Search engine optimization, like any specialized industry, has its own unique set of terminology, definitions, and abbreviations.
This SEO glossary compiles more than 200 of the most common terms you are likely to hear and will definitely need to know during your SEO career.
Above the Fold
Content that appears on a website before the user scrolls. Google created the Page Layout Algorithm in 2012 to lower the rankings of websites featuring too many ads in this space.
A complex computer program used by search engines to retrieve data and deliver results for a query. Search engines use a combination of algorithms to deliver ranked webpages via a results page based on a number of ranking factors and signals.
Some algorithmic changes go completely unnoticed. However, the impact of a major algorithmic change can usually be seen quite quickly, though the change sometimes takes a few weeks to completely roll out. Algorithmic changes come in three forms:
- Algorithm Update: The search engine changes certain signals of an existing algorithm.
- Algorithm Refresh: The search engine re-runs an existing algorithm using the exact same signals as last time.
- New Algorithm: The search engine adds a new algorithm to improve search quality. For example: Google Panda, Google Penguin.
HTML code that provides information used by search engines and screen readers (for blind and visually-impaired people) to understand the contents of an image.
Also known as: Alt Text
Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) is an open-source HTML framework that allows a desktop-first page to be delivered faster on mobile. It was used as a criterion to gain visibility in the news Top Stories carousel.
The AMP logo has since been removed from search results and Google announced that AMP is no longer a requirement for appearing in Top Stories. The emphasis is now on Core Web Vitals to measure faster delivery and page loading and the influence of AMP is now questionable.
The science of collecting, analyzing, and interpreting data to take future action based on what has (or hasn’t) worked historically.
Also see: Google Analytics
The clickable word or words of a link. This text is intended to provide contextual information to people and search engines about what the webpage or website being linked to is about. For instance, if you were creating a link to send your visitors to Search Engine Journal, “Search Engine Journal” is the anchor text.
Artificial Intelligence (AI)
The science of making computers perform tasks that require human intelligence. Rather than following a set of programmed rules (like an algorithm), an AI computer system is basically a digital brain that learns. AI can also make and carry out decisions without human intervention.
The combination of signals search engines use to assess websites and webpages for the purposes of ranking.
Authority is a concept of using the reputation and credentials of a person who writes content online as a ranking factor. Originally, Google tested this in combination with Google+ but despite several patents filed, no evidence supports author authority as a ranking factor.
Google is placing emphasis on E-A-T to reduce disinformation online, especially in YMYL niches such as health and finance. In these spaces, building the authority of an author is recommended for a brand to show credibility, even if it currently doesn’t influence ranking.
Short for business-to-business. In B2B SEO, the buying cycle is longer, products and services are more expensive, and the audience is professional decision-makers.
Short for business-to-consumer. In B2C SEO, the buying cycle is typically shorter (though it still varies by industry), products and services are (mostly) cheaper, and consumers are the audience.
See: Inbound Link
The most popular search engine in China, Baidu was founded in January 2000 by Robin Li and Eric Xu.
The name of Microsoft’s search engine. Bing launched in June 2009, replacing Microsoft Live Search (previously MSN Search and Windows Live Search). Since 2010, Bing has powered Yahoo’s organic search results as part of a search deal Microsoft and Yahoo struck in July 2009.
A complex computer program that is poorly understood. Inputs and outputs can be observed, but there is no access to the process itself due to its confidential nature. For example, Google’s algorithm is a black box.
Risky tactics that go against Google’s Webmaster Guidelines.
Also see: Webspam
A publication of content, sorted in chronological order, with the most recent content appearing at the top. The content reflects personal or corporate interests, and can be written by an individual or a group of contributors. Blogs were originally called web logs or weblogs. However, as “web log can also mean a server’s log files, the term was confusing. To avoid this confusion, the abbreviation “blog was coined, and became the common term.
The percentage of website visitors who leave without visiting another page on that website. Bounce rates range widely depending on industry and niche. Although bounce rate can indicate potential content or website issues, it is not a direct ranking factor, according to Google.
See: Crawler, Googlebot
When a user’s query includes an exact match, or variation, of a specific company or brand name. For instance, “Search Engine Journal”, “SEJ”, “SearchEnginejournal.com”, and “Search Engine Journal SEO 101 Guide” are a few examples of branded keywords.
A navigational element that helps users easily figure out where they are within a website.
See: Website Navigation
A link that leads to a 404 not found. Typically, a link becomes broken when:
- A website goes offline.
- A webpage is removed without implementing a redirect.
- The destination URL is changed without implementing a redirect.
A technology that temporarily stores web content, such as images, to reduce future page loading times.
A snapshot of a webpage as it appeared when a search engine last crawled it.
An HTML code element that specifies a preferred website URL, when multiple URLs have the same or similar content, to reduce duplicate content. Also known as canonicalization.
A country-code top-level domain. For instance, a company based in the United Kingdom would have a domain like this: www.example.co.uk, where uk is the ccTLD.
In Local SEO, a citation is any mention online of a brand Name, Address or Phone number (NAP). Citations are usually found in directories, social network and community profiles, website resources lists, or any mention of a brand online that does not include a link to the website. NAPs can influence ranking and visibility on Google maps.
Content that is designed to entice people to click, typically by overpromising or being intentionally misleading in headlines, so publishers can earn advertising revenue.
Click depth is the number of clicks it takes to get from the home page, or an entrance page, to a destination page on a website. The more clicks it takes, the less likely Google will crawl the page or it will rank.
Pages that are the closest to the homepage are considered to be the most authoritative and the most likely to be crawled and indexed by Google.
Click depth is important for pages to be crawled efficiently and for the flow of link equity; therefore does influence ranking indirectly.
Click-Through Rate (CTR)
The rate (expressed in a percentage) at which users click on an organic search result. This is calculated by dividing the total number of organic clicks by the total number of impressions then multiplying by 100.
Showing different content or URLs to people and search engines. A violation of Google’s Webmaster Guidelines.
Stands for Content Management System. A web-based application that lets people create, upload, and manage digital assets.
How frequently two websites (or webpages) are mentioned together by a third-party website, even if those first two items don’t link to (or reference) each other. This is a way search engines can establish subject similarity.
For instance, imagine Search Engine Journal and Search Engine Roundtable never linked to or mentioned each other. However, other websites and blogs would likely mention both SEJ and SER on lists of popular search engine news publications.
To see this in action, see: related:https://www.searchenginejournal.com/ search engine journal
Code To Text Ratio
The amount of text displayed on a page compared to the amount of code used to construct the page is called the code to text ratio. A higher ratio of text to code is considered to provide a better user experience but is not a direct ranking factor.
Poorly written comments, often off-topic and self-promotional, posted by spambots in the hopes of getting a free (but ultimately worthless) link.
There are two types of competition:
- Direct Competitors: Companies that sell similar products and/or services, serve the same needs, and target a similar audience both online and offline.
- SEO Competitors: Companies that vie for the same keywords and organic search visibility, but with unalike products or services that address different needs and/or target audiences.
- Words, images, videos, or sounds (or any combination thereof) that convey information that is meant to be distributed to and consumed by an audience.
- One of the two most important Google ranking factors (along with links). Search engines want to reward content that is useful, informative, valuable, credible, unique, and engaging with better traffic and visibility.
Content is King”
A phrase often used by speakers at conferences and writers on popular SEO (and digital marketing) publications. In this context, “content is king” usually means that content is essential for you to have any SEO, digital marketing, or business success.
This phrase actually dates back to a Bill Gates essay, “Content is King”, published January 3, 1996.
When a user completes a desired action on a website. Examples of conversions include:
- Completing a purchase.
- Adding items to a shopping cart.
- Completing a form (e.g., requesting a demo, registering for a webinar/event).
- Downloading premium content (e.g., ebook, whitepaper).
- Subscribing to an email newsletter.
- Video views.
The rate (expressed in a percentage) at which website users complete a desired action. This is calculated by dividing the total number of conversions by traffic, then multiplying by 100.
Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO)
The process of improving the number or quality of conversions that occur on a website. Some popular CRO tactics include testing changes to website design, copy, images, price, call-to-action, and messaging.
When Google makes broad updates to its core algorithm. Google sometimes announces a specific theme to their updates, such as the Page Experience update, but core updates are non-specific and happen several times a year.
Core Web Vitals
A set of metrics that measure the performance of the page related to user experience. Core Web Vitals were introduced alongside the Page Experience update as the main signals that indicate a good user experience:
- Largest Contentful Paint (LCP) – loading performance.
- First Input Delay (FID) – interactivity.
- Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS) – visual stability.
Google did confirm Core Web Vitals as a ranking factor but said that relevance and other factors may be more important.
The extent to which a relationship exists between two or more elements. Often used in SEO research to infer relationships of variables on search rankings due to the black box nature of algorithms. Always remember, however, that correlation ≠ causation.
The total number of URLs search engines can and want to crawl on a website during a specific time period.
- URLs that a search engine bot is unable to crawl.
- URLs that return a status code error.
A program search engines use to crawl the web. Bots visit webpages to collect information and add or update a search engine’s index.
Also known as: Bot, Spider, Web Crawler
The process of gathering information, using a crawler, from the billions of public webpages to update, add, and organize webpages in a search engine’s index.
Cascading Style Sheets describe how HTML elements (e.g., color, fonts) should appear on webpages and adapt when viewed on different devices.
All of the potential moments (or touchpoints) at which a prospect is exposed to or engages with a brand. All of these interactions are designed to eventually persuade, influence, and convert that prospect to become a customer, client, or subscriber.
Though customer journeys can vary greatly by business type and industry, typically it is made up of four main “stages”:
Awareness > Consideration > Decision > Retention
Google’s Avinash Kaushik offers an alternative framework:
See > Think > Do > Care
Also known as: Buying Process, Consumer Decision Journey, the Customer Journey to Online Purchase, Marketing Funnel, Path to Purchase, Purchase Funnel
All the hard numbers that represent real customers – the who, what, where, when, why, and how – all of which is needed to make informed decisions about SEO strategies and tactics.
A webpage that links to no other webpages. So called because once a user or bot arrives on this page, there is no place to move forward.
- A link pointing to any webpage other than the homepage.
- A link pointing to content within a mobile app.
Deep Link Ratio
When an internal link points directly to a page other than the homepage on a site, this is known as a deep link. The ratio of deep links compared to links to your homepage is known as deep link ratio.
It is considered that having links directly to deep pages in a site indicates quality of content on the site. The more deep links you have the better the site. There is no evidence to support that deep link ratio has any direct impact on ranking.
When Google removes a website or webpage, either temporarily or permanently, from search results, specifically its search index. Google provides a Remove URLs tool in the Search Console for voluntary cases; however, a website may also be de-indexed as punishment for violating Google’s Webmaster Guidelines, in the form of a manual action.
Also known as: Delisting
In Google Analytics, users that navigate directly to the site by typing the URL directly into the browser or by clicking on a bookmark are known as direct traffic. Google will also include into direct traffic any traffic sources it doesn’t recognize.
