Or have we lost you already! In case we have, these are some of the terms used in SEO, web design, email marketing and the web in general today. Why should you as a small business familiarize yourself with these terms? Simple, the more you understand the language used online, the better your understanding will be about SEO and the elements which support its success in your business. Some words you’ll recognise as they’re commonly used online terms. Have fun, read through them. You might just surprise yourself into how much you already know…
- Autoresponder: An autoresponder is a computer program that automatically responds with a prewritten message to anyone who sends an email message to a particular email address or makes use of an online feedback form.
- Bounces: Bounces are email messages which fail to reach their intended destination. On the other hand ‘hard’ bounces refer to emails which are caused by things such as invalid email addresses.
- Database Management System: A database system is a system which provides possibilities for users to connect to a program known as LISTSERV. This program is connected to back-end and hence sends out personalized messages to customers. Messages are sent out according to the demographic location and personal preferences.
- Email marketing: Email marketing is the use of email or mailing lists to plan and deliver marketing campaigns that are based on enquiring the user’s permission before being sent.
- Personalization: Personalization occurs when elements such as personal greetings in email messages .i.e. “Dear Tom” rather than your ordinary generic greeting such as “Dear Customer” is used.
- Rich media: Rich Media refers to any graphics, videos or audio files that create an interactive atmosphere with the website’s visitors or viewers.
- Soft bounces: Soft bounces refer to email messages that cannot be delivered due to a temporary error such as a full mail box.
- Hard Bounces: Hard bounces refer to emails which are caused by things such as invalid email addresses.
- Open Rate: An open rate is usually presented as a percentage. It is calculated by dividing the number of emails messages opened by the number of email messages which were sent.
- Click Through: A click through is an action which following and clicking on a hyperlink usually to a commercial website.
- Deliverability: Deliverability refers to the capacity and speed of an outgoing message to reach the recipient’s inbox.
- Email Client: An email client is a computer program that is used to access and manage a user’s email. Well-known ones include Outlook, Hotmail, and Gmail etc…
- Test Send: It’ testing your HTML mails before sending them (Dummy test).
- Email list: An email list is a special usage of email that allows for widespread distribution of information to many Internet users. … Emails can be sent to different users at the same time.
- Import a List/Contact: importing a list or contact requires you to import your contacts from any source capable of exporting data in .csv format. It’s possible to import data from the .csv file, widely used by all home and professional software, including common office suites (i.e. Microsoft Outlook, Excel, and Access).
- Email split test: Split testing occurs when two or more strategies are compared for opt-in forms or broadcast messages, side by side, in a controlled experiment. By testing and analyzing results, we get a clearer idea of what our website visitors and subscribers respond best to, this enables optimization of online marketing campaigns to take place.
- Email campaign: Electronic marketing occurs when a commercial message is directly distributed to a group of people using email. Usually this type of mail is sent to prospects or current customers. There are different uses for email marketing or campaigns – the sending of advertisements, to increase sales, for NGO purposes (donations). Its aim is to build loyalty, trust as well as brand awareness from email recipients.
- Spam: Spam is ‘email junk’. It’s unwanted, unneeded mail. This type of mail is usually sent to a large amount of recipients.
- Tracking: Tracking refers to measuring behavioural activities such as such as click-throughs and open-ups.
- User Interface: A way in which a user interacts with a computer system. Interaction could include buttons, commands and other related functions that enable a user to operate the program. URL: Short for Uniform Resource Locator, URL is the online address of a file or Web page accessible online (www.ondigital.co.za).
- FTP: File Transfer Protocol is used for uploading and downloading files to and from computer systems on a network using TCP/IP, such as the Internet.
- XML: XML (Extensible Mark-up Language) is a way to create standard information formats and share both the format and the data on the internet.
- Backend: The backend is the ‘engine’ of the website so to say as it makes the website work. It’s made of HTML mark-up language (HTML), code, files and server processes. The backend is a web designer will build, while the frontend is what web site visitors visualise.
- CSS: Cascading Style Sheets is a style sheet language which is used to describe the look and format of a document written in mark-up language. CSS can be applied to XML documents, SVG and XUL. Majority of websites use this mark-up language.
- Flash: Adobe Flash is a multimedia program and plugin used in web design. Web designers normally use it for animation purposes.
- GIF: (Graphics Interchange Format) is a popular image format for the web. GIF consists of 256 colours. It’s the simplest form of colour on the internet.
- Layout: The ‘layout’ in web design is reference to the structure of the content of a web page.
