If you’re new to the world of SEO, you might feel overwhelmed by the sheer amount of technical jargon and terminology used in the field. From “E-A-T” and “Google BERT” to “301 redirect” and “crawl budget,” the SEO Glossary is here to help you navigate and understand the most important terms and concepts related to search engine optimization. Whether you’re a beginner looking to get started with SEO or a seasoned pro looking to stay up-to-date with the latest trends and developments, this comprehensive glossary is your go-to resource for all things SEO. So, let’s dive in and explore the essential SEO terms you need to know to succeed in today’s digital landscape.
SEO Glossary 2023
the practice of improving the quality and quantity of website traffic by increasing the visibility of a website or a web page in a search engine’s unpaid results.
A word or phrase that people search for in search engines to find relevant information.
SERP (Search Engine Results Page)
the page that shows the results of a search query.
a link from another website to your website. Backlinks are an important ranking factor in SEO.
the clickable text of a hyperlink. It provides context and helps search engines understand the topic of the linked page.
HTML tags that provide information about a web page to search engines. Common meta tags include the title tag and meta description tag.
the HTML tag that specifies the title of a web page. It appears in the search engine results and in the browser’s title bar.
the HTML tag that provides a brief summary of a web page. It appears in the search engine results below the title tag.
a file on a website that tells search engine crawlers which pages or files they can or cannot crawl.
a file on a website that lists all the URLs on the site. It helps search engines find and index all the pages on the site.
the preferred URL for a web page. It is used to avoid duplicate content issues and to consolidate the link equity of multiple URLs.
a permanent redirect from one URL to another. It is used to redirect traffic and link equity from old pages to new ones.
content that appears on more than one web page. It can harm SEO by diluting the link equity of a page and confusing search engines.
the unpaid search results in a search engine. Organic search traffic comes from people clicking on these results.
CTR (Click-through rate)
the percentage of people who click on a link in the search engine results. It is calculated by dividing the number of clicks by the number of impressions.
the percentage of people who leave a website after viewing only one page. A high bounce rate can indicate that the website content is not engaging or relevant to the visitor’s search query.
a ranking algorithm used by Google to determine the importance of a webpage. It is based on the number and quality of backlinks to the page.
a description of an image that appears in HTML code. It is used to provide context to search engines and assistive technologies.
a code added to a website that helps search engines understand the content on the page. It can be used to provide rich snippets and enhance the appearance of search results.
the practice of optimizing a website to appear in local search results. It includes optimizing for local keywords, creating a Google My Business profile, and building local citations.
longer, more specific keywords that are less competitive and more targeted to a specific audience.
linking to other pages on the same website. It can help distribute link equity and improve site navigation.
linking to other websites. It can provide context and credibility to a website and help distribute link equity.
a metric developed by Moz that predicts how well a website will rank on search engine results pages. It is based on the quantity and quality of inbound links to the website.
a free tool provided by Google that tracks website traffic and provides insights into user behavior and website performance.
the percentage of times a keyword appears on a page compared to the total number of words. It is important to avoid overusing keywords, which can be seen as spammy by search engines.
special features that appear in the search engine results, such as featured snippets, knowledge panels, and local packs. Optimizing for these features can improve visibility and drive more traffic to a website.
the practice of optimizing a website for mobile devices. It includes designing for smaller screens, using responsive design, and optimizing page load times.
Google Search Console
a free tool provided by Google that helps website owners monitor and maintain their website’s presence in Google search results.
Black hat SEO
unethical SEO practices that violate search engine guidelines, such as keyword stuffing, cloaking, and link schemes. Black hat SEO can result in penalties or even a ban from search engines.
White hat SEO
ethical SEO practices that adhere to search engine guidelines and focus on improving user experience and providing high-quality content.
Gray hat SEO
SEO practices that fall somewhere between black hat and white hat. They may not violate search engine guidelines but still have the potential to be seen as manipulative.
the process of identifying and analyzing keywords that are relevant to a website’s content and audience. It helps in creating content that is more likely to be discovered by search engines.
the process by which search engine bots (also known as spiders or crawlers) discover and index web pages.
the process by which search engines add web pages to their database and make them available to show in search results.
the amount of time it takes for a web page to load. Site speed is an important ranking factor in SEO and can affect user experience.
enhanced search results that provide additional information, such as star ratings or recipe ingredients. They can help a website stand out in the search engine results and drive more traffic.
the number of clicks it takes to reach a particular page on a website from the homepage. A lower click depth can improve site navigation and user experience.