A list of websites, usually separated by related categories and maintained by human editors. Depending on the directory, inclusion could be free or paid. In the past, links from directories were highly sought after (e.g., DMOZ), leading to widespread abuse and overall devaluing of this sort of link building.
Also known as: Web Directory, Link Directory
If your link profile includes a high number of spammy, artificial, or low-quality inbound links that may be harming your rankings – and don’t have the ability to get them removed for a legitimate reason (e.g., the link exists on a site you have no control over) – you can use Google’s Disavow Tool tool to tell Google to ignore those links.
The Open Directory Project. This human-edited directory of websites launched June 5, 1998 and closed March 17, 2017.
A link that doesn’t use the “nofollow” attribute. In other words, a link.
A website address – typically ending in an extension like .com, .org, or .net. For example: www.searchenginejournal.com is the domain of this website.
The date a domain was registered on, to the current date is known as domain age. For example, Search Engine Journal was registered on 10th June 2003, so it has a significant domain age.
It was once considered that a greater domain age gave a domain more authority, but this idea of domain age as an influence on ranking has since been dismissed.
- The overall “strength” of a website, built up over time, which can help a new page rank well quickly, even before that content has earned links or engagement.
- A score, between 0-100, SEO software company Moz uses to predict the ability of a website to rank in search results.
Any activity, including backlinks and website built on a domain previously is known as domain history.
If a previous website on a domain received a penalty this will remain attached to the domain and cause issues for the new owner.
It’s recommended to always check the domain history before you purchase a domain.
Webpages that are created to rank in search engines for specific keywords only for the purpose of redirecting users who click on that page to a different website.
A search engine that was founded September 28, 2008. It is often praised for its heavy focus on user privacy and a lack of filter bubbles (search personalization). DuckDuckGo relies on more than 400 sources to serve its search results, including vertical search engines, its own crawler, DuckDuckBot, Bing, and Yandex. In 2016, 4 billion searches were conducted on DuckDuckGo.
When a significant amount of content contained on one webpage matches, or is incredibly similar to, content that exists elsewhere on the same website or a completely different website.
The amount of time that elapses between when a user clicks on a search result and then returns to the SERP from a website. Short dwell time (e.g., less than 5 seconds) can be an indicator of low-quality content to search engines.
Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness was a concept taken from the Google Search Quality Evaluator Guidelines and became known as E-A-T.
E-A-T represents signals that Google uses to determine quality content but it is not a direct ranking factor.
Google has committed to stopping the spread of disinformation, especially from any sites operating in Your Money Your Life (YMYL) niches such as finance or health.
The buying and selling of products, all conducted online.
A link that is given by one website to another without the recipient asking or paying for it.
Also known as: Natural Link.
Educational-focused institutions have a top-level domain (TLD) of .edu. For example, stanford.edu. A link from such a site is known as a .edu link.
Links from .edu sites were considered ‘hard to get’ and thought to have more value for link building. As a result, link builders targeted .edu links until many of the lesser-known .edu sites became devalued by Google and any benefit of the link was ignored.
Methods to measure how users are interact with webpages and content. Examples of engagement metrics include:
- Click-through rate
- Conversion rate
- Bounce rate
- Time on page/site
- New vs. returning visitors
- Frequency and recency
- Dwell time
People, places, organizations, websites, events, groups, facts, and other things.
Also see: Knowledge Graph
See: Outbound Link
For certain queries, usually questions (i.e., who/what/where/when/why/how), Google sometimes shows a special block above the organic search results. This box contains a summary (in the form of paragraph, list, table, or video), as well as the publication date, page title, link to the webpage from which the answer originated, and URL.
Also known as: Position Zero.
How easily the content on a website can be discovered, both internally (by users) and externally (by search engines).
First Link Priority
A concept in internal linking is that Google treats links differently if there are two links on a web page pointing to the same page. It was thought Google would consider the anchor text from the first link to have more influence.
There is no definitive evidence for how Google treats the same link on a page. When adding links to a page, it’s recommended to do this on a user-first basis and apply the link to anchor text where it is relevant.
Links that appear in the bottom section (or “footer) of a website.
See: Website Navigation
Freshness refers to the age of content published online.
It is considered that Google gives pBlan-kriority to fresh content in some niches for some queries depending on certain factors. For example, searches related to COVID announcements or sports results.
Query Deserves Freshness (QDF) is part of the Google algorithm that determines when a query should show up-to-date information, especially in breaking news, recurring events, information queries, and product queries.
The search engine founded by Larry Page and Sergey Brin in September 1998. Google marked a radical departure from human-edited web directories, relying on web crawling technology and a complex algorithm to analyze hyperlinking patterns to rank websites. Google is the most-used search engine in nearly every country in the world.
A free web analytics program that can be used to track audience behavior, traffic acquisition sources, content performance, and much more.
Visit: Google Analytics
A practice intended to make a website rank number one for a surprising or controversial search phrase. This was accomplished by having a large number of websites link to a certain webpage with specific anchor text to help it rank for that term.
For example, in 2003 President George W. Bush’s White House bio ranked number one on a search for “miserable failure.”
The web crawling system Google uses to find and add new websites and webpages to its index.
A term used starting in 2002 for the volatile period of time during which Google updated its search index, roughly every month.
A Google search algorithm that was officially announced in September 2013 after it had been in use for a month. The purpose of Hummingbird was to better understand the full context of queries (i.e., semantic search), rather than certain keywords, in order to provide better results.
Google Panda Algorithm
A major Google algorithm update that initially rolled out in February 2011, it was followed by numerous subsequent updates. The goal of Google Panda was to reduce the visibility of low-value content, often produced by “content farms. In 2016, Panda became part of Google’s core ranking algorithm.
Google Penguin Algorithm
A major Google algorithm that launched in April 2012, it was followed by a series of updates and refreshes. The goal of Penguin was to reduce the visibility of overly-optimized sites, or sites that excessively abused certain spammy tactics (e.g., building low-quality links, keyword stuffing). In 2016, Penguin started running in real-time as a part of Google’s core algorithm.
Google Pigeon Update
The name (given by the SEO industry, not Google) of a significant Google local search update launched July 24, 2014. The goal of Pigeon was to improve the accuracy and relevance of local searches by leveraging more traditional Google ranking signals and improving distance and locating ranking parameters.
A major Google algorithm change officially introduced in October 2015, although it had been in testing for months before this. With RankBrain, Google added machine learning to its algorithm and has been called the third most important ranking signal. In June 2016, it was revealed that RankBrain has been involved in every query and has an impact on rankings.
A theorized and debated (but never confirmed by Google) “waiting period” that prevents new websites from seeing the full benefit of their optimization efforts. Typically, this effect is witnessed most often with new sites targeting competitive keywords and can only be overcome when the site gains enough authority.
Google Search Console
Google’s Search Console offers several helpful features, including the ability to monitor sites for indexing errors and site speed. These pages are also used to communicate manual action notifications.
Google Search Quality Rater Guidelines
Google uses a document of guidelines for its internal Quality Raters to reference when manually reviewing websites.
The original internal document was confidential and then Google publicly released the Search Quality Rater Guidelines online which is updated from time to time.
Information in the document is a guide to creating quality content and features the concept of E-A-T. The guidelines are not a list of any direct ranking factors.
A website where you can explore data visualizations on the latest search trends, stories, and topics.
Visit: Google Trends
Google Webmaster Guidelines
Google’s guidance on good website optimization practices, as well as “illicit” practices that can result in manual action. Simply:
- Make unique, valuable, and engaging websites and webpages for users, not search engines.
- Avoid tricks and techniques that deceive users and are intended only to improve search rankings.
Government organizations have a top-level domain (TLD) of .gov. For example, usa.gov. A link from such a site is known as a .gov link.
Only government entities in the US can apply and gain a .gov TLD. Other countries have their own country-specific version, such as .gov.uk.
Government TLD domains are tightly regulated and trusted sources of information. For this reason, a link from a .gov domain is considered to have significant value and has been targeted by link spam.
A supposed “gray” area between techniques that adhere to Google’s Webmaster Guidelines, but then add an element that bends the rules a little.
A popular link building tactic that involves developing content for other websites in exchange for a backlink pointing at your own pages.
Also known as: Guest Posting.
HTML heading tags (H1-H6) separate content into sections, based on importance, with H1 being the most important and H6 being the least important. Headline tags should be used naturally and should incorporate your target keywords where relevant, as doing so may provide a small SEO benefit.
An H1 tag.
A popular keyword with high search volume that is usually difficult to rank for.
Also known as: Head Keyword, Short-Tail
Any text that can’t be seen by a user that is intended to manipulate search rankings by loading webpages with content-rich keywords and copy. This technique is against Google’s Webmaster Guidelines and can result in a manual action. For example, adding text that is:
- Too small to read.
- The same color as the background.
- Using CSS to push the text off-screen.
Influenced by the HITS Algorithm, and added to Google’s algorithm in 2003, Hilltop assigned “expert” status to certain websites or webpages published about a specific topic that also link to unaffiliated pages about that topic.
- Hilltop: A Search Engine based on Expert Documents (Krishna Bharat & George Mihaila)
Hyperlink-Induced Topic Search is a link analysis algorithm that assesses a value not just based on content and inbound links (authorities), but also its outbound links (hubs).
The default, or introductory webpage, of a website.
A server configuration file that can be used to rewrite and redirect URLs.
Stands for Hypertext Markup Language. HTML tags are specific code elements that can be used to improve the effectiveness of SEO for webpages and websites.
The Hypertext Transfer Protocol is how data is transferred from a computer server to a web browser.
Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure uses a Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) to encrypt data transferred between a website and web browser. HTTPS is a minor Google ranking factor.
An authoritative central resource (e.g., page or article), dedicated to a specific topic (keyword), that is continually updated and linked to, and also links out to topically-relevant webpages.
A link to a webpage that originates from an external website. For example, if Search Engine Journal were to link to Google, that would count as an inbound link on Google’s side; if Google were to link to Search Engine Journal, that would be an inbound link on SEJ’s side.
The database search engines use to store and retrieve information gathered during the crawling process.
How easily a search engine bot can understand and add a webpage to its index.
A webpage that has been discovered by a crawler, has been added to a search engine index, and is eligible to appear in search results for relevant queries.
How a website is organized and where various content and navigational elements are located on webpages.
The process of searching for information (e.g., text, images, video) from a large database and then presenting the most relevant information to an end user.
See: Website Navigation
An Internet Protocol Address. IP addresses can be:
- Shared: Numerous websites share an address within one server or a group of servers (a.k.a., virtual hosting).
- Dedicated: A website has its own address.
Neither will help you rank better; however, a dedicated IP address can increase site speed.
The word, words, or phrase that an SEO professional or marketer targets for the purpose of matching and ranking for what users are searching for. The words used on webpages can help search engines determine which pages are the most relevant to show in organic results when a searcher enters a query. Keywords usually represent topics, ideas, or questions.
Also known as: Keyphrase.
A type of self-competition that occurs when multiple pages from one website rank for the same query on a SERP. This can result in a lower CTR, diminished authority, and lower conversion rates than from having one consolidated webpage that ranks well.
