Small Business glossary: S

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sales reports
With a Merchant Solutions plan, you can glean valuable business insight from our sales reports, where you can view your order totals, number of items sold, revenue generated, average order size, inventory levels, and more. With these reports, you can see how your business is performing, then fine-tune your marketing strategy based on this analysis. Learn more in our "Merchant Solutions reports" article.

search directory
A search directory, such as Yahoo Pages, is a catalog of web sites organized by category to allow users to easily browse for the information they need. Unlike search engines, which locate and display relevant information based on a defined formula using an automated software program, search directories are organized by real people who discover new sites and relevant information by exploring the Web themselves and reviewing email submissions. A successful submission to a search directory can help bring traffic to your web site.

search engine
A search engine, such as Google, is an online tool that helps users of the World Wide Web find the sites and information they're looking for. Most search engines use automated programs (sometimes called spiders) to look for relevant information based on keywords entered by the user, and search not only web sites' content but also their web addresses, number of pages, and links. Search engines are one of the top ways users can find your web site or online store. Learn how to promote your site in our "List your site in search engines" article.

search reports
With a Merchant Standard or Merchant Professional plan, you can use our two search reports. The Searches tool shows you what your visitors have searched for, which can help you understand your customers, which products are popular, and where your site can improve. Shopping Searches displays weekly information about the most popular searches on Yahoo Shopping. Though this may not directly relate to your store, you can use this information to inform how you select new products. Learn more in our "Overview of search reports" article.

A server is a computer attached to a network whose function is to provide (or serve up) data or other resources to client computers. A web server, for example, sends web pages to the Internet when asked for them by a browser. Other kinds of servers you might encounter are email servers (which manage email distribution), application servers (computers that run applications used by other computers), and workgroup servers (which allow multiple users to share data).

server extension
A server extension is a program that adds functionality to a server. Server extensions are essential to the performance of certain software: For example, activating Microsoft FrontPage for use with your Web Hosting plan installs server extensions in your web site directory that are required to publish with this third-party tool. Learn more in our "Publish your site in FrontPage" article.

service announcements
Whenever we make changes to our system, improve your Small Business tools, or become aware of any other issue that might affect your site, we want you to be the first to know. We'll notify you immediately by posting a "New Service Announcement" alert at the top of your Web Hosting, Store, or Email Control Panels. Just click the link for more information.

shopping cart
If you have a Merchant Solutions plan, we automatically create a shopping cart and customer checkout pages for your store. You can customize these pages to make them visually consistent with your web site design, as well as add custom messages, fields, gift wrapping choices, cross-sell recommendations, multiple payment options, and more. You can also save customers' shopping cart contents for two weeks, giving them multiple opportunities to complete their purchase. Learn more in our "Shopping cart" article.

A signature is a personalized footer attached to the end of an outgoing email message. With Business Email's Signature feature, you can automatically add personal contact information, a quote or favorite saying, or anything you'd like at the end of your outgoing email messages. (Your signature will be attached only to messages you send using the Yahoo interface. To learn how to add an email signature in your own email program, please refer to your client's help files.) Learn how to add or edit an email signature.

Simple Promotional Email
The Simple Promotional Email tool is an easy way to start marketing your Yahoo Store, allowing you to announce your grand opening to friends and family, or to advertise special promotions or new products. Before you can use Simple Promotional Email, your store must be open for business. Learn more in our "Get Started with promotional email" article.

single-use coupons
Single-use coupons are coupons that may be redeemed one time only. Once a coupon has been redeemed, the coupon code will no longer be accepted during checkout. Single-use coupons are created in series, and each series may contain a maximum of 50,000 single-use coupon instances. For example, if you'd like to target a specific customer segment with the same offer, you may wish to create these single-use coupons as a series, to easier keep track of the coupons created with this offer, orders associated with this series, conversion rate, and revenue. Learn more about single-use coupons.

Site Statistics
Yahoo Web Hosting's Site Statistics feature allows you to view reports on your site traffic and performance. Available reports include a summary of page views over the last week or month; your total daily page views; profiles of your site visitors, such as which browsers or operating systems they use; and referrer information. You can use this information to make decisions about how to improve your site. Learn more in our "Overview of Site Statistics" article.

Our most comprehensive site building tool, Yahoo SiteBuilder gives you the most control over your web site. Designed for beginners but with the features and flexibility that intermediate to advanced users want, SiteBuilder offers more than 380 fully customizable designs, support for audio and video, email forms, and more. Plus SiteBuilder is also the only Yahoo Web Hosting tool compatible with Yahoo Merchant Solutions. Learn more in our "SiteBuilder guide" article.

SMTP (Simple Mail Transfer Protocol) is a protocol used for sending email on the Internet. Most email programs use SMTP to send messages from one computer to another; the messages can then be retrieved with an email program using POP. You can think of POP and SMTP as two sides of the same email coin: SMTP sends your email; POP retrieves it. (This is why you need to specify both the POP and SMTP settings when you set up your email software.) Learn more in our "Get started with POP and SMTP article.

Snapshot Backups
Snapshot Backups provide a convenient, automatic way to save copies of your web site files without using valuable disk space. When you create your site, you automatically activate Snapshot Backups, which stores a copy, or takes a "snapshot," of your web site files every four hours, nightly, and weekly, recording changes to your files. These backups can prove useful if you need to restore a lost or damaged file, or even if you'd just like to review changes made to your site. Learn more in our "Restoring from Snapshot Backups" article.