- Not found: (404 error) this sign occurs when the URL does not exist. The requested page by the user is in most cases deleted, been removed or never existed to start with.
- Web Browser: A Web Browser is a program used to view HTML documents.
- Development server: The server used to develop websites.
- C-panel: A C-Panel is an interface used by web hosting providers to make it easy for subscribers to manage their domains.
- PNG: Portable Network Graphics is a format in which graphics are stored. The great thing about PNG is the fact that is has multitude (millions) of colours.
- Photoshop: Photoshop is a graphics program that changes the form of images. Its functions include: cropping images, balancing colours and tones.Wireframe: Wireframes show how the website will look like once finished. Where everything is going to be placed in terms of the website’s structure and functionality.
- .net (opposite to php): The .NET Framework is a software program developed by Microsoft and runs on Microsoft Windows mainly. It made out of a large library and provides support for the cross-functioning of several programming languages. Staging server: A staging server is a temporarily used platform to test new or re-touched pages before they go live online.
- RSS feed: RSS when a website receives a number of updated information through blog entries, latest news, video, audio etc…
- HTML 5: HTML 5 is a new version of HTML language. The newer version allows for better attributes and elements. There’s also a larger set of technologies which produces the best sites on the web.
- Rich snippets: Rich Snippets are summaries of the content of a page. With search engines i.e. Google, they ensure that a user is aware of what a page is about before opening it.
- W3C: The World Wide Web Consortium is a body (organization) governing international standards for the World Wide Web.
- Opera Mini: A popular Internet browser that runs on most operating systems including MS Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux.
- PHP: (Hypertext Pre-processor) is a server language. It is used in the development of functional web pages.
- Redirect: A redirect occurs when more than one domain is uses for the same page. Redirects are used for URL shortening, prevention of broken links, privacy protection etc…
- Robots.txt: Robots.txt are files used by Website owners to tell web bots .i.e. GoogleBots what to go through or which pages to index.
- Sitemap: A sitemap (usually found on the bottom of a webpage) is a page that lists the different sections/pages of your website e.g. about us, services, products, events etc… This is to make it easy for users to find what they’re looking for (navigation) and for search engines to easily index internal pages.
- Template: Templates are websites which can be downloaded instead of having a design being built from scratch. They come in different formats and designs to suit your website or business’s culture and values (colours, shapes, and layout of objects).
- Visit: A visit happens when a person accesses a website, regardless of which pages they visited. It’s the overall site visit.
- WYSIWYG: “What You See Is What You Get” Editor is a program which allows the Web Designer to see what the end result will look like while the interface is being created.
- XML: (Extensible Mark-up Language) serves as a guideline on how other mark-up languages are to be written.
- ZIP: ZIP compresses files and is Windows-based, very effective in grouping and putting files together. ZIP files can also contain directory structures. They can be uploaded to or from a website.
- Plug-in: A plug-in is software that is added on a web-browser to give it more functionality e.g. Macromedia Flash Player for animations.
- Algorithm: An algorithm is a set of rules and gu
- idelines used by search engines to access the relevance and importance of websites. Sites are ranked according to the results.
- Back Links: Back links these are inbound links pointing to an outside web page.
- Conversion Rate: This is the rate at which visitors get converted to customers.
- Forums: A forum serves as an online community or discussion forum. These forums serve as a platform to exchange information between webmasters and SEO professionals. Users of various SEO related sites can post messages in different forums. Users send messages out to a large group or individual users.
- GoogleBot: A Googlebot is software used by Google to search and collect documents to build a search index for their search engine.
- Inbound Links: Inbound links are created when a website on the outside links to a particular page on your website. They’re also referred to as back links.
- Keyword: A keyword is a word or term that a web visitor may use when searching for a particular thing or topic that will be beneficial to their search results .e.g. Chocolate or chocolate muffins, Cape Town, Cape Town restaurants etc…
- Link-building: In basic terms, link-building is the process of creating relevant, inbound links to your site which assist it in ranking well with search engines. Also a great way to drive traffic to your website.
- Meta Description: Also known as a Meta tag, is hidden in HTML coding and describes the page’s content. It’s advisable to keep it short and simple at about 12-20 words max. The Meta description describes on a search engine results page what your web page is about before the visitor opens it.
- Page Rank: Page rank refers to an algorithm used by Google to rank websites in their search results page. What search engines do is rank a website according to the number of links point to its webpages.