User experience (UX)
the overall experience that a user has when interacting with a website. A good UX is important for both SEO and user engagement.
the process of acquiring backlinks to a website from other websites. It is an important ranking factor in SEO and can be done through a variety of methods, such as guest posting and broken link building.
the practice of creating and sharing high-quality content to attract and engage a target audience. It is an important part of SEO and can help build brand awareness and authority.
the process of choosing the preferred URL when multiple URLs can access the same content. It helps avoid duplicate content issues and consolidate link equity.
the unique name that identifies a website on the internet. Choosing a good domain name can improve a website’s brand identity and SEO.
when multiple pages on a website target the same keyword. It can dilute the ranking power of a page and confuse search engines.
Meta robots tag
a tag that provides instructions to search engine crawlers on whether to index a page or follow links on the page. It can be used to prevent duplicate content issues and conserve crawl budget.
CTR (click-through rate)
the percentage of people who click on a link after seeing it in search results or elsewhere. It is an important metric for measuring the effectiveness of SEO and advertising campaigns.
Google My Business
a free tool provided by Google that allows businesses to create a listing and appear in local search results. It includes information such as business hours, reviews, and contact information.
a file that provides instructions to search engine crawlers on which pages of a website should be crawled and indexed. It can be used to prevent crawling of sensitive or duplicate content.
a file that lists all of the pages on a website and provides information on how they are related. It helps search engine crawlers discover and index all of the pages on a website.
SSL (Secure Sockets Layer)
a security protocol that encrypts data between a website and the user’s browser. It is important for website security and can also be a ranking factor in SEO.
a link from another website to a page on your website. Backlinks are an important ranking factor in SEO and can help improve a website’s authority and visibility.
the visible text of a hyperlink. It can affect how search engines interpret the relevance and authority of the linked page.
the practice of overusing keywords on a page in an attempt to manipulate search engine rankings. It is considered a black hat SEO tactic and can result in penalties or even a ban from search engines.
content that appears on multiple pages or websites. It can be unintentional, such as when a website has multiple URLs for the same content, or intentional, such as when someone copies content from another website. Duplicate content can dilute the ranking power of a page and confuse search engines.
the percentage of visitors to a website who take a desired action, such as making a purchase or filling out a form. Improving conversion rates can help a website achieve its goals and improve ROI.
Google Search Console
a free tool provided by Google that helps website owners monitor and improve their website’s performance in search results. It provides information on search traffic, indexing, and potential issues.
a type of code that helps search engines understand the content and context of a web page. It can enhance search results by providing additional information, such as product prices or event dates.
SERP (search engine results page)
the page that displays search results for a query. It can include various types of results, such as organic listings, ads, and featured snippets.
the percentage of visitors to a website who leave after viewing only one page. A high bounce rate can indicate a poor user experience or irrelevant content.
a permanent redirect from one URL to another. It is used to redirect traffic from an old URL to a new one and can preserve search engine rankings and link equity.
a status code that indicates that a web page cannot be found. It can occur when a page is deleted or moved without a redirect, and can negatively affect user experience and SEO.
a website design that is optimized for mobile devices. It is an important factor in SEO and user experience, as more and more people access the internet on mobile devices.
Linking from one page on a website to another page on the same website. It can help improve site navigation, distribute link equity, and improve user experience.
linking from one website to another website. It can help improve authority and relevance signals for a website.
a description of an image that appears when the image cannot be displayed. It is important for accessibility and can also provide information to search engines on the context of an image.
a short description that appears below the title tag in search results. It can influence click-through rates and should accurately describe the content of a page.
the percentage of times a keyword appears on a page compared to the total number of words on the page. It was once considered an important ranking factor, but is no longer as important as providing high-quality content.
E-A-T stands for Expertise, Authority, and Trustworthiness. It is a framework that Google uses to evaluate the quality of a website’s content. Websites that demonstrate high levels of E-A-T are more likely to rank higher in search results.
Topical authority refers to the level of expertise a website or individual has on a specific topic or subject. It is an important factor in search engine rankings, as search engines aim to provide users with the most relevant and high-quality content.
A webmaster is a person or team responsible for the maintenance and operation of a website. Their responsibilities can include designing, coding, updating, and optimizing the website for search engines and users.
