Trying to understand the terms used in digital marketing is like learning a whole new language. Just when you think you’ve got to grips with the basics something new comes along and throws you right back to the start. Or, what usually happens to me, your mind goes a complete blank!
This glossary is designed to be a reference to help you master the language of digital marketing.
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If you want to improve your marketing efforts, A/B testing can be very useful. This is the process of comparing two variations of the same item to find out which one performs best. The variations can be:
change in copy,
whatever you want to try out.
Above the Fold
In website terms, ‘above the fold’ is the content a website visitor sees before scrolling down on a page It’s particularly useful to be conscious of this when you create landing pages for inbound marketing.
It originates from the headlines you’d see on a newspaper when it was folded.
Ad servers are automated servers that help you request, bid on, and place your ads on websites, as well as monitor the progress of each campaign. For advertisers handling billions of data per day, ad servers make it easy to select the ads with the most potential and place them on appropriate websites.
This is a type of performance-based marketing where a brand rewards affiliate partners for each website visitor or customer brought by the affiliate’s own advertising efforts. Affiliates typically receive discounts or payments based on the number of visitors or customers they bring.
API (Application Program Interface)
An API is a way of getting specific information from other applications or websites, which you can use for a variety of different needs. It is similar to a set of tools used for building a software application. The better the tools, the easier it is to make a good product. In the case of an API, the better the API, the easier it is to develop a program.
Is serving tailored advertising to your ideal/target audiences by utilising their previous web browsing behaviour/history in order to drive more engagement.
Bottom of the Funnel
Bottom of the funnel is the last stage in the buying process when your prospects are close to becoming new customers. Messages at this stage usually include a product offer, a product demo, or a free consultation.
If you click on a random link you often end up on a website that you are not interested in anyway. Even though you immediately leave that website, your visit still counts in that website’s analytics. This is what is known as the bounce rate. In other words, bounce rate is the percentage of visitors who have landed on your website but have not stayed long or clicked on other pages.
This is the metric that comes in handy when you want to find out how many customers your business retains and at what value. To find out your churn rate, divide the number of customers you lose within a specific timeframe to the total number you had at the beginning of that period.
The objective of closed-loop marketing is to be able to tie in your marketing efforts to the bottom-line impact as it’s important to find out how your inbound marketing is driving quantifiable business growth.
Cloud computing allows its users to store, manage, and transfer data using host servers. There are several types of clouds with different purpose and benefits.
CMP (Cloud Management Platform)
CMP is a group of products that can be used to manage and monitor cloud computing resources either in private, public, or multi-cloud models.
This is defined as a series of actions by which an anonymous website visitor becomes a known lead. Typical steps in your conversion path may be a call-to-action, a lead capture form, and a thank you page.
A cookie is a unique value stored on your browser (in the form of a small file cookie.txt) assigned by websites you visit. The purpose of a cookie is to keep track of where the user is and help create customised web pages or save login information.
CPA (Cost Per Acquisition)
In advertising, CPA (short for ‘Cost Per Acquisition’ or ‘Cost Per Action’) measures the cost that you are willing to pay to get a goal conversion. It is similar to CPC (Cost Per Click) and CPM (Cost Per Mile).
CPM (Cost Per Mille) / CPT (Cost Per Thousand)
When your ad loads and displays for a user, it counts as one impression. Cost Per Mille (CPM), also called Cost Per Thousand (CPT), is used for a thousand impressions on one website. It is similar to CPC (Cost Per Click) and CPA (Cost Per Action).
CR (Conversion Rate)
The percentage rate gathering the online audiences that followed and completed the campaign action that you wanted. (e.g: signing up to your service or mailing list or buying your product). A good CR means that your marketing is effective.
CRM (Customer Relationship Management)
CRM is the approach of managing and analysing your brand’s relationship with potential and existing customers. Digital marketers usually use a CRM system to support this strategy – to streamline processes and increase profitability.
