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Business 101: What Does SEO, SEM, SERP, Backlink, PPC, and Sitemap Mean?

Today, I have type of post that we haven’t had for you in awhile.

It’s a Business 101 post. What is that?

There are some basics about business that most business owners are afraid to admit that they really don’t know or understand.

Well, here at BBH we’re going to give you the answers to the questions you might have been too embarrassed to ask.

Today I have terms that are small business tax terms.

Here are the 6 terms for today:

search engine optimization, seo

1. What does SEO mean? Short for search engine optimization, the process of increasing the number of visitors to a Web site by achieving high rank in the search results of a search engine. The higher a Web site ranks in the results of a search, the greater the chance that users will visit the site. It is common practice for Internet users to not click past the first few pages of search results, therefore high rank in SERPs is essential for obtaining traffic for a site. SEO helps to ensure that a site is accessible to a search engine and improves the chances that the site will be indexed and favorably ranked by the search engine. (From

2. What does SEM mean? Stands for Search Engine Marketing, and as the name implies it involves marketing services or products via search engines. SEM is divided into two main pillars: SEO and PPC. SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization, and it is the practice of optimizing websites to make their pages appear in the organic search results. PPC stands for Pay-Per-Click, and it is the practice of purchasing clicks from search engines. The clicks come from sponsored listings in the search results. (From

3. What does SERP mean? SERP is short for “Search Engine Ranking Page” – The page that you are sent to after you run a query in a search engine. It typically has 10 results on it, but this may vary depending on the query and search engine in question. (From

4. What is a Backlink? Also called inlink or simply link, it is an hyperlink on another website pointing back to your own website. Backlinks are important for SEO because they affect directly the PageRank of any web page, influencing its search rankings. (From

5. What does PPC mean? PPC stands for “Pay Per Click” – a contextual advertisement scheme where advertisers pay add agencies (such as Google) whenever a user clicks on their add. Adwords is an example of PPC advertising. (From

6. What is a Sitemap? – A special document created by a webmaster or a piece of software that provides a map of all the pages on a website to make it easier for a search engine to index that website. (From

Photo from Danard Vincente




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About Scott Aughtmon (1872 Articles)
I’m author of the book 51 Content Marketing Hacks. I am also a regular contributor to and I am the person behind the popular infographic 21 Types of Content We Crave. I’m a business strategist, consultant, content creation specialist, and speaker. I’ve been studying effective marketing and business methods (both online and offline) since 1999. ===> If you would like to see ways that we could work together, then please click here to learn more.