization and who ignore off page optimization through external linking.
- return to top -
Keyword Effectiveness Index
A system that attempts to rank the relative popularity and competitiveness of a keyword. A low number is supposed to indicate that a keyword is overly competitive given its traffic. Keyword Effectiveness Index is limited both by its focus on quantitative over qualitative analysis, and the accuracy of search volume data available to users.

Keyword Effectiveness Index is usually abbreviated as KEI.
Keyword Rankings
Alternative name for search engine rankings.
Keyword Stuffing
The placing of keywords either in links or on pages. When referring to the content of pages, it is often a derogatory term indicating the over usage of such keywords.
Keyword Tag
The META keywords tag within a webpage. This tag can hold up to 8-10 keywords or keyword phrases. These keywords and keyword phrases are separated by commas. These keyword entries are generally misspellings of the main topic page or terms that are related to the content of the page. Keyword tags can be used for either internal searches or picked up by search engines.
Keyword Targeting
A type of contextual advertising where PPC ads are placed on publisher sites that contain keywords in a context advertiser's ad group.
Lag Time
Online, lag time refers to the amount of time a user has to wait between submitting a request and receiving a response. Reducing lag time is a primary goal of web engineers because excessive lags hinder functionality.
- return to top -
Landing Pages
Pages created for specific audiences, on specific topics, intended to be the first page a visitor sees on a site. Landing pages may be used for either paid search advertising or search engine optimization. The content of each landing page must be truly unique, or a site runs the risk of receiving the Google Death Penalty.

Sometimes confused with doorway pages or gateway pages.
Larry Page
Co-founder of Google with Sergey Brin. In 2007, Page was cited by PC World as the #1 most important people on the web.
A lead is created when a website visitor submits correct, contactable information via a webform.
Lead Bait
An item added to a Web site to encourage a site visitor to provide their contact information. The identity of the user and their contact information are the “lead.” This information is used to establish contact for the purpose of generating sales.

The idea of lead baiting is to entice the visitor into exchanging contact information for something valuable, such as a white paper. This ensures that it is a mutually beneficial exchange.

Similar in concept to link bait.
A URL that has been embedded on a webpage. Users can click-through to be taken to another webpage or website.
Link Architecture
The internal linking of a website. This structure is what connects the various pages of a website to each other.

Link architecture includes navigation menus, sitemaps and internal linking via anchor text, among others.

Effective internal linking helps search engines crawl the entirety of your website and helps users easily navigate your website.
- return to top -
Link Bait
An item added to a website to encourage linking from other websites. In many cases, the more controversial the link bait is, the more effective it might be.
Link Building
The process of getting quality websites to link to your sites to improve search engine rankings. Techniques can include buying links, reciprocal linking, or entering barter arrangements.
Link Checker
A web tool used to verify the validity of links. The W3C website can check the links on a page when the page URL is entered.
Link Condom
A nickname for the NoFollow tag.
Link Exchange
Also known as banner exchange.
Link Farm
A website which posts huge numbers of unrelated links on its pages. Such links are at best worthless, and are potentially dangerous, particularly when a reciprocal link is given to the link farm.
- return to top -
Link Juice
Refers to the quality of a website's link power, as in PageRank, that are obtained from inbound link.
Link Partner
Two individual websites that link only to each other. Generally, search engines do not see these as high value links.
Link Popularity
Refers to the total number of links pointing to any particular URL. The two types are internal and external. If one site has more links than their competitors they are said to have link cardinality or link superiority.
Link Rot
A term used to describe when web pages that were previously available at a URL are now no longer reachable at that URL. This could be caused by deletion or movement of web pages on a site. Link rot decreases the functionality of a webpage.
Link Text
An alternative name for anchor text.
A business-oriented social networking companies.

Company and personal profiles enable employee and job searches and the monitoring professional networks. Additional features like LinkedIn Answers allow companies and professionals to manage and grow industry knowledge.
- return to top -
Local Prominence
Similar to PageRank, Local Prominence is the likely score given to a website by Google in determining its ranking for local search. The factors that affect a sites Local Prominence score likely include the number and quality of incoming links, appearance of the business' address on site, citations and reviews among others.
Local Search
Any of a number of search engine marketing techniques that cater to geographically specific businesses (e.g. plumbers, accountants and restaurants). Local search can be either paid search advertising or natural search listings.

