Digital Marketing Glossary 2020

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Digital Marketing Glossary 2020

While this is not a detailed or comprehensive guide, below are the most commonly found terms we get asked about by clients. You can sort the table alphabetically or by topic area, just click the column.



Topic Area Term What is it?
About your website 404 Error An error page a user gets when they try to visit a page that doesn’t exist, or perhaps has been moved or deleted without a redirect.
About your website Accessability Making your website navigable for people with a disability, for example making sure that people using screen readers are able to understand what images are on a page, that people who can only use a keyboard can navigate the menu etc. In addition to being a basic requirement for a website that serves the general public certain provisions may be legal requirements in your durisdiction. And it’s good for SEO!
About your website Breadcrumbs A visual navigation tool that shows the users page path journey so far. E.g. home>about us>what we do
About your website Caching When your website pre-generates each page from the database in advance so that each time a user asks for the page, the code is already available. Because this drastically reduces the number of database lookups, this is very important for speeding up your website.
About your website Content Delivery Network (CDN) A network of servers that store copies of your website’s assets (eg. image files, video files etc) around the world to optimise the speed at which they’re delivered to your visitors.
About your website Content Management System (CMS) An application/program used to easily manage and edit the content for a website. Common CMSs include WordPress, Squarespace and Magento (for ecommerce).
About your website Conversion/Goal An action that you would like your visitors to perform on your website that’s valuable to your organisation (eg. an online sale, a lead obtained through a contact form or phone call). Conversions are defined by you and then tracked using analytics and/or advertising software for reporting and marketing optimisation.
About your website Display URL The URL that is displayed in an online ad to let the user know where they will be taken if they click. On most ad platforms, this doesn’t have to exactly match the actual URL you are sending a user (since many real life URLs are very long and ugly).
About your website Domain A website at its top level (eg. qantas.com.au), this is what you have to register to set up and keep your website.
About your website KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) Benchmarks and metrics used to quantify the success and performance of your website and marketing campaigns. These should derive from the conversions you’ve defined and be relevant to the overall health of your business.
About your website Responsive Design A method of implementing websites that can automatically adjust their page ratios to fit screens of all sizes (eg. desktop, mobile, tablet). Most modern CMSs have many responsive templates to choose from.
About your website Subdomain The domain you registered with something in front of it (eg. www.yoursite.com or donate.yoursite.com). You can set up multiple subdomains for a single domain that you own.
About your website Website Hygiene Making sure your website presents its best foot forward by optimising your website’s speed, security and anything else that’s more related the the medium of presenting content on the internet as opposed to the content itself.
About your website Website Speed A range of measures including how long your website takes to load the first piece of content, how long it takes to load a full page, how long it takes to respond to user interaction etc. Improving your website speed is essential for SEO, online advertising and general conversion rates.
Key digital marketing activities A/B Testing Showing one version of your website to part of your audience and another version to another part of your audience to determine which version of your website performs better for you (usually in terms of conversions). The two versions of the website can differ by only a small amount (eg. the content on a key sales page) or can be major changes.
Key digital marketing activities Customer Relationship Management (CRM) A method of managing and nurturing leads and the software that is used to help with this. Some popular CRMs include Salesforce and Hubspot. Integrating your CRM with your analytics software is essential if your website collects leads that actually convert offline.
Key digital marketing activities Digital Analytics The process of analysing data about how your visitors use your website in order to gain actionable insights into what is needed to improve your website’s KPIs and performance. This is usually done with digital analytics software (such as Google Analytics or Adobe Analytics) and is essential to any digital marketing campaign.
Key digital marketing activities Display Advertising The placement of text, image or video ads on an advertising network (eg. Google Display Network) that can show it on thousands of websites and mobile apps. With display advertising you can control which websites/apps you show on and what audiences you show to. Because people are not searching for your product at the time they view the ad, display advertising is usually less effective than search at direct conversions but is more relevant for branding, awareness and other interactions that come at the beginning of a user journey.