How often a word or phrase appears within the content of a webpage. At best, this unproven concept is outdated, if ever really mattered to search engines. There is no ideal percentage that will help a webpage rank better.
The process of discovering any relevant topics, subjects, and terms searchers enter into search engines, as well as the volume and competition level of those terms. This practice is made possible by a variety of free and paid tools.
When a keyword is placed as high as possible on a web page to influence ranking for a search term.
Using a keyword inserted at the beginning of a page, for example in the first paragraph, does send a strong signal to Google about the page.
Keyword prominence does work as a ranking signal if the theme of the page is aligned with the keyword.
In language and grammar, words are constructed around a variation upon a root or stem. For example, shopping, shopped, shops are all variations of the stem ‘shop’.
When trying to rank for a term such as ‘shop’, using variations of the word on the page (shopping, shopped) will all be considered the same stem keyword by Google. This also applies to plurals such as bikes/bikes or fly/flies.
Keyword stemming is Google’s ability to understand the variations of a keyword and is part of its algorithm.
Adding irrelevant keywords, or repeating keywords beyond what is natural, to a webpage in the hopes of increasing search rankings. This spam tactic is against Google’s Webmaster Guidelines and can result in a manual action.
An entity database Google uses to surface facts and information on people, places, and things (a.k.a., entities) – and their connections – in a Knowledge Panel or carousel at the top of search results on relevant queries.
A box that appears at the top of, or on the right rail (desktop only), of Page 1 of Google’s search results for relevant queries. This panel contains facts and information on people, places, and things, as well as links to related websites or Google searches.
Stands for key performance indicator. A measurement method businesses use to gauge whether marketing and business objectives, targets, and goals are being reached.
- Any webpage that a visitor can navigate to.
- A standalone webpage that is designed to capture leads or generate conversions.
Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI)
An information retrieval method designed to help search engines identify the correct context of a word. LSI doesn’t play a useful role in SEO today.
A person who may or may not be interested in your product(s) and/or service(s). A lead willingly shares their email address (and usually other personal or contact information) in exchange for something they deem of value from the website.
A connection between two websites built using HTML code. A link enables users to navigate to websites, social networks, and apps. Links play a critical role in how search engines evaluate and rank websites.
Also known as: Backlink.
Intentionally provocative content that is meant to grab people’s attention and attract links from other websites.
A process designed to get other trusted and relevant websites to link to your website to help improve your organic search rank and visibility. Link building can be done by:
- Conducting outreach to media outlets, bloggers, influencers, and webmasters.
- Attracting editorial links naturally, by publishing various types of high-quality or sensational content.
- Paying for them. For example, you can obtain links via sponsored content, paid reviews, or paying for a specific type of link to appear on another website.
- Forging partnerships.
- Manually. For instance, you link together various properties you manage or own, or add your site to online directories or review sites.
The value of inbound links, in terms of relevance, authority, and trust.
When a group of websites link to each other, usually using automated programs, in the hopes of artificially increasing search rankings. A spam tactic.
Also known as: Link Network, Blog Network, Private Blog Network
A term you should never use in public or online.
Did you mean…: Authority or PageRank
Every type of link that points to a particular website. The quality of a website’s link profile can vary widely, depending on how they were acquired and the anchor text used.
Where a link remains on a page consistently for a period of time without being changed or updated.
Google did apply for a patent that referred to link churn and how often the links on a page were changed, but there is no evidence that link stability has any influence on ranking.
How quickly (or slowly) a website accumulates links. A sudden increase in link velocity could potentially be a sign of spamming, or could be due to viral marketing or doing something newsworthy (either intentionally or unintentionally).
Links that navigate from one page to another page on the same domain. Internal links can be inserted on a page, in the main navigation menu, or in the sitemap.
Internal links can be used to indicate the importance of a page on a site. For example, a page that is directly linked from the home page compared to a page that is four clicks from the homepage.
Internal links are important because Googlebot crawlers follow internal links to navigate your site and find new pages.
In a hyperlink, rel=”nofollow” is an attribute added to the link to show that you are not passing any credit or endorsement to the page you are linking to
Nofollow was originally introduced by Google to limit comment spam and devalued all nofollow links, but they have since changed how the directive works.
Nofollow is now considered a ‘hint’ which means they may still use some information about linking patterns, but generally, still accept that no weight should be passed through the link.
Links, Outbound or External
An external or outbound link is a link from a page on x domain page to a page on y domain. For example, a link from searchenginejournal.com/google to google.com/about-us
It was considered that external links to authority sites added value to a page because it demonstrates that the page is well-researched and is using trusted sources.
External links are not considered to have any influence on ranking and should only be used to cite sources where relevant.
A file that records users’ information, such as IP addresses, type of browser, Internet Service Provider (ISP), date/time stamp, referring/exit pages, and number of clicks.
Log File Analysis
The process of exploring the data contained in a log file to identify trends, administer the site, track user’s movement around the site, gather demographic information, and understand how search bots are crawling the website.
- Highly specific multiple-word terms that often demonstrate higher purchase intent.
- Less popular keywords that have low search volume that are usually easier to rank for.
A subset of Artificial Intelligence in which a system uses data to learn and adjust a complex process without human intervention.
Google’s term for a penalty. Google will take manual action on a website after a human reviewer (i.e., a Google employee) manually reviews a website to confirm whether it has failed to comply with Google’s Webmaster guidelines. Penalized websites can either be demoted or removed entirely from search results. Manual actions can be assessed to the entire website or just certain webpages.
A tag that can be added to the “head section of an HTML document. It acts as a description of a webpage’s content. This content isn’t used in ranking algorithms, but is often displayed as the “snippet that appears in the search results. Accurate and engaging descriptions can increase organic click-through rate.
A tag that can be added to the “head section of an HTML document. Adding a bunch of keywords here won’t help you rank – search engine algorithms have ignored this tag for ranking purposes for years due to abuse (in the form of keyword stuffing).
Information that appears in the HTML source code of a webpage to describe its contents to search engines. The title tag and meta description are the most commonly used types of meta tags in SEO.
A way to measure activity and performance in order to assess the success (or lack thereof) of an SEO initiative.
See: Editorial Link
A rare but malicious practice where webspam techniques are used to harm the search rankings of another website, usually a competitor.
A specific market or area of interest consisting of a small group of highly-passionate people.
A meta tag that tells search engines not to store a cached copy of your page.
A meta tag that tells search engines not to follow one specific outbound link. This is done in cases when a website doesn’t want to pass authority to another webpage or because it’s a paid link. The nofollow attribute looks like this:
<a href=”http://www.example.com/” rel=”nofollow”>Anchor text goes here</a>
A meta tag that tells search engines not to index a specific webpage in its index.
A meta tag that tells search engines not to show a description with your listing.
After search engines moved to secure search in 2011, keyword data was removed from Google Analytics, replaced with “(not provided)” – thus making it impossible to know which queries were responsible for visitors finding a website.
Demand generation and brand awareness activities that take place outside of a website. In addition to link building, promotion tactics can include social media marketing, content marketing, email marketing, influencer marketing, and even offline marketing channels (e.g., TV, radio, billboards).
These activities all take place within a website. In addition to publishing relevant, high-quality content, on-page SEO includes optimizing HTML code (e.g., title tags, meta tags), information architecture, website navigation, and URL structure.
The natural, or unpaid, listings that appear on a SERP. Organic search results, which are analyzed and ranked by algorithms, are designed to give users the most relevant result based on their query.
Any webpage that is not linked to by any other pages on that website.
A link that directs visitors to a page on a different website than the one they are currently on.
According to Google: “PageRank is the measure of the importance of a page based on the incoming links from other pages. In simple terms, each link to a page on your site from another site adds to your site’s PageRank. Not all links are equal.” The algorithm was named after Google co-founder Larry Page.
The amount of time it takes for a webpage to completely load. Page speed is ranking factor.
A webpage is loaded in a browser.
Pay-per-click advertisements that appear above (and often below) the organic results on search engines.
Stands for Private Blog Network.
See: Link Farm.
Stands for Portable Document Format file. PDFs can contain text, images, links, videos, and other elements.
See: Manual Action
A fictionalized representation of an ideal website visitor or customer – their demographics, behavior, needs, motivations, and goals – all based on actual data.
Also known as: Buyer Persona, Marketing Persona
When search engines use search history, web browsing history, location, and relationships to create a set of search results tailored to a specific user.
Hypertext Preprocessor is a scripting language used to create dynamic content on webpages.
Search engines aim to reduce the organic search rankings of content that infringes on copyright. Google introduced a filter in 2012 that reduces the visibility of sites reported for numerous DMCA-related takedown requests.
When, after entering a query, a searcher bounces back and forth between a SERP and the pages listed in those search results.
Also see: Dwell time
PPC (Pay Per Click)
A type of advertising where advertisers are charged a certain amount (usually determined by bid, relevance, account history, and competition) every time a user clicks on the ad. Combining PPC and SEO can result in more SERP real estate, clicks, and conversions. Also, PPC data can inform your SEO strategy, and the reverse is also true.
Stands for query deserves freshness, where a search engine might decide to show newer webpages in search results (rather than older pages) if a particular search term is trending, perhaps because a news event has resulted in a surge in searches on that topic.
Content that helps you successfully achieve business or marketing goals (e.g., driving organic traffic or social shares, earning top search rankings, generating leads/sales).
An inbound link that originates from an authoritative, relevant, or trusted website.
The word, words, or phrase that a user enters into a search engine.
Also known as: A search.
Where a webpage appears within the organic search results for a specific query.
An individual component which contributes to a complex series of algorithms that determine where webpages should appear with the organic search results for a specific query. For years, Google has said that its algorithms “rely on more than 200 unique signals” to help users find the most relevant webpage or answer.
Also known as: Ranking Signal.
When two websites agree to exchange links to one another.
A technique that sends a user (or search engine) who requested one webpage to a different (but equally relevant) webpage. There are two types of redirects:
- 301: Permanent
- 302: Temporary
URL data that identifies the source of a user’s webpage request.
The process of asking a search engine to return a website or webpage(s) to its search index after de-indexing.
A way search engines measure how closely connected the content of a webpage is aligned to match the context of a search query.
The practice of crafting a positive online perception of a brand or person – including in search results and on social media – by minimizing the visibility of negative mentions.
Also known as: Online Reputation Management, Public Relations
A website designed to automatically adapt to a user’s screen size, whether it’s being viewed on a desktop or mobile device.
Structured data can be added to the HTML of a website to provide contextual information to the search engines during crawling. This information can then be displayed in the SERPs, resulting in an enhanced listing, known as a rich snippet.
The Robots Exclusion Protocol (or Standard) is a text file, accessible at the root of a website, that tells search engine crawlers which areas of a website should be ignored.
Return on Investment (ROI)
A way to measure the performance of SEO activities. This is calculated by dividing how much revenue you earned via organic search by the cost of the total investment, then multiplying by 100.
A form of microdata which, once added to a webpage, creates an enhanced description (commonly known as a rich snippet), which appears in search results.
A technique used to copy website content or information using a computer program or script. Search engines, such as Google, scrape data in order to build a searchable index of websites.
