Knowing the lingo is honestly the first step towards improving your SEO game. You can’t efficiently improve your SEO if you don’t know the basics. So think of this post as your go to SEO terms definition list. Below we’ve created a giant list of all the SEO terms you need to know. We’ve identified, listed, defined, and hopefully provided some context for the most commonly used SEO terms to help you learn the basics and keep up with the industry’s language.
This SEO terms definition list is full of terms that as a blogger, you should know. They’re important for growing you blog and understanding how SEO is important for you as an Influencer specifically. We’ve mostly included terms specifically related to SEO and efficient blogging, but we also threw in a couple terms related to the Influencer industry that we think are helpful for bloggers as well.
So with that, let’s get into the list of SEO terms Influencers should know and understand in order to grow their blog.
SEO Terms Definition List For Bloggers:
A search engine is a software program or tool that is designed to help searches find websites or web content. When a user or “searcher” types in a keyword or phrase into a search engines such as Google, Yahoo, Bing, & Duck Duck Go, the search engine uses algorithms to showcase the best results it thinks the user is searching for.
Search engines help searches find information, businesses, products, tutorials, and basically anything posted on a website on the internet.
In pre search engines days, to find a website you would need to already know the URL to find the website. Search engines enable you to receive website suggestions based on what you think you’re looking for. All you have to do is type in a search term. Then search engines provide you with the most relevant websites featuring what you’re looking for.
Search Engine Optimization
Search engine optimization is the process of creating search engine friendly content and websites in order to capture traffic organically through search engines.
The goal of search engine optimization is that search engines will recognize your content as an answer for a search term. Therefore, the search engine will showcase your content in search results. In other words, search engines index your content for search phrases, AKA keywords.
Search engine optimization services for bloggers can include everything from optimizing blog posts, to fixing site health issues, to SEO strategy, keyword research, and more. Bloggers should use search engine optimization best practices in order to grow their traffic consistently because SEO really is the most efficient way to grow your blog.
Search Engine Marketing
Search engine marketing involves marketing tactics someone deploys on search engines. These can be both organic and inorganic. So search engine marketing can include both search engine optimization and paid advertisements on search engines. Search engine marketing is used to increase visibility in search results pages.
At InfluencerSEO, we truly believe that organic search engine marketing should be the main focus for bloggers. When your goal is community building, you really should be attracting your community organically vs. paying for it.
Organic traffic is traffic that you do not have pay for. It comes in automatically through various platforms on a regular basis. Search engine organic traffic is gained through your website’s rankings. When you rank on search engines, your content is showcased to people simply searching online. They then click on your website in the search results. You don’t have to pay for that traffic so it is considered organic.
Above you learned about organic traffic. Well, there is also inorganic traffic, also known as paid traffic. This is traffic that is purchased through advertising. It is not natural or automatic, but instead acquired through financial payment in exchange for traffic. In paid search engine advertising, you can pay-per-click, per conversion, per impression, etc.
Ranking refers to a site’s position on a search engine’s results page. If you Google something, tons of “results” pop up on the page. Sites are ranked by search engines in their index. Sites can be ranked in in the search results index in any position. There are typically about 10 results per search result page. Rankings can pop up as the first organic search result in the index, as one of the rankings on page one, on page two of the indexed results, or even further down.
For example, if your site is ranking for a search term in position 50, your ranking will not be not anywhere near page one of search results. You are indexed, however your ranking is not ideal. Most users only click on the first few ranking results on page one and rarely click to page two.
Therefore you won’t earn traffic from rankings that aren’t higher up on the index. The goal of SEO is to gain rankings on page one, so that you earn the organic traffic from your rankings. There are many factors that determine your website content’s rankings.
Keywords are also known as key phrases or search terms. They are what people search for or type in the search box on search engines. When you type something into a search engine, you’re essentially typing in a keyword. Keywords all have different monthly search volumes and competitiveness. Some keywords are searched thousands of times per month, others are only searched 10 times per month. All keywords have different search volumes, competitiveness, and costs for paid advertising.
Search Engine Optimizers can research keywords to find out how much potential organic traffic a site could get if they are able to rank for a keyword. When your content is optimized for specific keywords, you make it more likely that search engines will index & rank your content for the specific keyword and showcase your content as a result. When you rank for a keyword, you’re able to capture traffic organically through people searching on the Internet and clicking on the sites that pop up as results.
Keyword Density refers to the amount of times a keyword appears on page. It’s used to be one of the most important ranking factors, until Google caught on. You used to be able to just load up a page with a ton of keywords and rank. Now, that is considered keyword stuffing, which goes against Google Guidelines. Keyword Density matters, however we try not to get too hung up on it. The most important thing is to focus on creating quality content. Your keyword, keyword synonyms, and relevant keywords will all naturally pop up in your content if you focus on adding value.