- Query: A query is a keyword or phrase which is entered into a search engine or database. What happens is the user enters the keyword, then the search engine or database returns the results according to what is what typed and submitted by the researcher.
- Relevance: It’s the likely chance that a webpage will serve its purpose or usefulness in the search efforts of a user. Search results are linked to keyword, therefore relevance of a webpage will be determined around info gathered regarding the keyword.
- Search Engine: A search engine is a program that assists in finding websites or items on a database according to a user’s query or keyword.
- Spider: A spider in SEO is a program that ‘crawls’ through a webpage or website and indexes it. They rate the content on a way to determine its relevancy in the topic it covers. A spider goes through the data from a website and store it into their databases.
- Traffic: The amount of users that turn to your website.
- Usability: Usability is all about how user friendly a web site is. It detects how easy it is for the user to perform an action on the site and how the interface allows it to.
- Visibility: Visibility in SEO refers to how search engines index your website and where you are ‘placed’ so to say on the web (Search Engine Results Page). For instance in social media ‘how present are you’ with your customers? Are you having a conversation with them, are you where they are?
- WordPress: WordPress is a free open-source blogging and content management system platform based on PHP and MySQL. It runs on a web-server. Its distinctive features include: a plug-in architecture as well as template.
* Integrated link management
* Plugin support
* Search friendly permalink structure
* Static Pages
* Typographic filters
* Nested categories
* Multiple authors (Plugins)
- Joomla: Joomla is a Content Management System (CMS) that develops powerful websites and online applications. Joomla is an open-source program which means it’s free and available for anyone to use.
- Silverstripe: SilverStripe also a free, open source Content Management System and is used for creating and maintaining websites and online applications. This CMS has a WYSIWYG website editor which allows you to make various changes to any part of the website.
- Wix.com: Short for (Windows Installer XML), helps you build both high quality HTML and Mobile websites.
- Panda: Google Panda is an algorithm that aims to promote content that is high in quality. The Panda algorithm aims to decrease low-quality or ‘thin’ content. And rather place great content at the top of search results.
- Google Penguin: Google Penguin is an algorithm set out by Google in 2012 that looks at penalizing websites that breach Google’s Webmaster Guidelines. This algorithm is based on the quality of links the website has pointing to it and what practices does it use to gain these links.
- Hummingbird: Google Hummingbird is an algorithm introduced last year (2013) that makes results more user-friendly and real to search engines users or visitors. It focuses on quality content written more in line with the way you speak, and it’s also geared more towards mobile searches.
- Cananonical URL: This is an element that assists webmasters in preventing duplication in content .i.e. when the same content is picked-up from different URLs. Webmasters place the word “canonical” or preferred version on their HTML in order for crawlers “Google Bots” to go through the page or not.
- White Hat: In SEO white hat refers to the use of accepted SEO practices in order to get higher rankings from search engines .e.g. an increase in traffic, social media engagement, online reputation etc.
- Black Hat SEO: Black Hat SEO is when unethical techniques of search engine optimization are practiced. For the most part this practice is carried out to gain more links, to get the top spot on search engine results pages.
- SEO Agency: An SEO service provider utilizes the practice of search engine optimization to increase the amount of visitors to a Web site by obtaining high-ranking placements in the search results page of search engines (SERP).
- SEO Analysis: An SEO analysis is a report that shows a website owner how their site is ranking in terms of search engines and which areas can be examined for improvement. Usually duplication of content, inbound links and URL structure make-up as core examining elements.
- Indexation: Indexing is about search engines finding your website first then secondly read the content on your website. Search engine use this method in scoring and ranking each webpage.
- XML Site Map: (XML Site Maps) An XML Site Map consists of all the links in your website.
- Adwords: An advertising platform by Google which enables advertisers to target their audiences in various ad formats both on Google’s Search Network as well as Google Display Network.
- Analytics: Analytics simply put, is the discovery and communication of meaningful patterns in collected data.
- Bid: The maximum amount an advertiser is willing to pay for someone clicking on an ad for a specific keyword.
- Broad Match: A keyword setting which enables your ad to show when some searches for a specific word or its variation.
- Campaign: A series of typically related AdGroups (adverts and associated keywords) with a shared budget on a PPC network.
- Conversion Rate: This is the percentage of visitors which ‘convert’ as to perform a desired action (i.e. make a purchase, register, request information, etc.)
- Cost per Conversion: The minimum cost required to achieve a conversion on a website.
- CPA – Cost per Acquisition: An alternative pricing model that based fees on conversions rather than clicks.