Some people have claimed that local search has a disappointingly low conversion rate, but Apogee Search's experience does not bear this out.
Log File
Records and stores information about a website's incoming and outgoing activity. The log file is generally found in the root directory but can also be located in a secondary folder.
Long Tail
A type of statistical distribution where a high-frequency population is followed by a low-frequency population which gradually "tails off". The events at the far end of the tail have a very low probability of occurrence. Long tail keywords utilize this concept.
Long Tail Keywords
A concept in paid search advertising that the keywords with the highest ROAS the more specific, lower traffic keywords, as they often have a higher conversion rate and a lower cost per click. See Long Tail for statistical foundation.
Long Tail Search Query
A specific, targeted search query usually containing at least two words.

Long tail search queries will have low search volume, but because the searcher will typically know exactly what they're trying to find, these queries will also have an extremely high conversion rate.
- return to top -
One of the very earliest search engines, Lycos was created in 1994.
Made For AdSense
A website created purely to create revenue through Google AdSense. Such sites rarely have any unique or useful content. Often abbreviated as MFA.
Human edited "search engine" which entered alpha testing in the summer of 2007. It claims to be "the world's first human-powered search engine", although Yahoo and EINet Galaxy might disagree.
Software that is intentionally (and sometimes unknowingly) included or inserted in a system for a harmful purpose. Many malware systems deliver contextual advertising based upon the users surfing habits.
Matt Cutts
Matt Cutts is a software engineer for Google, a prominent blogger on search engine topics, and the leading proponent of NoFollow.
Media RSS
Media RSS is an RSS dialect used for syndicating multimedia files in RSS feeds.

Publishers use it to feed media files into Yahoo!Video Search. The format can be used for podcasting and allows for a more detailed description of the content delivered to a subscriber than is provided by the RSS standard.
- return to top -
HTML data on a webpage that describe the content on the page and provides keywords. This information is used by search engines to determine what the page is about. The search engines then index the page according to their algorithms.
A HTML tag that provides information about a web document. Unlike regular tags, META tags do not provide formatting information for the browser. Instead they provide such information as the author, date of creation or latest update for the page, and keywords which indicate the subject matter.
META Tag Content
A particular META tag that provides information about the content of a web page. In the past, keywords used in the content META tag could effect one's search engine rankings, but none of the major search engines use any META tags in their relevancy calculations. Google, however, occasionally uses the content META tag as the text to describe a site in its search engine results pages.
META Tag Description
A particular META tag that provides keywords that should match the content of a web page. In the past, this tag could effect one's search engine rankings, but none of the major search engines use any META tags in their relevancy calculations.
A system of measures that works to quantify characteristics on a site such as overall web traffic, search engine traffic, conversions, top traffic driving keywords, and keyword rankings.
An abbreviation for Made For AdSense.
- return to top -
Michael Arrington
Founder of Techcrunch.
A form of multimedia blogging that allows users to send and publish brief updates as text or micromedia. Microblogs can be viewed by anyone or by a restricted group.

The most popular example of a microblog is Twitter.
A web-based approach to a semantic mark-up that reuses HTML and XHTML tags for the purposes of conveying metadata.
Minus 30 Penalty
A controversial theory that states that new and/or untrusted sites receive a penalty of thirty spots in Google's SERPs. This supposedly prevents the site from ranking on the top three pages within Google.
Minus 950 Penalty
A much hyped, but controversial theory that states that rankings may receive a penalty that drops them to the bottom of the first 1,000 Google listings for a term. The theory came to life in early 2007, and is believed by its proponents to be a page specific penalty, not a site specific penalty such as the Minus 30 Penalty.

Many believe that this is not a penalty, per se, but rather the symptoms of a new ranking factor within Google's algo.
An FTP server that provides copies of files from another server. This is an alternative way to access said files if the other server is too popular.
- return to top -
Miserable Failure
One of the earliest and most widely cited examples of a Google bomb. When one searches for the term "miserable failure" on Google, the first result is President George W. Bush's biography page on the website. Neither the term "miserable" nor the term "failure" are anywhere on the page, but thousands of bloggers (and other website owners) have linked to the page with that term in the anchor text.

Update: In late January 2007, Google took steps to remove Google bombs from its index.
An abbreviation for Media RSS.
MSN AdCenter
The control system for the paid search advertising offering from MSN Search. MSN AdCenter is somewhat notorious as it is not fully compatible with FireFox, the leading web browser alternative to Microsoft's Internet Explorer.
Multivariate Testing
A testing methodology where more than one variable is examined at once. The variables are tested in random combination to determine which combination of the variables is most effective.

Multivariate testing is extremely useful in online marketing, particularly paid search advertising, as it allows the interrelations of various factors to be tested and understood.
One of the most popular social networking sites on the web, Myspace allows users to easily connect and communicate with each other.

MySpace also connects popular musicians to their fans. Users can customize their profiles as well as their privacy settings, which can allow only their "friends" or approved users in their network to view their profiles.