Also known as: Web scraping.
A computer program that enables users to enter a query in order to retrieve information (e.g., files, websites, webpages) from that program’s index (i.e., a web search engine, such as Google, indexes websites, webpages, and files found on the World Wide Web). A search index is built and updated using a crawler, with items being analyzed and ranked by a series of algorithms.
Also see: Baidu, Bing, DuckDuckGo, Google, Yahoo, Yandex
Search Engine Marketing (SEM)
An umbrella term for increasing a website’s visibility in search engine results pages, encompassing both paid and organic activities.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
The process of optimizing a website – as well as all the content on that website – so it will appear in prominent positions in the organic results of search engines. SEO requires an understanding of how search engines work, what people search for (i.e., keywords and keyphrases), and why people search (intent). Successful SEO makes a site appealing to users and search engines. It is a combination of technical (on-page SEO) and marketing (off-page SEO).
See: On-Page SEO, Off-Page SEO
Search Engine Results Page (SERP)
The page search engines display to users after conducting a search. Typically, search engines show about 10 organic search results, sorted by relevance. Depending on the query, other search features may be shown, including:
- AdWords Ads (above and below the organic search results)
- Featured snippets (a.k.a., Position Zero)
- Knowledge panels
- Local Pack (with map)
- Related questions
- Related searches
- Shopping results
Also known as: SERPs, when referring to multiple search engine results pages.
Search engines track every search users conduct (text and voice), every webpage visited, and every ad clicked on. Search engines may use this data to personalize the results for signed in users.
Also known as: Web Browsing History.
Share of Voice
How many impressions a brand receives in the SERPs for search terms when compared to the total impressions that the brand’s competitors receive for those same search terms.
Up to six algorithmically-chosen links that appear below the listing for the same website of a top-ranked organic search result. Pages can be blocked from appearing as sitelinks within the Search Console or Bing Webmaster Tools.
Also known as: Deep Links (Bing).
A list of pages on a website. There are two types of sitemaps:
- HTML: This type of sitemap, typically organized by topics, helps site users navigate a website.
- XML: This type of sitemap provides crawlers with a list of webpages on a website.
A link that appears on every page of a website, typically in a sidebar or footer of blogs or websites that use templates.
Platforms (websites and apps) where users can interact with each other, as well as create, share, and consume content.
Any factors that demonstrate authority and influence on popular social networking websites. For example, the social authority of a user on Twitter.
Although many correlation studies have indicated that socials signals impact rankings (e.g., number of Likes/shares a piece of content receives), Google has publicly stated that social signals are not a direct ranking factor. Popular sites that have a lot of social media engagement tend to rank well for other reasons.
A controlled experiment used to compare at least two webpages to measure the effects of a different variable on conversions. After the pages are shown for a long enough period of time to site visitors to gather an adequate amount of performance data, a “winner” can be declared.
Also known as: A/B Testing.
A digital certificate used for website identity authentication and to encrypt information sent to the server using Secure Sockets Layer technology.
The response codes sent by a server whenever a link is clicked, a webpage or file is requested, or a form is submitted. Common HTTP status codes important to SEO:
- 200 (OK)
- 404 (Not Found)
- 410 (Gone)
- 500 (Internal Service Error)
- 503 (Service Unavailable)
A frequently used word. For example: a, at, for, is, of, on, the. Search engines have, in the past, ignored these words to save time/resources when indexing. Search engines have evolved greatly since the early days, and stop words sometimes are meaningful, so this isn’t something to worry much about for SEO purposes.
Organizing and categorizing a website to maximize content findability and help users complete desired on-site tasks.
Time on Page
An inexact estimation of how long a user spent looking at a particular webpage. Pages with high exit rates can greatly skew this data.
An HTML meta tag that acts as the title of a webpage. Typically, the title tag is the title search engines use when displaying search listings, so it should include strategic and relevant keywords for that specific page. The title tag should also be written so it makes sense to people and attracts the most clicks. Typically, title tags should be less than 65 characters.
Top-Level Domain (TLD)
The extension of a given web address. These include:
There are also many more industry and country-specific options.
Also known as: gTLD (Generic Top-Level Domain); Domain Extension.
The people (and sometimes bots) who visit your website.
Generally applies to the history of a domain (e.g., whether it cites or features expert sources, builds a positive reputation, adheres to Webmaster Guidelines).
A link analysis technique used to separate good “reputable seed pages” from web spam.
User-Generated Content (UGC)
Any form of content – videos, blog posts, comments, reviews, etc. – that is created by users or customers.
When search engines pull data from multiple speciality databases to display on the same SERP. Results can include images, videos, news, shopping, and other types of results.
Also known as: Blended Search.
Any links Google identifies as suspicious, deceptive, or manipulative. An unnatural link can result in Google taking manual action on your website.
A uniform resource locator is the specific string of characters that lead to a resource on the web. The term URL is usually short-hand for the letter-based web address (e.g., www.searchenginejournal.com) entered into a browser to access a webpage.
The values added to a URL in order to track where traffic comes from (i.e., which link someone clicked on to discover your website or webpage). Here’s an example of a URL parameter (bolded):
Also known as: Query String.
How easy it is for people to use your website. Site design, browser compatibility, disability enhancements, and other factors all play a role in improving usability and making your site accessible for as many people as possible.
Web crawling software.
User Experience (UX)
The overall feeling users are left with after interacting with a brand, its online presence, and its product/services.
A specialized type of search where the focus is only on a specific topic, type of content, or media. For example, YouTube (video), Amazon (shopping), Kayak (travel), Yelp (business reviews).
A bot that uses natural language processing to perform tasks, such as conducting web searches. For instance, Apple’s Siri or Microsoft’s Cortana.
The prominence and positions a website occupies within the organic search results.
A type of voice-activated technology that allows users to speak into a device (usually a smartphone) to ask questions or conduct an online search.
A document that exists on the World Wide Web and can be viewed by web browsers.
A collection of webpages hosted together on the World Wide Web.
How a website connects its webpages to help visitors navigate that site. Website navigation comes in a few different forms, including:
- Main Navigation: The major topics or subjects your website is focused on. For instance, on SEJ our Main Navigation consists of SEO, News, PPC, Content, and Social.
- Secondary Navigation: Topics related to the main navigation. For instance, on SEJ secondary navigation includes links to webinars, podcasts, guides, SEJ Summit, and other topics.
- Related Links: This area usually appears in the right rail or beneath content. It might be called “Most Popular,” “Most Read,” or “Trending Now.”
- Content Links: Links that appear within your main content (e.g., articles, landing pages).
- Breadcrumb Navigation: This type is less popular than it once was. Essentially, each webpage shows a “trail” to help quickly tell visitors where they are on your site. For example: Home > SEO > Link Building > What Is Website Navigation?
Also known as: Internal Links (or Internal Linking), Site Architecture
Any methods that exist solely to deceive or manipulate search engine algorithms and/or users.
Also known as: Black Hat SEO, Spam, Spamdexing, Search Spam
Tactics that comply with Google’s Webmaster Guidelines.
The total number of words that appear within the copy of content. Too little (or thin) content can be a signal of low-quality to search engines.
A popular blogging and content management system.
Extensible Markup Language is a markup language search engines use to understand website data.
A list of all the pages on a website that search engines need to know.
Yahoo was born in April 1994 and was an incredibly popular search engine and portal in the ’90s. Yahoo search was mostly human-powered, at least until June 2000 when a then-unknown search engine called Google began powering Yahoo’s organic search results. That deal continued until 2004, when Yahoo started using its own search technology. Since 2010, Yahoo’s organic search results have been powered by Microsoft’s search engine, Bing.
The most popular search engine in Russia, Yandex was founded September 23, 1997 by Arkady Volozh and Ilya Segalovich.
Featured Image: Blan-k/Shutterstock
How SEOs Make the Web Better
SEOs catch flak for ruining the web, but they play a crucial role in the search ecosystem, and actually make the internet better for everyone.
Let’s get the criticism out of the way. There are bad actors in SEO, people who seek to extract money from the internet regardless of the cost to others. There are still scams and snake oil, posers and plagiarists. Many parts of the web have become extremely commercialized, with paid advertising and big brands displacing organic and user-generated content.
But while there are situations where SEOs have made things worse, to fixate on them is to ignore the colossal elephant in the room: in the ways that really matter, the web is the best it’s ever been:
- It’s the easiest it has ever been to find information on the internet. Searchers have a staggering array of tutorials, teardowns, and tips at their fingertips, containing information that is generally accurate and helpful—and this was not always the case.
- Bad actors have a smaller influence over search. Search is less of a Wild West than it used to be. Once-scam-ridden topics are subject to significant scrutiny, and the problems and loopholes in search that need fixing today—like big brands and generic content receiving undue prominence—are smaller and less painful than the problems of the past.
- More people use search to their benefit. Online content is the most accessible it has ever been, and it’s easier than ever to grow a local business or expand into international markets on the back of search.
SEOs have played a crucial role in these improvements, poking and prodding, building and—sometimes—breaking. They are Google power users: the people who push the system to extremes, but in doing so, catalyze the change needed to make search better for everyone.
Let’s explore how.
SEOs are much-needed intermediaries between Google and the rest of the world, helping non-technical people acquire and benefit from search engine traffic.
There is a huge amount of valuable information locked up in the heads of people who have no idea how to build a website or index a blog post. A carpet fitter with a bricks-and-mortar business might have decades of experience solving costly problems with uneven subfloors or poor moisture management, but no understanding of how to share that information online.
SEOs provide little nudges towards topics that people care about and writing that’s accessible to people and robots. They help solve technical problems that would hinder or completely block a site from appearing in search results. They identify opportunities for companies to be rewarded for creating great content.
It’s a win-win: businesses are rewarded with traffic, searchers have their intent satisfied, and the world is made a little richer for the newfound knowledge it contains.
SEOs do many things to actively make the web a better place, tending to their own plot of the Google garden to make sure it flourishes.
Take, for example, the myriad standards and guidelines designed to make the web a more accessible place for users. The implementation of these standards—turning theoretical guidelines into real, concrete parts of the web—often happens because of the SEO team.
Technical SEOs play a big part in adhering to the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines, a set of principles designed to ensure online content is “perceivable, operable, understandable, and robust” for every user. Every SEO’s fixation with Core Web Vitals fuels a faster, more efficient web. Content teams translate Google’s helpful content guidelines into useful words and images on a page.
(Case in point: check out Aleyda Solis’ Content Helpfulness Analyzer.)
There is a lot of overlap between “things that help users” and “things that improve search performance.” Even if the motive behind these changes is as simple as generating more traffic, a well-optimized website is, generally speaking, one that is also great for real human beings trying to engage with it.
The biggest criticism leveled at SEOs is that they break things. And they do! But that breakage acts as a type of pressure testing that strengthens the system as a whole.
Abuse of spintax and keyword stuffing forced Google to develop a better understanding of on-page content. Today, that loophole is closed, but more importantly, Google is much better at understanding the contents of a page and its relationship to a website as a whole.
