Search Engine Glossary and Terms

How well do you know search engines? Do you know all the search engine lingo yet? Check out this glossary of search engine terms and get down with your cybergeek-self.

Basic Search Engine Terms

Search Engine: A program or collection of servers that searches a database of internet Web pages and returns pages with keywords that match your inquiry. The term "search engine" is often misused to describe directories. Directories, such as Yahoo, are not actually search engines.

Keyword: This is any word you punch into the search engine. If you're looking for info on the band Good Charlotte, then you'd punch their name into the search engine, right? Good Charlotte then becomes keywords. You will mostly likely end up with results from Web pages that have the name Good Charlotte in their content, meta tags or keywords.

Keyword Search: This is the specific word you type into a search engine to search. An example of a keyword would be dog or Boston Terrier, instead of common words like; the, have, and, or, etc.

Phrase Search: When you type two or more words into a search engine. For example, when you search for The Lord of the Rings trilogy, you've created a phrase search. You want all the words searched together as a phrase, you do not want just the word "Lord" or the word "Rings" searched separately.

Fuzzy Search: This is a search that will give you a list of sites, even though they contain only part of the word or misspelled words that you were looking for.

Stemming: This is when a search engine brings back Web sites that include the "stem" of a keyword. For example, if you search for skating, stemming is when you get back results for the word skate.

Stop Word: A word or words that are ignored by search engine searches because they are so commonly used that they aren't relevant. Examples of these types of words are: for, the, I.

  • Click here for more advanced search engine lingo.
Related Stories:
1 Comment

latest videos


What's Your Kinda Search? Vote!

  • I spend hours looking for music info.
  • I surf for free online games.
  • I look for homework help.
  • I look up stuff on my fave actor or band.

related stories

Search engines are great for finding info but can it find everything? What happens if you enter i...
Trying to figure out what peeps mean when they mention fuzzy searches, Booleans and spiders? Chec...
Don't know the first thing about using a search engine? Kidzworld put together some top search en...

Random in the forums

mayathepsychic posted in General:
banned for using pink italic text.
reply about 1 hour
NovaHex posted in Debating:
It's not unacceptable, it's just frowned upon. See, when you have a grown man drawing dirty pics of him and ponies in art sites, & then making extremely cringe-y pics about ponies, it's starts getting annoying. Sure, it's a somewhat creative show (which is why I liked it when I was 9), but other than that, it sucks. I've tried to understand why people love this show, but it seems no one will say anything other than, "it's a nice show" to me when I ask.
reply about 1 hour
SyedaHuma posted in General:
reply about 1 hour
NovaHex posted in Debating:
If you wanna go against the constitution, that's your thing dude.
reply about 1 hour
NovaHex posted in Food:
Basically every day for lunch, I'm stuck with a peanut butter sandwhich. Honestly, ANYTHING is better than that.
reply about 1 hour

play online games