Search engine terms and definitions

 Position Masters

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Search Engine Terms Defined

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  • automated robots
  • categorical
  • Comments
  • content
  • description
  • e-Commerce
  • FFA's
  • headings
  • HTML tags
  • keyword frequency
  • keyword placement
  • keyword prominence
  • keyword weight
  • keywords
  • listings
  • meta tags
  • optimize (Optimization)
  • phrases
  • PPF (pay for placement)
  • positioning
  • ranking
  • results
  • search directory
  • search engine
  • site popularity
  • spider
  • submission
  • targeted
  • title
  • total words
  • World Wide Web

  • automated robots - are invisible little web creatures, crawling all over the WWW, inspecting, indexing and (who knows what else they may be doing! I've always wondered why I've had unexplainable itches while surfing the web) web sites. 
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    categorical - Categorical or category is simply a keyword or phrase entered on a directory while making a search. The resultant page will attempt to find the correct category of your search. 
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    comments - are not HTML tags, as such, but they allow the HTML programmer to include these tags at various spots in the page without them being viewed by a browser. They are viewable if you look at the page source code, however and can be an aid in ranking.
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    content - Is the contents of your website, or more specifically, the contents of the specific page in question. In order for a page to rank well, the content of the page must be in align with the chosen keyword for that page.
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    description - Refers to the information contained in one of the META tags that holds the description of the page and/or web site. The information contained in this tag is the information that is displayed immediately after the main link on many search engine results so it's good to make it 'sell' the page or site content.
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    e-Commerce - is the conducting commercial transactions on the internet where goods, information or services are bought and then paid for.
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    FFA - pages (Free For All) are not search engines or directory's. They are, for the most part, pages that simply take submissions that usually stay active for a period of time. A submission is placed at the top of their list and then moved down and eventually out as other submissions are made. These sites are rarely recommended and usually result in the reception of a flood of unwanted e-mail and solicitations.
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    headings - Are those areas on a web page enclosed by heading tags. example: <H1>Position Masters<H1> (heading tags vary in weight (size & density) depending on the status of the heading or sub-heading, i.e., H1,2,3,4. They are part of HTML language).
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    HTML tags - Hypertext Markup Language tags are part of the language that powers web pages and delivers instruction to your web browser to display the page information in more than just plain text. example: <B>Position Masters</B> (turns text into bold).
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    keyword frequency - is how often a keyword appears on a page and in specific areas on a page. The more times a keyword shows up on a search engine submission, the more relevant it will be to that search. If overdone, some engines and directory's will downgrade the page due to what they term as spamming.
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    keyword placement - refers to the many areas on a web page that a search engine looks for in a search and include the page title, heading, body as well as link text and even in comment tags. (This is still important but is becoming less important to some engines and spiders.)
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    keyword prominence - Keyword prominence is how close to the start of the page content that the keyword appears. In general, a keyword that appears closer to the top of the page or area will be more relevant to some search engines. However, sometimes it helps to have a keyword in the middle of an area, or even toward the end of the area.
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    keyword weight - is simply a factor in percentage form of a keyword or phrase in relation to all other words on a page.
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    keywords - Generally refers to any word or phrase the user might search for in order to find a Web site or a page. Each variation of a keyword, such as the plural form of the word, is treated like a separate keyword. Phrases (i.e., a string of multiple keywords) is generally used interchangeably.
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    listings - refers to the report or result of a engine or directory search, usually 10 to 20 per page. (where your site appears in the listing is the 'rank' of that page on that search engine.)
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    META tags - META tags are part of HTML but are there for the sole use of search engine spiders. These (numerous) tags contain various information that the site owner wants to deliver to these spiders.
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    optimize - or optimization refers to changing and/or adding various HTML tags, such as Meta Tags, summary, title, alt, and content (text) and readies the page to be spidered by a search engine and, if done correctly, to rank very high in the results of a particular search on a search engine.
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    phrases - are (keyword phrases) are combination of keywords than are descriptive of your website content category and are optimized to those words that a typical web searcher may use when searching for content.
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    PPF (Pay-for-placement) -  a fee-based form of search engine marketing. It allows you to pay for a high ranking on a search results page for a given keyword or phrase. Also known as Pay Per Click (PPC). In this respect it presents a quick shortcut to getting the ranking you want, as long as you are willing to pay the going rate, which is sometimes available for everyone to see.
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    positioning - Positioning is the act of massaging various aspects of a website to closely align with the database criteria of an individual search engine, primarily through the use of META tags, keywords, description, content, headings, tags, comments and more. Submission is a part of positioning. All of this information is generated via comparisons between the top websites in any category that is being optimized for top ranking. A laborious project at best.
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    ranking - refers to the numerical position a page comes up on a search engine or search directory based upon it's position given a specific search criteria.
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    results - the results displayed by a search engine or directory after a search term has been entered.
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    search directory - A search directory is similar to a search engine in that they each compile databases of web sites. A directory differs in that it only enters sites that are directly submitted to it and in stead of crawling a site they send humans to inspect and decide if your site is worthy of a listing. The listings are then categorized and normally alphabetized so that the results of any search will start with site descriptions that begin with some number or non-letter character then A to Z.
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    search engines - A search engine is a giant database of many Web pages. A search engine generally returns the result of a search ranked by 'that search engines' indexing criteria. This formula (called algorithms) vary widely between search engines and frustratingly enough seem to get modified depending upon which way the wind is blowing.
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    site popularity - in a nutshell is simply how many other websites link to yours. If your popularity value is null, it is not the end of the world, but it definitely is a factor in the ranking process on some engines, and there are specific methods that can be employed to increase a sites popularity. Some engines used to rate popularity simply by the number of hits a site got. Now it's a bit more sophisticated and some even rank higher, sites that have links to them that are highly relevant to the site in question.
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    spider - programs, also called robots, enter your website and categorize the information contained in the site and the META tags, which at some point is indexed into the search engines database and subsequently is ranked based upon the keyword/phrase for that page.
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    submission - is the act of submitting a website to search engines and directories within the database criterion of each individual engine or directory. Fortunately for those of us in this business, some engines utilize the same criteria. Many do not.
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    targeted - A group of specifically defined individuals or companies.
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    title - in this case, title refers to the META/HTML tag that contains the page title, which SHOULD be determined by the contents of that page. Many designers pay little attention to the page content versus the title.
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    total words - a count of the words in an area on a page. This count excludes HTML tags. Engines rank pages more favorably if they have a certain number of words on the page. However, sometimes the fewer words the better (confused? I don't blame you.) Of course, some other engines think that the more words the better.
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    world wide web - well, that's where we are, or at least in a teeny corner of the vast network of linked computers that make up this wonderous electronic universe.
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    The Search Engine Tamer Talk to a live positioner (916) 373-9280