SEO Glossary

Anchor Text Anchor text refers to the visible text for a hyperlink. For example: <a href=”http://www.yoursite.com/”>This is the anchor text</a>

Back Link Any link on another page that points to the subject page. It is also called inbound links or IBL’s.

Bot Abbreviation for robot. Spiders are software programs that scan the web. They are used to index web pages for search engines. It is also called a spider.

Black hat An unethical method of SEO which break’s search engine’s Terms of Service. This method works short-term, but sites using black hat methods are permanently banned from search engines within a month or two after they get caught.

Cloaking Cloaking describes the technique of serving a different page to a search engine spider than what a human visitor sees. This technique is abused by spammers for keyword stuffing. Cloaking is a violation of the Terms Of Service of most search engines and results in a ban.

Doorway Page A gateway page exists solely for the purpose of driving traffic to another page. They are usually designed and optimized to target one specific keyphrase. Gateway pages are a violation of the Terms Of Service of most search engines and could be grounds for banning. Also called a gateway page.

FFA Abbreviation for Free For All. FFA sites post large lists of unrelated links to anyone and everyone. FFA sites and the links they provide are basically useless. Humans do not use them and search engines generally ban them.

Gateway Page A gateway page exists solely for the purpose of driving traffic to another page. They are usually designed and optimized to target one specific keyphrase. Gateway pages are a violation of the Terms Of Service of most search engines and could be grounds for banning. Also called a doorway page.

Grey hat SEO using both white hat and black hat methods.

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IBL Abbreviation for In Bound Link. Any link on another page that link to your page. Also called a back link.

Keyword Keywords are words which are used in search engine queries.

Keyphrase Keyphrases are multi-word phrases used in search engine queries Keyword Stuffing Keyword stuffing refers to the practice of adding too many keywords to a web page. The words are added in an attempt to rank higher in search engines. While this tactic works, the page reads badly to visitors and looks spammy, this result in not many repeat visitors. Search Engines are usually new technology to determine more accurately whether a page uses proper sentence structure and is not just keyword stuffing.

Link building Creating back links to your own website.

Link Farm A link farm is a group of separate, highly interlinked websites for the purposes of inflating link popularity and PageRank. Search Engines ban link farms and dislike sites which are listed on these sites

Mirror A mirror is a near identical duplicate website (or page). Mirrors are commonly used in an effort to target different keywords. Using mirrors is a violation of the Terms Of Service of most search engines and results in a ban. Mirrors can also be exact copies of sites.

Portal Designation for websites that are either authoritative hubs for a given subject or popular content driven sites (like Yahoo) that people use as their homepage. Most portals offer significant content and offer advertising opportunities for relevant sites.

PR Abbreviation for PageRank – Google’s trademark for their proprietary measure of link popularity for web pages.

Robots.txt Robots.txt is a file which spiders read to determine which parts of a website they may visit and may not visit

Sitemap A page containing links to all the pages in a site

SEO Abbreviation for Search Engine Optimization. SEO covers the process of making web pages spider-friendly so search engines can read them, and making web pages rank highly in search engines for relevant terms

SERP Abbreviation for Search Engine Results Page/Positioning

Spam In the SEO vernacular, this refers to manipulation techniques that violate search engines Terms of Service and are designed to achieve higher rankings for a web page. Obviously, spam could be grounds for banning.

Spamdexing Spamdexing was described as the effort to spam a search engine’s index. Spamdexing is a violation of the Terms Of Service of most search engines and results in a ban.

Spider Spiders are software programs that scan the web. They are used to index web pages for search engines. Also known as a bot or a robot.

Stop Word Stop words are words that are ignored by search engines when indexing web pages and processing search queries. Common words such as “the” and “and” are stop words.

White hat An ethical method of SEO that follows search engine’s Terms of Service.