41 SEO Terms You Need To Know

41 seo terms you need to know

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41 seo terms you need to know

Is one of your goals for the year ahead to learn and understand more about SEO? Or perhaps you’ve forgotten what a few acronyms or words mean.

If so, take a look at our new and improved SEO Jargon Buster!

301 Redirect

– If your website moves domains or people can access your website from various URLs, a 301 redirect is carried out to ensure that people aren’t greeted with a 301 error, they are taken to a page on the new website.

404 Error

– This message normally appears when a web page no longer exists or has moved to a different URL. The error can be resolved by using a 404 redirect which will send users to another page.


– This is a formula or process a search engine, program or computer follows to solve a problem and come up with a result. In SEO terms, search engines use algorithms to decide where a page should rank in search results.

Alt text

– This is used to describe an image, for example an image of a red ball would have the alt text ‘red ball’. Alt text will show up in place of an image if it can’t be viewed. Alt text can also help with SEO.


– In SEO terms, this is a collection of data showing how users interact with a website. For example, what search terms they used to read the website, how long they spent on the website and which pages they viewed.

Anchor Text

 – This is the clickable text in a hyperlink; “Find out about our marketing consultancy services.” ‘Marketing consultancy’ is the anchor text.

Authority links

– These are links from an authoritative website, such as BBC, Gov.uk etc.


– This is a link coming into a website from an external website. An example of this might be someone might link to your website on their blog.

Black Hat SEO

– These are SEO techniques which don’t comply with best practice guideless. Black hat SEO techniques trick search engines into giving a website a higher page ranking than it deserves, quite often these techniques can backfire and damage search rankings.

Bounce Rate –

A ‘bounce’ in website terms is when someone visits your website and leaves before visiting another page, so the bounce rate is the percentage of people who only visiting one page on your website.

Canonical URL

– This is the ‘correct’ URL for a page and is used when there are multiple ways to get to a page.

CAPTCHA – Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computer and Humans Apart

– A ‘test’ which is used to determine whether a user is a computer or a human.

You often see these when you try to create an account or leave a comment on a website. You will then be shown a box with a random selection of letters, a word or numbers. A human can fill out a CAPTCHA form (usually!), however a computer program that may be trying to spam the website would struggle.

CMS – Content Management System

– A system, such as WordPress and Concrete5, which allows website owners to manage copy and pages on their website, without the need for them to understand or know how to code a website.


– When a user or customer does what you want them to do. If you have a call to action on your website, such as download a brochure, the conversion is when a user downloads the brochure.

CPC – Cost Per Click

– In a Pay Per Click advertising model, this is the cost to the advertiser each time someone clicks on one of their adverts.


– Buying or selling products or services on the internet.

Grey Hat SEO –

There are search engine optimisation techniques which bend best practice results, rather than completely breaking them.


– This is a request for something on a web page to load, such as the page itself or an image. Hits are not a good indication of how much traffic your website has had, since each image counts as a ‘hit’. So if you had a website with 10 images and it was loaded twice, you’d see 20 hits.

HTML – HyperText Markup Language –

This is a ‘language’ used to tells browsers how a website should look and how to display it.

Link Building

– One way of improving your website’s SEO is to increase the number of links coming in to your website, so you may carry out link building. This can be done by writing guest blog posts for other websites or commenting on other websites.

Linking C-Blocks

– This refers to IP addresses and is used by search engines to determine whether websites linking to each other are related. For example, if websites on the same server are linking to each other, the links are not natural and will probably have been set up by the same person.

Long Tail Keyphrases

– Long tail keyphrases are made up of a few words. It’s much easier to try and get a higher ranking for a long tail keyphrase than it is a short tail keyphrase.

Meta Title

– Brief description of the page which shows up in search engines and at the top of browsers.

Meta Description – Tells search engines what the page is about and will show up in search results, which means it needs to be interesting and informative to get people to click on it.

Meta Keywords

– They were used to list keywords used on the page.Meta keywords are no longer used and can harm your search rankings.

Onsite SEO

– Any search engine optimisation work which is carried out on your website which will improve its SEO. This can be things such as making sure pages all have meta descriptions, using keywords in your copy and alt text.

Offsite SEO

– Any SEO work which is not carried out on your website, which will improve your website’s SEO. This can include gaining backlinks from other websites and directory listings.

Online Directory

– Like an online Yellow Pages, examples include Dmoz and Yell.com. Submitting your business and website to high quality directories, such as Dmoz and Yahoo Directory can help with SEO.

Pagerank (also known as PR)

– How relevant a search engine considers your page to be in relation to keywords searched.

Pageview – This is the number of times a page has been viewed, however this doesn’t show how many people have viewed your website as the same person could view the page more than once.

PPC – Pay Per Click

– An advertising pricing model, where the advertiser will pay for each click their advert receives, regardless of whether the person who clicks on it purchases or converts.

Reciprocal Link

– When two websites link to each other, they are using reciprocal links. This used to be a good method of link building, however it has very little benefit nowadays.

RSS Feed – Really Simple Syndication

– RSS feeds are used to ensure that anyone who subscribes to your blog or website, is sent your latest blog post or content. You can choose to send the entire blog post or just a small snippet of it to the RSS feeder, to encourage people to view it directly from your website.

SE – Search Engine

– Examples; Google, Yahoo, Bing.

SEO – Search Engine Optimisation

– A strategy used to improve a websites search engine rankings and making it easier to find. The better a website’s SEO is, the higher the rankings are, which can result in more traffic.

SEM – Search Engine Marketing

– This is a marketing strategy which simply uses search engines to promote a business. SEM usually uses paid advertisements, such as Google AdWords.

SERP – Search Engine Results Page

– When a user types something into a search engine, they will be shown a results page which lists web pages which are relevant to the keywords used in the search.

Unique Visitor –

This is how many unique visitors your website has had. You might have had 20 visits but only 4 unique visitors. This can show you how many people have returned to your website.

URL– Uniform Resource Locator

– This is address used to find a website or document on the internet, for example www.google.com.

White Hat

– These are search engine optimisation techniques which are within best practice guides and rightfully earn a website a page ranking, rather than tricking a search engine into giving it a higher page ranking. This is the right way to go about search engine optimisation.


If you need help improving your search rankings or making your website more SEO friendly, we can help. Check out our SEO blogs for more useful info, or get in touch with us to find out more and let’s have a chat about your website’s SEO and what we can do for you. You can call us on 01543 495 752 or email us on contact@themarketingpeople.com

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