Welcome our glossary of SEO and Digital Marketing terms. This list is for terms beginning with letters P through S.

SEO Glossary: SEO Terms A-C
SEO Glossary: SEO Terms D-F
SEO Glossary: SEO Terms G-I
SEO Glossary: SEO Terms J-L
SEO Glossary: SEO Terms M-O

SEO Glossary: SEO Terms P-S

Page Rank

Traditionally there were two type of page rank.  The first, which was in reference to the Google PageRank bar was Google’s measure of the link popularity of a page on a scale of 1-10 with 10 being the highest possibly rank a page can receive.  The second is what we refer to as true page rank which consists of a complex algorithm as to how Google places page authority on a given web page.  Page rank is impacted by the quality of links pointing to the page amongst numerous other factors.

Paid Inclusion

Advertising model where pages are guaranteed to be included in a search engine’s index in exchange for payment, though no guarantee of ranking well is typically given.

PPC (pay-per-click)

Also known as cost-per-click. See CPC.

Paid Listings

Listings that search engines sell to advertisers, usually through paid placement or paid inclusion programs. The opposite of organic listings, which are not sold.


Term popularized by some search engines as a synonym for pay-per-click, stressing to advertisers that they are only paying for ads that “perform” in terms of delivering traffic, as opposed to CPM-based ads, where ads cost money, even if they don’t generate a click.


The act of optimizing a web page to rank better in the Search Engine Results Pages.


Publisher’s conference and Webmaster discussion on numerous topics including Website design, programming, scripting, hosting, server administration, search engines and the like.


The act of performing a search in a search engine.


How well a particular web page or web site is listed in a search engine results. Rank indicates where exactly it was listed. Also known as position.

Reciprocal Link

A link exchange between two sites.


The process of having users going from one page to another either asking them to click on a link or by means of automatic redirection. Examples of redirects include meta refresh (not recommended) or 301 redirects (recommended method).


The measure of the accuracy of the search results based on a given query. Relevancy is a measure of how close the web pages listed in the search results are to what the user was looking for.

Results Page

The page that is displayed after a user enters a search query. Also known as SERP, for “search engine results page.”


A file used to keep web pages from being indexed by search engines.


Stands for “Return On Investment” and refers to the percentage of profit or revenue generated from a specific activity.

RSS Feeds

Really Simple Syndication – a method that allows users to subscribe to their favorite websites through a simple XML-based system. Webmasters use RSS to put their content into a standardized format, which can be viewed and organized through RSS-aware software or automatically conveyed as new content on another website.


The process of locating information – on the Internet typically done by searching through documents in search engine and directories.

Search Engine

A tool that consists of a database of websites that help users find web pages on a given subject based on a query for a specific key phrase. Web search engines such as Google consist of organic (free) and paid listings. In terms of market share in 2006, Google is the leader at around 44% followed by Yahoo and Microsoft Live Search.

Search Engine Marketing

The act of marketing a web site via search engines, whether this be improving rank in organic listings, purchasing paid listings or a combination of these and other search engine-related activities. A successful search engine marketing program will usually contain elements of both.


Acroymn for search engine marketing and may also be used to refer to a person or company that does search engine marketing.

Search Engine Marketing
Search Engine Marketer

Search Engine Optimization

The act of altering a web site so that it does well in the organic, crawler-based listings of search engines. Also called SEO. Search Engine Optimization is also referred to by some as Search Engine Marketing (although search engine marketing is more than just organic positioning).

Search Engine Spider

Such as Googlebot or Yahoo Slurp. See “Crawler”.

Search Terms

Also known as keywords, query terms or query. The phrase (or word) a searcher enters into a search engine’s search box. Also used to refer to the terms a search engine marketer hopes a particular page will be found for.


Acronym for search engine optimization and often also used to refer to a person or company that does search engine optimization. See “Search Engine Optimization”


Search Engine Placement, Search Engine Positioning, or Search Engine Promotion


Search Engine Results Page. See “Results Page”

SES (Search Engine Strategies)

The premiere conference for the search engine marketing industry. Key show include SES New York (April), SES London (June), SES San Jose (August) and SES Chicago (December). Search Engine Strategies feature the top experts in the field including Danny Sullivan, members of Google such as Matt Cutts, Yahoo and Microsoft.

SEU – Search Engine Usability

The act of determining and examining how users interact with search engines.


A map of your site pages. A sitemap can contain links to every page of your site. The important benefit of having a sitemap (apart from helping your visitors find what they are looking for) is that spiders can find all pages on a site quickly and with fewer hops. For maximum benefit, insert a prominent link to your sitemap on every page of your site especially the home page.


The act to submitting a URL for inclusion into a search engine’s index. Unless done through paid inclusion, submission generally does not guarantee listing.Submission can be done manually through an online form or automated, where a software program or online service may process the forms behind the scenes.