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SEO Glossary 2019 [67 SEO Terms To Know]

By The AfroPunk Entrepreneur

If you’re planning on getting into SEO, at some point there are terms that you will regularly come across. If you don’t familiarize yourself with them, you are going to get lost in an already complicated world. My aim with this SEO glossary is to help you (and me) get more familiar with all of this SEO jargon.  So Let’s Go!

HTTPS Status Numbers

1) 301 Redirect: A Permanent redirection from 1 URL to a new one. Passes website authority aka “link juice”. 

2) 302 Redirect: A Temporary redirection from 1 URL to another. Does NOT pass “link juice”

3) 404 Error: Not Found:  The server was unable to locate the webpage. A common error when a URL is changed. Requires a 301 redirect to fix. 

4) 500 Error: Server Error: The page is lost and is no longer on the server. Something is wrong, but the server is unsure as to what it is. 

5) 503 Error: Service Unavailable: A temporary server-side error that typically happens when a server is overloaded or the webs service is down for maintenance. 

Moz has an EXCELLENT infographic to help you visualize these errors. See Below

moz infographic of https status codes

SEO Glossary In Alphabetical Order


6) Anchor Text: The clickable text that’s attached to a link. Anchor text plays a rule in how well your site will rank. 

7) Authority Site:  A website that is highly trusted. This site is trusted by the search engines and users and is usually considered the “go-to” site in that niche. In the SEO niche, Neil Patel’s Blog is a good example of an authority site trusted by search engines and users alike. 

8) Backlinks: When one page links to another page. Backlinks are an important ranking factor for your site because it is assumed if there are more sites that are linking to yours that your content is good. That, in turn, tells the search engines to trust your site and ultimately boosts your site’s authority. 

9) BlackHat SEO: SEO tactics that do not comply with a search engines guidelines. Black Hat SEO is used to increases a page’s rank rapidly. Using these techniques can result in a penalty to your website and can damage your brand. 

10) Bounce Rate: The percentage of visitors who come to your website without visiting other pages on your site. Bounce rate is a ranking factor because a high bounce rate tells the search engines that the quality of your content is not good and your page will not rank well.

11) Cache: 
A copy or snapshot of a webpage that is stored once the page is indexed. It is a ranking factor because the cache relates to how fast that a webpage will load. The fast the page loads the better user experience and will decrease your bounce rate. 

12) Canonical TagTells the search engines the “preferred” URL of the page. It’s useful if you have different versions on the same page and want to tell Google and other search engines. which page to index. This helps prevent duplicate content. To designate a link as canonical the following code can be used:

<link rel=”canonical” href=”” />

13) Citation Flow:  A metric used by the SEO tool Majestic that aims to predict the power a site has by measuring how many sites are linking to it. Used in conjunction with Trust Flow. Citation flow is number between 0-100. The higher the number the more influential the link because more sites are pointing to it. 

14) Conversion Rate: The number of visitors to your site divided by the total amount of traffic to your site. For example, 4000 people visit your site and you want them to buy your product. 400 people buy your product. 400/4000 = 10% conversion rate.

15) Cookie: image of cookiesA small piece of data (a text file) used by websites and stored on your browser to keep track of their visitors. This file is sent from a web server and then retrieved from your computer or browser when you return to their site. 

16) CMS: Content Management System:  An alternative to using FTP to manage your website and manage its data and files. WordPress and Squarespace are examples of CMS’s.

17) Crawler: Also commonly referred to as a spider. A crawler is a bot that goes through each website and identifies all of the various hyperlinks and URLs. Crawlers are used by search engines for indexing purposes. 

18) CSS: Cascading Style Sheets:  Used to style the HTML of a website and format a webpages layout. 

19) CTA: Call to Action: A term used to describe a specific action that you would like your visitors, to take. Usually used at the beginning and/or end of the content. Examples of CTA’s include:

  • “Subscribe to My Channel” – Youtube
  • “Join MY Email List for Updates” – Blog/Website
  • “Like, Comment & Share” – Facebook

20) CTR: Click Through Rate: The number of clicks to a particular link divided by the total number of impressions (views) of that link. 

21) CRO: Conversion Rate Optimization: The optimization of your website or web pages to increase the percentage of visitors that take a particular action. This action can be buying a product or filling out a form.  


