Online Marketing Glossary

Commonly Used Online Marketing Terms

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Above the Fold – The part of the page you can see without scrolling down or over. The exact amount of space will vary by viewer because of screen settings.

AdWords – Google’s main advertising product and main source of revenue. AdWords offers pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, cost-per-thousand (CPM) advertising, and site-targeted advertising for text, banner, and rich-media ads. The Google AdWords program includes local, national, and international distribution.

ALT Text – Also known as alternative text or alt attribute. An HTML tag (ALT tag) used to provide images with a text description in case images are turned off in a web browser or do not load correctly. The images text description is usually visible while “hovering” over the image. This tag is also important for the web access of the visually impaired.

Analytics – Refers to collection of data about a website and its users. Analytics programs typically give performance data on clicks, time, pages viewed, website paths, and a variety of other information.

API – Acronym for Application Programming Interface. This is a program that advertisers create to manage their SEM campaigns, bypassing the search engines’ interfaces.

Backlinks – Links from other websites pointing to any particular page on your site. Search engines use backlinks to judge a site’s credibility; if a site links to you, it is in effect vouching for your authority on a particular subject. Therefore, link building is an incredibly important part of search engine optimization. How many links, the quality of the sites linking to you, and how they link to you all are important factors.

Banners – Picture advertisements placed on websites. Depending upon their size and shape, banner ads may also be referred to as buttons, inlines, leaderboards, skyscrapers, or other terms. When using specifics, banner ads refer to a 468×60 pixel size. Banner ads can be static pictures, animated, or interactive and can appear anywhere on a site – top, middle, bottom, or side.

Blacklist – Also called a “blocklist”. It is a list of IP addresses that an ISP blocks, preventing spam, viruses, and/or phishing emails from reaching the end user.

Blog – Short for web log, blogs are part journal, part website. Blogs are becoming increasingly popular as forums for people to express their views to a potentially unlimited audience. Personal recommendations from bloggers with large or dedicated followings can greatly help a business.

Click Through Rate (CTR) – # of clicks / # of impressions. Click through rate is a common internet marketing measurement tool for ad effectiveness. This rate tells you how many times people are actually clicking on your ad out of the number of times your ad is shown.

Content Management System – Content Management Systems (CMS) allow website owners to make text and picture changes to their websites without specialized programming knowledge of web design software. CMS examples include WordPress, Drupal, and Joomla.

Cost per Click (CPC) – A common way to pay for search engine and other types of online advertising, CPC means you pay a pre-determined amount each time someone clicks on your advertisement to visit your site. Also referred to as Pay Per Click (PPC) or Paid Search Marketing.

Customer Relationship Management (CRM) – Software solutions that help businesses manage customer relationships in an organized way. A CRM is a database containing detailed customer information that management and salespeople can reference in order to match customer needs with products, inform customers of service requirements, etc. An example of a CRM is Salesforce.

Domain – In general, a domain name represents an Internet Protocol (IP) resource, such as a website, a server computer hosting a website, a personal computer used to access the Internet, or any other service communicated via the Internet. Domain names serve as humanly-­memorable names for Internet participants, such as computers, networks, websites, and services.

Ecommerce – Conducting commercial transactions on the internet where goods, information, or services are bought and sold.

ESP – Email Service Providers send, receive, and store email for end users or organizations.

HTML– HyperText Markup Language, the programming language used in websites.

Hyperlink – A word, phrase, or image that you can click on to jump to a new document, webpage, or a new section within the current page.

IP Address – An Internet Protocol address (IP address) is a numerical label assigned to each device (e.g. computer, printer, server) participating in a computer network that uses the Internet Protocol for communication. An IP address serves two principal functions: host or network interface identification and location addressing.

ISP – An Internet Service Provider, which provides Internet access to end users.

Keyword– Words or a group of words that a person may search for in a search engine, such as Google or Bing. Keywords also refer to the terms you bid on through search engine marketing in trying to attract visitors to your website. Part of successful SEO is including keywords in your website copy.

Keyword Density – The number of times a keyword or keyword phrase is used in the body of a page. This is a percentage value determined by the number of words on the page, as opposed to the number of times the specific keyword appears within it.

Marketing Automation – The name given to software platforms designed for marketing departments and organizations to automate repetitive tasks. The use of a marketing automation platform is to streamline sales and marketing organizations by replacing high-touch, repetitive manual processes with automated solutions.

strong>Meta Descriptions – The blurb of text that appears when searchers see a page from your website on a search engine, like Google. This text should be optimized to encourage searchers to click on your search result.

Off-page Search Engine Optimization A type of search engine optimization that focuses on creating references and backlinks to a website to increase the traffic to and ranking of the target website. Complements on-page optimization.

On-page Search Engine Optimization Structuring the content of a page to maximize the value that search engines perceive as they crawl a website. This is generally done via meta descriptions, page titles, headings, and the use of specific keywords or phrases that the optimizer wishes to have a high search engine result (SERP) for. Complements off-page optimization.

Opt-in Email – Any commercial email or newsletter sent to people who have specifically signed up to receive it.

Organic Search Listings – Listings that search engines do not sell (unlike paid listings). Instead, sites appear solely because a search engine has deemed it editorially important for them to be included, regardless of payment.

Paid Search – Also referred to as Paid Placement, Pay Per Click (PPC), and sometimes Search Engine Marketing, paid search marketing allows advertisers to pay to be listed within the Search Engine Results Pages for specific keywords or phrases.

Quality Score – An estimate of how relevant your ads, keywords, and landing page are to a person seeing your ad. Having a high Quality Score means that your ad, keyword, and landing page are all relevant and useful to someone looking at your ad. Having a low Quality Score, on the other hand, means that your ads, keywords, and landing page probably aren’t as relevant and useful to someone looking at your ad.

Search Engines – Search engines are places people go to search for things on the internet, such as Google, Yahoo!, or Bing.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) – The process of improving the visibility of a website or a web page in a search engine’s organic search results.

Search Engine Results (SERPs) – Web pages displayed by any search engine for any given search query. They display both organic listings and Pay-Per-Click ads.

Social Media – Includes web-based and mobile based technologies which are used to turn communication into interactive dialogue between organizations, communities, and individuals. Examples include Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, etc.

Social Search – A type of web search that takes into account the Social Graph of the person initiating the search query. When applied to web search this Social Graph approach to relevance is in contrast to established algorithmic or machine-based approaches where relevance is determined by analyzing the text of each document or the link structure of the documents. Search results produced by social search engine give more visibility to content created or touched by users in the Social Graph.

Spam – Any bulk email sent for commercial purposes without permission from the receiver.

Subscriber – A person who opts-in to your email list is a “subscriber”.

Whitelist – A whitelist is a list of email addresses, domains, and/or IP addresses deemed to be trustworthy, and so will always be allowed. Whitelists can be created by ISPs, ESPs, email clients, and end users. A whitelist is termed “exclusive” when set so that only email from those on the whitelist will get through. This setting, when used, is generally set by end users, not ISPs or ESPs.