A Beginner’s Guide to SEO Jargon

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SEO is everywhere these days, but if you’re new to the world of Search Engine Optimisation, it can all seem a bit confusing, particularly if you’ve ever had any dealings with the Civil Service, where SEO stands for Senior Executive Officer!

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It doesn’t do to be behind the times in the digital age, so here’s a handy reference guide to the most common SEO acronyms and buzzwords that you’re likely to encounter, starting with the most obvious.


Search Engine Optimisation is not to be confused with SEM, which stands for Search Engine Marketing. According to Forbes, they are interconnected, but whereas SEM is focussed on strategic planning, SEO is functional, utilising analytics and data for the best UX.


UX stands for User Experience, which should be at the core of every website. SEO may be about tweaking code and opting for the best keywords, but the goal is to provide the user with the best possible experience, and this should govern every aspect of your website. You’ll find companies such as https://www.elevateuk.com/seo-services/, who specialise in providing professional SEO services in London, offer an SEO audit to highlight problem areas in your website – and if you’re attracting fewer than 10,000 visitors a month, there’s no charge for the service.

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Sometimes used to refer to the State Earnings Related Pension, in the digital world SERP stands for Search Engine Results Pages. The ultimate goal of every website is to make it to the first page of results, preferably the top spot, although this is not always achievable.


Keywords are an important aspect of SEO. They are the words that a website visitor types into the search engine page, and the aim is to match what visitors are typing within your content and meta data.

Long-Tailed Keywords

For even greater accuracy in search results, using long-tailed keywords requires you to choose three or more words or a phrase to match the search queries being entered into search boxes by prospective site visitors.

Paid Search

Also known as PPC or Pay Per Click, this is where a business bids for keywords, with the winner rising to the top of the search results pages for relevant keywords

Organic Search

A website with excellent SEO techniques will automatically rise to the top of search engine results.