Why Technical English

Why I busy myself with keywords for Internet search engines

June 23, 2012

Composed by Galina Vitkova

Dear friends of Technical English,

I have three blogs, all of them are related to Technical English and all of them are not popular with search engines. So I decided to study the topic carefully to make search engines to catch sight of my blogs and send more visitors to them. Concurrently I desired to prepare an interesting technical text apposite for studying Technical English and discussing the issue.

First, I have tried to sum up current technical terms to make them quite clear for me and possible visitors of my blogs. Unfortunately I met some terms, which I could not find explanation for.

Further, I have again looked through how search engines work to be better at getting my blogs to the top of search results. Finally, I have chosen from studied materials those recommended steps that I am able to accomplish in order to put keyword in right places. I wonder if my new knowledge will attract more visitors to this post.


English: The three biggest web search engines

English: The three biggest web search engines (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Keywords basic terminology

A keyword is a word used to make a search. Elsewhere, instead of a keyword a query or a tag is used too. Of the billions of made searches you need to decide which ones you want your site to come top of the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) for.

A keyphrase is a collection of words used to make a search (an equivalent to a keyword).

A target keyword is such a keyword which will bring your site to the top of a SERP. There are some online tools that can help you find and choose your target keywords.

A head keyword carries the highest volume of search engine visits. It is also called a primary keyword.

The long tail of keywords can be created by different combinations of head keywords and the number of such combinations is almost endless. The more numerous is your tail of keywords, the more is a number of your site visits by search engines. Furthermore, the long tail offers more potential for profit than the head ones.

A keyword niche is a group of keywords containing a single ‘seed’ keyword. So we target groups of keywords, i.e. a keyword niche

A primary keyword is a keyword that has the highest volume of search engine visits (it is searched for more frequently) and is the head keyword. It is the most popular keyword that has the most potential to attract traffic.

A secondary keyword has lower volumes (it is searched for less often).

Usually you choose one primary keyword, but you might also pick two or more secondary keywords.

How search engines work

Understanding how search engine work helps getting your website to the top of the SERPs. See e.g. the video on http://www.google.com/competition/howgooglesearchworks.html about how Google performs.

Every day Google answers more than one billion questions from people around the globe in 181 countries and 146 languages. 15% of the everyday searches have not been seen before.

Let´s drop a look at main steps of Google search activities.

Crawling. Google visits billions of website pages and finds more and more pages by following (crawling) the links it uncovers on previous billions of pages.

Indexing. When visiting website pages Google stores the information about every found page in the index. Google’s index is like a huge filing system for all the pages it finds.

English: This image shows you various ways of ...

Matching. When a searcher starts searching for anything, for any item Google searches its index for all the pages containing the item. Typically, Google will find thousands, even millions, of matches for a search.

Ranking. Google uses over 200 factors to decide what order to display the matching pages. Each matching page is scored for each of the 200-plus factors and the scores totaled. The total score is then used to rank the matching pages and decide the order the results are presented on the SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages) for (highest at the top).

Ranking factors include (for each page) for instance:

  • How often the keyword is used on the page
  • Is the page from a high quality website, or is it low quality or spam?
  • How many links from other pages and sites point to the page (and how important are those links)?
  • The percentage of searchers that click through (clickthrough rate – CTR) to each listed page.
  • The percentage of searchers that, once they have clicked through to a page, come straight back to the search results.
  • How much (and by whom) a page is referenced on social sites like Facebook, Twitter and Google+.

The detailed guidance enlightenment explanation of the issue is given in http://www.wordtracker.com/academy/seo-made-simple.

PS: Find additional information about search engines in Search engine – essential information, December 29, 2011; Search Engines The presentation at the SKYPE conversation conference on 27th August 2008.

