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SEM Glossary of Terms
AQABA has provided you with a glossary of terms, abbreviations
and acronyms used within the Search Engine Marketing
“SEM”, Internet Marketing, Organic Search
Engine Optimization “SEO” and Pay-Per-Click
management “PPC” industries. We hope you
find this to be resourceful.
404 - When a page is removed,
the server will generate a 404 when a visitor attempts
to view that page.
Above The Fold - Above The
Fold refers to the part of the screen where a user does
not have to scroll to see content. It is a reference
to newspapers where the top part of the page is above
Ad Broker - Someone who does
nothing but sell advertisements for websites.
Ad Inventory - The number
of page views a site has available for advertising.
Ad Sense - A contextual advertising
program by Google.
AERT - Techniques for Accessibility
and Evaluation and Repair Tools
Affiliate - Someone who sets
up a business that is in between the original manufacturer
and the end customer. Often these are not wholesalers,
but store fronts. Most often, affiliates do not handle
product delivery or customer support.
Affiliate Program - A program
that allows websites to sell a product on a commission
Agent Name Delivery - The
practice of delivering a custom page based upon the
user agent string a browser or spider uses to identify
Algorithm - In the context
of search engines, it is the mathematical programming
system used to determine which web pages are displayed
in search results.
Anchor Text - The text that
is surrounded by a hyperlink (the part you click on
in a browser). This text is used by some search engines
to rank search results.
API - Application Programming Interface
Architext Spider - A spider
run by the Excite search engine.
ASCII - American Standard
Code for Information Interchange
Ask Jeeves - A meta search
engine which was purchased by Go2net.com.
ASP - Active Server Pages
a server based scripting language that is used to provide
dynamic content and build database driven web sites
where the browser may have no scripting at all. Most
often used in cloaking activity.
ASPX - Microsoft Active Server
Authority Site - A system
that would count inbound and outbound links to identify
central sites in a community.
B2B - Business To Business.
Products and services designed to be sold to other businesses.
B2C - Business To Consumer.
Products and services designed to be sold to the general
B2E - Business To Employee.
Products and services designed to be sold to company
Back Link - Inbound links
pointing to a page are referred to as back links. Most
major search engines allow you to see who is linking
to a page or site. That process is called "checking
Banner Blind - Refers to
the process where users become accustomed to banners
and don't even notice they are there any more.
BTF - Below The Fold refers
to the part of the screen where a user does not have
to scroll to see content. It is a reference to newspapers
where the bottom part of the page is below the fold.
CGI - An acronym for Common
Gateway Interface. CGI refers to programs that are used
to produce on-the-fly content for browser delivery.
Common CGI programming languages include Perl, C, and
CGI-BIN - One of the most
common name for a directory on a web server that contains
CGI files. These directories are often under heavier
access controls than standard directories.
Citation - A citation is
a reference to an entity. Citation: quote, mention,
reference. Citation in the context of the web usually
means a HREF link to a location. A Citation count is
the count of references to a page on the internet. Some
search engines work on the theory that pages with high
citation counts are better. In reality this is about
70% true. With modern affiliate and promotion programs,
citations can be generated by some sites in mass quantities.
Click Through - When a user
selects a hyper text (web page) link. The Click refers
to the noise a input mouse makes when a button is depressed.
The through refers to the act of going "through"
the link. Many web statistics are kept on click-throughs
(sometimes abbreviated as Click-Thru). Some advertising
systems are based on paying sites when someone actually
Clicks-Thru to a new site.
Click Tracking - Counting
clicks on links via a redirected counter program that
counts the clicks.
Cloaking - Using some system
to hide code or content from a user, and deliver custom
content to a search engine spider. The word Cloak comes
from Star Trek where the Klingons were capable of "cloaking"
their ships invisible. There are three main types of
cloaking: IP based, User Agent based, and the combination
of those two. IP based cloaking custom delivers a page
based on the users IP address (this can be used to deliver
custom language based sites or target groups of users
from particular ISP's such as AOL or @home users). User
Agent cloaking sends a custom page based upon the users
Agent (most often use to take advantage of a particular
agents strengths or features). Finally, the combination
of Agent and IP cloaking is use to target specific users
with specific agents (such as search engines).
