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Glossary -SEO, SEM and Analytics Shop-Talk

Algorithm – is a mathematical procedure or problem-solving technique to perform and accomplish a task. Based on a specific and pre-defined logic, algorithms are the vehicle by which computers and search engines process information. For example, a search engine like Google uses algorithms to organize the millions of pages they find. The algorithms are effectively the logic they use to determine where a page ranks and why.

Blog – a personal account of one’s life –like a personal journal which is published online.  Blogs can can cover a specific area of one's life or their life as a whole.  For example, a photographer could start a blog detailing their experience as a photographer.  Alternatively, a company could use a blog to discuss their latest business developments or insights they've gleaned at a conference.

Blogging – the act of writing a blog.

Call to Action (CTA) - an action you wish to call out or bring prominence to on your website. Your call to action(s) should directly relate to your website's objectives.

Code – a term used by web professionals to describe the language used to make up the contents of a webpage. 

Conversion - When a user follows the desired action you wish them to take on your website.  For example, maybe your site's main raison d'etre is a newsletter sign-up.  In this case, every time a user signs up for your newsletter, they've converted.  Google analytics and other web analytics can track conversions.

CPC (Cost Per Click) – measurement or rating used in web analytics to determine the amount of money it costs every time someone clicks within a predefined area of a website or webpage.  

HTML (Hyper Text Markup Language) – a computing language which can structure the appearance of a document by designating and organizing text into common elements like title, new paragraphs, bolded text, etc...  Intended for the creation of web pages. 

Impressions – amount of times a page is viewed.

IA (Information Architecture) – the manner in which the site information is organized.  Can be compared to a blueprint for the construction of a structure. 

Inbound Links – links from another website pointing to your website (like a friend calling your house from their house).

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) - KPIs are used as a support and analyze your website's goals.  Typically, KPI reports are given to key stakeholders or management for weekly review.  

Natural Search Results or Organic Search Results – this term refers to a website's positioning in the non-sponsored section of the search engine results page.

Online Reputation Management (ORM) – with the onset of consumer generated content on the web, brands can't always control what people say about them.  ORM is an emerging field combining public relations with search engine optimization monitoring online conversation to enhance brand reputation in search results.

Orphan Pages – webpages within a website with no links pointing to them.

Outbound Links – links from your site pointing to another website.

Page Rank (PR) –  a method of measuring a web site or webpage relative to other sites or pages within its subject area. The term PageRank is trademarked by Google.

Reciprocal Link or Link Exchange – the process of swapping links with another website. For example, if a site about flowers links to a site about flower vases, then the flower vase site reciprocates with a link back. This is a reciprocal linking relationship.  Can  be compared to the notion “if you scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours.”

SEM (Search Engine Marketing) – the act of promoting a website via multiple paid and unpaid web marketing strategies.

SEO (Search Engine Optimization) – the process of arranging and preparing your website’s code or HTML so that search engines can better understand its content and/or purpose. Having a properly optimized webpage helps ensure your SEM tactics are further leveraged.

SERP (Search Engine Results Page) – the results page which appears when a query is performed through a search engine. 

Spamdexing or Search Engine Spamming – using questionable and deliberate content and linking tactics to manipulate a webpage's rank. Content Spamming includes but is not limited to: hidden or invisible text, keyword stuffing, meta tag stuffing, gateway or doorway pages and scraper sites. Link spamming includes but is not limited to: link farms, hidden links, spam in blogs or 'splogs', page hijacking, referrer log spamming and buying expired domains.

Spider – a computer program that finds webpages.

Traffic Insurance – buying key available derivatives of your domain name to account for the various ways people may type your website's address.

Viral Marketing – can be likened to the spread of an epidemic. Although this term may have an obvious negative connotation, it aptly describes the quick spread of information for the purpose of extending a brand, launching a product, introducing a campaign or the like. Viral marketing employs all the benefits of word-of-mouth advertising online. For this reason, it is a powerful marketing technique because it is based on a personal endorsement. Viral marketing can be carried out via email, blogging, forums, amateur websites and the like. Based on the buzz a viral marketing campaign can generate, it is considered to garner exponential coverage of the advertisers’ product or service and provide and an explosive return on investment in comparison to the campaigning company’s initial advertising spend.

Visitor Scenarios – understanding the basic reasons why visitors come to your site.

Wire Frames – initial mock-up or sketch of how each content, creative and navigational component will fit into a website.  For example, a wire frame will often include an initial rendition of site structure and include where the main navigation, text area and images will appear.  Wire frames are used as a website planning technique.

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