20 SEO Terms (& What They Mean) To Impress Your Boss!

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If you have a website or information hosted on the big brother internet, the buzzword SEO (or Search Engine Optimisation) is 100% essential to your survival as a company. But many of the terms used by experts to discuss the topic sound quite like Greek. Others are a little easier to understand and more literal.

Here’s AKIN’s quick, helpful glossary of key SEO terms that you need to know to have a good grasp of what’s happening between your websites and search engine bots. Read on to work that marketing magic on your business (you can thank us later!).  


AKA Search Engine Optimisation – the hard work of getting a better ranking on the search results (SERP) through good digital habits, which makes things easier for both humans and search bots, in order to draw more and better organic traffic to your website 


AKA Search Engine Marketing – buying greater visibility of your website on the search results using advertising, drawing in more traffic; the paid, quick-fix sister of SEO


Your website’s or webpages’ position on the search results (SERP) – the higher your ranking, the more clicks you are likely to get

Local SEO:

The smart way of prepping your website to capture searches from nearby users using local searches – i.e., “cafes near me”


AKA Search Engine Result Page – a display of the most relevant webpages as deemed by the search bots when a user searches for something online; the prime real estate of the internet 

SERP Features:

AKA Structured Data – additional helpful information that comes with the search results so that users don’t have have to click though to any webpages, such as Instant AnswersFeatured SnippetsLocal PacksReviewsPeople also Ask, etc. (there’s quite a lot)

Page Authority:

A one-to-100 scoring system that predicts how well a specific webpage will rank on search results; would you score an ‘A’?

Domain Authority:

Same as Page Authority but for the whole website


This is the stream of visitors flocking to your website, and they can be grouped into:

– Organic: through search results

– Direct: through typing in a URL

– Email: through links in emails

– Paid Search: through SEM ads               

– Display: through Display Ads

– Referral: through other websites linking to yours (please link to us, thank you!)

– Social: through social media posts and ads, think Facebook, Instagram, Twitter

– Others: well, others


Tiny, tiny search bots sprinting through the internet at light speed to find relevant information when a user clicks ‘Search’


Having your content sorted and catalogued by search engines to be resurfaced during searches. (Important!) Webpages that are not indexed will not appear on search results! Factors, such as duplicated content, bad site signals, and malware, can cause your pages to be left out

Site Map:

An instruction map that tells search bots how your webpage is organised, grouped and linked

Cost-per-Click (CPC):

How search engines can charge you for advertisements based on the number of times visitors click on them

On-page elements:

A cluster of elements on the webpage itself (as opposed to behind-the-scenes codes and scripts) that affects your SEO ranking – titles, URLs, multimedia, keywords, site speed, outbound links, internal links, social sharing buttons, etc


Terms and phrases to include in your webpages to help search bots deem your content as relevant to user searches; no keywords, no honey


When other websites (are super nice enough to) link back to your website, boosting your page’s ranking

Alt Text:

AKA Alternative Text – HTML terms and phrases that you can include to tell search bots the nature or content of an image or video; search bots cannot really tell the difference between butter and margarine, puppies and kittens, fine art and children drawings (just kidding!)

Site Speed:

How quick it takes to load content on your webpage

Load Speed:

How quick it takes to load a webpage element. If your webpages have a lot of photos and videos, you can choose to drive the loading speed of the primary content

First Meaningful Paint:

AKA FMP – the time it takes for the juicy stuff of your content (enough to make sense and engage people) to appear. Depending on what type of website you have, this primary content could be the image, video, title, or a mixture of them

For more information on why SEO is important and its common misconceptions, check out our introduction post here.

Once you are ready to start optimising your website, do download and check against our free SEO checklist for all the key essentials!

You can also reach out to us at for some help! 

Written by Hanson Ng

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