- CPC: It is the total cost of traffic generation divided by the number of conversions.
- CPM: Cost Per Mille is an online advertising ad model that calculates cost according to impressions.
- CTR: Click-through-rate is the number of times a click is made on an ad divided by the total of impressions.
- Daily Budget: The selected amount to be spent on an ad campaign daily.
- Geo-targeting: It’s the practise of delivering different content to a web visitors according to their Geographical location.
- Keyword: A keyword is a word or phrase which describes what the webpage is about.
- Impressions: The amount of times an advert is displayed by a PPC network within a selected period of time.
- Landing Page: The web page you direct people to when they click onto your advert. Generally the more tailored a Landing Page is to a specific query, the better the results.
- Phrase Match: A Phrase Match is a keyword used for search and shows the exact phase used for your keyword .i.e. Cape Town Bakeries, Bakeries in Cape Town.
- PPC: Pay Per Click – A form of online advertising, PPC is used to direct traffic to websites. An ad is only paid when it’s clicked on.
- Reach: Reach refers to the amount of people who see an ad as well as the percentage of the target audience who sees the ad.
- ROI: Return On Investment is a method used to measure the level of performance of a particular investment or a comparison of different ones.
- Sponsored Results: These are ads that are paid and usually appear just above organic results on the Search Engine Results Page.
- Unique Visitor: A unique visitor is one which visits a website more than once within a specific time period.
- Visitor: Visitors online are users who visit a website once then leave.
- Bounce Rate: The percentage of visits where the visitor enters and exits at the same page without visiting any other pages on the site in between.
- Click: The single action of a user following a hyperlink to another page to engage in the desired action .i.e. doing research, downloading, make a sale etc…
- Cookie: A cookie is a message given by a Web browser or server that store all information in a text file. This message is sent back to the server every time the browser sends a requests for a page.
- Direct Traffic: The amount of visitors which access your website directly.
- Google Analytics: Google Analytics is a free service offered by Google which concludes a detailed analysis of stats regarding a website’s traffic, sales and conversions.
- Head Match: One of the three different match types that Google Analytics defines to identify a URL for either a goal or a funnel. Matches the characters you specify as the beginning of a string including all strings that end with characters in addition to what you have specified.
- Key Performance Indicators: (KIPs) are a business module or metric used to analyse factors which are essential in the success of a business or organization.
- Organic Traffic: Organic traffic is made of visitors who end up on your website due to your site being listed on a Search Engine Results Page.
- Paid Traffic: Paid traffic are visitors who end up on your website due to a paid online advertising campaign .i.e. Google AdWords.
- Page View: A page view occurs every time a visitor views a webpage on your website.
- Path: An online path is the pattern a visitor follows according to their clicks on your website’s pages.
- Referrals: Online referrals are the locations that visitors come from. They can be from sites, directories or search engines.
- Returning Visitor: A returning visitor is one that has visited your website more than once.
- Session: A session is the period of time sent on your website by a visitor.
- Third-party cookie: A third-party cookie comes as text stored in the user’s computer and is created by a domain which is different from the one that is being visited by the user. Third-party cookies are usually installed by advertisers who want to know your whereabouts, search history and behaviour.
- Top Landing Pages: These are the pages visitors land on when visiting your website. The pages are scaled from the most visited to the least visited pages.
- Tracking Code: The code used to track a user’s movement and behaviour through a website.
- Uniform Resource Locator (URL): Is a unique address for a file that is available on the internet.
- Visitor Session: A visitor session is the time a website visitor spends on a website. Usually this is timed by the website owner (30 minutes). If the visitor leaves the website only to return more than half an hour later
- Visits: The amount of times users visit your website. This information allows you to track the success of your online marketing efforts. And to rectify what isn’t working.
GENERAL WEB TERMS
- Viral marketing: Viral marketing is a strategy that allows users to share interesting emails to another user .i.e. ‘Share with a friend’ link/icon.
- Virus: A computer virus is malware program that when accessed can damage the files on your PC (Getting access to private info, corrupting data, leaving unpleasant messages on a person’s P.C or system).
- Internet: A method of connecting one computer to another anywhere and everywhere in the world via routers and servers.
- IP address: It is an address of a PC or network device which makes use of TCP/IP .e.g. 22.214.171.124 can be an IP address.
