The Ultimate Digital Marketing & SEO Glossary
We're pleased to present this huge glossary of digital marketing and SEO terms, full of quick & clear definitions.
It's regularly updated with the newest words and acronyms. And, if you can't find what you're looking for, you can email us and we'll answer your query and update this page.
Don't forget that you can press CTRL+F (on a Windows computer) or CMD+F (on a Mac) to use your browser's built-in search function and hop straight to the definition you're looking for.
Jump to a particular letter:
A/B Split Test
Testing two variables for a statistically significant influence.
Above The Fold
The content that can be seen on a screen without having to scroll down. In Email Marketing, this refers to the portion of an email that can be viewed in the preview pane.
An approach to web design where different browsers and settings are taken into account, ensuring that all people will be able to view the site.
Refers to the point in time when a visitor to a website becomes a qualified lead or customer.
Active Server Pages
ASP. Microsoft's server-side technology for dynamically-generated web pages. ASP of this variety is marketed as an add-on to IIS.
A specified task performed by a user, which results in an affiliate being awarded commission.
Action Item Management (ORM)
Mentions requiring immediate attention are highlighted and grouped until they are dealt with, ensuring that urgent interactions are responded to immediately - before negativity has time to fester.
An action word, usually used in a call to action (CTA) and tells a visitor what to do.
The allotted space on web pages for Online Advertising.
Text and image advertisements by Google that appear on content websites.
The technology that powers Google’s PPC advertising. It facilitates targeting adverts to specific searches, and the adverts appear above and to the right of the organic searches.
Also known as "publishers". Affiliates market another merchant's products on their site and earn revenue for successful referrals to that merchant's website.
An online community of affiliates where members can read or post topics and articles related to Affiliate Marketing.
An agreement between two websites. The affiliate agrees to feature content on their site that aims to drive traffic to another merchant's site. In return the affiliate site receives a percentage of the sales generated by this traffic.
The merchant fills the role of the advertiser in an Affiliate Marketing relationship. The merchant implements a tracking system, provides affiliates with the campaign graphics and pays them.
A number indicating how popular a website is in comparison to other sites, based on information returned by the Alexa Toolbar and Quirk SearchStatus. The number is the index of a given site in long ordered list of popularity, the most popular site at index 1, the second most at index 2 and so on.
An algorithm is a mathematical, computational or statistical method that takes a number of variables into account to output a single, quantifiable number that is a function of all of the variables. A good example of a commonly used algorithm is the one used by Google to determine which pages should rank more highly on the SERPs.
See Alt Text.
An Alt Tag is used in HTML to attribute a text field to an image on a webpage. Normally with a descriptive function, this tag tells a user what an image is about and displays the text when the image is unable to load.
Software that assists a business in building customer relationships and analyses ways to improve them.
The visible, clickable text in a link.
A GIF (type of image file) which supports animations and allows a separate palette of 256 colours for each frame.
An open source web server. Apache HTTP Server is the most popular web server in use today.
This search engine formally known as Ask Jeeves was founded by Garrett Gruener and David Warthen. Ask Jeeves allowed users to ask questions in everyday language. As at Google, MSN and Yahoo! began indexing pages faster, Ask Jeeves suffered. Though its user base is still significantly smaller than those of the big three, Ask.com is still a popular engine.
Abbreviation of Application Service Provider, essentially a business that provides computer-based services to customers over a network.
Covert and manipulative use of word-of-mouth advertising or viral marketing.
A program designed to send an automated response to incoming emails or text messages.
Automated Significant (ORM)
Management Mentions that have a high credibility or extreme sentiment (positive or negative) are automatically grouped for further attention.
General classification for all the links on the pages that will take a user to a specific web page. Also known as inbound links. The number of backlinks influences PageRank, making relevant links of this type important.
The amount of data a connection is capable of moving. Generally measured in bits per second.
An online advertisement in the form of a graphic image that appears on a web page.
A symbiotic advertising initiative whereby the businesses involved promote each other’s services and websites on an exchange rather than a paid basis. Also known as link exchange.
An informal un-conference which brings techs, creatives and geeks together - this is where all the good stuff happens - keep an eye on the Quirk site for the next event in your area.
Blog Early, Blog Often. A social network based on the same format as Facebook or MySpace. There are numerous applications and add-ons that users can use to enhance its functionality.
An online design portfolio-based community recently acquired by Adobe, developers of industry-standard design software such as Photoshop and Illustrator.
The positive outcome for a user that a certain feature provides.
A term coined by the SEO industry to define the unethical techniques some search engine optimisers use to improve their sites ranking. These practises include keyword stuffing, hidden text and duplication of content. The immediate results may be astounding but the long term results are detrimental as Black Hat SEO techniques are a no-go with search engines.
Blacklists are lists of IP addresses belonging to organisations that have been identified as spammers. The ISPs use these lists to filter out spam and block messages from these IP addresses from reaching their final destination.
Once known as a 'web log'. A blog is a type of website that allows users (bloggers) to post entries on different topics and lets readers comment on these posts. Blog types range from being personal diaries to news commentaries. Blogs are easy to update, encourage repeat visits, create fresh content and natural links. If your company is not involved in the blogosphere - you're lost.
The world of blogs, bloggers and blog posts. The blogosphere has evolved rapidly since its inception and is destined to grow even more - start blogging! In fact visit our blog and get to it!
AKA Filtering. Sometimes emails are prevented from reaching their final destination because of a filter that has been put in place. These filters are usually put in place to block spam.
A collection of links to other blogs. It is usually found on the Home Page of most blogs.
A facility whereby users can remark on or provide feedback on a particular post. Some individuals and companies have abused this system by automatically spamming blog comments with links to their websites, forcing many comment systems to now be moderated or by invitation only.
The anonymous sending of unsolicited messages over Bluetooth to Bluetooth enabled devices such as mobile phones, PDAs or laptop computers.
Standard wording about an organisation that usually appears at the foot of a press release.
Saving the web address of a web page or website so that it may be easily found again. Bookmarks can be managed with a browser or with an online tool. See Social Bookmarking.