CRO (Conversion Rate Optimisation)
CRO is short for Conversion Rate Optimization. If your conversion rate is not impressive, then it is time to take action and employ conversion rate optimization methods. Because good CR is synonymous with a high number of conversions that in turn, reflects a good website and SoMe performance. CRO consists of numerous techniques and testing methods –
CSS (Cascading Style Sheets)
CSS stands for Cascading Style Sheets with an emphasis placed on “Style.” While HTML is used to structure a web document (defining things like headlines and paragraphs, and allowing you to embed images, video, and other media), CSS comes through and specifies your document’s style—page layouts, colours, and fonts are all determined with CSS. Think of HTML as the foundation and CSS as the aesthetic choices.
CTA (Call To Action)
A good choice of words and a persuasive CTA are essential. A CTA is a message that appeals to potential customers, and it is often the last push to drive a specific action such as buying a product, subscribing to a newsletter or signing up for free information (a lead magnet).
CTR (Click-Through Rate)
A CTR shows you how many people actually see your ads and how many clicked on them. CTR is simply the percentage of people that saw your ad and felt compelled enough to click it. You can calculate your CTR score by dividing the total number of Clicks to the total number of Impressions.
DAM (Digital Asset Management)
When you’re handling many digital files on a daily basis, DAM may come in handy. This process helps you store and categorise your digital assets more easily so that you can access them at any time from one place.
By visually representing specific information to make it easier to understand. Dashboards and infographics are common examples of visualisations.
DoubleClick is a subsidiary of Google which develops and provides Internet ad serving services. Its clients include agencies, marketers, and publishers who serve businesses such as Microsoft, General Motors, Coca-Cola, L’Oréal, Apple, Visa, Nike, Carlsberg, and many others.
At the beginning of 2018, Google announced the merge of DoubleClick and Google Analytics 360 Suite into a new Google Marketing Platform and Google Ad Manager.
Drip campaigns or drip emails are a lead nurturing method that uses automated tailored content and triggers that are ‘dripped’ at a specific time. The goal is to drive a specific action (e.g. a sale).
Dynamic content is the process of displaying different messaging on your website or in your online advertising (e.g. Facebook’s Dynamic Ads) based on the information you have about your target audience.
This is a valuable metric used to describe the amount of social media interaction a post, ad, or campaign has. This is usually measured based on interactions like Comments, Shares, and Like.
This is a method for analytics and social (e.g. using Facebook’s pixel) that helps you track your customers’ journey every step of the way by analysing certain behaviours such as forms filled, cart additions, or newsletter sign-ups.
This is the type of content that is always relevant to your audiences, no matter when they read it. Compared to time-sensitive content, such as seasonal articles or campaigns, evergreen content continues to provide value way beyond its original publish date.
Facebook is a social networking website where users can post comments, share photographs and post links to news or other interesting content on the web, chat live, and watch short-form video. Shared content can be made publicly accessible, or it can be shared only among a select group of friends or family, or with a single person.
Facebook’s success can be attributed to its ability to appeal to both people and businesses and its ability to interact with sites around the web by providing a single login that works across multiple sites.
It’s an effective marketing channel for businesses as it has 2.5 billion users worldwide and it’s free to start a business page.
Facebook ads are paid messages from businesses that are written in their voice and help reach the people who matter most to them.
It can be a very cost-effective form of advertising as you can target audiences by location, demographics and interests.
A friction element describes anything that causes your website visitors or campaign to stop taking the desired action. On a website, it can be a distracting colour or a confusing message.
FTP (File Transfer Protocol)
FTP or File Transfer Protocol is a network protocol that has been standardised to make transferring computer files between a client (user) and a server easier.
Geo targeting is where content is delivered to audiences based on their geographic locations. It’s effectively used in paid search, such as Facebook advertising, or a social media campaign. The location can be a country, state, city and you can define a radius around a set point.
Google AdWords is an online advertising service made by Google where customers can create and manage ads within the Google universe (on Google Search, Display, YouTube, etc.). If you want to advertise your service or product through AdWords, check out this handy guide from Neil Patel.
Google provides this free analytics service and it helps you track, analyse and measure all types of revenues and costs of your website, advertising campaigns, videos and social channels.
In email marketing, hard bounces are simply emails that weren’t delivered. This can happen for different reasons: the recipient email address could be wrong or inactive, the recipient might have blocked you or reported your emails as spam.
