If you’re a bit of a ‘newbie’ to the world of SEO, you’ll most likely be looking for something out there that covers the fundamentals of Search Engine Optimisation (SEO). What you might find out there is a plethora of SEO guides largely targeted towards the SEO technicians and all-round search engine super fan-boys. The aim of this guide is to bust the jargon out of your usual SEO newbie experience; it is often a daunting experience taking your first steps into SEO either as digital marketer, company or just someone with a burgeoning interest in SEO, hopefully this guide will explain it in simple language!
Before I proceed with this edition’s jargon buster, I should start with what is SEO exactly. Like it says on the tin, SEO is optimising a website – either internally or externally – in order to increase search engine traffic. It is a practice that requires looking at a number of elements to making a website search engine friendly; the Prodo SEO Jargon Buster is designed to help you discover what these elements are and educate you on the terms we use. Let’s start at the very beginning – A to C.
301 - Permanent server redirect, a web page’s change of address generally found in the web.config file on Windows Servers or in the htaccess file on apache servers however this can vary depending on the server setup. 301s are extremely useful for dealing with canonical issues (we’ll get to that later!)
Algorithm - Search engines use these to decide what pages to suggest for particular search queries.
Alt text - The description of a particular graphic; search engines cannot differentiate one picture from another; therefore the spider has to have an accurate description of the associated picture.
Analytics - A programme that collects and analyses data about the usage of a particular website. One particularly popular programme is Google Analytics, which has lots of features and best of all, free!
Anchor text - The user visible text of links. Anchor texts are important to search engines, as they give an indication of the relevancy of a referring site and of the link to the landing page’s content. Keywords are particularly important in anchor text.
Authority - Often humorously called link juice or Google juice by SEOs, authority essentially conveys how much trust a search engine credits a website with, according to search query.
Authority site - Websites which have many incoming links from other expert sites. You’ll know when you see an authority site, because it usually has a high page rank, trust and search results placement.
Back link - Sometimes called incoming links or inlinks, a back link is any link into a site or page from another site or page.
Bot - A programme which performs tasks autonomously; search engines use bots to locate and add new pages to their search index. These are often referred to as spiders or crawlers as they scour the web’s content.
Bounce rate - A percentage of users who enter a site and then leave without viewing other internal pages.
Canonical issues - issues with duplicate content. Canonical issues can be dealt with by using a no index meta tag in the non-canonical copies and 301s to redirect back to the canon.
CMS - Content Management System, which separates content creation from other tasks, so the creator can be effective without ever being that techie!
Conversion - achievement of a measureable goal on a website.
CPC - Cost Per Click
So, this is the first instalment of Prodo’s Jargon Buster. Has it whet your appetite for SEO yet? I hope so, because we’ve only just got started on the journey into SEO. Keep an eye on the horizon for the successive parts in our series…
This is just a basic overview of some of the SEO jargon used here at Prodo – if you would like to add your own thoughts as always feel free to comment below.