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Chapter 7

The SEO Glossary

Understand the key terms

301 Redirect – A way to redirect traffic from one web page to another. Whenever you change the URL of a page, make sure to apply a 301 redirect to make to old URL point to the new one. This makes sure people who have linked, shared, or bookmarked the old URL can still get to the new one automatically. Search engines also automatically update their indexes this way.

ALT Text/Tag – The description of an image on your website’s HTML. This is how search engines read images on your website, so it’s important to make sure all images have relevant ALT text.

Anchor Text – The actual text of a link to a web page. On most websites, this text is usually blue and turns purple if you’ve clicked the link in the past. The purpose of anchor text is to tell search engines what the linked page is about.

Black Hat – Search engine optimization practices that violate Google’s quality guidelines.

Blog – A part of your website where you publish content regularly, usually about what your website is about. Each blog post on your website is a new web page that a search engine sees.

Bookmark – A link to a webpage that you save for later reference on your web browser, computer, or smartphone. Creating content that gets bookmarked often is a good sign to search engines.

Click-Through Rate – The ratio of impressions to clicks on your URLs.

Conversion Form – A form on your website that a visitor fills out to give you information about them. These forms are one way to convert website visitors into leads.

Crawling – The process search engines use to discover your web pages.

Directory – An area to submit your site, much like the Yellow Pages. Directories give you an inbound link and also can help people find your business.

Domain – The main URL or web address of your site (ie: Search engines favor websites with longer registrations because it shows commitment.

The Fold – The “fold” is the point on your web page where the page gets cut off by the bottom of a visitor’s browser, monitor, or phone screen. You can always scroll past the fold but isn’t the first thing seen. This is generally the most important part of your homepage.

Google Tag Manager – A single hub for managing multiple website tracking codes.

Headings – The most important text on your page. You are able to express the importance of heading by using tags like h1 or h2. The lower the number the more important the text, and it is usually the biggest and most bold text on the page.

HTML – The backend, code part of your website that search engines read. The cleaner your HTML is, the better.

Inbound Link – Or “Backlinks” are links from one website to another. A link from another reputable website will improve your SEO, but a link from a blackhat website can actually hurt your SEO.

Internal Link – A link from one page to another on the same website. An example would be a link from your homepage to your services page.

Indexed Pages – The pages of your website that search engines store for their records.

Keyword – A word that users enter on a search engine. The goal is SEO is the optimize your web pages with the goal of drawing in visitors who search for specific keywords.

Link Building – The strategy of getting more inbound links to your website to improve your search engine rankings.

Long-Tail Keyword – An uncommon or less searched keyword, typically with more than two words in the phrase. Local businesses should be targeting long tail keywords because they are easier to rank for and have a higher conversion rate than shorter keywords.

Meta Description – A brief description of the contents of a web page, usually fewer than 160 characters. This is usually seen in search results below the page title and when linking pages to social media posts.

Nofollow – When a link from one page does not pass SEO credit to another. Use this when linking to external pages that you don’t want to endorse.

Page Speed – The overall time it takes for your web page to load.

Page Title – The name you give your web page, which is seen at the top of browser windows, social media posts, and search results. Page titles should contain keywords that you wish to rank for.

PageRank – A component of Google’s search engine ranking algorithm ranking how good your SEO is.

PPC (Pay-Per-Click) – Advertising method to bid on keywords to obtain website traffic, by showing your keywords on the top of searches and paying each time someone clicks on them.

SERP (Search Engine Results Page) – The page you see after conducting a search.

Sitemap – A document created that provides a map to search engines of all the pages on a website.

Spider – A program that browses the internet and collects information about websites. Also known as “bots” or “crawlers”.

SSL Certificate – “Secure Sockets Layer” is used to encrypt data passed between the web server and browser. This is part of making your web pages “secure” and give a boost in SEO.

Traffic – The visitors to your website.

URL – The web address of a page on your website (ie:

White Hat – Search engine optimization practices that comply with Google’s quality guidelines.

The Beginner's Guide to SEO

If you run into any words that you’re having trouble with during this guide remember to check our SEO Glossary!

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