Key digital marketing activities Electronic Direct Mail (EDM) The process of one-off or continuous communication with your leads or customers using email. As with other channels, integration with your analytics platform is essential for success.
Key digital marketing activities Marketing Automation Software that automates communications with the customer, their website experience etc. It can range from being as simple as an automatic welcome email when someone signs up to a full-fledged journey. Some examples of services that can help with this: Hubspot, Mailchimp, ActiveCampaign, Salesforce, Marketo.
Key digital marketing activities Multivariate Testing Testing of multiple differences between two landing pages to work out which combination maximises conversions (as opposed also A/B testing which tests simpler combinations).
Key digital marketing activities Personalisation Dynamically modifying your website content to be more relevant to your visitors. An example of a platform that can help with this is Google Optimize.
Key digital marketing activities Search Advertising/Search Engine Marketing (SEM) The placement of text ads on a search engine like Google or Bing. These are usually found at the top and bottom of the search results page. Because search advertising allows you to show your ad only to people who have specifically searched for it, it is usually one of the most effective forms of advertising.
Key digital marketing activities Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) The process of optimising a website’s content, architecture, code and marketing strategy in order to improve its rankings on search engines (in all the listings that are not labelled as “ad”) and thereby increase a website’s traffic and conversions.
Key digital marketing activities Social Advertising Advertising on social networks, such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube & Instagram. Each network has its own wide range of available ad formats, targeting settings and best practices.
Key digital marketing activities Usability/User Experience (UX) Refers to how user-friendly a website or process is (eg. how easy it is to navigate, how intuitive the options and steps are, accessibility etc) as well as the iterative process of improving the user experience.
Key products Bing Universal Event Tracking (UAT) Microsoft (Bing) Ads’ pixel, which when placed on your website allows you to create remarketing audiences for Microsoft (Bing) Ads and set up conversions for the platform to optimise for.
Key products Facebook Ads Facebook’s ad platform which allows you to run ads on Facebook, Messenger, Instagram, Facebook’s Audience Network and other properties.
Key products Facebook Ads Manager Facebook’s online interface for creating, modifying and optimising Facebook Ads.
Key products Facebook Business Manager Facebook’s umbrella online interface for managing your Facebook assets (eg. pages, ad accounts and pixels) in a collaborative way with your team.
Key products Facebook Pixel Facebook’s tag that advertisers place on their website to send data about their visitors’ on-site behaviour to Facebook. This is needed to create remarketing lists in Facebook or for Facebook campaigns to auto-optimise for specific actions on your website.
Key products Google Ads Google’s primary advertising product that allows you to run ads on Google Search, Google Shopping, YouTube, Gmail, search engines that have partnered with Google and millions of websites that show Google ads on their pages. You should have your own Google Ads account and retain ownership of that account regardless of who you work with on your advertising.
Key products Google Analytics (GA) Google’s free digital analytics platform. It is the most popular method of performing traffic analysis and reporting and can track websites, mobile apps and offline interactions.
Key products Google Data Studio Google’s free cloud-based dashboarding platform. It has a range of interactive elements and automatically integrates with most Google products (eg. Google Ads, Google Analytics etc) and generic data sources (eg. MySQL databases). There are third party connectors available for non-Google data sources like Facebook Ads.
Key products Google Merchant Centre (GMC) Google’s platform that allows retailers to upload their product inventory and product details for running a Google Shopping campaign in search results. Your Google Merchant Centre will link to your Google Ads account where the Google Shopping campaign details (including which products you want to run ads for) are controlled.
Key products Google My Business (GMB) Google’s platform for managing the knowledge panel that Google often shows when people search for your business name directly. To manage your panel you must first claim it by proving to Google that you are indeed that business.
Key products Google Optimize Google’s free A/B testing, multivariate testing and personalisation tool. It allows you to easily create tests with a drag and drop interface.