The list of all websites you have bookmarked are your bookmarks. These are called "favourites" in Internet Explorer.
In Google Analytics, this refers to the percentage of people that do not progress beyond the entry page within a certain time limit.
The number of emails that were unable to reach their final destination due to a hard or soft bounce.
Links, usually on the top of the page, that indicate where a page sits within the hierarchy of the website.
One who lives and breathes a brand, and is capable of spreading the word far and wide. Compare Brand Terrorist.
One who attacks a brand, normally an industry rival or dissatisfied customer. Compare Brand Evangelist.
Online excitement and word of mouth surrounding a certain brand or incident.
The clever mind who is responsible for making the objectives of a campaign a reality, by any means necessary.
If there are multiple versions of similar pages, the canonical rel tag tells the WebCrawler that the page linked is the definitive version. Each non-canonical page must link to the canonical version with this link.
Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing Act of 2003. The U.S. law that regulates commercial email.
Completely Automated Turing Test To Tell Computers and Humans Apart. A program that asks a user to complete a simple test to prove they are human and not a computer. The most common test is to retype a distorted image of numbers and text into a box that a computer would be unable to read.
Consumer Generated Media. Another term for social media.
Click-through Rate (CTR)
Expressed as a percentage, this refers to the total clicks on a link divided by the number of times that link was shown.
Cybersquatting occurs when a domain name that contains the name of a well-known brand/subject/trademark i.e. emarketing.com is purchased with no intention of development, but rather to be sold off to the highest bidder.
Two phase process which is made up of first analysing the collaborative effect of your eMarketing efforts and then optimising their effect to turn visitors into customers. The aim is to ultimately make your site more effective.
Advertising on content websites rather than on search sites. Where adverts are placed is based on the content of the website. For example, on a running magazine website, adverts might be for a running shoe brand.
The percentage of visitors to a website that perform a desired action, such as making a purchase or filling out a form. For example, if 30 visitors out of 100 subscribe to a newsletter, the conversion rate is expressed as 30%.
A small text file that is stored on an end-user’s computer and allows websites to identify that user, store unique variables and allow the website owner to construct a profile for that user.
This website/blog content is probably lengthy and detailed, and would attempt to completely cover the core topic that the website/blog is about. Other pages and posts on the site would likely link back to the cornerstone content regularly. The cornerstone content is designed and created to send strong signals to search engines regarding the site's focus (as well as its authority on the topic). See also: Evergreen content.
The act of generating invalid clicks on an advert. Deliberate invalid clicks may be generated by competitors to waste the media budget of an advertiser or by site owners hosting the advert in order to increase commission from the clicks.
The pattern of clicks as well as the entry and exit points of a user’s interaction with a website.
Clicks and Mortar
A business that has both online trading capabilities and physical stores located offline.
The number of times a link was clicked by a visitor.
Using scripts to track the number of clicks it takes to enter or exit a website. This can also be used to shield a link from being picked up as a backlink to another site.
Transactions that take place before information is sent to the server.
Content Management System. A nifty script or program for maintaining websites. If you have a really hot CMS program you can almost do anything and you no longer have to depend on anyone else when it comes to maintaining your site.
Umbrella term for all the interactive options for serving customers. It is people-based customer support that includes: collaborative browsing, Web-based text and voice chat, desktop sharing, application sharing, file transfer and phone support.
Common Short Codes (CSC)
Stands for Common Short Codes. Users send messages to shortened numbers, usually to get something in return, like a competition entry for example.
The bounty paid by a merchant to an affiliate when the affiliate makes a successful referral.
Common Page Elements
Items which appear on every page of a website.
Consumer Generated Media
This refers to online information that could be published anywhere, from blogs to forums and even on Twitter. Consumer generated media is highly valued among individuals looking for information about which brands or companies are trustworthy.
A visitor completing a target action.
A defined path that visitors should take to reach the final objective.
A commercial writer. An SEO copywriter is specialist who is skilled at writing for the optimised Web.
Raw figures captured for analysis. These are the most basic web analytics metric.
Cost Per Action or Acquisition. Refers to the cost of acquiring a new customer. The advertiser only pays when a desired action is achieved. Sometimes called cost per acquisition.
Cost Per Click. Refers to when an advertiser only pays when their ad is clicked upon, resulting in a visitor to their site. This is typically from a search engine in Pay Per Click search marketing.
Cost Per Lead. Commission structure where the affiliate earns a fixed fee for a lead sent to a merchant.
Cost Per Mille. In Pay per Click advertising, CPM refers to Cost per 1000 ad impressions. An advertiser pays each time 1000 impressions of their ad are shown.
Cascading Style Sheets. This is a language used to describe how an HTML document should be formatted. Cascading Style Sheets provide the ability to separate the layout and style of a web page from the data or information.
Call to action. A phrase written to motivate the reader to take a specific action and is usually situated at the bottom of a page. These actions can include signing up for a newsletter, contacting the company or booking a holiday.
This is the alternative to traditional copyrights. It allows publishers to licence their content in a variety of ways that are not as restrictive as traditional copyrights. Usually, these licences allow for content to be duplicated and shared as long as this is in accordance with the terms of the licence.
Credibility Analysis (ORM)
In ORM, distribution of the credibility assigned to mentions is plotted on a graph, allowing you to understand the influence that your consumers have on your reputation and who you should engage with.
Conversion Rate Optimisation. The conversion rate is how many people go from just browsing to making a purchase, or becoming a customer. Conversion Rate Optimisation means designing both the PPC adverts and the specifics of the website so to maximise viewer usability and hence the conversion rate.
Marketing other products or services to an existing customer. Cross marketing enhances the ability of generating further sales. Also known as Cross Selling.
See Cross Marketing
Harnessing the skills, talents and ideas of a broader community, usually through social media.
In Email Marketing, the database is the list of prospects to whom emails are sent and can contain additional pertinent information.
The process of analyzing large amounts of data for patterns. This process can be used to predict buying habits, credit card purchases and cross sale capabilities.
A link to a page that no longer exists. Search engine spiders check these types of links and eventually eliminate them from search engine results. Also see Link Rot.