Combined Logfile - A log
file format that collects all the data in the Common
Log File format, plus the information found in the referrer
and user agent fields. Often includes separate scripting
error logs as well.
Clustering - Some search
engines Cluster pages from the same website in groups
to keep any one site from dominating the top results.
A poor mans directory service.
Cold Fusion - A cgi database
program from Allaire. Cold fusion uses a file extension
of cf or cfm. Also used by some cloaking programs.
Comment Tag - HTML comment
tag that marks some html as a comment rather than displaying
it in a browser. It is notable in relation to search
engines because search engines have been known to index
comment based text.
Conversion Rate - The relationship
between show visitors to sales or actions. If 1 person
out of 100 purchases a sites product, it has a conversion
rate of 1 to 100.
Counter - A counter counts
hits or page views to a web site. Counter quality and
features can vary widely. Most common are image tag
counters that are activated when anyone views a page
with graphics enabled.
CPC - Cost Per Click.
CPL - Cost Per Lead
CPM - Cost Per
CPS - Cost Per Sale
CRM - Customer Relationship
Cyber Squatting - When a
person buys a domain that is a trademark or near trademark
name of some other company.
D2D - Distributor to Distributor.
Dead Link - An html link
that has gone bad. The destination page no longer exists.
Many search engines routinely check for "dead links"
by spidering the page again. Dead links used to be a
serious problem on search engines (mostly yahoo), but
with increased link checking, dead links are becoming
Deep Linking - Linking to
content buried deep within a website. They are referred
to as "deep" because they are often two or
more directories deep within a website.
Defaults - Advertising term
used to describe when an advertiser doesn't have enough
advertisements to fill the websites inventory. Usually
defaults are filled with PSA ads, or blanks
Direct Hit - A click through
counting system that counts users clicks on various
search engine results. The count of clicks is then used
to determine web site rankings in results pages. This
system is can be manipulated quite easily.
Directory - A directory is
a web site that focuses on listing web sites by individual
topics. A quasi table of contents. A search engine lists
pages, where a Directory (such as Looksmart or The Open
Directory Project lists websites).
DMOZ - Directory Mozilla
DNS Lookup - Or sometimes
referred to as Reverse DNS Lookup. Most often used by
webmasters while looking at server log files. It converts
a unique IP address of a site visitor to its domain
Domain - There are Top Level
Domains (such as .com, .net, or .org), and then there
are midlevel domains such as Ford (ford.com ford.net
or ford.org). Domain is a generic term to describe any
of these levels and is most often used to refer to the
mid level domain (ford.com). In reference to search
engine technology, domain names can play an important
part in determining sites rankings on the search engines.
Domain Name Registration
- The act of registering a domain name with an approved
Doorway Page - A page designed
as an entrance to a website. Many doorway pages a specifically
created to rank high on a particular search engine.
Sometimes referred to as a Gateway Page or a Welcome
Download - The process of
retrieving information from any computer is called Downloading.
When one computer sends information to another, it is
Dynamic Content - A page
that is generated just as the user views it. The content
delivered to the user is often updated on-the-spot out
of a database or based upon the users browser. It used
to be easy to spot one of these pages, but with most
systems now allowing dynamic content from any page at
any time, you just never know. Search engines no longer
penalize for dynamic content as long as the URL does
not include submitted data (a ? question mark in the
Dynamic IP Address - An
IP address that changes each time you connect to the
Entry Page - Sometimes refers
to a single page with a logo and "click here"
EPC - Earnings Per Click.
EPV - Earnings Per Visitor.
Error Log File - Web servers
run separate logs that show web site errors. These logs
can show things like access to robots.txt (if it doesn't
exist), and cgi program failures.
Everflux - Another term coined
at WebmasterWorld. It refers to the Google phenom when
results appear to be in daily updating. This is between
major updates where individual pages are updated, added,
or removed from the index.