a new term / correction to
an existing term. In exchange we will place your name and a link to
your site below your suggestion / correction.
Referring to the position of a web page on the
search results for a particular
query. For example, a page that is listed
third for the term "bubblegum" is said to have a ranking of
3 for that term.
alternative web site address system whereby particular words could be
registered and pointed to actual URLs. The system is no longer in use.
It relied heavily on support from Microsoft. When Microsoft decided
to discontinue their support, the RealNames system simply did not have
the reach it needed to work.
A measure of a search
engine's ability to return all relevant
results. Search engines must find a balance between recall and precision
(The measure of a search engine's ability to return only relevant results).
If there are 10 pages about "blue bananas" in a search engine's
database and a search
for "blue bananas" returns only 8 of those pages, the recall
is scored at 0.8 or 80%. It's important to note that recall has nothing
to do with database size. If another search engine has only 3 pages
about blue bananas and returns all 3, its recall is 100%, even though
there are other relevant documents not included in its database.
A link placed on site
A, pointing to site B, on the condition that site B returns the favor.
Also called a link swap. Contrary to popular belief, reciprocal linking
does not necessarily improve a site's PageRank.
In some cases it can have a negative effect on PageRank. For a detailed
discussion on how and when to swap links as well as getting the most
out of PageRank, please refer to the Search Engine
Also see deep linking.
Users can be redirected from one page to another
either by asking them to click on a link or by means of automatic redirection,
most often done with the meta refresh
tag. Automatic redirection has been misused to the point where most
search engines now penalize sites
that use it, typically by de-listing
the offending site.
When a user follows a link
from page A to page B, page A is called the referrer. The referrer is
identified by the URL of the referring page. Referrer information can
be accessed through the log file.
/ refresh tag
See meta refresh
The measure of the accuracy of the search
results - in other words it's a measure of how close the documents
listed in the search results are to what the user was looking for. The
ability to return relevant results is a big thing in the search engine
world - and arguably the one thing that made Google
stand out of the crowd and gain much popularity in a short time.
Also see precision and recall.
The process of submitting
a web page to a search engine and
then repeating the submission process - either a couple of times or
regularly over a period of time. Contrary to popular belief, regular
re-submission does not improve a page's ranking
and is considered a form of spamdexing
by most search engines. For more on this and other common SEO
mistakes, please refer to the Search Engine Yearbook.
A browser-like program
that automatically request web pages in order to index
the page content (in the case of spiders)
or to retrieve specific information (in the case of programs like e-mail
/ robots text file
A text file (with the ".txt" extension)
that tells spiders which pages it may not
index. Every time a spider (that complies
with the Robots Exclusion Standard) visits a site it will first request
a robots.txt file to see where in the site it is not allowed to go.
The syntax and correct placing of the robots.txt file as well as an
alternative way to declare pages "off-limits" is discussed
in the Search Engine Yearbook.
Return On Investment. In the context of SEO,
the term refers to sales generated as the direct result of a search
engine marketing campaign.
The ratio of the number of web sites which contain
a keyword or keyphrase ("R",
the supply) to the number of search engine searches for that keyword
or keyphrase ("S", the demand). Used as to identify attractive
keywords for which there is little competition.
- August 26, 2004
by Jane McLain of
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