Hashtags are a way for you and your readers to interact with each other on social media and have conversations about a particular piece of content. They tie public conversations on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn together into a single stream, which users can find by searching for a hashtag, clicking on one, or using a third-party monitoring tool.
The hashtags themselves are simply a keyword phrase, spelt out without spaces, with a pound sign (#) in front of it — like #SocialMedia and #DigitalMarketing. You can put these hashtags anywhere in your social media posts.
Instagram is a free, online photo-sharing application and social network platform that was acquired by Facebook in 2012.
Instagram allows users to edit and upload photos and short videos through a mobile app. Users can add a caption to each of their posts and use hashtags and location-based geotags to index these posts and make them searchable by other users within the app. Each post by a user appears on their followers’ Instagram feeds and can also be viewed by the public when tagged using hashtags or geotags. Users also have the option of making their profile private so that only their followers can view their posts.
As with other social networking platforms, Instagram users can like, comment on and bookmark others’ posts, as well as send private messages to their friends via the Instagram Direct feature.
Companies with business accounts have access to free engagement and impression metrics. According to Instagram’s website, more than 1 million advertisers worldwide use Instagram to share their stories and drive business results. Additionally, 60% of people say they discover new products through the app.
Interactive content is the type of online content that engages audiences in a certain activity. In return, participants get real-time and relevant results. Think of a survey, a quiz or an interactive infographic that captures your attention right from the start.
This can be information such as interactive maps, animated 2D/3D graphics, scrolling videos jukeboxes. It is the third layer of standard web languages, the other two of which are HTML and CSS which you’ll find in this Glossary.
KPI (Key Performance Indicator)
A KPI is a type of performance measurement used to demonstrate how effectively a marketing project, company, or employee is achieving key business objectives. Common KPIs are cost reduction, revenue improvement, or increased customer satisfaction.
In marketing and sales, lead generation is the process of attracting and converting new potential customers in order to drive future sales. For many companies, this is a crucial stage of their sales and marketing strategy.
Lead nurturing is a process used in inbound marketing for pushing leads further in the buying lifecycle by targeting them with contextually-relevant content. This can be done through different channels like email or social media.
Lifecycle (Customer Lifecycle)
These are stages used to define the relationship that you have with your potential or existing customers. Common lifecycle stages are Awareness, Evaluation, Purchase, and Retention.
LinkedIn is a social network that focuses on professional networking and career development.
You can use LinkedIn to display your resume, search for jobs, and enhance your professional reputation by posting updates and interacting with other people.
LinkedIn is free, but a subscription version called LinkedIn Premium offers additional features like online classes and seminars, as well as insights into who’s searching for and viewing your profile.
A lookalike audience is a type of custom audience used in social media targeting – popularised by Facebook and LinkedIn. It helps you target audiences with similar characteristics to existing ones. Here’s an example: let’s say you have many people visiting your website. With a Lookalike Audience, you could easily advertise to people similar to your visitors.
LTV (Lifetime Value)
LTV is a useful metric that helps you find out what customer groups are valuable to your business and what total worth they bring during their lifetime. Differently said, it shows the total revenue your business can expect from every single customer.
Marketing automation is the process of managing and automating across all your marketing channels.
Martech (Marketing Technology)
Martech is a term used to describe the overlap between marketing and technology. Software suites and technical tools used by marketers to drive more marketing impact usually fall under the martech umbrella.
MVP (Minimum Viable Product)
A minimum viable product is a term often used in software to describe the most basic version of a product that can carry out its desired function.
Native advertising is a popular type of social media advertising where an ad follows the form, function, and feel of the content of the media where it’s placed. Native ads are currently considered more effective in terms of engagement, as they enable marketers to target audiences with content that closely matches their experience.
A news feed is an online feed full of news sources. On Facebook, the News Feed is the homepage of users’ accounts where they can see all the latest updates from their friends. The news feed on Twitter is called Timeline.
A no-follow link is used when a website does not want to pass search engine authority to another webpage. It tells search engine crawlers not to follow or pass credit to linked websites as a way to avoid association with spammy content or inadvertently violating webmaster guidelines. To varying degrees, the no-follow attribute is recognized by all major search engines, like Google, Yahoo, and Bing.
