Welcome to Ethical Search Engine Optimisation
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Search Engine Optimisation glossary
NOTE We use SERPs a lot in this glossary so it might be useful to know that SERPs are .. Its short for Search Engine Results Page(s)
We also talk a lot about Google but we really mean all the major search engines. Its just that most people use Google and its (currently) by far the most popular Search Company.
Adwords - A trade name used by Google to describe their SPONSORED LINKS. This Glossary primarily describes the NON-SPONSORED or ORGANIC SERPs
IMAGE OF SERPS FROM GOOGLE
The organic listing(s) is in Green (marked 1)
The Sponsored listing(s) are circled red (marked 2)
The whole area within the purple box is the SERP (marked 3)
TERMS USED IN SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZATION (aka SEO or Website Optimisation)
The Google 'paid for' service that allows you to BID for listing in the SPONSORED LINKS part of the Google Search Engine Results Pages or SERPS. Adwords are displayed down the right and at the top of the SERPS. The FREE listings are called ORGANIC listings
The group of mathematical rules and formulae that a search engine uses to classify and rank web pages for use in its SERPs
If you try to cheat Google and the other search engines, you will get banned. To most companies on the web, this would be the end of their website and domain. Unethical methods of SEO result in getting banned. A warning may precede banning. See also Ethical
In the early days of internet, the structure resembled a web. Anything that CRAWLED the pages of the web was called a SPIDER The method of gathering data for a search engine is therefore called Crawling and is done by a software 'bot or robot called a spider. For a list of common bots see ROBOTS
Delisted / Removed
A search engine will remove or De-list an entry from its index if you violate its ethical policies. i.e try to artificially improve your rank in the listings (SERPs) by unetical means. See Ethical Optimisation
A search engine that lists its results by category. Example of this can be seen at DMOZ.COM
A domain is the unique name you choose for your website. You can only buy a domain if no one else has already bought it. Example: mylovelywebsite.com or buymyhouses.co.uk
Ethical Optimisation & Unethical Optimisation
Calco UK use ETHICAL OPTIMISATION - e.g. Who you are, what you do and where you do it. We .. also think mentioning how much you charge for what you do is important too. However many companies use UNETHICAL STRATEGIES such as:
- Doorway Page
An unethical method of improving an aspect of a website. The Doorway or Bounce page will be created solely for the purpose of optimising one or two key phrases not covered in the main website. The pages are also created to POINT to the real website as though they were recommending the website like incoming links. It is frowned upon by Google and will eventually get you banned.
- Spam - mentioning the keyword or phrases over and over and over and over ....
- Keyword Stuffing - same as spam but in the body text of the document. The resulting paragraphs are an usually unreadable jumble of the clients preferred key phrases in various permnutations. Likely to get you at least demoted in Google.
- Link Farming - signing up to a linking company that get you any old links from ANY source. They usually set up site JUST to create links. They are useless and will eventually get you banned. Ethical Incoming links are GOOD though - you should seek links from companies related to your product. They are basically recommending your product because its good.
- Rapid Link Building
Too many links appearing in a short period of time will result in Google demotion or at worst - a ban
- Cloaking - will get you banned. A cloaked page looks like one thing to a Search Engine and a completely different thing to a bona fide visitor.
- Same colour text is when you make text invisible to the viewer by making it the same colour as the background. eg white text or links on a white background. You can get banned for this.
- Small Text - making text so small its not readable.
- Off the page - making text go to a minus or huge positional CSS value by pushing it beyond the viewing area.
- Too many links - as the web gets more competitive SEO companies have added more and more links to pages to the point where some pages are just a bunch of links. Not useful.
- Mirror Sites. Sites with identical content or similar content with different domain names. Easy for Google to find and not productive.
- Multiple page submissions - The domain only should be submitted to Google
- Submitting more than one page from the same website.
Google say they crawl the whole site. So long as a page is linked - Google will find it eventually. You dont submit every page. Not recommended.
Usually a page called INDEX.HTML or DEFAULT.HTM or index.php or default.asp - this is the page most people submit to a search engine and is the one Google recommends. If your simply submit your DOMAIN NAME to google the index part is implicit - that is Google will look for an index page anyway. It will also scan for ROBOTS.TXT
Incoming Links (Back linking)
These are people linking TO YOUR website. Google favours sites with lots of incoming links. RECIPRICOL links are where you link to me if I link to you. Not as good as one way links.
The words that describe your website AND that you think people will type into Google (et al) to find your website
The page you get to when you click the results in the search engine listings (See SERPs)
There is a gadget you can get free on the web that will tell you your link popularity i.e. the number of listings you have in any given search engine databse. In google you can scan their "index" for Finding pages that link to your page - its in ADVANCED SEARCH. Other Search Engines have a similar feature.
