SEO Dictionary

Blog SEO SEO Dictionary
random SEO related words and a magnifying glass

301 REDIRECT 

There are two types of redirect: temporary and permanent. There is no difference between those two redirects from a user’s perspective. However, they differ greatly from a search engine’s perspective. 301 redirect is a permanent redirect. It informs search engines that the page they are trying to access has permanently changed its URL address.

The easiest way to set a redirect is by using popular content management system (CMS) plug-ins, such as https://wordpress.org/plugins/redirection/ in Wordpress. Some of the more advanced users can set the redirect themselves in the .htaccess file. In such a case, a redirect generator like https://www.htaccessredirect.net/ may be useful. 

Caution! Keeping a backup copy of the .htaccess file is always recommended since some changes might lead to errors.


ALT TEXT

Alt tag is an HTML attribute of the IMG tag. The IMG tag is responsible for displaying images. The alt tag/attribute is the text that gets displayed in case the image cannot be loaded for some reason. Alt tags have some SEO value. Currently, Google cannot analyze the actual image, but it can read the alt tag. Proper use of alt tags is the best way of informing Google about the content of the images.

Using alt tags is crucial for images to appear in search engine results. Descriptive image names are also recommended. For example, understanding the content of an image named funny-cat.jpg is easier for computer systems than understanding the content of an image named image01.jpg. See more image tips here

 

ANCHOR TEXT

Every link consists of two elements. The first element is the URL address of a website that the link leads to. The second element is the anchor text. In simplest terms, the anchor text is the text that works as the link, instead of the URL address. Anchor texts are of particular importance for SEO. Including relevant and engaging keywords in the anchor text is immensely recommended in order to attract more visitors to the website.

Example: 

<a href="https://www.pulno.com">SEO Audit</a>

In this case https://www.pulno.com is the destination URL address of the link. In other words, when you click the above link, you will be redirected to https://www.pulno.com. The link text will read: "SEO Audit". Apart from changing the appearance of the link, anchor text also impacts the website’s ranking. Including "SEO Audit" in the anchor text, will result in the website ranking high in search engines for users typing the “SEO audit” phrase. However, it is important not to overuse anchor texts. Keep in mind that too many of the same anchor texts might lead to penalties from Google.

 

BACKLINK 

Backlink is a link on one website that leads to another website. Backlinks are of enormous value for SEO. Acquiring a lot of valuable backlinks is a good way to improve rankings in search engines. 


BLACK HAT SEO

Black hat SEO is the collective name for all SEO practices that are considered to be unethical. Long-term, those practises can hurt a website, or even ban it from search engines. Black hat SEO practices include acquiring links via automatic tools, artificially acquired link farms, PBNs (private blog networks), links from low-quality websites as well as hacking to acquire links. Currently, in the age of artificial intelligence, the effects of black hat SEO practices are becoming less effective and more short-term.


CANONICAL TAG

Canonical tag informs search engines which URL address is the most important out of all the pages with the same content. If you have several pages with duplicate content on your website, using a redirect to indicate which page is the most important is recommended. However, if a redirect is not an option, using a canonical tag is the best solution. Canonical tag works great on pages with the sort by option, such as:

http://example.com/green-shoes/sort-by-price-low-to-high

http://example.com/green-shoes/sort-by-price-high-to-low

http://example.com/green-shoes/sort-by-brand

In such a case, it is best to set the canonical tag as http://example.com/green-shoes/ on all of the above pages.

Proper use of the canonical tag requires selecting the right pages. You can find more information about the use of the canonical tag in the article on duplicate content here.


CLOAKING

Cloaking is a practice of building a website in such a way that it displays different content to users than it does to search engines. In reality, such a strategy might result in getting penalized or even banned from search engines very quickly.


DEEP LINKING

Deep links are links which point to a specific page or image on a website. Such links are particularly valuable for SEO. Linking to specific pages and including a relevant anchor text improves the ranking of a website.

In fact, the best link profile (all links leading to a website) includes links to the home page as well as links to other pages.


DOFOLLOW

An HTML link lacking the ”nofollow” attribute. Links without the “nofollow” attribute are commonly referred to as “dofollow”. In other words, whenever a search engine encounters a dofollow link, it recognizes its value and, consequently, gives the destination page some SEO value. Dofollow links are the most valuable ones from SEO perspective and acquiring as many dofollow links as possible is recommended. By default, every link is a dofollow link. See more about links here.


DOMAIN NAME (AND HOSTING)

Domain is the unique address of a website on the Internet. Hosting, also referred to as web host or server, is where the website is being stored on the Internet.  There are plenty of free web hosts available, but we do not recommend such a solution.