Deep linking exists when a user clicks on a link and is taken to a page that is not the homepage, but another page that exists within the site's structure. The landing page where the user is taken to is usually one that is not easily found within the site.
The automated process of sorting traffic depending on the device used for access.
Dynamic Keyword Insertion
In paid search advertising, this allows keywords used in searches to be inserted into advert copy.
The elements of a URL that are dynamically generated.
Content such as text, image and form fields on a web page that change according to each user's needs and information.
Document Object Model. A web standards approach to representing HTML and XML documents as objects.
An email authentication system designed to verify the DNS domain of an email sender and the message integrity.
The name of a server that distinguishes it from other systems on the World Wide Web. Quirk's domain name is quirk.biz.
These are specially assembled pages that feature keywords for particular product searches. These often redirect visitors to a home page.
An enterprise that only conducts business online. These enterprises do not have physical stores - the products/services they offer are only sold online. Compare Clicks and Mortar.
Domain Name System. DNS resolves a domain name into an IP address.
The act of getting subscribers to confirm their initial subscription via a follow up email asking them to validate their address and hence opt-in again.
Transferring files from one computer to another. When you are online you are downloading files from a website server to your PC.
Electronic Customer Relationship Management.
A faster version of GSM wireless service. It enables data to be delivered at rates up to 384 Kbps on a broadband.
Payment and receipt of payment via the Internet.
A software application used to compose, send, receive and view e-mails. Some common examples include Outlook, Thunderbird, Apple Mail and Google Gmail.
Email marketing is the most effective of all online marketing tactics. It is extremely cost effective, can be highly targeted and customised, is measurable and best of all takes advantage of the consumer's most prolific touch point with the Internet, their inbox.
The process of marketing a brand using the Internet. In a world where online is everything you may as well pack it in if you don't have a kick-ass website and an effective eMarketing strategy.
Like a traditional print newsletter but delivered to your inbox rather than to your post box.
Together with the Marketing Managers, the eMarketing Strategists know where and how to effectively position a brand online.
Mathematical algorithms used to encode data in order to protect it from unauthorised use.
Earnings Per Click. This is the total amount earned divided by the number of clicks.
The first web page visited when someone enters a website.
Anything online that you can't be bothered to actually explain.
A recorded action that has a specific time assigned to it by the browser or the server. Can also refer to a step a visitor takes in the conversion process.
Website/blog content that is designed to have long-term value. It's probably a very in-depth, detailed piece of content, perhaps a combination of written, video and/or audio. This type of content is designed to attract lots of links (see: Skyscraper Method) and draw lots of traffic over a lengthy period of time (1 year +). See also: Cornerstone content.
The last web page a user visit before exiting a website.
If growth more than doubles with each iteration, it is exponential.
A URL that is outside of the website.
Facebook applications are add ons that allow users to customise their Facebook experience and perform a number of functions such as playing online games, adopting avatar pets or sending gifts.
Favourite Icon. It is a small icon that identifies a bookmarked site. It can also show in a browser's address bar, making it a worthwhile branding effort.
A prominent aspect of a product which is beneficial to users.
An RSS aggregator that lets you view all your RSS feeds in one place.
See RSS and RSS Reader.
Mozilla's web browser, currently the most popular browser around.
Security software which monitors and authorises access.
Technology used to show video and animation on a website. Although popular, Flash can be bandwidth heavy and unfriendly to search engine spiders because they can't read it. This may negatively impact on your site rankings on SERPs.
Fixed cost for impressions on low-traffic sites.
A fake blog. For example the Edelman/Walmart Fiasco. In this, a PR firm (Edelman) backed the creation of a fake blog detailing the travel escapades of a couple in America who camped in Wal-Mart parking lots. The whole incident was revealed as being contrived and Wal-Mart/Edelman were strongly criticised by the online and offline community.
A form of qualitative research where a group of people are asked questions in an interactive group setting. From a marketing perspective, it is important tool for acquiring feedback regarding new products and various topics.
Everything you see on your computer screen for that page without needing to scroll downwards. All your critical or most important information should lie above the fold in order to ensure maximum exposure and to entice the user to read more.
Categorisation or taxonomy based on social media tags.
An online discussion group usually around a specific topic that a number of users can participate in and comment on.
A social network for users to share their location with friends those are within a close proximity.
An HTML technique used to combine two or more HTML documents within a single web browser screen. Frames can often cause accessibility and usability issues and their use is largely discouraged by good designers.
This is the interval, at which email efforts or advertisements such as newsletters are sent, or displayed to users (daily/weekly/monthly etc.).
Frequency caps are present to limit the number of times we are exposed to the same online advert.
Abbreviation for File Transfer Protocol, a standard for transporting files online.
Also Geotargeting. Used to allow you to see where your visitors come from and to give them specific information that is relevant to them.
Stands for General Packet Radio Service. Delivers wireless packet data services to GSM customers.
Also known as geo-targeting or geo-locating. Used to allow you to see where your visitors come from and give them specific information that is relevant to them based on their location.
Gentoo is the free file management system for Linux and other UNIX based operating systems.
The worlds best known search engine. Google offers access to billions of web pages in over 30 languages to searchers from all over the world. Google began life as the research project of two graduate students, Sergey Brin and Larry Page.
This program allows web publishers to display Google ads and earn revenue from the hits that generate traffic. AdSense delivers relevant text ads that are targeted to the Google search results pages generated by your visitors' search request.
Google's PPC program allows advertisers to display their adverts on relevant search results and across Google's content network via this program.
The free traffic analytics software provided by the search engine giant Google.
Google Earth is a virtual globe comprised of the super-imposition of satellite imagery, aerial photography and GIS images.
Your Google CV is a dynamic curriculum vitae (resume) which is represented as the results which appear when an individual or company is searched for. Go on, have a look: search for your name on Google. The listings specific to you in the SERPs will form your Google CV.
This is what you're doing when you enter a search query in Google.
A term coined by AdWords advertisers to describe an unexpected change in Google AdWords policy, introducing a quality score for the landing pages of AdWords ads. It is gaining wider usage as a term to describe (unexpected) decisions and actions taken by Google, which negatively impact Web or search engine rankings, irrespective of whether they relate to Google AdWords or not.