Hacks like hiding keywords with white text on a white background (or moving them beyond the visible bounds of the screen) forced Google to expand its understanding of page styling and CSS, and how on-page information interacts with the environment that contains it.
Even today’s deluge of borderline-plagiarised AI content is not without benefit: it creates a very clear incentive for Google to get better at rewarding information gain and prioritizing publishers with solid EEAT credentials. These improvements will make tomorrow’s version of search much better.
This isn’t just Google fixing what SEOs broke: these changes usually leave lasting benefits that extend beyond any single spam tactic and make search better for all of its users.
This is not to argue that blackhat SEO is desirable. It would be better to make these improvements without incurring pain along the way. But Search is huge and complicated, and Google has little incentive to spend money proactively fixing problems and loopholes.
If we can’t solve every issue before it causes pain, we should be grateful for a correction mechanism that prevents it—and more extreme abuse—from happening in the future. SEOs break the system, and in doing so, make future breakages a lot less severe.
Some SEOs take advantage of the loopholes they discover—but many don’t. They choose to raise these issues in public spaces, encourage discussion, and seek out a fix, acting like a proxy quality assurance team.
At the small end of the spectrum, SEOs often flag bugs with Google systems, like a recent error in Search Console reporting flagged independently by three separate people, or Tom Anthony famously catching an oversight in Google’s Manual Actions database. While these types of problems don’t always impact the average user’s experience using Google, they help keep search systems working as intended.
At the other end of the scale, this feedback can extend as far as the overarching quality of the search experience, like AJ Kohn writing about Google’s propensity to reward big brands over small brands, or Lily Ray calling out an uptick in spam content in Google Discover.
SEOs are Google’s most passionate users. They interact with it at a scale far beyond the average user, and they can identify trends and changes at a macroscopic level. As a result, they are usually the first to discover problems—but also the people who hold Google to the highest standard. They are a crucial part of the feedback loop that fuels improvements.
Lastly, SEOs act as a check-and-balance, gathering firsthand evidence of how search systems operate, letting us differentiate between useful advice, snake oil, and Google’s PR bluster.
Google shares lots of useful guidance, but it’s important to recognize the limits of their advice. They are a profit-seeking company, and Search requires opacity to work—if everyone understood how it worked, everyone would game it, and it would stop working. Mixed in with the good advice is a healthy portion of omission and misdirection.
Google Search plays a vital role in controlling the flow of the web’s information—it is simply too important for us to leave its mechanics, biases, and imperfections unexplored. We need people who can interrogate the systems just enough to separate fact from fiction and understand how the pieces fit together.
We need people like Mic King, and his insanely detailed write-up of SGE and RAG; Britney Muller and her demystification of LLMs; the late Bill Slawki’s unfaltering patent analysis; or our own Patrick Stox’s efforts in piecing together how search works.
The web has problems. We can and should expect more from Google Search. But the problems we need to solve today are far less severe and painful than the problems that needed solving in the past; and the people who have the highest expectations, and will be most vocal in shaping that positive future, are—you guessed it—SEOs.
To SEOs: the cause of (and solution to) all of the web’s problems.
12 Creative Lead Magnet Ideas For Law Firms
Lead magnets have long been an effective tactic for generating more leads and growing an email list.
Popular in the marketing industry, lead magnets can also be used by independent business owners to attract more clients and build online authority.
This is also true for law firms, which often rely on their content to build trust, increase traffic, and generate more leads.
However, law firms face unique challenges given the complexity of their subject matter and the restrictions regarding soliciting new clients.
That’s why we are sharing some of the most creative (and effective) lead magnet ideas law firms can use to grow their email lists and get more leads.
1. Educational Ebooks
The legal process can be confusing for many clients. They might venture to Google in search of resources, information, services, and tips for their case.
What better way to build your authority and draw in potential clients than to share educational content via ebooks?
Ebooks are generally in-depth guides or reports that cover a particular topic in detail. For law firms, ebooks can provide beginner-friendly insights, case studies, and/or step-by-step guidance regarding legal issues.
Not a designer? No problem! There are tons of free tools you can use to create ebooks. One of the most popular options is Canva.
Here’s how to create an ebook using Canva:
- Select a template: Canva offers a variety of ebook templates for different styles and themes. You can view and decide which pages to keep, discard, or edit to suit your needs.
- Customize the design: Use Canva’s stock photos, illustrations, icons, and graphics, or upload your own images to personalize your ebook. Experiment with colors, backgrounds, fonts, and photo effects.
- Add content: Fill in your design with helpful content. Add a descriptive title. Consider linking to supporting resources, including eye-catching images, adding “bonus tips,” and more to make your ebook engaging.
- Publish and share: Once the ebook is finalized, you can download and save it as a JPEG or PNG. Then, you can upload it to your website and put it behind a subscription wall.
2. Free Legal Templates
Templates are predesigned forms that make it easy for users to create, edit, and save their own documents. Templates can be used to create wills, lease agreements, contracts, non-disclosure agreements, parenting plans, and more.
As an attorney, you have the legal know-how to help clients create detailed and accurate legal documents.
While there are limitations – you should recommend users get their documents reviewed by an attorney – providing templates can help people head in the right direction.
When clients download the template, they can provide their email addresses, allowing your firm to follow up and offer to assist them in completing or reviewing the document.
Some other legal template ideas include:
- Power of attorney.
- Advance healthcare directives.
- Employment contracts.
- Business formation documents.
- Partnership agreements.
- Service agreements.
- Release or waiver forms.
- Prenuptial agreements.
- Intellectual property assignments.
- Demand letters.
- Cease and desist letters.
- Settlement agreements.
- Complaints or petitions.
- Loan agreements.
- Promissory notes.
3. Exclusive Webinars And Interviews
Live or pre-recorded webinars are another great way to offer value to potential clients. People love the interactive nature of live webinars and the ability to re-watch informational videos.
You can host online seminars, interviews, or sessions regarding important legal topics, helping your audience know what steps to take during the legal process.
For example, you can talk about how to navigate the divorce process, how to get started with a will, or what to know about real estate law.
Here are a few examples of titles you can use for your webinar:
- “Understanding Your Rights: [Legal Topic] Explained.”
- “Navigating [Legal Issue]: Your Step-by-Step Guide.”
- “Legal Essentials: How to Protect Your [Assets/Business/Family].”
- “How to Avoid Legal Pitfalls in [Scenario/Situation].”
- “[Legal Topic]: A Lawyer’s Tips for Success.”
- “Legal Questions Answered: [Topic] Q&A Session.”
- “What Every [Entrepreneur/Parent/Homeowner] Should Know About [Legal Topic].”
- “What Every [Person/Business Owner] Should Know About [Legal Topic].”
Once you have your idea for your webinar or interview, you can promote your session on social media, your website, or via your email list.
Then, people can register for the webinar by providing their contact information and expressing their interest in the topic.
This will allow you to follow up with them after the session, opening the door to them becoming new clients.
4. Downloadable Checklists
Simplify complex legal topics and processes with easy-to-follow checklists.
Checklists help prospective clients organize their tasks, prepare for their cases, and remember important details regarding legal proceedings.
Checklists provide a ton of value, making them a smart pick for a potential lead magnet.
Say, for example, that you’re a will and probate attorney. You could create a checklist titled “X-Step Checklist for Estate Planning.”
You could design this document to include helpful resources, tasks, and graphics that support people navigating the estate planning process.
Some steps on this type of checklist might include:
- Download our free Estate Plan Template.
- Create a list of your family members and other beneficiaries.
- Take inventory of your assets, such as real estate, bank accounts, and investments.
- Take inventory of your liabilities, such as debts, mortgages, and loans.
- Record the information from your insurance policies (life, health, and property).
- Choose your power of attorney designation.
- Hire a will and probate attorney to help you draft your last will and testament.
- Schedule for reviewing and updating the estate plan.
You can offer checklists as downloadable content in exchange for contact information, which will help you build a database of potential clients.
Plus, a necessary step in the checklist could be for someone to contact an attorney (i.e., you) for more support; you can then provide your direct contact information.
5. Actionable Worksheets
Similar to checklists, worksheets are interactive tools that help potential clients understand the legal process, assess their situation, prepare for a legal consultation, and even calculate estimated attorney costs.
Worksheets can be particularly helpful if you are used to getting new clients who don’t yet have their information or documents in order.
People can opt into using the worksheet, which provides value to them and makes them a better client for you!
You could even have people fill out the worksheets in exchange for personalized feedback or consultation offers, creating an opportunity for you to engage with them directly.
6. Tools And Resource Lists
If you have the technical skills to create web applications (or the resources to hire someone to do this for you), digital tools are a great way to garner user interest and generate leads.
Resource lists are perhaps the simplest version of this. You can design and publish a list of relevant resources someone might need and then host this list on your website.
For example, some resources might include document templates, links to government websites, links to case studies, and links to helpful videos.
Another approach is to create online tools such as calculators or apps. Some ideas include:
- As an interactive “checkup” tool that evaluates users’ legal needs.
- A cost calculator that estimates the costs for certain proceedings (like starting a business, filing for divorce, hiring an attorney, etc.) based on the user’s specifications.
- An e-document generator, which creates basic legal documents like non-disclosure agreements or letters of intent.
- Visual timeline “maps” that show the typical timeline of various legal processes.
- Case studies, where users can input different variables to see the possible legal outcomes for their situation.
There may be many more ideas that we haven’t been able to think of here, so get creative and consider what might be most relevant to your audience!
Remember that the key is to capture users’ information so you can follow up with them later as a possible lead.
7. Video Tutorials
Unlike webinars, video tutorials are usually pre-recorded videos in which you instruct users on a particular process from start to finish. This usually includes detailed steps and examples instead of interviews or sound bites.
Consider some scenarios in which clients might need help navigating a task, such as filing a small claims case or trademarking their logo.
Then, create an outline for your video, detailing the steps you want people to take.
Finally, record your video, edit the content, and then host the video – likely as a private video on YouTube (which can be sent to subscribers via email) or behind an opt-in wall on your website.
8. Legal Case Studies
Case studies are common lead magnets for the legal industry. This is because potential clients want to see examples of when you have succeeded in a case and what the outcome was for your client.
Case studies can build trust and convince people that you are the attorney to work with.
In your case study, explain the problem the client was facing, how the case was handled, what the outcome was, and (ideally) your client’s review of your services.
Highlight the benefits of your client working with an attorney to get the guidance and support they need to navigate this stressful and challenging situation.
You can put these case studies behind an opt-in wall or have them express interest via social media, with you sending them the case study in exchange for their email address.
Interested readers can then request more information or a consultation, becoming a potential lead!
9. Interactive Quizzes
Quizzes are usually used to prompt users to answer questions and receive a “score.”
But in their application to the legal field, quizzes can be used to help people assess their legal situation and receive answers, next steps, or considerations from a trusted legal professional.
These “answers” could be auto-generated based on certain criteria or (most effectively) crafted by your legal team and sent to the recipient via email.
The user receives their personalized assessment, with recommendations and/or precautions for their case, and you generate a potential new lead.