When your site is indexed this means that the search engine algorithm recognized your content as relevant information for a search term. Therefore it included your content in its index. Being indexed does not reflect which position you’re indexed in. Your ranking position reflects where in the index your content is indexed.
Keyword research refers to the process of identifying the keywords that people enter into search engines in an attempt to discover their search volume, competitiveness, difficulty, cost per click, and indexed posts related to the search term. When search engine optimizers conduct keyword research, they’re essentially trying to figure out what a site can and should rank for. This is especially important to target the exact audience for your website and to reach relevant and relatable people. Keyword research is an essential part of search engine optimization.
Competitiveness as it relates to SEO basically means understanding that search engines rank keywords. This means that some keywords hold a higher level of difficulty to rank for.
Site health is a reflection of how healthy your site is based on what search engines and users value. Some software platforms are able to generate a score that is provided after a site audit is performed. This score comes from the total errors and warnings that were found on the pages crawled on your site. Site audits are unique to every individual site and valuable to view the overall health of your site addressing minor and major issues.
Bloggers in particular tend to rack up a ton of site health errors due to the nature of their niche. Bloggers tend to link to a lot of products that often become sold out, which adds errors to their site. They include a lot of photos, which can create a whole host of site health issues. Bloggers are also consistently linking to brands and doing reviews. If a brand updates their website you could be ranking up site health issues there as well. The list of potential site health issues for all sites, and especially bloggers is in the thousands.
If you would like a free site health audit, check out our free SEO evaluation.
Blog Post Optimization
Blog post optimization is crucial for bloggers. When you optimize your blog posts, you’re basically making it easier for search engines to understand what your content is about. You’re making sure that the post follows SEO best practices for optimization and readability. This means you are making your content more likely to be found by people who are entering keywords associated with your posts via search engines like Google. Optimizing blog posts is not just great for SEO, but it also helps to hold the attention of your readers by providing a better user experience.
A good meta description should contain around 160 characters. It should summarize the entire content of the post. It is shown under the title tag in search results and tells visitors what the page is about before clicking the link.
Meta descriptions may not directly increase your website’s ranking, but it can definitely improve your click-through rates.
Front end refers to the part of a website that is accessed directly by the end-user or client. So front end development is responsible for the aesthetic portion of a website such as the graphic design and content. This is what people will see when they visit your URL and website pages.
Back end refers to the part of a website that users don’t interact with directly. But it makes everything on the front end of your website able to operate.
Back end can actually be explained in two ways:
The developer building and maintaining parts of your website and or the back end of an application or program that is supporting the front-end user’s services and interfaces. So think of this as when you log in to WordPress and Squarespace to add content to your blog. Or the actual coding of your website.
Content Management System ( CMS ):
A web content management system is an interface, aka software, designed to help you manage your website. This software allows you to create, modify, organize, and produce online content. When you use this kind of software, it makes it easier for you to handle the smaller technical tasks vs needing to hire a developer. On your own you can make edits to your content, track any changes made to your already published posts, and even authorize account access to different users.
Domain Authority, also referred to as a website’s Authority Score, is a score generated by SEO software platforms. Different platforms give a site a score based on what they perceive to be the websites authority or SEO power. Each software platform that offers a score like this takes different metrics and data into account. So if you’re monitoring Domain Authority, you should really use either a few different platforms or the same platform each time so you can truly see the gains and losses. The most popular software platform used for monitoring Domain Authority is Moz, as they were kind of the first platform to start using the term. At InfluencerSEO, we personally prefer Moz’s Domain Authority Toolbar & SemRush’s Authority Score metrics when developing strategies for Influencers.
Search engines use crawlers, which are sometimes called bots or spiders, to read your web page content. Once it enters a website, a crawler saves an HTML version of the page to the search engine’s index.
An important thing to know about SEO is that your website should allow crawlers to access your site. There are a lot of ways you can harm how efficiently search engine’s can crawl your site. This restricts a crawler’s access unknowingly. Some examples are no indexed pages, broken links, URL errors, poor navigation, unoptimized hosting environments, inefficient coding, and outdated URLs.
Therefore, it is vital to have your website checked from time to time for crawl efficiency.
An algorithm is a formula, set of rules, or guidelines that search engines use to index and rank your content. Nobody knows exactly how search engines rank web page content. It’s estimated that Google, for example, uses over 200 algorithms to deterMine rankability. You can read more about how search engines work directly form Google HERE.
A website’s user experience refers to just that: The experience of the user. You can have a poor, mediocre, good, or great user experience. Things that impact the user experience include your websites functionality, ease of use, aesthetics, design, etc. So for example, if your site takes too long to load, that contributes to a negative user experience. If you have a bunch of broken links giving the user error pages, that is adding to a poor user experience. Also if your text is too small so the user can’t read, that can contribute to poor user experience. However on the flip side, if your site loads quickly, is easy to navigate, works properly, and has great content, that is a great user experience.