See Social Media.
Naked Links
A link that is both posted and visible in the content of a webpage that directs to a particular website. For example, is a naked link because the text of the link is the actual URL. Apogee Search is not a naked link because the text of the link is not the URL, it is just a keyword for the link.
- return to top -
Narrow Match
Another name for broad match.
Natural Search
A term referring to the so called "free" side of a search engine, and the search engine optimization techniques required to rank there.

Also known as organic search.
The process of facilitating movement through a website from one web page to another. Site maps and good link architecture aid in the promotion of good site navigation.
Negative Keyword
In Google AdWords, a negative keyword allows an advertiser to eliminate unrelated keywords from his advertiser. For instance, if an advertiser has a ad running on the term "mathematics software" and a negative keyword for "free", then the ad would not show for queries on "free mathematics software".
Neil Patel
Social media expert, and regular contributor to Search Engine Land.
News Feed
A web feed is a data format that provides users with frequently updated content.

Content distributors syndicate a web feed, allowing users to subscribe by providing a feed link. A collection of web feeds are accessible on an aggregator.

Syndicate feed is a common name for a news feed.
- return to top -
Created by Google, NoFollow is a controversial attribute used in a link to instruct search engines not to follow the link. Ostensibly, NoFollow is intended to reduce the volume of link spam, particularly with blog comments, but its efficacy is highly questionable. In fact, Yahoo's Jeremy Zawodny argues that it has reduced the number of valid comments on blogs.
A META tag that directs web crawlers not to display the page in the SERPs.
Off Page Optimization
The creation and proper structuring of links to aid in search engine optimization. Off page optimization can be done both via links from one's own website (internal linking) or via third party websites (external linking).

An example of the power of off page optimization can be found through the Google bomb.

Off page optimization should be coupled with solid on page optimization to maximize keyword rankings.
On Page Optimization
The altering of particular web page factors to aid in search engine optimization. Many inferior SEO agencies and consultants focus on keyword density to the exclusion of other on page factors, and on page optimization to the exclusion of off page optimization through links.
One Way Link
A link received from a site without linking back to that same website. A one way link is typically worth more than a reciprocal link.
Online Reputation Management
The process of actively optimizing web pages in order to help eliminate or greatly reduce negative search results. The goal is to "push" the negative results off the first or second page so that most users will not see them. Often, this process includes creating positive news articles, press releases and/or creating web sites. Reputation management works to save a brand's image.
- return to top -
Open Directory Project
A free website directory. Human-edited, and extremely understaffed, if can be very difficult to get links from the Open Directory Project. When one does, however, they can be fairly powerful links, as the Open Directory Project feeds a large number of other directories, including the Google Directory.

The Open Directory Project is also known as DMOZ.
Open Source
Software that makes a source code available to anyone. Other designers and developers can use this source code to create applications for the software or make improvements. Open source software is unlike proprietary software.
OpenID simplifies the management of user accounts across multiple websites. Rather than continuously fill out sign up forms for websites, OpenID allows people to use a single identity across the internet. The development and adoption of the OpenID protocol by such big internet players as Google, Yahoo and Microsoft will help bring the tool to the masses, enhancing the user experience and potentially benefiting online businesses that lose visitors to "sign up burn out."
Outline Processor Markup Language is an XML format for outlines.

The most common use being to exchange lists of web feeds between web feed aggregators.
Synonymous with "subscribe". Users request to receive information from a company or website via email. It is good practice for email marketers to only email those users who have opted-in to the service.
Users who once opted in to receive email updates and have now unsubscribed. It is the act of removing oneself from a particular email list.
- return to top -
Organic Search
A term referring to the so called "free" side of a search engine, and the search engine optimization techniques required to rank there.

Also known as natural search.
The acronym for Online Reputation Management.
Outbound Link
A link going out from one site to another site. Some people believe that outbound links cause PageRank leakage.

The opposite of an outbound link is an inbound link.
The company previously known as Later Overture was purchased by Yahoo! and renamed Yahoo! Sponsored Search.
An acronym for Pay For Performance. Under this system of payment, a client pays only when certain results are achieved. Pay per click is a form of P4P.
PageRank is the concept upon which Google was created. In a nutshell, it is a weighted representation of the "importance" of a particular webpage, based upon the importance of the pages that link to it. PageRank is visually represented by a scale from zero to ten, although there are actually infinite gradations between each whole number.

PageRank is a logarithmic scale, with each higher number being approximately eight times the number below it. To illustrate, as of January 2004, there were only thirty-three pages on the entire Web which held a PageRank of ten.