Key products Google Search Console (GSC) Google’s free platform for webmasters that helps them to check on the health and performance of their website on organic search results. Use of Google Search Console is essential to performing well in SEO.
Key products Google Tag Manager (GTM) Google’s free tag management platform. It is used to quickly and easily add code that is needed to use third party tracking and advertising products (eg. Google Analytics, Google Ads & Facebook Ads) to your website. Using a tag management platform is essential for digital success.
Key products Microsoft (Bing) Ads Microsoft’s advertising platform. Is very similar in features to Google Ads but has a much lower market share in Australia. ROI for most verticals is higher though, so we normally recommend this for most clients.
Key products Password manager A program that stores all your passwords for you so that you only have to remember one password to unlock it. Common features include storing your data securely in the cloud and autofilling login forms inside your browser. This is essential for anyone with digital assets. Our favourite is 1Password but there are a host of great ones out there.
Digital strategy/analytics Acquisition Strategy The process of finding potential customers, leading them to the website and influencing them to take the next step.
Digital strategy/analytics Application Programming Interface (API) A service provided by an online platform (eg. Google Analytics) which allows any program with appropriate permissions to talk to it to extract data or make changes automatically, without needing anyone to perform manual changes.
Digital strategy/analytics Baseline Metrics Calculations (usually from historical data) that provide a basis for comparing performance with past results. An essential component of Key Performance Indicator (KPI) measurement/management.
Digital strategy/analytics Branding Strategy The attempt to increase awareness of a brand and promote its key value proposition within a business’ target market.
Digital strategy/analytics Business to Business (B2B) Marketing Business to Business marketing, where businesses sell to other businesses, not individuals.
Digital strategy/analytics Business to Consumer (B2C) Marketing Business to Consumer marketing, where businesses sell directly to individual customers.
Digital strategy/analytics Channel A traffic source that’s important for your business. In Google Analytics, you can define custom channels based on your own marketing mix.
Digital strategy/analytics Competitor Analysis The assessment and analysis of strengths and weaknesses of competing websites and advertising strategies.
Digital strategy/analytics Cookie A piece of text that a website stores on the visitor’s browser to save some data about them. Any website function that requires the website to remember anything about you (eg. shopping carts, logins and digital analytics) require the use of cookies or a similar storage technology.
Digital strategy/analytics Cross-Device Behaviour The act of tying together the behaviour of the same individual on different devices. Because cookies are browser-specific, most default analytics software considers the same person switching devices as a different person, so an alternate way of identifying the same person across devices is needed.
Digital strategy/analytics Custom Dimensions/Metrics Additional information about your visitors that you may want to track into your analytics software, to make reports more relevant to your business needs, eg. user membership tier, number of restaurant covers booked, whether the user is logged in or not, etc.
Digital strategy/analytics Digital Assets/Web Assets Your websites, social media pages, email templates, advertising accounts and anything else that is a resource that can be deployed to serve your business needs.
Digital strategy/analytics Javascript (JS) A coding language used to add interactive functionality to websites. It can be used in conjunction with other tracking tools like Google Tag Manager to facilitate advanced tracking of website activity.
Digital strategy/analytics Keyword/Search Query A single word or combination of words that a searcher might type into a search engine, or look for on a web page or in online content. In search advertising keyword refers to what the advertiser adds to their account and search query is what a user searches for (these are not always identical). In SEO the distinction is more blurred.
Digital strategy/analytics Landing Page The web page a customer lands on when clicking on your ad or link. Also known as ‘destination page’ and ‘destination URL’. The quality of your landing page (how fast it loads, how convicing the message is) forms the core part of how successful a paid or organic campaign will be.
Digital strategy/analytics Lead A sign of interest and/or permission to contact from the customer. E.g. a phone call, enquiry form submission, sign up to a newsletter or social community.
Digital strategy/analytics Life Time Value (LTV) Estimating the total customer value for better ROI calculations. Is essential for businesses that have a recurring payment/subscription model or those that rely heavily on upselling and cross-selling.