22) DA: Domain Authority: A metric created by Moz that estimates how well a site will rank in the SERPS In plain English, its the likelihood that a site will appear higher up once a search is conducted. DA is number between 0-100. The higher the number the more lightly a site to appear higher up in the search engine results. There are many factors that contribute to a site’s DA, most notably the number of domains linking to it. It also takes into consideration the DA of the sites linking to it.  A Site DA can be checked by going to Moz’s Open Site Explorer. 

23) Deep Link: A link that directs the user to any page another page of the site OTHER THAN the home page. 

24) Disavow: A tool used by Google that attempts to remove all of the “spammy” or unnatural links pointing to a site. It asks Google not to count those sites as pointing to yours. Bad backlinks can greatly affect the trustworthiness of your site, thus making it rank lower in the SERPS. 

25) DR: Domain Rank: Same as DA but this metric is created by the backlink checking tool Ahrefs


Image of Ahrefs DR

A Sample of DR (Taken Directly From Ahrefs Site)

26) Do-Follow: 
A link that will pass page authority/rank aka “link juice” to another.  image of dmca badge

27) DMCA: Digital Millenium Copyright Act: 
A law enacted in 1996 to protect digital media.  You can get a DMCA badge like the one pictured below for your website here:

28) EMD: Exact Match Domain: A Domain whos URL is an exact match of the keyword you are trying to rank for

Example:Keyword:Best Dog Collars =

29) Google+ 1: Similar to a Facebook “Like”. But on the Google Plus social media site. 

30) Grey Hat SEO: SEO that probably won’t get you penalize like black hat SEO, but it doesn’t necessarily comply with a search engines guidelines either. 

31) GA: Google Analytics: A platform owned by Google that allows the webmaster to view data about the number of visitors and measure the overall performance of the website. Also allows the site owner to see the best-performing pages. Which is useful for internal linking.  

32) Heading Tags: Tags used to help the search engine understand the structure of a webpage. The H1 and H2 are the most important tags as the H1 tag denotes the title of the page. The font for these tags in bold and larger to draw attention. Heading tags range from H1 to H6.  

33) HTML: Hypertext Transfer Markup Language: A language code used for search engines. Since they cannot read text, HTML is used to help markup web pages.

34) Impressions: In simple terms, the number of views that a page has. It is also the number of times some searching for a term sees a particular page. 

35) Inbound Link: A link coming from another site to your site. Also called a Backlink. 

36) Index: Adding a page to the search engine results page. Basically alerting the search engines that your site exists. This triggers the search engine to crawl the site. 

37) Internal Link: A hypertext link that links to another page within the same domain 

38) Keyword: Phrases or words entered into a search engine. Keywords are used in SEO to help users locate your site. The better your keywords, the better that you are able to rank your site and the more likely that you will have visitors based on their search queries.  image of seo keyword search results
39) Keyword Density:  The percentage of times a keyword appears on a web page. Good keyword density can help the page rank better in the SERPS. 

40) Keyword Stuffing: The practice of adding an unnecessary amount of keywords in a piece of content. Keyword stuffing also often leads to the content being “unnatural” to read. 

41) Link Juice: The slang term for passing page rank and authority to another via linking. Link juice can pass from pages within a domain or from one domain to another. 

42) LSA: Latent Semantic Analysis: Analysis that focuses on the underlying meaning and overall concept of a document.  

43) LSI Keywords: Latent Semantic Indexing Keywords: LSI keywords are words or phrases that are similar or related to the main keyword. Although they can be synonyms, they are not always synonyms. Here are 2 ways you can determine LSI keywords:

  1. At the bottom of the SERPs, there are other related search terms. These are phrases closely related to the original search. image of car insurance LSI results
  2. Use a tool such as LSIGraph. Although there are many tools available. 

44) LongTail Keyword: A keyword that is longer than 2 words. Longtail keywords can be more sentence-like. Search engines tend to favor and search for longer tail keywords. It’s also easier to rank for longer tail keywords than their shorter counterparts. For example:

Its easier to rank for “weight loss tips for after childbirth” than just “weight loss tips


45) Meta Description: An HTML element that can contain up to 320 characters that summarize the content of a page. Meta descriptions will show up as snippets in the search results and help the searcher know what the content is before they enter the site. 