When Google first broke onto the search engine scene, a high PageRank was something of a "magic bullet" to high search engine rankings. While the benefits are no longer so extreme, it is still quite important to have a reasonable PageRank on one's site.
- return to top -
PageRank Leakage
The contoversial concept that PageRank may be lost by linking to other sites. If PageRank leakage actually does occur, the actual affect is certainly minimal.
Paid Inclusion
The process of paying a fee to a search engine in order to be included in that search engine or directory. Paid inclusion does not impact web page rankings; it guarantees that the web page itself will be included in the index.
Paid Search
An advertising method that involves the purchasing of traffic from search engines. Advertising is attached to individual keywords and is generally purchased via a pay per click financial model. First invented by
(synonymous with Variable) The specific terms used within a controlled variable of a software code.
Pay Per Call
An online advertising system that drives users to a phone call, rather than a website.
Pay Per Click
A financial model for purchasing advertising where an advertiser is charged for each time an advertisement is clicked upon, rather than when it is simply seen. Created by and used in conjunction with paid search advertising, although it can be applied to most any online advertising technique.

Often abbreviated as PPC.
- return to top -
Pay Per Impression
A financial model for purchasing advertising where an advertiser is charged for each time an advertisement is shown on a web page. This is an alternative to the pay-per-click model which charges advertisers only when their add is clicked on.
Pay Per Post
A commercial marketplace that connects advertisers and bloggers for the purpose of reviewing products and websites. Also sometimes used as a general term for any paid blogging system.

Pay Per Post can be found at
Permanent Links
Links which do not have any expected expiration date. The opposite of permanent links is rented links.
Phrase Match
In Google AdWords, phrase match means that an advertiser's ad will show when users search on the exact phrase and also when their search contains additional terms, as long as the keyword phrase is in exactly the same order.

Phrase match traffic is generally less targeted than exact match, but more targeted than broad match traffic.
A media file, typically a sound recording, that is distributed over the Internet. Listeners can play it back on their computers and portable media devices including MP3 players.

Just like radio, podcast means both content and the method of syndication.
Position Preference
A feature in Google AdWords and Microsoft adCenter that enables advertisers to specify which positions they would like their ads to appear on the SERP.
- return to top -
An abbreviation for Pay Per Click.
PPC Arbitrage
The technique of bringing traffic to a site using large numbers of inexpensive, long tail keywords in hopes that they will click on more expensive Google AdSense advertisements on the site. This generates revenue for the site without adding any actual value to the system.
PPC Management
The monitoring and maintenance of a Pay-Per-Click campaign. Including changing bid prices, expanding and refining keyword lists, editing ad copy, testing campaign components for cost effectiveness and successful conversions, and reviewing performance reports for reports.
An acronym for Pay Per Click Search Engine. These search engines rank web pages based on the amount they have bid on each click. Web pages that bid more per click are displayed at the top of the results in the search engines.

See See PPC.
An abbreviation for Pay Per Post.
An abbreviation for PageRank.
- return to top -
The lowest possible PageRank. A PR0 can indicate a new page that has not yet received any links or a page that has been penalized by Google.
The highest possible PageRank. There are very few PR10 pages on the entire internet.
Price Comparison Engine
A particular form of paid search advertising system that allows one to list products and their prices. The website's users can then find a particular product and easily compare pricing from a number of online vendors.

Price comparison engines are most often driven via a pay per click financial model.
Product Feed
A data file sent to price comparison engines by advertisers that includes all the products that the advertiser wishes to promote via the engine.
Webmaster conference series sponsored by Webmaster World. Contains significant coverage of the search engine marketing industry.

PubCon can be found at
Quality Score
A number that is assigned by Google to paid search ads in a hybrid auction that ultimately determines each ad rank and ranking on SERPs. These quality scores will affect the ad's historical CTR, keyword and landing page relevance, as well as several other aspects that Google may take into consideration.
- return to top -
The keyword(s) or keyword phrase(s) that users type into search fields for the purposes of obtaining search engine results. Those results will include both organic and paid search ads.
Real Simple Syndication
An XML-based web feed format.
Real Time Search
Real Time Search provides the user with search results that include most recent postings about a topic rather thank links to Web sites that may not have been updated for a number of years. Real Time Search has developed to search across social media sites to deliver the latest news as it is being commented.
Reciprocal Link
A link agreement between two web sites where each site places a link on its site to the other. A reciprocal link is typically worth less than a one way link.
Referrer Spam
A type of spam that involves making repeated web site requests using a fake referring URL pointing to the spammer's site. Sites that publicize their referrer statistics will then also link to the spammer's site.
Referring URL
The URL of the page from which a website visitor comes. Referring URLs are useful for tracking the results of natural search engine optimization efforts, as well as for tracking traffic and actions of visitors from links where you don't want to use a tracking URL.
- return to top -
Rented Links
As opposed to permanent links, rented links are purchased on a monthly basis. The advantage of such links is that one generally receives absolute control over anchor text and deep linking.