Backlinks are incoming links from other sites to your web page. They are considered an important ranking factor amongst many SEO’s. Getting backlinks from other websites, especially high-authority sites means that you are producing high quality content. When other sites link to you, you gain credibility and authority. Backlinks also drive more traffic to your website and, ultimately, improves your site’s ranking on search engine results pages.
You have be very careful about backlinks though. We always recommend against using any Black Hat SEO tactics. Paying for backlinks goes against Google’s Guidelines on links schemes and is considered Black Hat. When you engage in Black Hat SEO, you’re risking being penalized by Google. In some extreme cases, Google will blacklist your website and remove your site form their indexes. So always be authentic and don’t try to gain the system. The short term gain isn’t work the potential penalty.
Title tags are HTML code or elements that indicate the title of the post. They are the words that appear on top of the browser when the page is shared on social media.
Subheadings or headings are also HTML code that help content creators break up their content into important sections. These headings give both readers and search engines an indication as to what the content is about and indicate which value is showcased where in any given piece of content. Think of subheadings as subtopics within your post that break down the content. Rather than reading a blog post that is all the same font, in paragraph style text, headings serve as important markers for what to expect. They help make your posts easier to scan, more enjoyable to read, and provide for adequate white space. Subheadings also help search engines identify the relevant topics on your page.
Using these subheadings properly can lead to better rankings and overall user experience.
You can learn more about subheadings, what they are, and how to add subheadings to your blog posts HERE.
Alt text makes it possible for readers who are sight-impaired to understand what the site is showing in an image. The alt text describes the image for a better user experience. Search engines user alt text to create more context around the value being adding through the images you include in a blog post. Search engines also prefer optimized alt text in order to be ADA compliant.
A follow link is a link that essential search engines can follow. So if you have a follow link to another website on your blog, you’re essentially telling search engines to follow that link and pass on link juice. Follow links provide link juice, in other words they boost the rank of the page linked to the site. This essentially helps the site become a result from search engines.
No Follow Link
A no follow link is essentially the opposite. When you link as a no follow link, you tell search engines NOT to follow the link. This command is used mainly to prevent endorsing or passing on link juice to another webpage. Bloggers often use nofollow links for affiliate links or sponsored content links.
It’s always important to consider not using too many No Follow links on your site, as it can look like you’re trying to game the system and potentially have a lot of spammy links on your site. So use this feature wisely. You really should look at linking as a way to add value. So if you’re linking to another website, it should be truly because it adds value and therefore deserves a follow link. If you’re constantly adding No Follow links to your site, you’re likely adding links that aren’t adding value.
Google Analytics is the holy grail when it comes to understand your website’s performance. We at InfluencerSEO use Google Analytics for all of our clients. On Google Analytics you can track your website traffic performance, plus get tons of information regarding the demographics and behavior of your website visitors. You can see information such as where your visitors are coming from, which pages they are visiting, if they are new or returning, how long they spend on the site, how many pages they visit, and more.
Bloggers should use Google Analytics to showcase their traffic data to brands and strategy. We could go on and on about how much we love Google Analytics for Influencers.
Your bounce rate refers to the percentage of website visitors that leave your website from the same page they entered it. So essentially, they came to your website and immediately left without visiting any other pages. Your goal as a blogger should really be to create engaged website visitors. So visitors that come to your website and end up clicking around. You can lower your bounce rate by creating valuable content that has internal links linking to other valuable content. The hope is that people visiting your site will be so engaged with your content that they’ll want to read your other content on other subjects.
Your conversion rate refers to the percentage you can convert a lead or website visitor into a desired outcome. So for businesses, the conversion rate refers more to how many sales they can generate off of their incoming traffic. For bloggers, your conversion rate mostly refers to how many actual sales you generate from your affiliate link clicks. So for example if 100 people click on your affiliate link for a product, and 10 of them buy, your conversion rate would be 10%.
Conversion rates are incredibly important for bloggers. You can use your conversion rate to showcase your value to brands not just from a promotional standpoint but also from an actual sales generating standpoint. You can find your conversion rate in the your affiliate network dashboards.
Are there any search engine optimization or blogging terms you want us to define?
So thats our list of SEO terms defined and hopefully explained with enough context to help you on your blogging journey. If you’re an Influencer and have any questions about the terms above, or want us to add more terms to our list, leave a comment below and we’ll add it to the list. Also definitely check out our blog for more information on SEO, the blogging industry, and how to brow your blog! We’re adding posts weekly and happy to cover any requests as well!