We have compiled a list of what we think are the most important industry terms. This dictionary will be essential to the SEO Marketer looking to improve their knowledge base and be able to successfully navigate their way through the world of Local SEO. We know that there will be differing opinions on definitions so we welcome any suggestions or discussions in the comments section.
Adwords: Google’s online advertising program used to create online ads is Google AdWords, you can create online ads to reach people exactly when they’re interested in the products and services that you offer. Adwords can be purchased and appear in their Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) or on apps like Google Maps.
Aggregator: In the world of local search and business listings, the aggregators are companies that manage databases of the local businesses. They sell that data to local search sites, like Google, Yelp, Facebook, Yellowpages, etc.that power the business listings on those sites. Some U.S. aggregators include Infogroup, Localeze, Acxiom, and Factual.
Algorithm: An algorithm is a detailed step-by-step instruction set or formula for solving a problem or completing a task. For example, many local search algorithms are designed to sort through all the possible results, weigh the different results based on a number of factors such as listing accuracy and popularity, and then return the most relevant and popular results to users.
Alt Text: A word or phrase that can be inserted as an attribute in an HTML document to tell Web site viewers the nature or contents of an image. The alt text is the text that appears in the blank box that would normally contain the image, only visible to the end user if the graphic is undeliverable.
AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages): A Google-backed project designed as an open standard for any publisher that project enables the creation of websites and ads that are consistently fast, beautiful and high-performing across devices and distribution platforms. You can distinguish AMPs by the lightning bolt shown below search results.
Analytics: Google Analytics is a tool you can use to analyze data from all touch points of website usage in one place, for a deeper understanding of the customer experience.
Anchor Text: Anchor Text is the visible, clickable text in a hyperlink. In order to optimize for search engines, the anchor text, content and URL should all contain the same keywords.
API (Application Program Interface): In simple terms, it is the part of the server that receives requests and sends responses. When you type www.facebook.com into your web browser, you are sending a request to facebook’s remote server who then sends back the code needed for your browser to display the facebook page. To the browser on your computer, facebook’s server is also known as an API.
Authoritative OneBox: A singular local listing that shows up at the top of the main Google search results page. This is the gold standard of local search optimization and what all local businesses hope to achieve. Appears when Google determines that a certain local listing is the authority for that local search.
Backlink (Aka Inbound Link): When a web page links to any other page, it’s called a back link. For Example, this link is a back link to a more in depth description about backlinks and how they are used in SEO.
Black Hat SEO: The use of aggressive SEO strategies, techniques and tactics that focus only on search engines and not a human audience, and usually does not obey search engines guidelines.
Boolean Search: A type of search that allows users to combine keywords with operators (or modifiers) such as AND, NOT and OR. For example, a boolean search could be [“Hotels” and “New York”]. This would limit the search results to only those documents containing the keywords “Hotels” and “New York”
Branded Keywords: Keywords that are variations of the brand or company name and used by searchers who are already familiar with a brand or company and searching for them by name.
Brick-And-Mortar: A business that has physical locations that consumers can visit.
Category: A business type that helps search engines classify businesses. There are approximately 2,000 default business types within search engines and many categories are based on the North American Industry Classification System, or NAICS. A business owner can edit their category if they have already claimed and/or verified their business listings.
Conversion: The ability to have a consumer perform an action on your website such as call, email, or visit a business location. This can determine the success of your online strategy and goals. The conversion rate is the percentage of users who take a desired action.
Cookie (web, internet or browser cookie): When a user is browsing a web page, the browser will place a small piece of data, called a cookie, to be stored on the user’s computer. Cookies are used for targeted ads
CPC (Cost Per Click): Refers to the actual price you pay for each click in your pay-per-click marketing campaign.
CTR: Clickthrough Rate is a ratio showing how often people who see your ad end up clicking it. CTR can be used to gauge how well your keywords and ads are performing.
Direct Traffic: Visits to your website without a referring website. When a visitor follows a link from one website to another, the site of origin is considered the referrer. These sites can be search engines, social media, blogs, or other websites that have a link to other websites for visitors to follow. Direct traffic, however, categorizes visits that do not come from a referring URL.
Duplicate Content: Generally refers to substantive blocks of content within or across domains that either completely match other content or are appreciably similar.
Dynamic Content: Opposite of Static Content, web content that is generated for you at the time you request the page. Dynamic Content is great for content that is constantly changing, viewer-specific content, and conditional content.
External Link: Hyperlinks that point at (target) any domain other than the domain the link exists on (source).
GMB: Google My Business; A business google listing page
GoogleBot: Google’s web crawling bot (sometimes also called a “spider”). Crawling is the process by which Googlebot discovers new and updated pages to be added to the Google index.
Google 3pack: The first three search results provided by Google for local searches, also known as the “Google Snack Pack”.
Hidden Text: Text on a Web page which is visible to search engine spiders but not visible to human visitors.This is usually achieved by setting the font color to the same color as the background, rendering the text invisible unless the user highlights it.
HTML: HyperText Markup Language is the coding language used to create pages on the world wide web.
Hummingbird: The name for Google’s search algorithm is designed to better focus on the meaning behind the words. Google has been using this search platform since September, 2013.
Hyperlocal: A way to describe web content that is focused on a very small geographical location such as a neighborhood.
Internal Link: An internal link is a type of hyperlink on a webpage to another page or resource, such as an image or document, on the same website or domain. Hyperlinks are considered either “external” or “internal” depending on their target or destination.
Keywords: The words and phrases that Internet users type into search boxes of a search engine, such as Google, to find websites that match what they are looking for.