If you want keywords to bring you the highest effectiveness, put them in appropriate places

And now when you have chosen and set all keywords recommended by professionals you should put the keywords in appropriate places. There are many recommendations related to the issue. From what I have studied trying to attract search engines to my blogs I have learned it is mainly necessary to:

  • Include the keyword that you determined as a primary in the title of your writing (preferably near the beginning).
  • Describe in the description tag using both the primary and secondary keywords what the article or web page or a post is about.
  • Write the first paragraph of your article or web page as an overall summary including both primary and secondary keywords.
  • Map out the structure of the article, writing a heading and subheading that each contains keywords. Among others, it focuses your mind on what you really want to say, and the quality of your writing will improve.

mappa_blog (Photo credit: francescopozzi)










Search engine – essential information

December 29, 2011
Composed by Galina Vitkova using Wikipedia

A search engine usually refers to searching for information on the Web. Other kinds of the search engine are enterprise search engines, which search on intranets, personal search engines, and mobile search engines. Different selection and relevance criteria may apply in different environments, or for different uses.

Diagram of the search engine concept (en)

Web search engines operate in the following order: 1) Web crawling, 2) Indexing, 3) Searching. Search engines store information about a large number of web pages, which they look up in the Web itself. These pages are retrieved by a Web crawler (sometimes also known as a spider). It is

Architecture of a Web crawler.

 an automated Web browser which follows every link it sees. The contents of each page are then analyzed to determine how it should be indexed. Data about web pages are stored in an index database. Some search engines, such as Google, store all or part of the source page (referred to as a cache) as well as information about the web pages. Other engines, such as AltaVista, store every word of every page they find. This cached page always holds the actual search text since it is the one that was actually indexed. Search engines use regularly updated indexes to operate quickly and efficiently.

When a user makes a query, commonly by giving key words, the search engine looks up the index and provides a listing of best-matching web pages according to its criteria. Usually the listing comprises a short summary containing the document title and sometimes parts of the text. Most search engines support the use of the Boolean terms AND, OR and NOT to further specify the search query. The listing is often sorted with respect to some measure of relevance of the results. An advanced feature is proximity search, which allows users to define the distance between key words.

Most Web search engines are commercial ventures supported by advertising revenue. As a result, some of the engines employ the controversial practice of allowing advertisers to pay money to have their listings ranked higher in search outcomes. The vast majority of search engines running by private companies use proprietary algorithms and closed databases, though a few of them are open sources.

Nowadays the most popular search engines are as follows:

Google. Around 2001, the Google search engine rose to prominence. Its success was based in part on the concept of link popularity and PageRank. Further it utilizes more than 150 criteria to determine relevancy. Google is currently the most of all used search engine.

Baidu. Due to the difference between Ideographic and Alphabet writing system, the Chinese search market didn’t boom until the introduction of Baidu in 2000. Since then, neither Google, Yahoo nor Microsoft could come to the top like in other part of the world. The reason may be the media control policy of the Chinese government, which requires any network media to filter any possible sensitive information out from their web pages.

Yahoo! Search. Only since 2004, Yahoo! Search has become an original web crawler-based search engine, with a reinvented crawler called Yahoo! Slurp. Its new search engine results were included in all of Yahoo! sites that had a web search function. It also started to sell its search engine results to other companies, to show on their web sites.

After the boom success of key word search engines, such as Google and Yahoo! search, a new type of a search engine, a meta search engine, appears. In general, the meta search engine is not a search engine. Technically, it is a search engine based on search engines. A typical meta search engine accepts user queries the same as that of traditional search engines. But instead of searching key words in its own database, it sends those queries to other non-meta search engines. Then based on the search results returned by several non-meta search engines, it selects the best ones (according on different algorithms), showing back to users. Examples of those meta search engines are Dog Pile (http://www.dogpile.com/) and All in One News (http://www.allinonenews.com/About Allinonenews).

English: Meta search engine Français : metamoteur

PS: The text is drawn up within an upcoming e-book titled Internet English (see Number 33 – WWW, Part 1 / August 2011 – Editorial). G. Vitkova


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