In the context of SEO, an entity refers to a person, place, or thing that is identified and recognized by search engines. Entities can include people, companies, products, and more, and can help search engines understand the context and relevance of a page.
NLP stands for Natural Language Processing. It is a branch of artificial intelligence that helps computers understand and interpret human language. NLP is used by search engines to better understand the intent behind search queries and provide more accurate and relevant results.
BERT (Bidirectional Encoder Representations from Transformers) is a natural language processing algorithm developed by Google. It helps search engines understand the context and nuances of language, allowing them to provide more accurate and relevant search results.
A Google penalty is a negative action taken by Google against a website that violates its guidelines. Penalties can result in a drop in search rankings or even removal from search results.
Google Panda is a search algorithm update that focuses on improving the quality of search results by penalizing low-quality and spammy websites. It was first introduced in 2011 and has since been integrated into Google’s core algorithm.
Google Penguin is a search algorithm update that focuses on identifying and penalizing websites that engage in manipulative link building practices. It was first introduced in 2012 and has since been integrated into Google’s core algorithm.
Google Hummingbird is a search algorithm update that focuses on understanding the meaning and intent behind search queries, rather than just matching keywords. It was first introduced in 2013 and has since been integrated into Google’s core algorithm.
Link building is the practice of acquiring links from other websites to a website. It is an important factor in SEO, as links can improve a website’s authority and visibility in search results.
Shopify SEO refers to the process of optimizing a Shopify e-commerce website for search engines. This can include optimizing product pages, improving site speed, and building high-quality backlinks.
E-commerce SEO refers to the process of optimizing an e-commerce website for search engines. It can include optimizing product pages, improving site speed, and building high-quality backlinks.
Wix SEO refers to the process of optimizing a Wix website for search engines. This can include optimizing page titles and descriptions, improving site speed, and building high-quality backlinks.
Weebly SEO refers to the process of optimizing a Weebly website for search engines. This can include optimizing page titles and descriptions, improving site speed, and building high-quality backlinks.
Squarespace SEO refers to the process of optimizing a Squarespace website for search engines. This can include optimizing page titles and descriptions, improving site speed, and building high-quality backlinks.
Small business SEO
Small business SEO refers to the process of optimizing a small business website for search engines. It can include optimizing page titles and descriptions, improving site speed, and building high-quality
Enterprise SEO refers to the practice of optimizing large, complex websites with multiple pages and products. It involves developing a comprehensive SEO strategy, including on-page and off-page optimization, content creation, and technical SEO, to improve visibility and traffic to the website.
10x content is a term coined by Rand Fishkin, which refers to content that is 10 times better than any other content on the same topic. It is high-quality, comprehensive, and provides unique insights or perspectives that can’t be found elsewhere. 10x content is more likely to generate backlinks and social shares, improving a website’s search engine rankings.
HTTPS stands for Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure, and it is a protocol used to encrypt data transmitted over the internet. HTTPS is becoming increasingly important for SEO, as Google considers secure websites to be more trustworthy and therefore more likely to rank higher in search results.
A 302 redirect is a temporary redirect used to redirect users and search engines from one URL to another. It indicates that the original URL has moved temporarily to the new URL, and search engines will continue to index the original URL.
A 401 error occurs when a user attempts to access a page that requires authentication. It is typically seen when a user tries to access a password-protected page without the correct login credentials.
A 404 error occurs when a user attempts to access a page that no longer exists on a website. It is a common error that can occur when a page is deleted or moved without proper redirection.
A 410 error occurs when a user attempts to access a page that has been permanently deleted from a website. Unlike a 404 error, a 410 error indicates to search engines that the page will not be returning, and it is no longer necessary to index it.
Crawl budget refers to the amount of time and resources search engines allocate to crawling and indexing a website. It is influenced by factors such as site speed, server performance, and the size and complexity of the website.
No index is a tag that can be added to a page’s HTML code to instruct search engines not to index the page. This can be useful for pages that are not important for SEO or that contain duplicate content.
Nofollow is an attribute that can be added to a hyperlink to instruct search engines not to follow the link to the target page. This can be useful for avoiding link spam and preventing the transfer of authority to low-quality pages.
Noopener is a tag that can be added to a hyperlink to prevent the target page from accessing the window.opener object, which can be used for malicious purposes such as phishing attacks. It is a security feature recommended by Google for all external links.