NPS (Net Promoter Score)
If you’re conducting customer surveys and you’re interested in customer satisfaction, NPS is a handy metric. It helps you find out how likely a customer would be to recommend, on a scale of 0-10, your product, service or company to somebody else.
Omnichannel Marketing is a cross-channel marketing strategy that focuses on delivering unified experiences – regardless of the touchpoints or devices your customers are using.
This is related to on-page optimization. Off-page SEO refers to incoming links and other outside factors that impact how a webpage is indexed in search results. Factors like linking domains and even social media play a role in off-page optimization. It’s a powerful tool and needs you to create useful, quality content so people will share and link to it.
This type of SEO is based solely on a webpage and the various elements within the HTML (see “H”). Ensuring that key pieces of the specific page (content, title tag, URL, and image tags) include the desired keyword will help a page rank for that particular phrase.
Open rate is used in relation to email marketing. Simply put, it’s the value that shows you many recipients have opened your email.
Page Views represent all the visitors of your website. Each reload of the webpage by the same visitor counts as a new page view.
In the context of marketing, personalisation is a popular practice that enables you to tailor user experiences by delivering personalised content to specific users based on behaviour and context. This technology typically uses advanced machine learning and automation processes.
Pinterest is a social network that allows users to visually share, and discover new interests by posting (known as ‘pinning’ on Pinterest), images or videos to their own or others’ boards (i.e. a collection of ‘pins,’ usually with a common theme) and browsing what other users have pinned.
Using a visual orientation, the social network is very much focused on the concept of a person’s lifestyle, allowing you to share your tastes and interests with others and discovering those of likeminded people.
Businesses and consumers alike use the website to post images and photos they like so fellow users can repin (share) that content. Users can either upload images from their computer or pin things they find on the web using the Pinterest bookmarklet.
Pixels are snippets of code that allow you to gather valuable information about website visitors and what actions they took, so you can send them ads that are most relevant to them. Pixels are vital for measuring campaign performance, tracking conversions, and automatically building audiences based on behaviour.
Position Zero is used in search engine optimisation to describe the featured (and desired) snippet of text that shows up in search right before the search results.
A product matrix is a chart that describes the various products a business offers and the features that apply to each product. Product matrices typically assign each version of a product its own column along the top, with the features included in each version listed in rows down the lefthand side.
A QR Code or Quick Response Code is a scannable barcode used to encode data such as text or an URL.
A Qualified Lead is a term used to describe a lead that has shown interest in your brand and is likely to become a new customer based on a specific set of qualification criteria. This can be anything from a guide they have downloaded or a service they have signed up to.
Referral marketing is the process of promoting products or services to new customers through referrals or recommendations. Compared to traditional online advertising, it’s usually done through word of mouth.
Remarketing is an effective way to reconnect with your website visitors who haven’t achieved a desired action like signing up for a service or buying a product. It enables marketers to target them with new ads that will make them more likely to convert .
A re-posting of a tweet posted by another user on Twitter. Retweets look like normal tweets except for the retweet icon. They can be done in three ways:
- You can retweet an entire tweet by clicking the retweet button
- You can post as a new tweet that includes your own commentary in addition to the information you’re retweeting. The formula is: Your own commentary + RT + the original tweeter’s Twitter handle + colon + the exact text from their original tweet.
ROAS (Return On Advertisement Spend)
After you start using AdWords, you want to see if your advertising is making an impact. This is when you check your ROAS – a calculation of the results (purchases, downloads, page views, etc.) divided by the budget spent on advertising. Contrary to ROI (Return On Investment), ROAS is only operating with the money spent on advertising, cutting down all the other costs in the investment (marketers’ salaries, etc.).
ROI (Return On Investment)
When you put your money and effort into something, you probably want to know what results it’s driving. ROI measures the performance and the efficiency of your investment compared with other investments. ROI is calculated by dividing total revenue by the total cost of investments. In digital marketing, ROI is often substituted for ROAS.
RPC (Revenue Per Click)
You can calculate your RPC like this: Goal Value x Conversion Rate. Voilà, now you know whether your ad (or keyword) is profitable or not!
