The terms and definitions below relate to most aspects of search engine indexing and ranking of websites.
 

Spider / Bot:

A program used by search engines to visit and index websites. Search engines regularly send these spiders to the sites in their database and new sites that were submitted to verify accuracy of the index.
   

Ranking:

When a user types in a keyword in a search engine, the response usually contains a list of websites which the search engine determines to be most relevant. The list of sites appears in the order of their relevance (ranking). There could be thousands of matching choices, so to generate any traffic, your site should be in at least the top 30.
   

Page Title:

The single most important line of text at the top of each web page identifying the name of the page or the entire site. The page title often determines how search engines index and rank a website. The page title should be short and to the point.
   

Domain Name:

A domain name is almost as important as the page title, as most search engines give higher rankings to sites with domain names relevant to their content. This is another reason why having a good domain name is extremely important to the success of your site. It is also recommended that you have multiple domain names forwarded to your website, as different domain names increase the odds of search engines indexing your site under more topics and keywords. Our US and UK domains are available for registering most easy names, such as common dictionary words and phrases, to substantially increase the ranking of your site in any given category. For example, if your domain name is myjewelrystore.com, you could register jewelry.us.vu, and your site should place higher than other sites with longer names, under the keyword “jewelry”.
   

Meta Tags:

Meta tags are embedded into web pages and are invisible to users. They are only visible to search engine spiders and assist them in determining the relevant nature of a website’s content. Each page of a website that you want listed on search engines must have meta tags.
   

Description Tag:

A meta tag listing the description of a web page. The description tag should be no more than two sentences long, and describe the exact purpose of the website.
   

Keyword Tag:

A meta tag listing the relevant keywords a user may enter when trying to find a specific category on a search engine. You should have no more than 18 unique keywords or short phrases separated by commas, with any single word never repeated more than 7 times.
   

Page Text:

The body of text on a webpage is also very important in search engine ranking. Most search engines can only read text on a page, not images, java applets or embedded objects. This is why sometimes the most plain looking website will be ranked before a fancy, graphics based site. Therefore, try to have more relevant text (matching your keywords, description and page title) wherever possible.
   

Popularity:

Another factor used by search engines for ranking is site popularity on the Internet. This is the number of links to your site on other websites. The only way to achieve this is to be listed on as many search engines as possible.

Posted by Charles Yarbrough

Charley has been working as a webmaster since 1998. Since then, he has had his hands in thousands of websites and has helped millions get online through a company he partially owns called Web Host Pro.

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