Graphics Interchange Format. A GIF is an 8-bit-per-pixel bitmap image format using a palette of up to 256 distinct colours. GIFs allow images to be reduced without degrading their quality.
Geographic Information Systems Image. An information type which bridges the gap between physical terrain and a fully integrated digital map of the chosen area.
Stands for Global Positioning System. Satellite-based positioning technology that allows a GPS receiver to calculate its position anywhere on earth with great accuracy.
Grey Hat SEO is what occurs when white hats try and push the limits of what they can get away with. With the rapid evolution of search engines they don't tend to get away with it for very long. See Black Hat.
Stands for Global System for Mobile Communications. Most widely used of the three digital wireless telephone technologies. Uses a variation of time division multiple access.
Software that compresses a website in order to speed up its download time.
The unauthorised use or attempted use of a network or information system. Hacking usually involves bypassing security measures put in place by system administrators.
The failed delivery of email communication due to an undeviating reason like a non-existent address.
A data visualisation tool that shows levels of activity on a web page in different colours. Reds and yellows show the areas of the most activity and blues and violets the least.
Heading tags (H1, H2, H3 etc) are standard elements used to define headings and subheadings on a webpage. The number indicates the importance, so H1 tags are viewed by the spiders as being more important that the H3 tags. Using targeting key phrases in your H tags is essential for effective SEO.
A black hat technique where the keywords are invisible to the naked eye as they are the same colour as the page's background. Search engines are not fooled by this unethical technique and sites will be penalised for employing it.
The first page of any website. The home page gives users a glimpse into what your site is about – very much like the index in a book or a magazine.
A link in an electronic document that allows you, once you click on it, to follow the link to the relevant web page. Hyperlinks are often written in underlined, blue text.
A hit, though often mistaken for a measure of popularity, is a request from a user’s browser or web server to view a particular page, file or image.
An email database that a company generates itself without purchasing or renting names.
HyperText Markup Language. This is the "language" read by web browsers. Certain HTML "tags" are used to structure the information and features within a web page. As an example, HTML emails usually contain graphics and can be interactive.
Hypertext Transfer Protocol, a protocol used when browsing the World Wide Web.
IA is the structural design of shared environments, methods of organising and labelling websites, intranets and online communities and the ways of bringing the principles of design and architecture (structure) to the digital landscape.
The set of standard which outline the Wireless LAN protocol (WiFi)
An iFrame is an HTML document which allows additional HTML elements to be embedded within.
Customisable additions that can be loaded onto your iGoogle home page and perform various functions such as weather updates, sports scores or TV guides.
Internet Information Services. A web server from Microsoft. It is the world's second most popular web server in terms of overall websites.
Instant Messaging is a technology that allows its users to communicate in real-time, via text chat. Essentially your IM system alerts you when a contact on your list is online and you can then initiate a chat session.
The number of times a web page or ad is viewed.
The searchable catalogue of documents and pages created by a search engine. Web spiders index websites with the search engines by scanning or crawling them.
Consolidation of many media toward a unified platform or standard.
A URL that is part of the same website.
Internal Site Search
A search function specific to one site. This awesome tool allows users to find what ever they are looking for on your site. All they do is type in the search term and hey presto if you have it on your site, they’ll find it.
IE – Microsoft’s web browser.
Internet Press Release
An element of WebPR, an internet press release is exactly the same as a traditional press release but is released online rather than in print and can be optimized to form part of an SEO strategy.
The act of deliberately generating impressions of an advert without the intention of clicking on the advert. The result is a reduction in click through rate which can affect Quality Score in PPC advertising.
The Internet Protocol (IP) address is a exclusive number, which is used to represent every single computer in a network.
Marking a online mention as irrelevant (during the sorting phase) means that it is related your particular key phrases but not relevant to your brand. For example to the brand Apple computers a mention about the fruit may be found but are irrelevant to your brand.
Internet Service Provider – this is the company that is providing you access to the Internet e.g. MWEB, AOL, Yahoo! etc.
Interaction Design defines the structure and behaviours of interactive products and services and user interactions with those products and services. It is grounded in an understanding of real users (goals, tasks, experiences, needs and wants) and balances these needs with business goals and technological capabilities.
A programming language which allows multifaceted and graphical customer applications to be written and then accessed from a web browser.
Specialists in Java, and usually a few other programming languages, the Java team are indispensable in an eMarketing agency.
A popular scripting language that is used on websites to perform client side actions without requiring full page refreshes. Examples include web analytics for page tagging and page animation. See AJAX.
Keyword Effectiveness Indicator. It is designed to measure and quantify the quality and worth of a search term.
A word or words used by a searcher on a search engine. In SEO, keywords are the words that a website is optimised to rank for and in PPC, keywords are bid on by advertisers. In Online Reputation Management, a keyword is a term that is used when searching the Internet for mentions.
This relates to the number of times a keyword/key phrases appear on a webpage. This divided by the total number of words that appear on a page gives you a percentage. The higher the better - but not too high. You don't want to be penalised for keyword stuffing.
Two or more words that are combined to form a search term/query - often referred to as keywords. It is usually better to optimise for a phrase rather than a single word as more searches will search for a phrase rather a than word as they want more specific and relevant content.
This term refers to where the keywords/phrases targeted by your SEO efforts rank amongst the search engines - if your targeted terms do not appear on the first 3 pages, start worrying.
The process of researching what searchers are actually searching for. Copy optimisation revolves around the selection of the best keywords/key phrases. There are a multitude of keyword research tools out there, which will help you discover the best possible keywords to use.
Repeating keywords/phrases over and over ad nauseum in the hopes of improving the page's ranking. Search engines penalise sites heavily for keyword stuffing.
A composite word derived from keyword and quirky. Describes the way one should write for the web: using keywords appropriately, yet still keeping the copy fresh, relevant and quirky. It's all about personality! Thanks to Andre from the Africa Travel Guide for this awesome definition.
The number of times a keyword or key phrase appears on a website
Key Performance Indicator
A metric that indicates whether a website is achieving its goals.