Digital strategy/analytics Long Tail Keywords Keyword phrases with three, four or five keywords within them. Often more specific than shorter phrases. E.g. ‘green baseball caps’ versus ‘caps’.
Digital strategy/analytics Referral Traffic brought from other websites, usually by a direct link and not by advertisement.
Digital strategy/analytics Search Engine Results Page (SERP) The list of results, both organic and paid, which show after a customer has entered a keyword search.
Digital strategy/analytics Short Tail Keywords Keyword phrases with only one or two keywords. Usually more generic and attracting higher volumes of traffic.
Digital strategy/analytics Unique visitor/user Used to describe an individual customer and give an indication of how many people have been to the website because visitors may have visited the site multiple times during the reporting period. For example, you may have 100 visits to the site in a month, but only 85 unique visitors.
Digital strategy/analytics Value Proposition The sum of total benefits a customer is promised to receive in return for choosing a particular product or service.
Digital strategy/analytics Vertical A specific industry or sector that a business operates within. E.g. tourism, banking, education.
Digital advertising Ad Account Management The ongoing work required to run and monitor online advertising campaigns and can include; adjusting bid prices, expanding and refining keyword lists, editing and testing ad copy and testing additional campaign components and targeting settings to improve cost efficiency and conversions.
Digital advertising Ad Copy The main text of an advertisement, excluding any images or rich media that might accompany it.
Digital advertising Ad Extension Extra real estate that can be shown with your search ads. E.g. sitelinks, callouts, prices, phone numbers.
Digital advertising Ad Spend The money specifically spent with an ad platform (eg. Google Ads). It is not inclusive of the creative work and management involved in managing a campaign.
Digital advertising Behavioural Targeting A form of advertising targeting available which serves ads to groups of people who exhibit similarities not just in demographic ways such as age, gender and location, but also how they behave in the online environment. Examples of behavioural targeting can include the categories of websites they visit, the topics of content they subscribe to and the types of goods they purchase online.
Digital advertising Bid The maximum amount of money the advertiser is willing to pay each time a searcher performs an action (eg. clicking on an ad for PPC ads, viewing a video for CPV ads etc). Bid prices vary depending on things like competition from other advertisers and the quality score given to the advertiser for their relevance to a user’s search keyword or behavioural signals.
Digital advertising Campaign In online advertising a campaign can mean an all-inclusive campaign or marketing project. If speaking specifically about Google, Microsoft or Facebook Ads, campaign is used to describe the top level of the three tiers of account structure.
Digital advertising Click Through Rate (CTR) The percentage of the times your ad is shown that someone actually clicks on it. CTR indicates the performance/relevance of your ad copy to the user’s search query. It will vary greatly from keyword to keyword so it is best to monitor them with baselines developed from your own historic data.
Digital advertising Contextual Advertising Advertising that is placed in the marketing depending on a pages’ content, keywords and phrases and does NOT take into account a user’s previous browsing behaviour (which is behavioural advertising). Contextual advertising typically has a much lower ROI than behavioural advertising.
Digital advertising Cost Per Acquisition (CPA) The total cost of an advertisement or campaign, divided by the number of conversions (eg. if the total cost is $100, and total number of conversions is 10, the CPA is $10). This value can either be a target or an actual result from your advertising campaign. Can also refer to a bidding strategy where you pay for each conversion from an ad.
Digital advertising Cost Per Click (CPC) The total cost of an advertisement or campaign, divided by the number of clicks (eg. if the total cost is $100 and total number of clicks is 50, the CPC is $2).
Digital advertising Cost Per View A bidding strategy where you pay for each view of your ad, most used in video advertising.
Digital advertising Dynamic Ads Any ads where the ad content is not known or created in advance for each case but depends on live factors (eg. the keyword a user searched for for DKI or the products they visited on your website for dynamic remarketing).