Keyword Stuffing: The practice of loading a webpage with keywords or numbers in an attempt to manipulate a site’s ranking in Google search results. Often these keywords appear in a list or group, or out of context (not as natural prose).
Landing Page: The section of a website accessed by clicking a hyperlink on another web page, typically the website’s home page.
Link Bait: A web page designed to attract attention and encourage those viewing it to create hyperlinks to the site. It draws traffic to a website without keyword searches or specific searches for that web page.
Local Authenticity: The ability for a business to demonstrate a local presence in the lives of consumers by establishing a positive brand image.
Long Tail (Keywords): A keyword phrase that contains at least three words used to target niche demographics rather than mass audiences. They allow you to rank highly in search results for popular topics relatively quickly.
Local Search: This occurs when a consumer is performing a search query on a mapping application such as Google or Apple Maps. These consumers are highly important to capture as 82% of Local Searches generate paying customers.
Local SEO: The same as SEO except used to improve rankings in local searches and on mapping applications such as Google Maps. Hugely more important than regular SEO because consumers are typically in the researching stage on the web and move to the buying stage when conducting a local search.
Meta Description: A ~160 character snippet, a tag in HTML, that summarizes a page’s content. Search engines show the meta description in search results mostly when the searched for phrase is contained in the description.
NAP (Name Address Phone): The crucial information every business listing needs to have. Local search engines use NAP information to judge the accuracy of the data in their own indexes. Consistent NAP information is essential to improving search engine rankings.
Natural Language Processing: The ability of a computer program to understand human speech as it is spoken. Many search engines are developing sophisticated NLP to use in voice search and in machine assistants such as Siri, Alexa, and Google Home.
Non-Branded Keywords: Keywords that do not contain a brand name and are not associated directly with a specific company or brand.
Organic Search: A listing which appears in search results because it is relevant to the search terms used to find it.
PageRank: An algorithm utilized by Google to rank websites within their search results. It is used as a way to measure the importance of web pages.
PPC: Pay-per-click (PPC), also known as cost per click (CPC), is an internet advertising model used to direct traffic to websites, in which an advertiser pays a publisher. Google Adwords is an example of PPC
RankBrain: Google’s machine-learning artificial intelligence system, RankBrain, is used to help process search results and is a part of the overall search algorithm.
Rankings: A position or scale of measurement placed on a business online based on a multitude of ranking factors determined by search engines.
Reputation Management: The practice of attempting to shape public perception of a person or organization by influencing online information about that entity.
Review Generation: A service that helps agencies and businesses gain more reviews.
Rich Snippet: Another way to describe structured data markup that you can add to your HTML that allows search engines to better understand what information is contained on each web page. This is a huge benefit for searchers as it makes it very easy to find the information they are looking for.
ROI: Return on investment. Chatmeter accurately measures ROI by tracking your Ranking Increases.
RSS (Rich Site Summary): Also called, Really Simple Syndication, is a format for delivering regularly changing web content. It allows you to easily stay informed by retrieving the latest content from the sites you are interested in, save time by not needing to visit each site individually and ensures your privacy, by not needing to join each site’s email newsletter.
Search Engine: A program that searches for and identifies items in a database that correspond to keywords or characters specified by the user. The top 3 search engines are Google, Bing, and Yahoo.
SEM: Search Engine Marketing is a form of Internet marketing that involves the promotion of websites by increasing their visibility in search engine results pages (SERPs) primarily through paid advertising.
Sentiment / Sentiment Analysis: The process of identifying and categorizing text, particularly in reviews, in order to determine the writer’s opinion on the matter. This can be utilized by businesses to learn the quality of experience and see where improvements are needed or what is successful.
SEO: Search Engine Optimization is the process of getting traffic from the organic search results on a SERP. There are many ranking factors that go into SEO and can either positively or negatively affect your rankings.
SERP: Search Engine Results Page
Service Area: A term used to describe personal service and go-to-client businesses. These businesses typically have their addresses hidden on local listings.
Sitemap: A list of a website’s content. Great to implement as it makes it easy for search engines to read and therefore recommend your website.
Spider (bot, crawler): A program that visits Web sites and reads their pages and other information in order to create entries for a SERP
Static Content: Opposite of dynamic content, Static content are files that don’t change based on user input. Static web pages can be great for SEO since they are easy for spiders to read.
Social Proof: The influence that the actions of people around us, either online or in person, have on our own behavior. Social proof is a necessary tool to help build trust among a business and consumers.
Trustrank: A link analysis technique used to differentiate between real and spam web pages by filtering web results based on reliability of the site.
UGC: User Generated Content is any form of content such as blogs, wikis, discussion forums, posts, chats, tweets, podcasts, digital images, video, audio files, advertisements and other forms of media that was created by users of an online system or service, often made available via social media websites
User Experience Design (UX, UXD, UED, XD): The process of improving user experience with a product by enhancing the accessibility, usability, and functionality of the product so as to increase satisfaction for the consumer.
Web Search: A traditional search query performed on a search engine such as Google.com. There is a distinct difference between a web search and a local search.
White Hat SEO: Opposite of Black Hat SEO. White Hat SEO is a practice used to improve search performance that is in line with terms and conditions set in place by a search engine.
White Label: A product or service produced by one company (the producer) that other companies (the marketers) rebrand to make it appear as if they had made it.
Widget: An element of a graphical user interface (GUI) that displays information or provides a specific way for a user to interact with the operating system or an application. Widgets are devices for displaying information and for inviting, accepting, and responding to user actions, making them great as lead bait.