Word/words a page or website is being optimised for. Also used to refer to words that are utilised by of search engine users.
The page a user reaches when clicking on a paid or organic search engine listing or a banner advertisement. The pages that have the most success are those that match up as closely as possible with the users search query.
Lame-Ass Syndrome (LAS)
This unfortunate yet common syndrome results in sites that will not function without the WWW in the URL; it is caused by System Administrators presenting signs of severe DNS laziness.
A link is a URL imbedded on a webpage, if you click on the link you will be taken to that page.
A technique for providing useful content that attracts links from other web pages. Particularly applicable when creating content that appeals to social networks and/or bloggers. Our recent eMarketing 101 series is a good example of Link Bait - other websites use this content as a resource.
These tools are used to check your site for broken hyperlinks. Very useful.
See Banner Exchange.
A measure of the quantity and quality of other web pages that link to a website.
The search engine ranking value which is achieved when others hyperlink to your website.
When you click on a link and receive an error message or a notification that the website has been moved. This highly frustrating phenomenon known as "link rot" is detrimental to SEO as spiders cannot keep up with the changes. This could be solved by a redirect link being inserted.
The length of time it takes for a page to open completely in the browser window.
Software that provides information about a site’s visitors, activity statistics, accessed files, click-through paths and other analytical data based on the users behaviour.
A file that is automatically created by a web server listing the actions that have occurred. Log file analysis tools show where visitors are coming from, how often they visit, and track their path through the site. When used in conjunction with cookies they provide a much more in-depth information.
Many terms are searched for through search engines, and many people search for the same things. As these terms are so popular, it is very difficult for a starter company to compete against the established websites. However, on the other hand, there are a vast amount of terms that are searched for relatively rarely. These terms are said to be part of the ‘long tail’, as when plotted on a graph the terms are searched for infrequently, but there are many of them. It is far easier for a starter company to rise to the top of the results with long tail keywords, albeit with fewer potential searchers.
When content from two or more sources is combined.
Media Segmentation Analysis (ORM)
In ORM, the graphic representation of the media sources from which mentions relating to your brand allows you to better understand how particular media types are interacting with your brand.
In Online Reputation Management, mentions refer to the instances when your brand, company or staff members are talked about online, usually by your clients or consumers. Online Reputation Management and monitoring tools, seek out mentions and alert you to them, so that your company can respond appropriately.
This is the owner of the product that is being marketed or promoted. Also referred to as "Advertiser".
Information that can be entered about a web page and the elements on it that provide context and relevancy information to search engines. These used to be an all important ranking factor.
Meta Description Tag
A short paragraph describing the page content. This summary is usually shown on the SERPs if it contains the term searched for. The spiders use the meta tag description to determine the topic of the page, making the use of targeted key phrases important.
Meta Keyword Tag
A list of the words and phrases that are important and relevant on the web page. The use of targeted key phrases is important here - but remember no keyword stuffing.
A search tool that will allow a user to conduct a search across two or more search engines and directories. Examples of meta-search engines include Clusty and Dogpile.
Meta tags are there to tell the spiders what exactly the webpages are about. It's important that your Meta tags are optimised for the targeted key phrases. Meta tags are made up of meta titles, descriptions and keywords, etc.
Brief text updates that are usually less than 200 characters. These are published via SMS, the Web, IM, email or Mp3 and can either be received by the general online community or a select number of individuals. As of May 2009, the most popular microblogging service is Twitter.
Small, simple browser used on mobile phones: E.g. Opera Mini.
Duplicates of a site usually found on a different server. These sites are used to trick search engines and are usually considered a Black Hat tactic which the search engines will most often penalize by removing both the mirror and original sites from the index.
MySpace is a social networking website that offers users the opportunity to build profiles, collect friend lists, blog, join groups and enjoy a number of other interactive networking activities.
An open source, Database Management System which is available for both Linux and Windows. Based on goals of speed, robustness and ease of use, this system stores information for use on websites.
A blend of the words mobile and weblog. A moblog, consists of content posted to the Internet from a mobile or portable device, such as a cellular phone or PDA. Moblogs generally involve technology which allows publishing from a mobile device.
A number from 0 to 10 indicating how high a site is likely to rank in the search results. Provided by SEOmoz's Linkscape.
MSN Search was developed by Microsoft and comprised of a search engine, index, and web crawler. On September 12 2006, MSN Search evolved into MSN Live Search which offers users the ability to search for specific types of information using search tabs that include the Web, news, images, music, desktop, local, and Microsoft Encarta.
A test using many variables to determine statistically significant influences on outcomes.
Non-paid search engine results. See also Organic Results.
Navigation is what allows users to move from page to page in your site. It is essential that your navigation is user friendly. If the users can’t easily find their way, they won’t travel deeper into your site.
The opposite of a keyword: if a user searches using a negative keyword, your results will not show. This is useful if a link is easily confused with something else.
Like etiquette but on the net, netiquette are the social rules that govern online interactions. An example of a net no-no would be IMing someone in caps (this means you’re SHOUTING).
A word derived from net and citizen. Unlike a newbie, a netizen is an experienced web user. Someone who has spent a significant (if not disproportionate) time on the web.
A group of two or more computer systems linked together in a LAN or a WAN.
An online discussion group usually focussed around a specific topic. Articles are posted and people have discussions around them.
A unique visitor who visits a website for the first time ever in the period of time being analysed.
NoFollow is an attribute of a hyperlink, indicating that the link is not necessarily endorsed by the website and is ignored by search engine spiders.
A NoIndex page is a HTML meta tag (at page level) telling the search engine spiders visiting your site not to display the page in the SERPs.
Your online reputation refers to how your company, brand or staff is perceived by the online community. It is influenced by the comments that people make about you and your brand on blogs, in forums and discussion groups and on Twitter. It can be damaged or built on, depending on the sentiment of the mentions.
Online Press Room
A part of a website aimed at providing journalists with pertinent corporate information such as PR contacts, images and press releases.
Online Reputation Score (ORM)
This is an absolute gold mine of information and the most reliable indicator of what your reputation is like on the internet. Score that can be compared with your competitors or (cheekily) between your CEO and yourself. This Reputation Score acts as the "spot price" of your brand at any moment and is graphed on a time graph for easy comparison.