Keep in mind that there are limits to what degree you can provide legal counsel to someone who is not yet a client. Your “answers” might need to include more general advice and a recommendation to seek out legal counsel.
Similar to tutorials, courses can be used to help people understand their rights, learn how to navigate the legal process, or know the steps they need to take to hire an attorney.
A course does not necessarily need to be on video but could consist of an email series, downloadable PDF, or a series of worksheets.
You can publish mini course videos, add “homework,” link to related resources, and so much more.
Remember that creating a course is often more involved than just a single tutorial. That’s why we recommend creating a “mini” course that provides just enough value to get people interested in your services.
Here are some example course topics you could use:
- Legal Fundamentals: X Steps to Understanding Your Rights.
- Navigating Contracts: What You Need to Know Before Signing.
- Estate Planning Basics: How to Plan Your Legacy.
- Small Business Law: Protect Your Company the Right Way.
- Intellectual Property 101: How to Safeguard Your Ideas.
- Mini-Course: How to Buy and Sell Property (Tips From a Real Estate Attorney).
- Employment Law for Employees: Know Your Workplace Rights.
11. Trend Reports
Trends reports offer analysis, findings, and opinions regarding trending legal topics or stories.
If there’s a hot topic in your industry – and people are searching for it – it could be an interesting idea to publish your very own trends report.
For example, say you are a real estate attorney. A common trending topic is the real estate market: is it going up or down?
You could host a “market watch” report summarizing your findings and connecting the market to what buyers/sellers need to know about real estate law.
You can advertise your specialized report and grow your email list by enticing users to opt into your report or newsletter.
Then, you can notify your audience of special events, promotions, blog posts on your website, upcoming webinars, and so much more. That way, you have a growing list of potential leads!
12. Facebook Groups
People are constantly searching for information — on Google, on social media, and yes, even in Facebook Groups. If you have knowledge to share, creating a Facebook Group could be a way to generate more leads.
When you create a Facebook Group, you are able to prompt new members to answer questions when they sign up.
These can be questions like, “Why are you interested in [legal topic]?” “Would you like to provide your email address to receive more information?” or “What other topics are you interested in?”
These questions can help you not only grow your list but also come up with more topic ideas for your group.
For example, you could create a Facebook Group called “Real Estate Watch” if you are a real estate attorney, “Small Business Tips” as a business attorney, or “Contracts 101” as a contracts attorney.
While you can’t give out personalized legal advice, you can point people in the right direction if they have questions about complex legal matters.
Think Of Your Own Creative Lead Magnet Ideas
When it comes to lead generation, the possibilities aren’t only limited to this list!
You know your audience the best, so you might have your own ideas for how to engage with them and what content they might be interested in.
Don’t hesitate to think outside the box to come up with your own lead magnet ideas.
Lead magnets can be an effective tool for increasing engagement, growing your audience, and attracting new leads. Law firm marketing doesn’t have to be boring.
Try to think of new ways to reach your audience and get them excited to work with you.
Featured Image: Andrey_Popov/Shutterstock
The 17 Best Ad Networks For Content Creators In 2024
No room for doubt, we find ourselves firmly entrenched in the era of the creator economy.
In today’s digital landscape, the influence wielded by content creators, influencers, and community builders has reached unprecedented heights. Their craft not only resonates with audiences but also opens up diverse avenues for revenue generation.
However, navigating this landscape is far from a walk in the park.
Bloggers, videographers, photographers, and creatives of various stripes are in a perpetual quest for innovative ways to monetize their work amid the unpredictable nature of the digital domain.
Enter display ad networks – a tried-and-true method for creators to maximize earnings while ensuring an exceptional user experience. The key lies in selecting the right one.
In the upcoming sections, we’ll delve into the most promising ad networks for content creators in 2024, equipping you with the tools to monetize your content effectively.
Understanding Ad Networks:
Let’s kick off with the basics: What exactly is an ad network?
An ad network acts as the intermediary between publishers (bloggers, content creators, etc.) seeking to sell ad space and advertisers eager to secure ad placements.
These networks bridge the gap, helping advertisers locate suitable websites aligning with their target audience and goals. Conversely, they enable publishers to connect with advertisers whose content aligns seamlessly with their own.
For bloggers and content creators, ad networks offer a hassle-free opportunity to monetize their content without the intricacies of direct negotiations with advertisers.
Contrary to sponsored posts or affiliate marketing, ad networks provide a more automated, hands-off approach, saving creators both time and stress.
Here’s a glimpse into the typical functioning of ad networks, though the specifics may vary based on your chosen network:
- Joining the network: Submit your content for review; the network evaluates your content based on various criteria.
- Ad placement: Once approved, the process of placing ads on your site begins. This may involve embedding a code snippet or inviting bids from advertisers.
- Earnings generation: Users viewing or clicking on ads lead to revenue for you, as advertisers pay the network for serving their ads.
- Payment: The network transfers your earnings through your chosen method, sometimes with a commission deducted.
Exploring Ad Network Types:
While ad network types are ever-evolving, some categories remain prevalent. Here are a few you might encounter:
- Vertical Networks: Specialized in specific niches or industries, targeting a highly specific audience.
- Premium Networks: Emphasize high-quality ad content, often collaborating with top-tier publishers and high-traffic websites.
- Specialized or Inventory-Specific Networks: Focus on specific content types rather than industries, such as video-specific or podcast-only networks.
- Targeted Networks: Aim for hyper-specific demographics or user segments, honing in on criteria like location and behavior.
- Performance and Affiliate Ad Networks: Prioritize user actions over mere ad display, with payment tied to specific user actions.
Choosing the Right Ad Network:
While ad networks offer a recognizable avenue for income, not all are created equal. Consider the following factors:
- Audience and Niche: Ensure alignment with your content and audience.
- Ad Formats: Select networks offering ad types, sizes, and placements that suit your preferences.
- Revenue Models: Understand payment models (revenue share, CPM, CPC, CPA) and choose what aligns with your goals.
- Traffic Requirements: Be mindful of minimum traffic requirements, choosing a network that suits your platform’s reach.
- User Experience: Prioritize networks that enhance user experience, delivering non-intrusive, relevant ads for increased audience satisfaction and revenue.
1. Google AdSense
For those embarking on the journey of ad monetization, Google AdSense stands out as an excellent choice. As a product of Google, it reigns supreme among ad networks, appreciated especially by beginners for its user-friendly interface.
What makes it particularly enticing for novices is the absence of a minimum traffic requirement, and the fact that joining the self-service platform comes at no cost.
Once you secure approval, initiating the display of ads is as simple as embedding a code snippet into your site. The Auto Ads feature adds to the convenience, allowing effortless automation of ad placement on your website or selective deactivation for specific pages.
Google AdSense presents a diverse range of ad formats, including display, text, in-feed, and in-article ads. Moreover, it offers personalization options such as contextual and behavioral targeting.
Despite its user-friendly appeal, navigating Google AdSense comes with its set of challenges. Obtaining approval can be a rigorous process due to Google’s stringent policies and guidelines. Additionally, even after approval, there is a lingering risk of account suspension for any policy violations.
To cash in your earnings, a minimum of $100 must be accumulated. While AdSense does offer a decent income, it falls short in terms of revenue potential compared to some alternative platforms.
Here’s a breakdown of the revenue share: 68% goes to site owners, while 32% goes to Google AdSense. The payment model is based on cost-per-click (CPC), and fortunately, there are no traffic requirements to contend with.
- Responsive Ads: AdSense ensures that your ad units automatically adjust to the user’s device, guaranteeing a seamless user experience.
- Insights and Analytics: Dive into detailed performance reports to glean valuable information on your ads’ effectiveness. Track metrics like views, clicks, revenue, and more to optimize your ad placements.
- Ad Review Center: Take control of the ads displayed on your site by utilizing the ad review center. This feature empowers you to review, approve, or deny specific ad categories, shaping the content that aligns with your platform’s ethos.
If you find yourself seeking an alternative to Google AdSense, look no further than Media.net. Powered by the dynamic duo of Yahoo! and Bing, this platform boasts an extensive pool of advertisers, making it an excellent choice to complement your AdSense endeavors.
Media.net has gained recognition for its emphasis on contextual ads. Unlike targeting ads based on user interests, it aligns with the content on your page, a strategy believed to enhance user engagement and clickthrough rates (CTRs). Picture this: If your blog explores serene beaches, Media.net might showcase ads for beach towels to your audience.
Much like AdSense, Media.net comes without a price tag and has no traffic requirements for joining. It offers a vast array of ads, optimized for seamless viewing on mobile devices.
One distinctive advantage of Media.net is its dedicated account managers, providing assistance with setup, issue troubleshooting, and optimization tips. This support sets it apart from many other platforms.
However, it’s essential to be aware of a few downsides, including a somewhat challenging approval process, a learning curve, a minimum payout threshold of $100, and limited payment options, confined to Payoneer or wire transfer.
It’s noteworthy that Media.net tends to shine brightest for sites in specific niches like health, tech, and finance. Sites outside these niches might experience comparatively lower earnings than on alternative platforms.
Here’s a snapshot of its features:
- Dynamic Optimization: Media.net optimizes between various ad types to maximize the impact of your impressions, tailoring them to your audience.
- Sizeless Ads: Publishers enjoy the flexibility to create ads with custom sizes and designs, ensuring a perfect fit for their site.
- “Sticky” Ads: The platform introduces ads that stay fixed to the screen as users scroll or in-content ads automatically woven into your content, enhancing viewability.
3. Raptive (Formerly AdThrive)
Formerly known as AdThrive, Raptive has solidified its position as one of the most coveted ad networks for content creators, particularly those navigating the realms of travel, lifestyle, food, and parenting.
Renowned for catalyzing substantial revenue growth through meticulous ad placement and performance optimization, Raptive distinguishes itself by prioritizing publishers. Creators can expect to receive payment irrespective of whether Raptive has received payment from its advertisers.
Among the advantages of Raptive are a dedicated support team catering to creators, flexible payment options, personalized site recommendations, the capability to host and monetize video content, and a user-friendly dashboard offering insights into earnings and impressions.
However, like any platform, there are certain drawbacks to consider.
Foremost, Raptive sets a high bar for entry, necessitating a minimum of 100,000 pageviews to qualify for its traffic requirements. This requirement can pose a challenge for newer or smaller creators.
Additionally, Raptive predominantly caters to English content, with a prerequisite for a majority of traffic originating from the US, CA, UK, AU, or NZ. Some reports indicate that Raptive might have a high ad density, potentially impacting the user experience, a factor creators need to weigh.
Breaking down the revenue share, 75% goes to site owners, while 25% goes to AdThrive. The payment model operates on a cost-per-click (CPC) basis, and the traffic requirement is set at 100,000 pageviews per month.
- Auto Ad Placement: Raptive’s algorithms ensure that ads are automatically positioned for optimal performance.
- Experimentation: Creators can engage in A/B ad testing, experimenting with various ad types and placements to find the most effective combination.
- Learning Resources: Raptive enriches creators with a range of expert webinars, tutorials, and articles, empowering them to enhance their earnings through insightful guidance.