Digital advertising Dynamic Keyword Insertion (DKI) Showing customers specific, customised ad copy by inserting your campaign keywords into generic ad templates. Good for scaling and growing campaigns.
Digital advertising Dynamic Remarketing/Retargeting Showing customers a remarketing ad tailored to the specific products or pages that they visited on your website. This typically has a very high ROI.
Digital advertising Hashtag A word or phrase beginning with “#” used by social media sites to group content.
Digital advertising Impression Share Is the percentage of times an ad was shown, versus how many times it could have shown. Impression share is affected by your settings and those of your competitors.
Digital advertising Negative Keywords Commonly used in SEM campaigns. You can prevent your ads from appearing for irrelevant or inappropriate keyword searches by defining and implementing negative keywords.
Digital advertising PPC Pay-per-click is a common advertising fee model where advertisers pay when their ad is clicked, as opposed to purchasing a certain volume of impressions (CPM).
Digital advertising Quality Score A score assigned by an ad platform (eg. Google or Facebook) to your paid ads based on factors like the ad’s relevance to the user or the landing page quality. Quality Score is one factor that helps determine how much your ad shows (and in what position) and your ultimate cost. The higher your quality score, the higher the ROI.
Digital advertising Remarketing/Retargeting Presenting advertising to customers who have already visited one of your digital assets (eg.website or mobile app).
Digital advertising Return on Ad Spend (ROAS) The calculation of return on an advertising dollar. It divides profit generated by an advertising campaign, by ad spend: Profit/Ad Spend = ROAS.
Digital advertising Return on Investment (ROI) Return on Investment is the % of profit from your ads compared to the amount of money spent on your ads: (Profit – Ad spend) / Ad Spend = %ROI
Digital advertising Stories Short-lived video and image content that can be added to your profiles on Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat.
SEO 301 Redirect A type of redirect that tells Google the change from page to page is permanent. Generally the best type of redirect to use if you’re changing the URL of a web page.
SEO Backlinks/Inbound Links All the links on the web pointing back to a particular page on your website, or the entire domain. This is a major SEO ranking signal.
SEO Bot/Robot A name used to describe the tools used by search engines that routinely crawl/check websites.
SEO Canonicalisation The process of picking the best URL when there are several choices (eg. whether or not you want a www in front of your domain name) and passing this data to search engines so that they index your website in an optimum way.
SEO Knowledge Graph Google’s knowledge base of real-world items (eg. people, places, events and things) that’s is obtained by crawling structured data on webpages and displayed in knowledge panels for relevant user searches.
SEO Knowledge Panel A panel of summarised information from various sources that pulls into the top of organic search results. Usually presented when searching for people, events and locations. The panel for your business name is likely to include information from your own Google My Business listings, which you can claim and manage.
SEO Linking Domains The domains that provide backlinks to your website. Having a large and diverse number of reputable linking domains will improve your rankings and your SEO traffic.
SEO Metadata The SEO fields that sit behind web pages (eg. meta title, meta description). These tell search engines what your website/page is about and are therefore essential to ranking for relevant searches.
SEO Off-Page SEO Improving your SEO based on signals that don’t come from your domain, mostly this involves PR and outreach and other activities that would increase your website’s backlinks and general popularity.
SEO On-Page SEO Improving your SEO based on signals that come from your domain, for example optimising your website and URL structure, canonicalisation and creating appropr
SEO Organic Results The free search results that show when you do a keyword search in a browser such as Google or Bing. Advertisers cannot pay to influence these results, they are impacted by utilising SEO best-practice, user behaviour, brand recognition and a wide variety of other factors.
SEO Robots.txt A text file hosted by your website which is used to direct the activity of search engine bots/crawlers.

Tactic Lab is a full-stack digital analytics and marketing agency based in Australia. This knowledge base was developed as a resource for both our clients and anyone else wishing to improve their measurement, strategy, marketing and digital assets.

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