Open Education Declaration
It is a "statement of principle, a statement of strategy and a statement of commitment. It meant to spark dialogue, to inspire action and to help the open education movement grow." OED is centred around efforts to promote open resources, technology and teaching practices in education so as to make it freely accessible to all learners.
This is also referred to as the read rate. This is the number of emails that are opened in an email marketing campaign as a proportion of the total number of emails sent.
Unlike proprietary software, open source software makes the source code available so that other developers can build applications for the software, or even improve on it.
Entails supporting the "front office" business processes, which include customer contact (sales, marketing and service).
A file containing a list of RSS URLs. Often used for sharing feeds amongst users.
Also known as subscribe. Explicitly requesting to receive information from a company via e-mail. All responsible email marketers ensure that only users who have opted in receive their communication. If you haven't opted in - it's SPAM!
Also known as unsubscribe - The act of removing oneself from a list or lists so that specified information is no longer received via email.
These are the listings generally found on the left hand side of a SERP and are not influenced by direct financial payments. These listings are results based on factors such as keyword relevancy within a webpage: SEO is used to boost success.
Online Reputation Management - the only way you can measure what is being said about your company, product and business methods online. How you are portrayed online is a vital part of any PR strategy, especially when that portrayal is negative.
These are the results of a web search that have not been paid for. The positions of the results should be organic in that they reflect the popularity/trustworthiness of the website without being influenced by paid advertising.
The URL that sent a new visitor to the website.
Online reputation management.
These links will, once clicked on, take users to another site.
Formerly GoTo.com, bought by Yahoo! And provider of Yahoo!'s PPC advertising. Panama has replaced Overture as the platform that powers Yahoo! Search Marketing.
Unit of content (downloads and Flash files can be defined as a page).
PageRank gives a ranking or score to every webpage on the Internet based on the number and quality of the page's backlinks, this score is a number out of 10 with 1 being the lowest and 10 being the highest. Anything above 5 means your site is doing well!
Page Exit Ratio
Number of exits from a page divided by total number of page views.
To share content with another person.
Pass On Rate
The number of times a piece of information or content is forwarded to others.
Google Penguin is a version of its PageRank WebCrawler which improves its spam detection. It is better at detecting cloaking, keyword stuffing and duplicate pages. It is in place to better organic searches.
The number of times a page was successfully requested.
Page Views Per Visit
The number of page views in a reporting period divided by the number of visits in that same period.
Placing ads for products or services on SERPs (listings appear at the top of the page and on the right hand side) and on content sites across the Internet. These ads are typically small snippets of text linked to merchandise pages. See PPC.
Pay Per Lead
Similar to Pay Per Click, PPL is an advertising payment model in which payment is made on leads not just clicks.
A unique URL which points to the permanent location of a single blog post and its associated comments and Trackbacks.
A character used to define a group of users to a website.
A criminal activity where “Phishers” attempt to fraudulently acquire sensitive information, such as passwords and credit card details. Often this is done by masquerading as something the victim is likely to trust (another person or reputable business) via some form of electronic communication like email, IM or even telephone.
Pay per Click. Buying sponsored adverts on search engine results pages and content pages and only paying for those ads on a performance basis. See Paid Search.
Packet Internet Groper. A utility that verifies a link or a connection to the Internet.
An extension that adds on to the capabilities of a major software package. SearchStatus, for example, is a Mozilla or Firefox plug-in that allows you to see how any and every website in the world is performing.
Publishing audio programs via the Internet, allowing users to subscribe to a feed of new files. Podcasting enables independent producers to create self-published, syndicated "radio shows". Listeners may subscribe to feeds using "podcatching" software such as iTunes (a type of aggregator), which periodically checks for and downloads new content automatically.
Unrequested window that opens on top of the currently viewed window.
Also called a news release, this is an electronic or paper document issued to the media with the intention of gaining news coverage. It follows established layout guidelines.
The 'cleanliness' of a mailing list based on previous mailings. A Purity Point of 0 is the best while 1 is the poorest. This decimal number is based on the number of bounces and their type in comparison to the number of emails sent.
The collection of data to present at a client meeting.
Data that can be observed but not measured. Deals with descriptions.
Basis for measuring the quality of keywords and determining minimum PPC bids. This score is calculated by measuring a keyword's click-through rate, ad text relevancy, the keyword’s historical performance and the quality of the landing page.
Data which can be measured or defined. Deals with numbers.
In search, ranking is used to describe the relative position of a web page in the SERPs.
An interpretation of data captured. A ratio can be between counts and ratios or a ratio and a count metric.
This is when a site agrees to link to another site providing that the other site links back to it in return.
When an 3rd party site/blog/individual recommend a site, product or service provider to a second individual or company.
The URL of the web page that a user was on before reaching yours. The server's logs capture referral URLs and store them in their log files. Furthermore, if a user used a search engine to find your website, the key phrases they used to find your site will be embedded in the referring URL. Intelligent log analysers can then use this data to track how many visitors originate from each key phrase.
The number of unique users who’ve viewed an online advertisement.
A unique visitor with two or more visits within the time period being analysed.
A unique visitor who is not a new visitor to the site.
Commission structure where the affiliate earns a percentage of a sale.
Return on Advertising Spend. Indicates the amount of revenue garnered from each referrer. It is calculated by dividing the total amount of revenue garnered by the total amount of revenue spent on the advertising campaign.
Robots Exclusion Protocol
A protocol used to indicate to search engine robots which pages should not be indexed.
A file written and stored in the root directory of a website that restricts the search engine spiders from indexing certain pages of the website.
Return on Investment. The ratio of cost to profit. An example of this is advertising spend as a percentage of the revenue that it generates.
This is how you read your RSS Feeds. These desktop news readers or aggregators display new content from the RSS feeds that you have signed up to. Also known as RSS Aggregator.
Really Simple Syndication. RSS allows you to receive/ syndicate information without having to constantly open new pages in your browser.
Also called a content scraper, these tools automatically collect content from other websites - a popular tool in black hat circles.