Adcash stands out as a self-serve ad network designed to cater to the needs of both creators and advertisers, with a global reach that spans across diverse audiences.
Its reputation is anchored in the extensive array of traffic sources and ad formats it offers. From pop-unders, native ads, and interstitials to display ads, banners, push notifications, and beyond, Adcash provides a comprehensive toolkit.
This global perspective translates into a significant advantage for content creators, enabling them to connect with users in more than 196 countries – a testament to the platform’s adaptability.
Beyond global reach, Adcash boasts real-time performance reporting, optimization tools, and a noteworthy feature: anti-adblock technology. This technology empowers creators to continue generating revenue from visitors who employ ad-blocking tools.
Getting started with Adcash is relatively straightforward, and the platform supports multiple payment options.
However, like any platform, Adcash presents certain considerations. Some ad formats, such as interstitials or pop-unders, might impact the user experience negatively. The minimum payment threshold is set at $25 USD/EUR, and the CPM rates, while competitive, tend to be slightly lower than the market average.
Here are some key attributes of Adcash:
- Anti-Adblock Technology: A unique feature that allows ads to be shown to users, even when they are utilizing ad-block tools.
- High Fill Rate: Adcash maintains consistently high fill rates, ensuring creators can monetize a significant portion of their impressions.
- Live Reporting: The Publisher Platform Reports section in Adcash offers live reporting, allowing creators to track revenue in real-time as it accrues.
5. Amazon Publisher Services
Amazon Publisher Services offers publishers and content creators a comprehensive suite of tools designed to streamline the management of their ad inventories and optimize content monetization.
One of its major draws is the gateway it provides to Amazon’s expansive advertising ecosystem. Content creators can leverage cloud-based solutions such as the transparent ad marketplace, unified ad marketplace, and shopping insights. Additionally, creators gain access to Amazon’s substantial ad demand, enhancing their revenue potential.
However, it’s crucial to note that Amazon Publisher Services is tailored more towards established creators with significant website traffic, as it mandates a minimum of 5,000 unique daily visits. For newcomers, the platform might appear daunting due to its complexity, requiring time and technical know-how for effective implementation.
Breaking down the features:
- Transparent Ad Marketplace (TAM): Amazon’s server-side header bidding solution takes a cloud-based approach, enhancing speed and efficiency in ad transactions.
- Unified Ad Marketplace (UAM): This feature empowers creators to efficiently manage multiple demand partners, securing optimal bids for their inventory by consolidating demand from various sources.
- Shopping Insights: A distinctive attribute providing data insights based on shopping behaviors. This allows publishers to fine-tune their delivery strategies for maximum optimization.
While the revenue share and payment model details are undisclosed, Amazon Publisher Services operates on a cost-per-thousand-impressions (CPM) basis. The minimum traffic requirement is set at 5,000 unique daily visits, reinforcing its focus on creators with substantial online presence.
PropellerAds stands out as a welcoming ad network tailored for beginners, with a primary focus on display ads. Its appeal lies in its user-friendly interface and hassle-free onboarding process – no minimum traffic threshold required.
The platform boasts a global reach and an extensive advertiser pool, ensuring publishers from various regions can capitalize on its monetization options. PropellerAds offers a diverse range of ad formats, spanning popunders, push notifications, native banners, interstitials, and more.
Employing a combination of technology and manual reviews, PropellerAds diligently monitors the quality and content of ads. This proactive approach enables the removal of any unsafe or suspicious content, ensuring that the right ads reach the right audience.
Additional advantages of PropellerAds include a 100% monetized inventory, providing creators with flexible payment options, dedicated account manager assistance, and access to optimization tools.
However, there are certain considerations to bear in mind. PropellerAds has been noted for its lenient approach with advertisers, raising concerns about the potential for low-quality and intrusive ads. It’s also predominantly limited to display ads, which may be a relevant factor for some creators.
Here’s a closer look at the key features:
- Real-time Reporting: PropellerAds provides instant access to real-time reporting, allowing creators to track the performance of their ads with immediacy.
- Account Manager: While this benefit is more limited to larger publishers, those eligible can enjoy the assistance of a dedicated account manager to address concerns and optimize performance.
- Referral Program: PropellerAds introduces a referral program, enabling users to boost their earnings by referring fellow creators to the network.
Infolinks positions itself as an ad network with partnerships with some of the globe’s major advertisers, including Amazon, Microsoft, and eBay.
What sets this network apart is its specialization in cutting-edge, “intent-driven” banner ad formats meticulously designed to seamlessly integrate with website content, combating banner ad blindness. These distinct ad types go by names like InFold, InText, InTag, InFrame, and InScreen.
For creators seeking to diversify beyond traditional banner ads or explore alternatives, Infolinks presents itself as a compelling option. The absence of minimum traffic requirements means creators of all sizes can easily join, and the setup process is straightforward.
An interesting facet is that Infolinks allows you to use its ads on the same website alongside AdSense ads, offering the potential for a synergistic income boost.
However, like many ad networks, the potential impact on the user experience is a key consideration. While Infolinks’ non-traditional formats are less intrusive than large banners or pop-ups, they can still influence the overall user experience.
It’s important to note that Infolinks maintains a $50 minimum payment threshold, provides relatively limited customization options compared to some platforms, and may not match the earning potential of other networks.
Here are some key features:
- InText: This ad format scans content, highlighting relevant keywords. When users hover over these keywords, relevant ads are displayed.
- InFold: Overlay ads that often appear as a footer ad in relation to search intent.
- InTag: This ad type compiles your content’s most valuable keywords into a tag cloud on the page. Users can view relevant ads by hovering over a keyword.
- InFrame: Banner ads strategically placed in the margins of your website’s page, utilizing previously unused screen space.
The revenue share with Infolinks is 70% to publishers and 30% to Infolinks, and the payment model encompasses CPM, CPC, CPA, CPV, CPI, and Auction. Importantly, there are no traffic requirements for creators to get started.
Formerly recognized as The Blogger Network, Monumetric emerges as an enticing choice for publishers able to meet the minimum traffic benchmark of 10,000 pageviews per month.
Monumetric stands out for its extensive pool of advertisers, offering a lucrative earning potential coupled with a diverse array of ad formats. This flexibility allows you to tailor your ad choices to align seamlessly with your audience and content.
A notable advantage of Monumetric lies in its dynamic approach. Rather than presenting a single static ad per user session, it continually delivers different relevant units based on the audience, enhancing engagement.
Perhaps the standout feature is the personalized service extended by Monumetric to content creators, bloggers, and publishers leveraging its services. The Monumetric team offers support to comprehend your goals, collaborate on an ad revenue strategy, and even assist in its setup.
On the flip side, there are a few considerations. Beyond the minimum traffic prerequisites, there is a one-time setup fee of $99 to join Monumetrics, although this is waived for those surpassing 80,000 monthly pageviews. The payout schedule operates on a net-60-day basis, with a minimum payout threshold of $10. A critical point to note is that Monumetric exclusively supports WordPress and Blogger websites.
- Dynamic Ads: Monumetric’s approach involves dynamic ad placements tailored to the audience and content.
- Managed Ad Platform: The company distinguishes itself by offering hands-on support, managing the placement and oversight of your ads.
- Personal Support: Monumetric provides one-on-one attention through its dedicated team, aiding in the development of a customized ad strategy for your blog.
The revenue share with Monumetric can reach up to 70% for publishers, and the payment model operates on a CPM basis. Meeting the traffic requirement of 10,000 pageviews per month is essential to unlock the benefits of this platform.
Taboola stands out as a frontrunner in the realm of content recommendations and suggestions. Wondering what that entails?
Consider the last time you perused a blog or article, and at the bottom, you encountered a section suggesting other articles or videos from external sources. These are native ads, also known as sponsored links, often facilitated through an ad network like Taboola.
By enrolling in Taboola, publishers and creators grant the network the authority to present ads through native content suggestions, be they articles or videos.
The advantage of this advertising approach lies in its seamless integration with your site’s content, delivering a more organic user experience compared to disruptive banner ads.
Taboola empowers you to curate the types of content presented to your audience, offering an uncomplicated setup process and the potential for substantial earnings.
However, there’s a noteworthy drawback: Taboola imposes a significantly high minimum traffic requirement for enrollment. Qualification necessitates a minimum of 500,000 pageviews on your blog each month. If this threshold seems daunting, you’re not alone.
For those who meet the criteria, it’s important to be aware that some suggested content on your site may not align perfectly or could be perceived as spam.
- Native Ad Format: Taboola’s ads are meticulously crafted to blend seamlessly with your site’s content, minimizing disruption to your users.
- User-Friendly Interface: The platform offers a straightforward and easy-to-use interface, streamlining the process for publishers and creators.
- Content Discovery Engine: Taboola’s algorithm delves into the interests of your audience, curating content recommendations that align with those interests, ensuring the most relevant suggestions.
Revenue is shared on a 50-50 basis, with 50% going to publishers and the remaining 50% to Taboola. The payment model encompasses CPC and CPM. To unlock Taboola’s features, meeting the minimum traffic requirement of 500,000 pageviews per month is imperative.
If you’re eyeing the content recommendation space but find Taboola’s minimum traffic requirements a bit steep, consider exploring Revcontent!
With a more attainable minimum threshold of 50,000 pageviews per month, Revcontent emerges as a viable option for bloggers and content creators. While it may not match Taboola’s scale, Revcontent positions itself as a robust competitor, emphasizing performance and quality.
Revcontent distinguishes itself by offering publishers unique customization options, allowing them to ensure that native ads seamlessly align with their site’s design and branding. The network provides various placement options, ranging from the bottom of blog posts to newsletters and even video ads.
Known for its stringent approval process, Revcontent ensures a focus on quality content and sensible placements, enhancing the overall user experience.
However, there are considerations. Despite having a considerably lower minimum monthly traffic requirement, hitting the 50,000-pageviews threshold still requires a decent amount of traffic. The approval process, while maintaining quality, may pose challenges for some creators. While not as expansive as competitors like Taboola and Outbrain, Revcontent has a minimum payout of $100.
- Widget Customization: Revcontent allows publishers to customize the appearance of content on their site through widget customization.
- Content Recommendation Technology: The platform employs a proprietary algorithm to ensure that recommendations are both relevant and engaging for the audience.
- Viral Content Discovery: Recognize a piece of content with viral potential? Revcontent provides a feature allowing publishers to promote such content, maximizing revenue opportunities.
The revenue share with Revcontent leans heavily towards publishers, with an 80-20 split in favor of creators. The payment model encompasses CPC and CPM, and the minimum traffic requirement is set at 50,000 pageviews per month.
If you’re exploring options beyond the major players in the advertising realm, BidVertiser, a direct advertising network, might pique your interest.
Having launched in 2003, BidVertiser has expanded its reach to serve over 80,000 publishers and advertisers globally. It offers a diverse array of ad formats, including slider ads, popunder ads, and native ads.
What sets BidVertiser apart is that creators earn not only for clicks on ads but also receive additional income if those clicks lead to conversions or sales for the advertiser.