DUPLICATE CONTENT

Duplicate content is having two separate pages with the same or very similar content on one or more than one website. Duplicate content is believed to be a negative factor for SEO. Such practices might even result in penalties from Google.

Some valuable tips concerning duplicate content related issues might be found on Google. Most important tips are:

  • limiting the number of very similar pages,
  • avoiding repetition of content,
  • eliminating content that is sorted or filtered.

If the content appears to be duplicated, either permanently redirect the page or set the “canonical” parameter. For more information see this article.

HEADERS

The <h1> header is the most visible part of any article. Headers function as article titles. They might also separate different sections of one article.

Some good tips for setting up a header: 

  • use a single <h1> header. Using more headers is possible, but it is not recommended
  • include keywords in headers
  • do not use the same keywords for headers, <title> tags and meta description. This might lead to over-optimization.


KEYWORD DENSITY

Keyword density is a number indicating how often a phrase appears in a text. To calculate it, the number of times a keyword appears in the text needs to be divided by the total number of words. The result needs to be multiplied by 100. The final result will be a percentage. In the past, it was believed, that the higher the keyword density, the better. Currently, keyword density does not appear to be as relevant. Implementation of the RankBrain algorithm allowed for better understanding of website content. Today, high rankings in search engines can be achieved without keywords.

Keyword stuffing is a practice of taking a word or a phrase and repeating it in a text, usually to a point where the text no longer looks natural, all for the purpose of increasing keyword density of the desired phrase. Stuffing is not recommended and is believed to have a negative impact on SEO. Overuse of keyword stuffing might lead to over-optimization. While this practise was effective before 2010, currently it is sure to harm a website in the long run. 


KEYWORDS

In SEO, keywords are single words or whole phrases that are of a particular importance for a given website. In the context of this list, the keywords would be “SEO” or “SEO glossary”.


LINK FARM

A link farm is a network of websites that link to each other with the sole purpose of increasing PageRank. The more websites participate in such a practise, the more effective it is. However, link farms are considered a black hat SEO technique and are not recommended. In most cases, participating in link farms leads to penalties from Google and might even result in complete banning from search engine results.


LINKBAIT

Linkbait is often jokingly referred to as link fishing. In other words, it is a process of creating highly viral pieces of content, that are likely to generate a lot of backlinks.

Creating linkbait content is exceptionally difficult, even though the principles seem simple. Linkbait content might be text only, but videos, images, and audio might work equally well.


LINKBUILDING

Link building is one of the most important SEO related terms. It is a process of acquiring backlinks leading to your website. Good ranking in search engines is directly related to linkbuilding and the number of valuable backlinks leading to your website. Valuable links are mainly natural links.


META DESCRIPTION

Meta description is a short description of a page displayed in search engine results. It is not visible anywhere on the website. Meta description is not analyzed by search engines in the process of deciding which websites should be displayed and in what order.

There are two techniques used by Google when displaying meta descriptions. If the meta description contains a keyphrase typed by a user, it is probable that Google will display the meta description defined in the meta tag. Otherwise, Google will only display the fragment of the page’s content which contains the typed keyphrase.

search results of bizdb in Google

Meta description in the above example is "Free database of Limited Liability Companies in the United Kingdom, information on their directors, official reports and accounts filed by the companies..

Some useful tips for writing meta descriptions:

  • using relevant keywords - keywords are bolded in search engine results and therefore, tend to draw attention
  • call for action catchphrases
  • shorter than 160 characters - longer text might be cut
  • longer than 30 characters - make better use of the meta text to attract more clicks
  • a unique meta description of every single page. Indeed, all pages should have varied and unique meta descriptions

Consulting the meta description Google guidelines is recommended.


META KEYWORDS

Meta keywords is a list of keywords and keyphrases for a given blog, post or website used mostly by search engines. However, back in 2009 Google made the decision that meta keywords were being abused by spammers and stopped taking them into account in the process of page ranking.


META TAGS

Meta tags are placed in the head section of the HTML structure of a website. The information included in those tags is usually not meant for the users but for the search engines because they give additional information about the content of a website. Most important tags for Google are: <title>, description, robots. There are more meta tags, but <title> and description should be of utmost importance.


NATURAL LINKS

Natural links are all links that were added by others. Links in the press or links hidden in the content of someone’s blog are some examples of natural links. In order to acquire natural links, the content of your website should be of exceptional quality. The better the quality of your content on a given topic, the more likely it is to be linked to a lot. Think of a way to stand out, create content that is unique and promote it. If you do that, links should start appearing soon. See more about links in this article.