46) Meta Keywords: Although mostly useless for SEO in 2018, they are/were part of the HTML tags that search engines used to get a better idea of what the site is about and therefore giver the searcher the results closest to what they were looking for. 

See Yoast’s Post on Why Meta Tags are Now Obsolete

47) Meta Tags: 
Part of the HTML tags that include both the Meta Descriptions and Meta Keywords. The search engine uses this information to know what that site or page is about. 

48) Money Site: Simply, a money site is a website that makes the owner money. This site can be a niche blog, an amazon affiliates store or many other types of websites that can be monetized. 

49) No-Follow:  As opposed to a Do-Follow Link, this link passes no page authority or “link juice” to another page.

50)  No-Index: An HMTL code (or plugins can be used) that tell the search engines NOT to index that page. Useful if you’ve created pages that you do not want to be searchable or show up in the SERPS.

51) OBL’s: Outbound Links: The opposite of an inbound link that connects pages within the same domain. This is link type that connects to a different domain/website. 

51) PA: Page Authority:  A metric created by MOZ that estimates a page’s authority. It is used in place or Google’s PageRank as it is no longer information that Google publically shares. 

52) PBN: Private Blog Network: Commonly used in Black Hat SEO, a Private Blog Network is a group of websites that you own that you can link to your money site to create backlinks. To the search engines, it’ll seem as if these sites are all individually owned but they are owned by a single person. Although common, using PBN’s can cause you to incur a search engine penalty and should be used at YOUR OWN RISK and only used by an experienced SEO. 

53) PMD: Partial Match Domain: Unlike an Exact Match Domain, it is a URL that contains some of the keywords but omits words or includes additional words.  

54) PR: Page Rank:  Named after Larry Page, one of the founders of Google, this metric analysis the number of links and the quality of those links going to a website or page to help determine its authority. PageRank is scored with a number between 1-10. Google no longer shares this metric with the public. MOZ’s Page Authority essentially measures the same thing but is an estimation of Google PageRank.

55) Redirect: When a user clicks one URL and is very rapidly sent to a different URL. Used commonly amongst affiliate marketers to allow them to place pixels and tracking links on a page that the user never sees. 

56) Robots.txt: A text file that gives instructions to a search engines robots. This .txt file tells the robots what pages should or should NOT be indexed. 

57) RSS Feed: Really Simple Syndication: A user can subscribe to a sites RSS feed to have access to and stay updated of a site’s newest content without having to log-in to that site. 

58) SEM: Search Engine Marketing: The process of advertising a website using paid ads in the search engine to generate traffic. The aim of this type of marketing is for a site to be more visible in the SERPs. Therefore gaining more traffic.

59) SERPS: Search Engine Results Pages: The web pages that show up when the user searches for a specific term. I.E. All of the results that show up when you search Google. 

image of serps

Organic SERPS

60) Sitemap: A file that tells the search engines how your site is organized. It’s essentially a list of all of a website’s pages. They make it easier for the robots to crawl and index your website. Sitemaps can easily be generated using a plugin like Google Google XML Site Maps.

61) Spam/Spammer: Unwanted and poor quality content usually sent to mass amounts of people to advertise something. A spammer is someone who creates and distributes this content. 

62) Spider: See Crawler

63) Title Tag: A HTML element that describes the title of the page for the search engines. Users will typically click on a page based on the title tag as it shows up in the SERPS once a search is initiated. 

64) Trust Flow: A metric used by the SEO tool Majestic that aims to predict the power a site has by measuring how many trusted sites are linking to it. Used in conjunction with Citation Flow. The higher the number the more trustworthy it’s is assumed the link is because of the number of trusted sites linking to it. Trust flow is number between 0-100.

65) UGC: User-Generated Content: Content that is created by a site’s users and not the site’s owner.

66) White Hat SEO: Practices that follow and fully comply with the Webmaster guidelines set by the search engines. 

67) XML Site Map: A file where all of the various URL of a website are stored. Sitemaps are used by web crawlers to determine how a website is organized and properly index a website’s pages. XML sitemaps aren’t seen by visitors, only by the search engine. 

Thanx for checking out my SEO Glossary. If you’d like to know more about me, feel free to go to my “About Me” page. Or can you also contact me via my “Contact Me” page. 

If you want to learn more about On-Page SEO see my On-Page SEO Guide

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