The disadvantage, naturally, is that one must pay for them every month. And, due to Google's requirement that links be aged, no benefit is received for months after their creation.

Wherever possible, the page from which such links come should match the theme of the key phrases on the page being linked to. If the geographic theme of the page matches that for the site, one might even receive decent direct traffic.
Return On Advertising Spend
A measure of the effectiveness of one's online marketing campaign. Return On Advertising Spend is the gross revenue realized from an advertising campaign divided by its cost. Generally abbreviated as ROAS.

ROAS = Sales/Cost
Return On Investment
A measure of the effectiveness of invested money. Return On Investment is the earnings realized from a venture divided by its cost. Generally abbreviated as ROI.

ROI = (Sales - Cost)/Cost
Revenue Sharing
System of allocating PPC revenue to a site publisher and click-through charges to a search engine that distributes paid-ads to it context network partners. Similar to a site “finder’s fee.”
Rich Media
Media with embedded motion or interactivity. Rich media is an option of PPC advertisers.
An abbreviation for Return On Advertising Spend.
- return to top -
An alternative name for a web crawler.
A file used to prevent particular web pages from being indexed by search engines.
An abbreviation for Return On Investment.
An abbreviation for Real Simple Syndication.
RSS Feed
RSS is a family of web feed formates used to publish frequently updated works - such as blog entries, news headlines, audio and video - in a standardized format.

An RSS feed can include full or summarized text and meta data. They can be read using an aggregator.
Run of Site Links
An alternative name for site wide links.
- return to top -
A popular Apple Internet browser.
Sales Funnel
Also known as a Buying Funnel.
A controversial idea that Google places new websites under a filter that prevents them from ranking for competitive terms. Those that believe in the sandbox jump through impressive hoops to try and explain the behavior in a predictable manner.

It is more likely that new sites are not placed into a sandbox, but new links must remain in Google's index for a certain time before they provide much Google juice. It is possible that links from trusted sites build Google juice faster than other links.
A term coined by Boing Boing reader John that reflects the feeling one gets when caught doing something one shouldn't on Google Street View.
An alternative name for malware.
Search Advertising
Also known as Paid Search.
- return to top -
Search Engine Indexing
The process of reading a web page and extracting the content into a database. If a page is not in a search engine's index, it cannot be returned for a natural search query.

Method of improving indexing include the addition of bread crumbs and a site map, and the avoidance of frames, Flash-based sites, and using Javascript for links.
Search Engine Land
Publication created by Danny Sullivan after he left Search Engine Watch.

Search Engine Land can be found at
Search Engine Marketing
The marketing of one's website through a search engine, whether through paid search or search engine optimization.

Often abbreviated as SEM.
Search Engine Optimization
Techniques used to improve a website's rankings in the search engines. Consists of on-page optimization, indexing improvements and link building.

Often abbreviated as SEO.
Search Engine Position
In PPC advertising, position is the placement on a search engine results page where an ad appears relative to other paid ads and to organic search results.

Paid search ad position is determined by confidential algorithms and Quality Score measures specific to each search engine.

Factors in the engines’ position placement under some advertiser control include bid price, the ad’s CTR, relevancy of ad to searcher requests, and relevance of click-through landing page to the search request.
Search Engine Rank
Position of web page or website position appears in search engine results. Rank and position affect click-through rates and conversion rates for landing pages.
- return to top -
Search Engine Rankings
The position a website has on a search results page when a particular keyword is searched for. One should only be concerned with rankings for Google, Yahoo and MSN Search at this time, as other engines either do not have material amounts of traffic, or are actually driven by one of the big three search engines. could join this list of relevant search engines in the future.
Search Engine Results Pages
The pages returned by a search engine when a search query is performed. Generally consists of both paid search and natural search listings.

Often abbreviated as SERPs.
Search Engine Roundtable
Blog and forum covering the search engine marketing industry. Search Engine Roundtable can be found at
Search Engine Strategies
The leading conference series for the search marketing industry. Search Engine Strategies can be found at
Search Engine Watch
One of the very first publications to cover the search engine industry. Created, and previously managed by Danny Sullivan.

Search Engine Watch can be found at
Search Funnel
Used to anticipate customer intent and develop keywords targeted to different stages in the purchasing process.
- return to top -
Search History
User data that is stored by search engines. This data is used to determine improvements in ad targeting or to make old information on the web easily available.
Search Marketing Expo
Search industry conference series created in 2007 by Danny Sullivan.