BidVertiser boasts a low payment threshold of $10, coupled with no minimum traffic requirements. Similar to Revcontent, it equips creators with tools for customizing the design of ad units, ensuring seamless integration with their websites and content. Additionally, it maintains a 100% fill rate.
An appealing aspect of BidVertiser is its automated approval process. Meeting the joining requirements results in instant approval, enabling creators to commence revenue generation promptly.
However, BidVertiser does have its drawbacks. The ads it serves may not always align perfectly with your audience, as it lacks contextual targeting, potentially leading to lower click-through rates. Creators are required to provide a list of preferred advertisers; otherwise, BidVertiser randomly selects them. While BidVertiser has a global reach, those with non-US traffic may not experience substantial earnings.
- Direct Advertising Platform: Facilitates direct connections between creators and advertisers, eliminating middlemen.
- Geo-Targeting: Enables publishers to segment their audience based on demographics and geography, presenting targeted ads for enhanced revenue generation.
- Transparency: BidVertiser provides creators with comprehensive details on incoming bids, winning bids, and revenue earned, ensuring transparency in the process.
BidVertiser’s revenue share remains undisclosed, and it operates on a CPC, CPM, and CPA payment model. Importantly, there are no traffic requirements for creators to join.
Mediavine stands out as a preferred ad network for numerous bloggers and content creators, celebrated for its commitment to optimizing earning potential while ensuring a positive user experience for audiences.
Let’s delve into the advantages.
Mediavine boasts faster ad delivery compared to many other ad networks, resulting in reduced wait times for users to view ads. Remarkably, Mediavine asserts that its ads load 200% faster than those of competitors.
Prioritizing user experience extends to other facets, including SEO-optimized website scripts and high-quality ad placements striking a balance between revenue generation and user experience.
Renowned for having some of the highest revenue per mille (RPM) in the industry, Mediavine features a substantial pool of top publishers and advertisers. It further fosters a robust community of creators who not only support one another but also engage in mutual learning and networking at conferences and events.
Similar to many ad networks, Mediavine does have a notable downside – its minimum traffic requirement. While not as daunting as some, a minimum of 50,000 sessions per month, predominantly from the USA, is necessary for qualification.
Additionally, Mediavine mandates 100% exclusivity from its publishers, meaning concurrent usage of other ad networks on the same site is prohibited.
- Strong Community: Publishers gain access to Mediavine’s dedicated Facebook group, facilitating networking with industry experts and fellow content creators.
- Dynamic Ad Placements: Mediavine prioritizes high-quality ads, emphasizing a superior user experience and enhanced viewability.
- Transparent Reporting: Both creators and advertisers benefit from detailed insights and analytics provided by Mediavine. The platform includes a dashboard showcasing top posts and RPMs.
Mediavine operates on a revenue share model, with 75% allocated to publishers and 25% to Mediavine. The payment model is based on CPM, and the traffic requirement for qualification is set at 50,000 monthly sessions.
Adsterra stands out as a reputable and dependable ad network, providing global coverage and serving as a compelling alternative to larger networks. It particularly caters to creators seeking extensive worldwide coverage and a diverse range of ad types.
Presenting itself as the premier ad network for publishers, Adsterra boasts a swift 10-minute approval process, a 100% fill rate, and a network comprising over 12,000 advertisers. Notably, there is no minimum traffic requirement for joining.
As a self-serve platform, Adsterra ensures ease of use, offering publishers a selection of ad types such as Popunder, social bar, in-page push, native banners, and standard banners. Beyond typical desktop and mobile website traffic, Adsterra allows monetization of social and mobile app traffic.
Adsterra brings additional advantages, including a three-level anti-fraud system for a secure experience, flexible payment options tailored to individual needs, and a Partner Care support system. The support system provides 24/7 multilingual chat assistance for users.
On the downside, Adsterra maintains a minimum payment threshold of $100, and CPM rates may vary based on location.
- Referral Program: Adsterra offers a referral program for publishers, enabling them to earn 5% of the revenue generated from anyone they refer.
- Strong Security: Employing a combination of in-house and third-party fraud detection tools, along with manual human reviews, Adsterra is committed to providing top-notch security.
- Customer Support: With 24/7 support available in multiple languages, Adsterra ensures assistance is readily accessible for its users.
Adsterra operates with an undisclosed revenue share model and supports various payment models, including CPC, CPM, CPI, CPA, and CPL. Notably, there are no traffic requirements for publishers to join.
14. Sovrn (Formerly VigLink)
Sovrn operates as a supply-side platform (SSP), providing a suite of tools and services to publishers and creators for effective content monetization. Its approach integrates traditional ad-serving techniques with advanced methods such as automated affiliate linking, powered by VigLink, a company acquired by Sovrn.
Creators utilizing Sovrn gain access to the Sovrn Data Collective, recognized as the “world’s largest publisher collective for deep consumer insights and enriched audience data.” Currently serving over 60,000 sites, Sovrn offers an array of services including an ad exchange, ad management, and more.
Setting up Sovrn’s tools and integrating them with your website is a straightforward process. Notably, Sovrn can automatically convert relevant links to affiliate links, even on older content. The platform provides customizable ad formats to suit your audience.
While Sovrn does not impose minimum traffic requirements for joining, it does have a minimum payout threshold set at $25 ($50 for wire transfer). The approval process is relatively strict, and payments follow a net-60 structure.
- Signal: Sovrn’s Signal feature empowers publishers to delve into their audience’s behavior, utilizing these insights to tailor their ad units.
- Automated Affiliate Conversion: Formerly known as VigLink, this feature enables the automatic conversion of standard links into affiliate links.
- Access to Sovrn Data Collective: Publishers can leverage data from Sovrn’s collective to understand which ads audiences are engaging with, aiding in revenue optimization.
Sovrn operates on a revenue share model, allocating 75% to publishers and retaining 25%. It supports various payment models, including CPM, CPC, and CPA. Sovrn does not impose traffic requirements for participation.
BuySellAds operates as an ad marketplace, facilitating revenue generation for publishers by directly connecting them with advertisers across websites, newsletters, and podcasts.
The process involves publishers listing their available ad inventory and CPM in a centralized marketplace. Advertisers can then submit bids for these ad placements, with creators reviewing and approving the proposed creative before the ads go live on their sites.
BuySellAds prides itself on offering an easy-to-use platform, featuring non-disruptive ad types, contextual brand sponsorships aligned with content, and a dependable payment schedule.
While the platform offers numerous advantages, there’s a slight learning curve for beginners. Additionally, there are minimum payment thresholds, ranging from $20 for PayPal to $500 for wire transfer.
- Range of Products: Creators can monetize various platforms, including websites, newsletters, and podcasts.
- Pricing Control: Publishers have the flexibility to set their own rates through BuySellAds, giving them more control over their earnings.
- Marketplace: BuySellAds’ marketplace facilitates direct connections between publishers and advertisers, ensuring that ad placements align with the goals of both parties.
BuySellAds operates on a revenue share model, allocating 75% to publishers and retaining 25%. The payment model is primarily based on CPM, and there are no specific traffic requirements for participation.
Ezoic stands out as a technology-driven ad network that harnesses the power of AI to optimize ad placements, enhance revenue, and maintain a positive user experience for publishers.
As a Google Certified Publishing Partner, Ezoic adheres to industry standards in serving ads on websites. It distinguishes itself by being the first in the industry to integrate AI and machine learning into its features. These technologies enable Ezoic to conduct tests on various ad placements, formats, and sizes, determining the most effective formula for publishers to maximize earnings while ensuring a superior user experience.
Ezoic provides creators with the flexibility to choose placeholders for ad locations or specify user experience metrics, such as page load time. The AI considers these preferences when deciding how to serve ads to the audience. Notably, there is no minimum traffic requirement for signing up, and Ezoic caters to global traffic, allowing creators to generate income from diverse sources.
However, it’s important to note that significant earnings may be more likely with US traffic, and there might be a learning curve as creators familiarize themselves with Ezoic’s tools. Temporary performance issues may also arise as Ezoic experiments with different layouts and placements to optimize results.
- Mediation: Ezoic’s Mediation feature enables publishers to integrate and manage multiple ad networks, including Google AdSense, alongside Ezoic. This allows networks to compete for ad inventory, ensuring creators receive the highest possible bids.
- Leap: An exclusive toolset, Leap provides creators with insights and tips to improve speed metrics, page load times, and Core Web Vitals scores.
- Humix: An innovative video tool that allows creators to share and display videos from other publishers on their own website.
Ezoic operates on a revenue share model, allocating 90% to publishers and retaining 10%. The payment model includes CPM and Earnings Per Thousand Visitors (EPMV). The traffic requirement for participation is 10,000 monthly visitors.
RevenueHits distinguishes itself as a self-service, performance-driven ad network tailored for creators with high-intent audiences likely to engage in actions like making purchases or signing up for advertisers.
The core of RevenueHits’ model revolves around a performance-based approach, particularly emphasizing cost per action (CPA). In this framework, creators earn income when users click an ad on their site and successfully complete an action, such as making a purchase or signing up for the advertiser’s service.
- CPA Model: Publishers receive payments based on user actions, such as sales, sign-ups, registrations, form fills, or other predefined activities.
- Ad Formats: RevenueHits offers a range of ad formats, including display banners, shadow box, floating banners, footer sticky, in-page push, and more.
- Referral Program: Creators can participate in a referral program, earning up to 10% of the earnings generated by publishers they refer for a year.
- No Minimum Traffic Requirement: RevenueHits welcomes publishers without a minimum traffic requirement, offering flexibility in participation.
- High Earnings Potential: With payouts of up to $50 per acquisition, there is a substantial earnings potential for creators, especially those with a high-intent audience.
- Payment Thresholds: Publishers should be aware of minimum payment thresholds, set at $20 for PayPal and $500 for wire transfers.
- Payment Model: RevenueHits operates on multiple payment models, including CPA, CPL (Cost Per Lead), and CPM (Cost Per Mille).
- Ad Quality and User Experience: While RevenueHits presents an opportunity for earnings, it may not have the same reputation for high-quality ads that prioritize a positive user experience compared to some other networks.
- Undisclosed Revenue Share: The specific revenue share percentage that RevenueHits retains is undisclosed.
In summary, RevenueHits offers an alternative approach with a focus on performance-driven models, making it suitable for creators seeking opportunities based on user actions. The absence of a minimum traffic requirement and the potential for high earnings based on user conversions contribute to the appeal of this ad network. However, creators should consider the trade-offs, including the minimum payment thresholds and potential variations in overall earnings.
Selecting the right ad network is a crucial decision for content creators, bloggers, and publishers. The process involves understanding the nuances, weighing the pros and cons of each platform, and grasping their diverse payment models and methods.
The key factor is ensuring that the chosen platform aligns with your content goals and values. Before making a decision, it’s essential to clarify what matters most to you – whether it’s the quality of ads, user experience, or payout frequency – and verify that these priorities are reflected in the ad network you opt for.
Whether you’re a novice blogger embarking on the journey to monetize your content or an experienced creator reevaluating your revenue strategy, this guide aims to assist you in making well-informed decisions to maximize your earnings.
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