- LAN: Local Area Network is a computer network and is usually based according to locality (limited surroundings) and interconnects computers .i.e. at home, school, an office, a university etc…
- Broadband: Broadband is a high bandwidth connection to the internet. It’s faster and easier to use than a traditional telephone and modem connection.
- CRM: Customer Relationship Management – A CRM can be defined as a system which assists in managing a company’s relations with current and prospective customers. CRMs are built around technology and therefore data can be changed easily.
- Browser software: It’s the computer software used to view all documents online .i.e. Microsoft Internet Explorer.
- Bookmarks/Favourites: Bookmarks or Favourites on the internet refer to websites that you’re likely to visit more than once in future. These URLs are saved on your browser .e.g. Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome.
- Browsers: A browser is a PC program with a graphical user interface for the use of displaying HTML files. Browsers are used to navigate the web.
- Cache: Cache is an element that stores data so that future references or requests for the same data can be served much faster.
- Cyberspace: Cyberspace can be defined as the linkage of computer networks where online communication is witnessed.
- Dial-up: The simplest way to connect to the internet, dial-up is an internet service that enables connectivity through a telephone line.
- Download: To retrieve a file or folder from a website to your PC or another device.
- E-mail: Known also as electronic mail, email is the method of exchanging digital messages from the sender (author) to the receiver (recipient).
- Internet Service Provider (ISP): An ISP is an organization or company which provides internet services to users for both personal and business related reasons.
- Login: Login refers to the credentials required in order for you to gain access to a computer system, a website, intranet etc…
- Modem: A device that enables the transmission of digital data via an analogue telephone connection.
- Plug-in: A plug-in is software that adds a distinctive feature on an existing application.
- Portal: A portal is a website or service that offers a variety of resources and services. (Forums, Emails, Search Engines…)
- Real-time audio or video: Basically the communication of sound or graphics over the web that occurs without delay in real time.
- Search: Search is when you’re main pursuit is that of specific information. Between documents, web pages and other related sources. You want information but not sure where to find it therefore you ‘search’ for it.
- Surfing (or Web surfing): Surfing the internet means to browse the internet with the intention of finding something on the web. It could also mean to go from one page or site to another just to pass time by, nothing much.
- Top-level domains: A top level domain is the very last part of a URL (after the last dot) .e.g. .au, .com, .edu, .org, .za, .gov…
- Bandwidth: The amount of data carried from one point to another within a specified time period. It’s usually measured in bits per second. With a thousand bits (kilobits) or million bits (megabits) per second.
- Breadcrumb: It’s a navigation element used to track users according their location in a website or web application. .e.g. Home page > Section page > Subsection page
- Content: Online content comprises of text, graphics, audio & video and entertainment (games).
- Conversion: A conversion is the action you want after your PPC ad receives clicks from visitors.
• Making a sale online.
• Filling in a form and submitting it on a website.
• To sign up for the site’s Newsletter.
• Other related objectives for the website.
- E-commerce: E commerce is the selling and buying of goods and services via the internet.
- Home page: The first page of a website and is the
- HTTP: (Hyper Transfer Protocol) is the core protocol used by the web. It enables users globally to send each other information found on webpages.
- Hyperlink: A hyperlink is a link from a hypertext document to another location (website or webpage). It is activated when you click on the highlighted image or word.
- Impression: An impression looks at the number of times an ad is viewed, and whether it was clicked on or not.
- ISP: ISP (Internet Service Provider) is a company or organization that supplies both internet connectivity to home and business customers.
- Java: Java is a program which allows you to play online games, have live chats, view things in 3D etc… It’s also known as the foundation of corporate computing.
- Navigation: Links that are placed on the side or across your webpage are known as site navigation. The four main ones which are placed on the homepage are Home, About us, Contact us, Directions, and Blog. You can create internal links that connect to these pages.
- Publishing: When all webpages of your website are completed they need to be published online (sent to server) and are to be viewed using your domain name.
- Text Editor: A text editor is a system or program which enables you to edit text online.
- Type Face: Typeface is the design set out for computer characters. Well-known ones include Times Roman, Courier and Helvetian. Typeface determines the ‘Font Family’ which you’ll make use of in your document.
- User Experience: User experience refers to how a person feels when they interact with a system. It could be a website, web app or software. These could be visual things such as design, accessibility, utility, marketing etc…
- Website: Best described as the location connected to the web which has more than one page. It’s comprises of a collection of web pages which are simply documents which can be accessed via the internet.
- White Paper: A white paper can be defined as; a marketing tool used by a company to educate consumers on how to use their product(s) using the latest technology.
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