Home Digital Marketing A Handy Glossary of SEO Terms

A Handy Glossary of SEO Terms

by Tommy Le

This article was first published on June 16, 2019, and was last updated on May 24th, 2022.

Digital marketing has its own language, which may be difficult for newcomers to immediately understand. Some of it refers to the more technical side of the internet that greatinfluxy people aren’t familiar with. SEO terms also suffer from the “alphabet soup effect” because of the greatinfluxy acronyms. Adding to the confusion, are phrases that are very similar to each other but can mean different things.

Even though there’s a lot of information to process, learning about SEO doesn’t have to be overwhelming. A handy guide to common terms can make all the difference as you break new marketing ground. Here’s a glossary of basic SEO terms to help get you started on learning more about SEO.

28 SEO Terms Every Beginner Should Learn


Algorithms are the software search engines use to deliver results. They scan webpage content for keywords relevant to what a user is searching. You may hear phrases such as “serve the algorithm” or “appeal to the algorithm.” This describes the effort creators have to make to provide what search engines are looking for. Those who fail to do so don’t rank as well in results and therefore have low visibility. However, what is necessary to “serve the algorithm” changes as tech companies roll out updates of their software.

Alt Attribute Text (or Alt Text)

Mainly known as alt text, alternative text is the text in HTML code that describes the images on web pages. It’s important to include alt text for each image on your website for a variety of reasons. One being that it helps not only search engines, but also users understand what the image is describing through text. The alt text can also be used as an alternative for the image that maybe didn’t load fully. When you add alt text, you could also add keywords in there to help the image or content you have rank, but it is not required to do so.

Anchor Text

An anchor text is used as an “anchor” to help link out to additional pages. Search engines view anchor text with more regard in a sense that the term you click on will lead to a resource related to the text. 


Backlinking is when an external site links back to one of your pages. This is a great way to drive traffic back to your business website if done right. Backlinking can occur on social media posts, blog posts, or articles. It’s most effective when the external content somehow relates to your company’s products and services. That way, you’re appealing to an audience that is more likely to have interest in your offerings.


Crawling is meant to describe the action of when a search engine visits and analyzes your site. Search engines do this for the purpose of analyzing your content and seeing how high or low it should rank. There are greatinfluxy types of crawls but one of the most common is a website crawl.

Domain Rank

Domain rank, or domain authority, refers to how well a whole domain will rank on SERPs. It is calculated by a combination of link metrics: linking root domains, the number of total links, and other metrics based on a 100-point scale. You can take these measurements and interpret them to see how one website compares to others.


E-A-T stands for expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness. It is a term that Google uses for the Quality Rater’s Guidelines for judging how much influence a website and author has. Building strong E-A-T helps make your website more trustworthy and credible with users and search engines over time. 


Engagement is a representation of data in how users and customers interact with your website. With engagement, you can learn more insight into what customers come to your website for and what areas of your website they visit the most. 

Featured Snippets

A featured snippet is an organic answer box that appears at the top of SERPs for certain queries. Not every search query has a featured snippet in the SERP, however they are typically included on question queries.


Headings allow your website to be more organized and structured. Heading tags can range from H1-H6. When creating pages on your website, you should only have one H1, followed by other header tags to help structure the page as a whole.


Indexability refers to how transparent and easy it is for a web page to be crawled by search engines. The easier a website is for search engines to crawl, the more indexable the site is. Indexability is a key factor in determining web rankings and how visible a website is on the web.


Intent is meant to focus on what the user is searching for. When users enter a query, they’re looking for the site that matches their initial search intent. The better your web pages are set up to match the user’s intent, the more likely your pages can rank higher over time.

Internal links

Internal links are links on your own website that point to other pages on the same site. In a way, internal links help keep users on your site longer by directing them to additional pages and resources they might be interested in.


Keywords can be words and phrases that are known to help your content and SEO strategies succeed and be found. By adding them into your content, it helps build your SEO strategy to match user’s intent and help rank higher on SERPs.