This is the text you see behind which there is a link - example of link text: Click Here to go to the Google Search Engine (which is usually underlined)
Listings or Page Listings
The results of a search commonly referred to as SERPs
Information in a web page that is never seen on the screen. There are tags for Copyright, Keywords, Version numbers, page title and description. SOME search engines use the specialised tages: TITLE, DESCRIPTION AND KEYWORDS to classify and index your page (and website) Now see below for a detailed description of these.
- The Title Tag
Literally the TITLE of your Website. Often as not Google will use this as the HYPERLINK in the SERPs
- The Description Tag
Use this tag to describe the content of the page. Search engines sometimes use the content as a description under the page link in the SERPs
- The Keywords Tag
Use this tag to tell the search engines likely KEYWORDS or KEY PHRASES that relate to your page. Phrases and keywords must be concise and accurate.
Organic Listings or Organic Results
The SERPs are divided into PAID for and NOT PAID FOR or SPOSORED LINKS. The organic listings are the ones NOT paid for. You CANNOT pay to be in the Organic listings. PAID FOR or SPONSORED listings appear on the RIGHT column of Google and if the KEYWORDS are especially popular, the PAID for or SPOSORED listings can also appear ABOVE the Organic listings, usually with a highlighted backgound colour.
Links on YOUR webpages pointing to OTHER websites.
This is an internal grading system used by Google to RATE or RANK your website's pages. They also factor in the Page Rank when deciding where in the SERPS your page appears (i.e high page rank should make the page appear near the top of Google listings)
Quality Score (Google)
In ADWORDS Google uses the Quality Score to determine the position and the cost of an ad. In reality they use FOUR quality scores to determine how ads are displayed. If possible you should include the text of the AdWords ad and the most important keywords on your landing page. Its very similar to optimizing a page for the Organic Listings
When one website agrees to list another website ONLY if the other website lists them. i.e. they add links to each other on both websites.
The page returned by a search engine when producing the results for a given phrase. Also known as SERP(s) - search engine results page(s).
Robot aka Web Robot or Bot
A software programme that crawls the web from page to page looking for new content to catalogue for its parent search engine. e.g. The Google robot is called GOOGLEBOT, The Yahoo one is called SLURP
A text file you create to tell which Search Engine Robots which pages to scan and which ones not to.
A company or website that run a search and results service. Google Microsoft and Yahoo are Search Engine providers. The Search Engine company software SCANS or SPIDERS the whole of the visible web looking for content which it lists in and INDEX. Each time a user searches, the company's software searches the INDEX for the most appropriate results or matches to their Keywords or search phrase. The resuting pages of results restuirned are called SERPs or Search Engine Results Page(s)
Search Engine Optimisation (ETHICAL)
The process of ethically making a website attractive to a Search Engine as possible and getting it to be as high in the listings as possible.
Search Engine Consultants Or SEO companies
Companies that perform SEO. Look for one that uses only ETHICAL methods of SEO
Keywords, key phrases or terms are the words typed into the Google search box (or other search engine search boxes). Also called Queries.
Search Engine Optimization (English : Optimisation)
Search Engine Results Page(s) - these are the pages of results returned by Google when you type something into the SEARCH BOX and press Google Search button. The I'm feeling Luck button only returns one web page - usually what Google considers to be the best one.
In some results you might see extended or extra links which link to the main areas of the website. These are called Sitelinks. Below is an example from Glasgow City Council's result:-
Cached - Similar
All of Line 3 Search for a Vacancy etc is the Sitelinks part of the listing. There is no sure fire way to get Sitelinks, however the more clear and concise your website navigation is and with obvious Subjects or Titles for each page, the more likely Google is to use Sitelinks. Google explain Sitelinks as follows: " Our process for generating sitelinks is completely automated and cannot be purchased or requested. We show them when we think they'll be most useful to searchers, so one site may show different sitelinks for different queries. If you think the sitelinks displayed for your site are inappropriate or incorrect, you can manage them in your Webmaster Tools account. "
The internet used to be called (and still is) the World Wide Web due to the linking of one page to another ina similar fashion to a spiders web. Search Enngine companies write software programmes that crawl from page to page via the links on these pages ... just like a spider on its web. A spider is also called a crawler or a bot (short for robot)
Submission or Site Submission
Because search engine spiders can only crawl from link to link, they will not find your site unless you give them your HOME PAGE or DOMAIN NAME to start with. Telling Google (and the other search engines) where your homepage is is called Submitting your website or Site SUbmission.
You could and some people do; simply ask other websites to link TO YOU and have Google find you that way. This is generally takes longer.
Top Ten Listings
Many companies offer top ten listings. Just remember Google themselves say they do not take money for placement in their organic SERPs. Anyone can offer to put you in the top 10 of page one in Google for: cephelapod pyjamas, its less likely they will get you in the top ten on page one for the keywords: Mortgage Broker.