Search Marketing Expo can be found at
Search Marketing Standard
Print publication covering the search engine marketing industry. Search Marketing Standard can be found at
Search Personalization
Personalizing SERP's based on an IP address, personal profile information or settings.
Search Relevance
A measure of how closely an ad's title, description, and keywords are related to the search query and the searcher’s expectations in PPC advertising.
The blog of search industry journalist John Battelle.

Searchblog can be found at
- return to top -
Secondary Links
Indirectly acquired links. An example can be a news article on a media outlet's website featuring some aspect of your company/brand.
An abbreviation for Search Engine Marketing.
Semantic Clustering
Technique for developing relevant keywords for PPC ad groups. Keywords are closely related and narrow.
Semantic Web
The idea of defining semantics, or the study of communication, of information and services on the Internet, making it possible for the web to understand users' requests for the use of web content. It is an extension of the World Wide Web.
An abbreviation for Search Engine Optimization.
SEO Book
The blog and download SEO how-to book of Aaron Wall.
- return to top -
SEO Copywriting
The creation of website copy that includes heavy usage of keywords in hopes to move a page up the search engine rankings. It is generally written to a particular keyword density, that will supposedly perform well in the search engines.

For search engines with a heavy reliance on on page optimization, such as MSN, or for particularly uncompetitive keywords, SEO copywriting might work, at least to a certain degree. For keywords with any amount of competition on Google and Yahoo, however, it is rarely effective.

What's more, even if the SEO'd copy works in a search engine, it is rarely effective for the human beings visiting the site.
SEO Red Flag
Google has an algorithm that detects over-optimized websites. Sites that are detected are downranked in Google search results, typically by 950 positions. Other search engines have similar procedures to prevent over-optimization of websites.
Sergey Brin
Co-founder of Google with Larry Page.
An abbreviation for Search Engine Results Pages.
Server Logs
Files or data that are hosted on servers which display website traffic, trends, and sources. Generally, server logs do not show as much information as an analytics tool would.
A common abbreviation for Search Engine Strategies.
- return to top -
Shopping Engine
An alternative name for a price comparison engine.
A fraudulent method of stealing another website's traffic including the use of spyware.
Site Map
An overview of an entire website, often structured like a table of contents. Site maps make it much easier for a search engine to fully index a website.
Site Wide Links
Links that are purchased on every page of a site. In the past, Google valued site wide links on large sites quite highly, but now it is clear they filter them out. Google and Yahoo can even occasional give a temporary penalty to sites who gain too many links from the same site over a short period of time.

MSN Search appears to love site wide links.
The search engine Spider for Inktomi.
A common abbreviation for Search Marketing Expo.
- return to top -
Social Media
Based on the concept of Web 2.0.

Websites that allow users to to create and update content. Examples of social media are social bookmarking and social news sites.
Social Media Optimization
A marketing discipline concerned with promoting one's website, company or organization within the online social networks and tagging systems. Many consider socail media optimization a form of search engine optimization. While there is some overlap in skills and activities with SEO, it is better considered a discipline of its own.
Social Networks
Social networks are websites that allow users to interact with each other and with content. Users can usually share information, photos, news and events. Popular social networking sites include Facebook , MySpace , Twitter and Wikipedia. See Social Media.
Most generally, spam describes unsolicited, and generally bulk-sent, email. In search engine optimization, spam refers to any of a number of techniques felt by most to be abusive. Examples of SEO spam include blog comment spam and referrer spam.
A tagging system for the search engine industry created by Danny Sullivan.
A shorter version of the term web spider.
- return to top -
Splash Page
A page placed between a site's supposed homepage and its actually homepage content. A splash page is generally a graphical intro to the site (often including audio), often running for several seconds like a television commercial, and then forwarding the visitor to the actual content.

Many users find splash pages annoying, and they can be very damaging to one's search engine optimization efforts.
Sponsored Listing
A title on SERPs in order to identify paid advertisers as well as distinguish the difference between natural and paid links or listings.
Static HTML
Web pages extracted from previously created files. While static HTML pages might by changed by the website's author over time, they do not change with each retrieval.

