Words Every Webmaster Must Know
For beginners starting a website that makes money online can be daunting. Entering the unknown – everything is new. Like your first day at grade school. For years you knew where the bathroom was. Now you have to ask the teacher.
The first obstacles are the terms that must be learned. A whole new language. And the worst part is that, like the military, a lot of acronyms are used.
Here I will present some of the terms that you must be familiar with to understand the webmaster's language. This is not a definite guide. It is just the beginning and the basics. I do not expect professional webmasters to use this as a resource. It is for beginners. This is what your mother would tell you just before your first day of school as you clasp your arms around her leg and cry.
What is a Website
This should be an easy one. I cannot imagine anybody reading this and not knowing what a website is.
But let's assume that one day, out of anger caused by my lack of traffic, I dig a hole in the lawn and bury this laptop. I die. Then everybody dies. 200 years later aliens visit Earth and find my laptop. Plugging it into their space ship they find this document. They do not know what a website is. For the aliens sake I will explain.
The word is made of two root words. Web and site. Web refers to spider web. A spider needs to eat so out of a thin thread she creates an interconnected net and hangs it up between two perpendicular points. A fly coming home from a successful day of pestering a family of picnickers, is in such a good mood that he is not paying attention. He slams into the web. His good mood suddenly turns sour. How can a day that started so well, turn out so bad? He has no time to analyze the question, the spider is coming.
Since every thread is connected to every other thread. The spider can always get to the fly. No matter where the spider is she can always find her way to the fly. Start anywhere, end anywhere. That is similar to the Internet. All computers are connected to all computers. It is a web. No matter where you start you can always find your way to any other part of the web.
A site is just a particular point on the entire web. In the above example the spider is going to the website, www.dyingfly.sw.
What is a Webmaster
A webmaster is the person that operates the website. A webmaster's duties include adding content, making visual changes to the site, and making sure that it is running properly. I am the webmaster of this site. If you have a question about anything to do with a website you contact the webmaster.
Not sure why they are called masters. The statistic is that most websites are failures. I guess it is nice to be able to have webmaster on your business card. It sounds so prestigious - a master.
The first time someone told me they were a webmaster I wondered whether I should bow and kiss her feet. Later I typed her website address into the address bar and got a message that the page is under construction. That is when I understood that webmaster does not really mean master.
What is HTML (HyperText Markup Language)
The purpose of text is to transfer information from ones person's head to another person's head. Like this:
- My foot is probably larger then yours
I have taken a thought that was in my head and put it into your head. This was done by me writing text and you reading text.
But the text is naked. HTML is called Hypertext because it adds properties to text. Hypertext – text about text. For example, I can change foot to foot by surrounding the word foot with <strong></strong>. It is like putting shoes on a foot. With HTML you describe the shoe. How large is it, what color is it, how thick are the soles. You put the shoe on by encapsulating the foot with HTML Tags.
But HTML is not only about text. It has evolved to be Meta everything. Everything you see on this webpage is surrounded by HTML tags. HTML tells the browser whether text is bold, whether it is a link, an image, a video.
Here is the same text. But now I will tell the browser that the text is in the body section of the page, within a paragraph, and that the word foot is actually an image:
<body><p>My <img src=../images/foot.gif></img> is probably larger then yours</p></body>.
My is probably larger then yours
What is Internet Traffic
Website Traffic is a lot like car traffic. But instead of people sitting in their cars they are sitting at their computers. And instead driving to geographical locations like grandmothers house for dinner, they are driving to websites.
People sitting at their computers want information or want to be entertained. They drive around the Internet looking for places to visit. Some of them are looking for a particular place. They want to know how to make money online. Like you. Others are just out for a Sunday drive. Stopping at sites of interest. Bob come look at this – a guy is balancing a stack of ten apples on his head.
Traffic is everybody on the Internet who is moving from one site to another. As a webmaster you want everybody to come over to your house for dinner.
What is Backlink
A link is a teleport to another location. You click on a link and then arrive somewhere else. It can be somewhere else on the same website or somewhere on another website half way across the world.
In the old days – 10 years ago, links were usually blue and underlined. By hovering over them the cursor turned from an arrow to a hand. Using your hand to hit the mouse button caused the hand on the screen to hit the link. This initiates the teleporter.
Today links come in all shapes and sizes. A link can be text, an image, or even a video. Sometimes the only way to tell if something is a link is by hovering over it with the cursor and see whether it turns into a hand. Then like one of Pavlov's dogs - arrow turns to hand – your finger reacts by pressing. Zap – your're somewhere else.
Backlinks are links that take a person to your website. If a person arrived at your site by clicking on a link on some other site then they arrived via a backlink.
To understand backlinks reverse the words: A backlink is a link back to your site.
What is SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
In the beginning websites were created for people. The author would write a graceful and elegant paragraph hoping that the reader's heart would swell and woo at every word.
That is no longer the case. Because there are so many websites, the webmaster has to make sure that people can find his website. You can have writing that would cause Shakespeare to shine your shoes just for the chance of getting some scraps of advice. But if nobody finds your site then it like it was never written.
Google is God Almighty on the Internet. Google decides who views what pages. Please Google and you will be rewarded. Usually if you want a aod to do something for you there is a ritual that must be performed. A dance where you lift your knees up high, or cut open an innocent animal and bath in its blood, or, the modern one, clasp your hands together and touch them to your chin. But none of these methods work on Google.
Google keeps track of what words you use, how many times you use them. What title you use, what words you have bold. What websites you link to, what websites link to you. Google takes all these factors in and in His ultimate and boundless wisdom determines if visitors will find your site.
SEO is the act of a webmaster trying to please Google. SEO is designing the website and writing the content in such a way to receive Google's blessing. Webmasters will use a word a certain amount of times, use it in their titles, and bold them. They will visit forums in an effort to get backlinks. Like Abraham, the webmaster is willing to sacrifice his baby, the website, by suiting the content to please God. And in return the webmaster expects God to send traffic his way.
What is Search Traffic - Paid and Organic
Search traffic is the best kind of traffic you can get. It is visitors who are looking for something specific and they find your site. Like a group of drunk sailors finding the brothel - it is going to be a busy night. When Google sends you traffic that means that Google thinks that your website has what the person is looking for. And Google is the top search engine because it is usually right. The visitors that come to your site via Google want to visit your website.
There are two ways to get traffic from Google. The first is by paying Google. You give them some money and they put your website either on the top section or on the right side of the search. This method is good and it works - the only problem is that you have to pay for it. Every time someone clicks on your site link from the search page then you have to pay Google. Like paying a young woman with her skirt hiked up and standing at the docks directing sailors to the brothel.
The second and preferred method of receiving search traffic is by organic search. This is the section of Google that you are most familiar with. When you do a search for 'Where can a sailor have a good time?' all the results that appear are considered organic results. These are the results that Google determined are the websites that best answer that question. The website owners did not pay Google. They are in the results because Google determined they are the website you are looking for. As a webmaster you want people to arrive at your site because Google determines your website is the best match. And if your website is good then Google will direct lots of traffic to you for free. Like the sailors, fresh off the boat, always getting the same response when asking about the best brothel in town.
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