A high level language used to control what the user sees on a site or to manipulate the data stored on a server.
A tool for searching the Internet. Users of search engines enter keywords relevant to their search and the search engine returns both organic and paid listing results from its databases.
Search Engine Copywriting
The practice of writing content specifically designed for chosen key phrases. This enhances spiderability and results in higher rankings on SERPs.
Search Engine Algorithm
Search engines rank webpages based on different sets of criteria: while they may attribute different values of importance to the criteria they tend to consider the same factors in general. The program which search engines use to judge these factors and rank webpages in their SERPs is called their ranking algorithm. Algorithms are regularly updated to combat spam and black hat tactics. As the algorithms change and put more or less importance on certain factors SEO’s do the same. Google’s change in algorithm is termed the Google Dance.
Search Engine Submission
Supplying a URL to the search engines to make them aware that the website and its pages actually exist and/or alerting them to updated content in the hopes of faster and more regular indexing. This is an old-school SEO technique and is no longer necessary.
See Search Term.
The URL that has been generated by a search function.
An awesome toolbar extension for Firefox and Mozilla that allows you to see how any and every website in the world is performing.
Search terms are the words entered by the searcher. search engines will then look for these words in their index and return matching results. Also known as Search Query.
Collection of existing research data.
The process of initiating a viral campaign through strategic online placement.
The initial audience from which viral growth starts.
Used to filter visitors into distinct characterised groups to analyse visits.
Search Engine Marketing. This is the process of getting a website to achieve top rankings for its chosen key phrases on SERPs. See SEO and Organic Search.
The name that is chosen to appear in the sender or from field of an email.
A method used by major ISPs to confirm that emails do originate from the domain from where it claims to have been sent.
During ORM, once you have mentions of your brand that are marked as relevant , you are required to attach a level of Sentiment to it. This is done on a scale of -5 to 5, where a Sentiment score which sits at -5 means anger towards the brand is expressed in the post and 5 means celebration and praise.
Sentiment Analysis (ORM)
Distribution of sentiment contained in mentions and automatically plots the information on a graph, allowing you to understand how your consumers and the press feel about you, your brand and your products.
Search Engine Optimisation. The creation or tweaking of a website to increase the amount of traffic to it from search engines. The aim is to get the page to rank highly on SERPs.
Search Engine Results Page. The page that shows the results for a search on a search engine. In terms of SEO, websites should aim to be the first result on the SERP.
Transactions that take place on the server.
A lasting connection between the user and a website.
Online shopping software that allows you to add chosen product offerings on a site to your cart. You can add, delete and purchase the merchandise in your cart. Also known as shopping basket.
This is a signature file which is displayed at the end of an email. It often contains the senders name and full contact details. This short message will appear at the bottom of every email sent. It’s also sometimes called a business card.
A signature quote that appears at the end of an email; it could be a quote or a call to action. Don't forget to track clicks on any links here with the right URL parameters for your analytics platform.
Visits to a site that only consist of the viewing of one page.
On a website, a page that links to every other page in the website and displays these links organised according to the information hierarchal structure.
See Web Analytics.
The design and planning of websites involving the technical, aesthetic and functional elements.
Due to the competitive nature of content marketing, now that it's known to improve search rankings and brand awareness, it can be very difficult to create something truly new or original. Instead, you might try the Skyscraper Method: search for topics that have been covered but not in great depth or with high-quality content, and create new content on the topic that is of far higher detail and quality than any of the competition. You'll be looking to attract more relevant links to your new content than any of the older pieces of content were able to obtain.
The failed delivery of an email due to a deviating reason like an overloaded mail box or a server failure.
Email sent to someone who has not requested to receive it - EVIL!
An automated program that scans or crawls web pages to gather information for search engines. Also called trawlers, crawlers and robots, or bots.
This is a page at the entry to a site which is usually animated and contains some variation of the phrase ‘click here to enter this site’. These pages are considered detrimental to SEO.
Split testing begins with a hypothesis and tests this by randomly sending visitors to either option A or option B in a statistically equal manner. This is followed by measuring which has the best conversion rate.
A measure of a person’s power and influence within a defined social group.
In the online sense, this refers to a type of website model where individual members become part of a broader virtual community.
Social Media Optimisation
SMO. It's a way to optimise websites so they can be more easily connected with online communities and community websites. It involves generating publicity through social media, online communities and community websites. It can perhaps be thought of as the bastard child of SEO and social networking.
See Pay Per Click (PPC).
A Web based service to share Internet bookmarks. Del.icio.us and Digg are examples of social bookmarking services.
The media that is published, created and shared by individuals on the Internet, such as blogs, images and video.
The handsets have advanced capabilities and allow users to add applications to their phones. They usually have a QWERTY keypad and include 3G and Wifi capabilities.
Short Messaging Service. SMSes are text messages that can be sent to mobile phones from the Internet or from other mobile devices.
Simple Mail Transfer Protocol. A protocol for sending messages from one server to another.
Sender Policy Framework. An extension of SMTP that stops email spammers from forging the “From” fields in an email.
The paid search results on a SERP.
The operating system OS) used on Sun Systems known for its robustness and scalability.
Sorting is the process of reading mentions and determining their relevancy to your brand for optimum ORM. The Sorting process allows for a mention to be marked as Relevant, Duplicate, Spam or Irrelevant. All interactions at this point, teach BrandsEye to assist with the sorting process by intelligently reducing irrelevant and spam.
Spam is any mention which is either a collection of nonsensical words on a page or a direct copy of another site. Marking mentions within the sorting process as spam will teach BrandsEye to ignore similar mentions in future (with a 95% margin of certainty).
A person or organisation with an interest (a “stake”) in how a resource is managed.
A set of ideas that outline how a product line or brand will achieve its objectives. This guides decisions on how to create, distribute, promote and price the product or service.
Making content available for distribution among selected clients.
In social media, a tag indicates or labels what content is about.
Classification and division into ordered categories, usually hierarchical. In social media, taxonomy can refer to the categorisation of content on the Internet.
Text emails or plain text emails do not contain graphics or any kind of markup.