The opposite of static html is dynamic HTML.
The identification of closely related keywords. For instance, stemming the search query "win" might return "wins", "winning" and/or "won".
Stop Word
A keyword that is so common that the search engines ignore it in their relevancy calculations. Stop words include terms such as "a", "for", and "the".
Submission Service
A commercial service (either automated or manual) that submits one's website to the search engines. At best, such services are a waste of money.
- return to top -
Supplemental Index
A secondary index for Google. Results from the supplemental index are only show if there is no matching page in the primary index. According to Matt Cutts the supplemental index has lower standards for indexing than the main index. Pages in the supplemental index are marked as such when shown in a site: command in Google.
Supplemental Result
A SERP from the supplemental index.
A multivariate testing methodology created by Dr. Genichi Taguchi. Originally applied to engineering design, Taguchi was extended to marketing and advertising by James Kowalick, former corporate director of engineering at Aerojet General.
A search engine that indexes blogs. Technorati uses RSS to maintain a nearly real-time index.
Ted Murphy
Founder and CEO of Pay Per Post.
Term Frequency
A measure of how many times a particular keyword appears across a collection of several pages and documents.
- return to top -
Three Way Link
A link scheme where Site A links to Site B, Site B links to Site C, and Site C links to Site A. The hope is to hide the fact that they are actually reciprocal links. It is believed that Google has developed methods of detecting such link schemes.
Tim Mayer
The Director of Product Management for Yahoo! Search.
Time on Page
The amount of time that a visitor spends on a specific web page.
Title Field
The top line of text in a paid search advertisement. In Yahoo, the title field can be up to 40 characters, and in Google, it can be up to 25 characters.
Title Tag
A HTML tag that defines the text along the top of a web browser. The TITLE tag is also the single most important factor in on page optimization in Google and Yahoo.
Top-Level Domain
A top-level domain (TLD) is the last part of a domain name, or the letters that follow the final dot of any domain name.

For example, in the domain name the "com" part of the domain name would be the top-level domain.
- return to top -
Tracking Cookie
See cookie.
Tracking URL
An argument added to the URL of a link or advertisement so that actions by website visitors can be tied to their specific source.

Tracking URLs are particularly useful in paid search advertising and other forms of online advertising that send visitors through a website redirect. Such traffic cannot be accurately tracked using referring URLs.

Links using tracking URLs are unlikely to pass any link juice, but if the link uses a redirect, it will not do so in any case.
A concept originally promoted by engineers at Yahoo, but a term recently trademarked by Google. Whereas PageRank attempts to determine the value of a page based upon the pages linking to it, TrustRank determines a level of authority for a site. It is believed that links from an authority site provide more Google juice than links from non-authority sites.
Video analytics and distribution company serving publishers who need independent information about video performance on the Internet.

Tubemogul aggregates video-viewing data from multiple sources to provide improved understanding of when, where and how often videos are watched, track and compare videos, measure the impact of marketing campaigns, gather competitive intelligence, and share data with colleagues.

Tubemogul also allows automated upload to the Web's top video sharing sites.
A status update or post on Twitter. Posts are limited to 140 characters.

The action of posting an update is called Tweeting.
A microblog that allows users to post real-time status updates over multiple networks and devices, including cell phones. Posts are limited to 140 characters in length.

Users or "Tweeters" are encouraged to "follow" other Tweeters in order to keep track of their updates or "Tweets". Twitter can be used to obtain news or to increase one's social network.
- return to top -
Twitter Squatting
Twitter Squatting occurs when a user registers any number of Twitter names with the intent to sell them in the future. This is similar to Domain Squatting in that there is little risk for the individual, but a possibly high profit should they reserve a name others are willing to pay to have.
Consists of all participants of the social networking service, Twitter. It also includes the means by which "tweeple" (people on Twitter) communicate: cell phones, desktop clients, the Twitter site itself, etc.
User Interface (UI) is the aggregate by which users interact with a device, machine, computer program or tool. The UI provides the user with the ability to input data and provides an output to reflect the effects of the users' manipulation.
Uniform Resource Locator
The address system used by the Internet to locate resources such as web sites. A Uniform Resource Locator includes the type of resource being accessed (such as gopher or hypertext), the address of the server, and the location of the file.