Spam is any message or posting, regardless of its content, that is sent to multiple recipients who have not specifically requested the message. Spam can also be multiple postings of the same message to newsgroups or list servers that aren't related to the topic of the message. With Business Email, we automatically filter emails we detect as spam into your Spam or Bulk folder.

SSH (Secure Shell)
SSH refers to both an application and a protocol for accessing networked computers securely. One can use an SSH client (a computer program) to sign in to and complete tasks on another computer in the network, while the SSH protocol — used alone or in combination with other protocols — is often used when the secure transmission of data is required, such as in sending files or remotely accessing another computer. Yahoo does not currently support SSH access; however, we hope to offer this feature with your Web Hosting or Merchant Solutions plan in the future.

SSI (Server Side Includes)
SSI is a scripting language commonly used in web sites to display the contents of one page in another. You might use SSI to include contact information at the bottom of every page of your site, for example. Although SSI directives can be added to HTML pages, they are not supported by all servers. For information on using SSI with your plan, we recommend visiting the site.

SSL (Secure Sockets Layer)
SSL is an accepted standard protocol for transferring information securely across the Internet. It encrypts data passed between the server and the browser, ensuring that unauthorized parties cannot interpret sensitive, confidential, or personal information such as phone numbers and addresses. If you have a Web Hosting plan, you can use Yahoo's SSL secure server to protect data passing through your web site, such as responses collected through email forms. Merchant Solutions employs SSL to protect customers' billing and shipping information submitted through your checkout pages. Learn more in our "What is SSL and how it works" article.

starter web page
When you sign up for Yahoo Web Hosting, we automatically create a placeholder web page for you at your web address (such as Your visitors will see this default "Under Construction" page when they go to your web address until you replace it. The starter web page feature allows you to customize your placeholder page by displaying your name, contact information, and some details about your business in a professional-looking, predesigned template. Your starter web page establishes a presence at your domain until you are ready to build a more comprehensive, business-class web site. Learn more in our "What is a starter web page" article.

Starter Web Page Wizard
The Starter Web Page Wizard allows you to build a single placeholder web page using limited text and our predesigned template. You may display some basic company or personal information but not add graphics, HTML code, or other design features. With the Starter Web Page Wizard, you can create your starter web page quickly to establish a web presence until you're ready to build a full-featured, customized web site. Learn how to create your own starter page.

If you have a Merchant Solutions plan, you can use our Statistics to keep tabs on your sales and traffic. Available statistics include:

  • Sales Reports showing the number of items sold, orders, revenue, inventory levels, and more.
  • Page View Reports listing which pages people visit on your site and how much they purchased from those pages.
  • Referring URL Reports show how people get to your site and the sales attributable to each referring site.
  • The Repeat Customer Detector groups orders placed by the same customer.

Merchant Standard and Merchant Professional customers also receive search-related statistics, as well as Click Trail Reports that show customers' paths through their sites. Learn more.

When you set up an email address for someone in Business Mail, that person's address will change from one state (or status) to another. If the user's status is active, the user has accepted your invitation and started using the email address; if the status is pending, the user hasn't activated the address. If the status is pending, make sure the person received your invitation (did you send it to the correct address?), and if it did arrive, remind the user to get started! You can check a user's activation status from your Email Control Panel.

status update emails
If you have a Merchant Solutions plan, we'll automatically send status update emails to your customers as their orders are processed and shipped. These updates help keep customers informed, which means they'll be less likely to contact you with questions about the status of their order. Learn more in our "Set up status update email" article.

Store Editor
The Store Editor is a free store-building tool for those with limited experience creating web pages or who want to get a small store up-and-running quickly. With the Store Editor, site building is as easy as clicking through a web page, completing online forms, and choosing a design for your site. If you're familiar with HTML, you can also create customized templates using RTML. Learn how to update your databse to Store Editor.

Store Tags
Store Tags are pieces of HTML code that you can insert into your pages, which will dynamically access your Catalog Manager data and display it on your site. Any time you change an item in your Catalog Manager, the information will be automatically updated wherever you've used Store Tags to display the product on your site. After you've signed up for a Yahoo Merchant Solutions account, you can access the Store Tag Hub, which includes instructions on using Store Tags, access to all of your Store Tag codes, and product merchandising page layouts that you can use for your site. Learn more about store tags.

See directory.

A subdomain, also known as a "third-level" domain, is a great way to create memorable web addresses for various areas of your web site. For instance, Yahoo uses subdomains such as and to distinguish its services. Yahoo Web Hosting makes it easy to create subdomains. Learn more in our "What is a subdomain" article.

A subweb is a subdirectory of a web site created with FrontPage that behaves just like a complete web site — essentially a web site within a web site. Because you can assign each subweb a different set of authors and permissions, subwebs can be a convenient way to restrict access to certain parts of your site. 

A symlink, or "symbolic link," is a type of entry that can be used in Unix-based computer systems to refer to another file or directory. The symlink is an alias for the other file or directory, and can in some cases function as a shortcut to that element. Symlinks are sometimes used to help navigate complicated file systems or to trick restrictive software applications into interpreting files a certain way. Yahoo does not support the use of symlinks on members' sites.

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