Third Party Cookie
Some websites store information in a small text file on your computer called a cookie. A third-party cookie either originates from, or is sent to, a website other than the one you are currently visiting. These third-party cookies can either be persistent, meaning they remain on the system after your session, or temporary, meaning they are removed from your system.
The (preferably optimised) title text you select will appear in the top bar of a user’s browser when they view the web page. Title tags should be a brief and accurate description of the page’s content.
Every instance that the consumer comes into contact with a brand.
Tomcat is a server solution based on the Java Platform that supports the Servlet and JSP specifications. It is open source technology.
Measuring the effectiveness of a campaign by collecting and evaluating statistics.
This refers to the visitors that visit a website.
A mechanism used in a blog that shows a list of entries in other blogs that refer to a post on the first blog.
A piece of code that tracks a user’s interaction and movement through a website.
Newspapers, magazines, television and publishing houses make up the realm of traditional media.
User Generated Content also known as CGM.
This refers to the number of individuals who forwarded a specific email on to other users.
The number of individual people visiting the website at least once within a specific period of time. Each individual is only counted once.
Stands for Universal Resource Identifier - the technical term used for means to access a resource on the Internet. The term both designates a method to access the resource and which specific resource should be accessed.
Presenting search-friendly URLs without question marks and rewriting them on the server in their standard format suitable for use in querying dynamic content.
The most common operating system for servers on the Internet.
Uniform (or Universal) Resource Locator. The unique address of a site or web page on the Internet.
Usability is a measure of how easy it is for a user to complete a desired task. Sites with excellent usability fare better than those that are difficult to use.
Stands for Unstructured Supplementary Service Data. Works on all existing GSM phones. Provides session-based communication, enabling a variety of applications.
User Experience is a term used to describe the overarching experience a person has as a when interacting with a particular product or service, its delivery, and related artefacts, according to their design. The first requirement for exemplary UX is to meet the exact needs of the customer, without any fuss.
Vendor Relationship Management (VRM)
Vendor Relationship Management. The emerging school of thought that incorporates the tools, technology and services that make it easy for customers to manage relationships with vendors.
A specialised or niche search. A search within a particular area of interest where the search database is highly refined for relevance to a particular subject.
Also known as Vodcatsts or Vlogs. A video file which can be subscribed to via an RSS feed. Although the technology to achieve this has been available for a while, only recently has the bandwidth been available to make this a practical reality.
The spread of a message quickly across the Internet, largely by "word-of mouth". It mimics a virus because of the speed at which is transferred and the number of people that it reaches. Viral Marketing is an effective form of marketing that yields a good ROI if successful.
A virus is a destructive program that is loaded onto your PC (hopefully without your knowledge). These little programs can delete or corrupt your files so save yourself the drama and get yourself a good anti-virus software package.
The length of time in a session.
Visit or Session
An interaction by an individual with a website consisting of one or more page views within a specified period of time.
The URL that originated a particular visit.
An individual visiting a website that is not a search engine spider or a script.
A video based log, also called a video log.
Voice Over Internet Protocol is a system of rules which allow for voice and sound to be streamed, live, across the internet. This allows the system to behave exactly as a traditional telephone.
Stands for Wireless Application Protocol. A set of standards that allows Web access on mobile devices.
Site analytics are essential to the success of any website – they provide you with information detailing how visitors are interacting with your site as well as how successful your supporting eMarketing techniques are on your site's performance. Data for the analysis is mined using specialised software. Site analytics provide you with a comprehensive and insightful analysis of your website as well as an insight into what needs to be done to ensure even greater success.
The layout and structure of a web page. Web design is not solely about making the page look pretty, it’s also about functionality and usability.
This is what allows you to browse the World Wide Web – examples of browsers include Internet Explorer, Safari and Firefox (Quirk’s number 1 browser).
Public relations on the web! Online press releases and article syndication promote brands as well as drives traffic to sites.
Your web presence is determined on whether you have a webpage or site on the net. If you don’t you are an unknown force and are losing out!
Best practices for building websites. The web standards are issued by the W3C.
Viewing the Internet as a platform for content and functionality. This includes delivering and allowing multiple users access to dynamic web applications and content as well as online collaboration, generation and distribution of data and a richer interactive user-experience through website applications that enhance value and ease-of-use. Web2.0 is often considered to include RIAs (Rich Internet Applications) built in AJAX, Flash, Java applets or ActiveX.
A term coined by the SEO industry to describe ethical SEO tactics – you’ll only find white hats at the QuirkStation. See Black Hat and Grey Hat.
A window or a text box for user interaction. An area on a page hosted by a third party, generally used for a small application or syndicated content.
A wiki is an online collaborative tool that allows numerous users to access and edit web page content freely and creatively. It supports links to websites, images and text and can be used for a host of functions, including project planning and document building.
A list of accepted email addresses that an ISP, subscriber or other email service provider allows to deliver messages regardless of the spam filter's settings.
The wireless technology which is the current standard protocol for networking and connecting to the Internet.
Word of Mouse
Another way of referring to online viral marketing and Word of Mouth.
WordTracker is an online tool that helps web site owners and search engine marketers identify keywords and phrases that are relevant to their client's business and likely to be used as queries by search engine visitors.
World Wide Web Consortium. An organisation which oversees the Web Standards project. www.w3c.org.
eXtensible Markup Language. A standard used for creating structured documents. XML promises more efficient and organised delivery of data over the internet. XHTML is the XML version of HTML.
One of the most popular search engines on the net. Yahoo! began its life as the bookmark lists of two graduate students, David Filo and Jerry Yang. Their bookmark list just never seemed to stop growing, and today Yahoo! serves billions of page views worldwide.
In computer networking, a zone file is a database element of the domain name system (DNS) used by BIND and other DNS server software. A zone file typically contains information that defines mappings between domain names and IP addresses and can also contain reverse mappings which can resolve IP addresses into domain names.
A scannable barcode which can be read by certain mobile applications (by taking a photo of the barcode) and convey information such as URLs etc. Also known as a QRC or Quick Response Code.
A permanent feature that rechannels traffic from one URL to another.
An error message that means that the page could not be found.