Usually abbreviated as URL.
Unique Visitor
The number of individuals who visit a website. If one user visits a website 4 times, the statistics will show that 1 user has visited.
Universal Search
See Google Universal Search.
- return to top -
An abbreviation for Uniform Resource Locator.
The measure of how simple it is for a visitor to complete a desired task on a website. Generally, sites with high usability or user-friendliness are more popular and successful than sites that are difficult to use.
An acronym for Unique Selling Point or Proposition. This is a determining factor in what makes a product or service different from the rest.
Vanessa Fox
The original founder of Google Webmaster Central. Prior to joining Google in 2005, Vanessa worked for AOL. In June 2007, Vanessa left Google for Zillow, an online service company in the real estate space.
Video podcast,sometimes shortened to vidcast or vodcast, is a specialized podcast that refers to the distribution of video where RSS feed is used as a non-linear TV channel to which consumers can subscribe using a variety of media center or mobile multimedia devices.
Video Blogging
Vlog or Vlogging for short, video blogging is a form of blogging using video as the medium instead of written posts. Can include an embedded video or links to other videos. Vlogging's popularity has steadily increased over the last 3 years.
- return to top -
Viral Marketing
A technique that uses pre-existing social networks to produce increases in brand awareness to achieve other marketing objectives through a virus-like spreading of media. It can include word-of-mouth, text messages, interactive Flash games, Advergames and increasingly online video.
A unique individual on a website. Unfortunately, some people unscrupulously equate visitors and leads, so that whenever someone clicks on an advertisement, they claim a new lead has been acquired. This can make comparing cost per lead from different people or companies confusing.
Also know as video SEO, involves techniques to improve video rankings in search engines.
Walled Garden
A term used to describe a selection of web pages that are linked together but do not link to any other pages. This can result in low page rankings. These pages can be indexed only if they are included in a Google Analytics.
Web Cookie
See cookie.
Web Crawler
A program which browses the Web in a methodical, automated manner. Web crawlers are mainly used to create a copy of all the visited pages for later indexing by a search engine.
Web Spider
Alternative name for a web crawler.
Webmaster World
One of the largest and most active search engine marketing forums.

Webmaster World can be found at
White Hat
A controversial and difficult to define concept in search engine optimization that ascertains that certain techniques are actually unethical. Proponents of white hat believe that the manipulation of search engine rankings is unethical.

The opposite of white hat is black hat.
- return to top -
Wikipedia is a web based encyclopedia project that is updated by users. This is a free service and is available in several different languages. Anyone with access to the site can edit articles.
A popular open source blogging platform. Available to users to download as software or free hosting. Download the software at
A third-party keyword tracking and suggestion system. Wordtracker search volume data, while based on a small sample set, is in many ways more reliable than that of the Yahoo Keyword Selector Tool.
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.
XMPP (Extensible Messaging and Presence Protocol) is a protocol based on Extensible Markup Language (XML) and intended for instant messaging (IM) and online presence detection. It functions between or among servers, and facilitates near-real-time operation. Currently, real-time search engines have adopted the XMPP protocol over traditional HTTP to render up to the second results.
One of the most popular search engines today. Founders David Filo and Jerry Yang started Yahoo! from their own bookmark lists.
- return to top -
Yahoo! Content Match
Yahoo's content advertising targeting for Yahoo Sponsored Search.
Yahoo! Easy Track
A free tool from Yahoo that allows one to track the results of one's paid search advertising with Yahoo. Like many web analytics packages, Easy Track has issues with counting the same actions multiple times. Unfortunately, it does not give any way to de-duplicate one's list of actions.
Yahoo! Keyword Selector Tool
A free tool from Yahoo that allows one to enter a keyword, and receive back the search volume for that keyword the previous month, as well as a list of key phrases that include the original keyword.

The data from this tool is significantly skewed by the Yahoo Match Driver system.
Yahoo! Match Driver
A technology from Yahoo Search Marketing that combines similar keywords together for the purposes of paid search advertising.

This can simplify things greatly as the difference between terms such as "apple" and "apples" is very small. In other cases, such as with "architect software" and "software architect", the difference is actually quite substantial.
Yahoo! Paid Inclusion
An offering from Yahoo that ensures that pages are indexed by Yahoo. One pays a recurring fee for the inclusion of the pages in the Yahoo index, plus an additional fee for each click generated. This can quickly get very expensive.

In addition, if a proper site map is implemented, the pages should find their way into the Yahoo index for free. Apogee Search does not recommend the usage of Yahoo Paid Inclusion.
Yahoo! Search Marketing
The division of Yahoo! focused on search engine marketing products such as Yahoo Sponsored Search and Yahoo Paid Inclusion.

Formed through the combination of
Overture and Inktomi.
- return to top -
Yahoo! Sponsored Search
The paid search division of Yahoo! Previously known as Overture.
Yahoo! Weather Report
Unlike most search engines, Yahoo actually announces via the Yahoo! Search Blog when algorithm changes are being made. These announcements are known as weather reports.

Return to the Apogee Results Glossary

All trademarks are the property of their respective owners. Please send comments or suggestions to

Get Your Free Consultation


Sign up for the Apogee Results Marketing Brief

Learn about Apogee, industry news and events, and more!

Please enter your email address:


"During the time Apogee has been managing our search campaigns, we have increased sales volumes and ROI. We consider Apogee an important partner for our ongoing success."