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.

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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.
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.
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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.
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.
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An acronym for File Transfer Protocol.

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