SaaS (Software as a Service)
Google, Dropbox, Salesforce, MailChimp, Shopify are all providing systems as a service. That means that they provide a third-party software solution that hosts a platform for the application and software and makes them readily available to their clients. It is beneficial for companies in the sense that they don’t have to invest in new hardware and software, they can use a third-party solution by paying a subscription fee.
SAINT (Site Catalyst Attribute Import Naming Tool)
Classifications (SAINT) are one of the enduring features of Site Catalyst (Adobe Analytics). In general, classifications (both utm_id and SAINT) are making marketers’ lives easier. SAINT allows users (advertisers) to upload customized metadata within the Site Catalyst, analyze, and process them. By classifying the data, you are attributing them specific characteristics and creating a relationship between a variable (campaign’s source, medium, keyword, etc.) and all the metadata related to it. In other words, the campaign link that is classified can be used to measure all the variables through one link because the analytical tool (Site Catalyst) recognizes the classification and knows what is going on. Without classification, you have to create specific campaign links to measure all the variables separately and manually, which takes time and energy.
SEA (Search Engine Advertising)
Are you longing for that top result in most search engines? You can improve your SEO by paying for it. SEA means that you are buying the top spots in a search engine’s result page. However, your link will have the little “Ad” button or other indication that it is a paid link.
SEM (Search Engine Marketing)
Have you noticed the little yellow boxes that say “ad” next to the top links in a search query? That’s search engine marketing! Because most users select the first options that are shown in search results, businesses pay to get their website linked at the top hoping that people will click their link. This is done through AdWords for Google search results. Other search engines (Bing, Yahoo, etc.) have similar tools.
SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
Do you want to increase organic growth and visibility on the internet? Then you have to polish your SEO game. Through technical (e.g., a correctly structured website that a search engine understands) and creative (using the right keywords, optimized headlines etc.) aspects, well-made SEO improves your chances of appearing among the first results in a search query on Google or other search engines.
Shoppable Posts or Pins
If you’re using Instagram or Pinterest, you’ll love Shoppable Posts and Pins. They’re great if you’re an Ecommerce business. They enable you to turn your account into visual stores with the help of product tags. You can add them to your images and link them to your webshop.
Formerly known as Omniture, Site Catalyst is an analytical tool that has been part of the Adobe platform since 2009. It allows marketers to measure and analyze data from multiple marketing channels.
A fun phrase used to refer to the practice of aligning Sales and Marketing efforts. In a perfect world, marketing would pass off tons of fully qualified leads to the sales team, who would then subsequently work every one of those leads enough times to close them 100% of the time. It’s important for Marketing and Sales to align efforts to impact the bottom line the best way they can through coordinated communication.
Snapchat is a social mobile phone app that allows users to send and receive time-sensitive photos and videos known as “snaps,” which are hidden from the recipients once the time limit expires. (Note: Images and videos still remain on the Snapchat server). Users can add text and drawings to their snaps and control the list of recipients in which they send them to.
A Snapchat story is a string of Snapchats that lasts for 24 hours. Users can create stories to be shared with all Snapchatters or just a customised group of recipients.
Social media is media designed to be disseminated through social interaction, created using highly accessible and scalable publishing techniques. Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn and Instagram are examples of social media networks that one can join for personal or business use.
Social Media is a core component of Inbound marketing, as it provides marketers with additional channels to spread reach, increase growth, and reach business goals.
A Soft Bounce is a term used in email marketing to notify a sender that their email was delivered to the recipient(s), but ‘soft bounced’ back. Common reasons are a full inbox, a heavy email. or an email server that is temporarily down.
TikTok is a Chinese video-sharing social networking service used to create short 15-second dance, lip-sync, comedy, and talent videos.
The app was launched in 2017 for iOS and Android in markets outside China.
HTML tag used to define the text in the top line of a Web browser, also used by many search engines as the title of search listings.
TOFU (Top of the Funnel)
In marketing, TOFU stands for the first stage of the buying funnel. At this point – also called the awareness point, your target audiences are typically wide and have challenges that you can help them solve through helpful content such as guides or best practices. Your messaging has very little to do with the product or service that you are selling.