NOFOLLOW LINKS

“Nofollow” is an attribute of a link, which notifies search engines that they should not take this link into account while ranking a website. Such links give no PageRank to the destination website. Therefore, nofollow links have very little SEO value. See more about links in this article.

When to use nofollow links:

  • Linked page is not trustworthy. Allowing only nofollow links in the comments, user generated content and anywhere else where link verification might be difficult is strongly recommended.
  • Paid links. If you are getting paid for a link, it might be best to make it a nofollow link. Otherwise, you might be at risk of being penalized by Google.

An HTML code with rel="nofollow" looks like this:

<a href="http://untrustedwebsite.com" rel="nofollow">Example</a>

For more information on nofollow links see Google:

https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/96569?hl=en.


ORGANIC SEARCH RESULTS

Having typed a phrase in a search engine, results will appear. Those results might include many elements such as: a map, Google Shopping elements, AdWords. Organic search results as seen on the attached image, are the results that are not marked as “Ad” or “Sponsored”.

organic search results of camping mattress

Getting high rankings in organic search results is the main goal of all SEO practices.


PAGE OPTIMIZATION

The are two main subcategories of SEO practises. Those that happen on a website and those that happen outside of a website. The first category, also known as page optimization, refers to everything you do on your page to improve its ranking in search engines. This includes practices such as: tuning the HTML structure, improving title tags and descriptions, choosing relevant keywords of right density, improving the internal linking structure, eliminating indexing errors.

Pulno focuses on page optimization. Eliminating all potential errors will improve the performance of a website and its ranking in search engines.


PAGERANK

PageRank is an algorithm first created by Larry Page, one of the founding fathers of Google. This algorithm estimates the value of a page. There is no certainty about the components of this algorithm, since they were never made public. One of the most commonly believed theories is that the number of backlinks to a website and the PageRanks of those pages are the deciding factors. In short, the more backlinks you have, and the better the PageRank of the websites on which the backlinks are, the better your PageRank will be. For several years now, the PageRank value has been unavailable to users, but acquiring backlinks is still one of the greatest challenges in SEO.


ROBOTS.TXT

Robots.txt is a text file of particular importance for SEO. It notifies search engines which areas of a website they are restricted from. This is, in fact, a very effective SEO technique. It can stop some pages from indexing. It can also be used to block duplicate content on a website.

Robots.txt should be in the main file and accessible via:

https://www.example.com/robots.txt.

Sometimes robots.txt file can block more than it should.


information from Pulno about blocked resources

Pulno analyzes robots.txt files and suggests any necessary changes. See more about robots.txt in this article.


SEARCH ENGINE

Essentially, search engines are software applications. Their main task is to search the internet for a given phrase. Search engines apply specific algorithms in this process. These algorithms decide which websites should appear first in the search engine results. Those algorithms are top-secret and not given to the public. This is a challenge for SEO, because no practices are guaranteed to succeed. The biggest and most popular search engine is Google.


SEM

SEM stands for Search Engine Marketing. In other words, it is a type of marketing conducted via search engines. Promoting your products or services via search engines can be done in two ways. The first way is to optimize a website in such a way that it appears high in search engine results. The second way is paying for views. In such a case the website appears under the “ad" or "sponsored listings” section. 


SEO

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. It is a practice aiming to improve a website’s rankings in search engines for given keywords. SEO consists of practises that happen on a website and those that happen outside of a website. It is a time-consuming and ever-changing process. That is why Pulno was created. This tool will give you all essential information about what needs to be done without the need to track and understand online marketing.

SERP

SERP stands for Search Engine Results Page. It is a page that gets displayed as a result when you search for a keyword in a search engine.


SITEMAP

Sitemap file provides search engines with a list of all of the URL addresses on a website. Having a XML file with a sitemap might facilitate locating all of the pages. Once the sitemap is created, it is best to link to XML sitemap in robots.txt or to submit it in Google Search Console.


SPIDER

A search engine spider is a software that browses the web, looks for new pages, analyzes their content and all the available data. Pulno uses its own search robots. This is what allows us to fix issues and improve websites.


TITLE TAG

Every page should have its own title tag. From the user’s perspective the title tag is visible only in the browser’s title bar and in search results. In the example below the title is "Opening Times - find opening hours for UK businesses"

example of title tag as shown in Google

Title is of enormous importance for SEO, because it is an indicator of the content. Search engines determine the content of a page mostly by looking at the title tag. For that reason, choosing a relevant and engaging title tag is essential. See more about titles in this article.


URL

URL is the address of a webpage. For example: https://www.pulno.com/


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