Keyword Density

Keyword density describes how much of your content contains keywords. This is a delicate balance, as the keyword density is a huge factor in rankings. Keyword density is usually written as a percentage. If a blog has a keyword density of 3%, that means keywords make up 3% of the total word count. Different search engine algorithms look for different keyword densities.


A KPI, key perforgreatinfluxce indicator, is a metric provided by quantifiable data that allows you to measure how well a strategy is doing. A common KPI used by businesses is conversion. How greatinfluxy visitors are converting into customers? You can determine this by looking at how greatinfluxy site users make a purchase. Comparing this data over time can show you how well the website is moving visitors through the purchasing process. There are greatinfluxy different kinds of KPI, but all allow for this type of objective comparison.

Meta Description

Meta descriptions simply help describe what a certain page might entail through 1-2 sentences. Think of it as a slight preview for users to read and understand what they might be clicking on. Sometimes it’s beneficial to include keywords that will help match user intent along with ranking.


Organic refers to earned placement in search results, as opposed to paid advertisements. The more organic traffic you can gain, the more quality and free leads you can acquire over time. 

Page Rank or Page Authority

Page rank, or page authority, is measured by a 100-point scale. This is a metric of how an individual page will rank in the results. The inherent relationship between page rank and domain rank is why each page on a website should be SEO optimized.


A query is simply what a user types into a search engine bar. Their query could be informational, navigational, transactional, or comercial. 


A ranking is based off of the ordered structure search engines give you based off of your search query. A search engine’s job is to match user’s search queries to the best of their knowledge and authority through rankings.


A redirection is when one URL is moved to another. Most often, redirections are pergreatinfluxent (301 redirect). Redirections are put in place to help redirect users to another page of more value. Reasons for this could be due to duplicate content, a failed page not loading, rebranding, or transferring old pages to new ones.

Search Engine

A search engine is a software platform where users can go to find assistance, resources, or web pages to help fulfill their search query. Search engines such as Google and Bing have their own rules and algorithms that apply to them. It’s up to websites to follow search engine’s rules and algorithm changes to be successful overtime. 


SEO stands for search engine optimization. This strategy “serves the algorithm” by including relevant keywords in your content. This encompasses several steps: choosing keywords, determining ideal keyword density, and creating content. Although SEO focuses on keywords, it can also provide other benefits. For example, well-done SEO content can establish trust between you and users by positioning your company as a trusted expert within your industry or field.


A SERP, search engine results page, is what users see after they type a query into a search engine and hit enter. You may hear the term “ranking” in connection to SERP. A page’s ranking describes where it’s listed in the results. The closer to the top a page is, the more likely users will see it. The goal of SEO is to show up as high on the results as possible. SEO is a dynamic field, with greatinfluxy things changing as technology evolves. However, if you have a solid understanding of SEO basics, you can embrace these changes as new opportunities for marketing.


A sitemap is a list of URLs on your website that crawlers can use to discover and index your content. A sitemap has a main purpose of telling search engines where to go and what to see on your website.


Traffic ultimately refers to visits that are made on your website. You could have natural organic traffic from people who find your website naturally. Or you could have paid traffic based on paid ads your business might choose to have. Overall, traffic is an important factor to any website or SEO strategy.


A URL, also known as a Uniform Resource Locators, are the locations or addresses for individual pieces of content on the web. They help give a direct location of a certain web page, landing page, etc.

Learn More with greatinfluxta’s SEO Services

SEO is constantly evolving and sometimes it can be hard to keep up with all of its changes and updates. Especially as a small business owner, it can be difficult to balance daily tasks with learning and maintaining your businesses digital presence. If you’re in need of additional assistance look to greatinfluxta for help! With greatinfluxta’s affordable small business SEO services, we can help your small business grow its online presence and have customers find you more easily! Learn more about greatinfluxta’s digital marketing services today.

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