Twitter is a platform that allows users to share 280-character long messages publicly. Users can follow one another and be followed back.
A public message on Twitter is known as a ‘tweet’. You can also tweet videos and images.
URL (Uniform Resource Locator)
URLs are what we use in the address bar of our browser to tell our browser where to get the information we want (like a specific website). URLs most commonly appear in the form of HTTP or HTTPS protocols, for example, ‘https://morrmarketing.co.uk/’
User Experience (UX)
The overall experience a customer has with a particular business, from their discovery and awareness of the brand all the way through their interaction, purchase, use, and even advocacy of that brand. To deliver an excellent customer experience, you have to think like a customer, or better, think about being the customer.
User Interface (UI)
A type of interface that allows users to control a software application or hardware device. A good user interface provides a user-friendly experience by allowing the user to interact with the software or hardware in an intuitive way. It includes a menu bar, toolbar, windows, buttons, and so on.
An utm_id is a classification campaign code used for Google Analytics. Classifications make the lives of marketers easier, as it enables them to track their campaign URLs in their analytics platforms.
UTM parameters are simply tags that you add to a URL. When someone clicks on a URL with UTM parameters, those tags are sent back to your Google Analytics for tracking purposes. The most common parameters are medium, source, campaign, term, content.
However, parameters are versatile and can be customised according to what you want to track. The biggest disadvantage of UTM parameters is the likelihood of marketers using their own terms, such as lower- and upper-case letters and special symbols, that might cause data fragmentation.
UV (Unique Visitor)
Unique Visitor stands for a visitor that returns to your website repeatedly in a set period. Contrary to Page View, UV is tied to one visitor, so even if they visit a website ten times (which results in ten page views), the UV still counts as one.
Viral content is content that gets really popular really fast – usually by having viewers/ visitors sharing it to others soon after publishing.
Voice search is an increasingly popular technology that allows users to search the web, a website or an app using a voice command.
A blog that publishes video content.
An organised categorised listings of Web sites.
The business of providing the storage, connectivity, and services necessary to serve files for a website to the internet.
The ease with which visitors are able to use a Web site.
WhatsApp is a free to download messenger app for smartphones acquired by Facebook in 2014. WhatsApp uses the internet to send messages, images, audio or video. The service is very similar to text messaging services, however, because WhatsApp uses the internet to send messages, the cost of using WhatsApp is significantly less than texting.
A marketing method that relies on casual social interactions to promote a product. This often takes place at organised networking events and can take the form of referrals and testimonials.
A workflow is another way to describe a lead nurturing campaign. It’s a set of triggers and events that move a lead through the nurturing process. A workflow can also serve other purposes, such as adjust contact properties on a lead record based on certain conditions or adding a contact record to a certain list. Regardless of how you use it, workflows can be a very powerful asset in an inbound marketing strategy.
An XML sitemap is a file of code that lives on your web server and lists all of the relevant URLs that are in the structure of your website. It’s kind of like a “floor plan” for the site, which especially comes in handy whenever the site gets changed. It also helps search engine web crawlers determine the structure of the site so they can crawl it more intelligently.
Sitemaps don’t guarantee all links will be crawled, and being crawled does not guarantee indexing. However, a sitemap is still the best insurance for getting a search engine to learn about your entire site.
Yandex is a Russian company that is best known for its Yandex search engine.
The search engine was originally started in Russian at yandex.ru, but now has a global English version at yandex.com.
Yandex is the biggest search engine in Russia.
YouTube is a video-sharing website on which users can upload, share, and view videos. Three former PayPal employees created YouTube in February 2005. In November 2006, YouTube, LLC was bought by Google Inc. for $1.65 billion, and is now operated as a subsidiary of Google. YouTube is the largest video-sharing site in the world.
Zoom is a web-based video conferencing tool with a local, desktop client and a mobile app that allows users to meet online, with or without video. Zoom users can choose to record sessions, collaborate on projects, and share or annotate on one another’s screens, all with one easy-to-use platform. Zoom offers quality video, audio, and a wireless screen-sharing performance across Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS and Android.