Online Marketing Terms Every Marketer Should Know | Michael McVinney
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Online Marketing Terms Every Marketer Should Know

This post originally appeared on tBL member Joshua Lyon’s blog Joshua Lyons Marketing Blog and is republished with permission. Find out how to syndicate your content with theBrokerList.

If you’re new to marketing it can be challenging to keep up with all the online marketing terms that are used. Luckily, you can use this blog post as a cheat sheet! This post will introduce you to some of the most popular marketing expressions to be aware of. If you know of a term that’s should be added, send us a note in the contact form [at the end of this post], so we can see about adding it.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Search engine optimization is a very popular term used by website owners and digital marketers. SEO is a marketing tactic that focuses primarily on improving website rankings in search engines. There are two forms of SEO, being on-site and off-site SEO. We recommend that websites practice both forms of SEO (if possible). This will increase the chances of you seeing positive results from your SEO efforts. We have many blog posts that explain the ins and outs of SEO, as it is a lot to sum up in one blog post.

ppc is a common online marketing termPay-Per-Click (PPC)

PPC is a type of online advertising where the advertiser pays a certain monetary amount each time an advertisement is clicked. Many search engine advertising and other web traffic campaigns run off of the pay-per-click advertising model. Other popular leads you can pay for consist of pay per download, pay per impression, pay per engagement, and more. There are many different approaches to acquiring leads, but PPC is one of the most effective ways to set up advertisements.

Cost-Per-Click (CPC)

This is different than pay-per-click as cost-per-click is the amount you are charged per each click. For example, if you pay $0.40 each time someone clicks your ad, then the CPC for your ads is $0.40. The formula that equates to this number is the amount spent divided by the number of clicks received on the ad. It’s best to have a CPC that’s as low as possible. If you are not a math wizard, keeping CPC down means that your ad must receive a lot of clicks, as the amount spent per ad is based on your budget.

Content Management System (CMS)

Content management systems are very useful for those who plan to regularly publish content to their websites. Unlike traditional website developing, content management systems make it easy to have multiple users collaborating on content. Most importantly, CMS’s make it much easier to develop a website for those who are not technically inclined website developers. Content management systems relate to marketing because they help website owners stay organized and plan their content efficiently.

click-through rate explainedClick-Through Rate (CTR)

A click-through rate is the percentage of people who see your advertisement and actually click on the ad. Most advertising platforms calculate the click-through rate of an advertisement automatically, but here is the formula just in case: CTR= (Total Clicks / Total Ad Impressions) x 100. Your ad’s CTR will tell you a lot about how your ad copy and creative is doing based on your audience. Ads that have a CTR that is lower than expected should be edited or possibly deleted.

Call-to-Action (CTA)

A call-to-action can potentially be a marketer’s best friend. CTA’s are buttons or phrases on a website or advertisement. The goal of a call-to-action is to get your viewer to take the next step down your marketing funnel. For example, you may want to include a call-to-action button that says “Download” on an advertisement that’s trying to get people to download your e-book. Call-to-action buttons are incredibly handy tools for marketers and website owners and are very effective.

Search Engine Marketing (SEM)

SEM is the organic and paid marketing done to improve search result rankings. Search engine marketing sounds very similar to search engine optimization (SEO), which is mentioned above, and they are related. SEO is a form of search engine marketing, along with many other marketing tactics. Another form of SEM is the use of paid search engine rankings (like using PPC on Google AdWords). Any marketing done to improve search result rankings, paid or unpaid, is considered search engine marketing.

Social Media Marketing (SMM)

SMM is one of the most modern forms of marketing to date. Marketers have figured out how to utilize social media platforms as a way to drive conversions, and it’s very effective. Social media marketing is all marketing done on social media platforms, whether it’s paid or unpaid. Unpaid SMM can range from simply posting about products or services to interacting with potential customers. The biggest social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram have their own advertisement platforms where marketers can practice paid SMM.

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Without a web hosting service, it’s impossible for search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo to find your website. Luckily, there is a wide variety of affordable and high-quality web hosting services. Select a website hosting tool that you feel is best for your budget, so you can start practicing search engine marketing and begin driving traffic to your website.


A website’s domain name has much more to do with marketing than you may think. Strategic selection of a great domain name is an on-site SEO tactic. The domain name, also known as the internet address of a website, needs to be catchy and memorable so it’s effective. A great online marketing terms include "domains"domain name is easy to spell, easy to say, and easy to remember. This makes it more likely that website visitors can easily find your website again in the future, because they can remember your domain name.

If you have not set up your website yet, consider practicing on-site SEO with your domain name. To do this, you should steer clear of highly competitive keywords when selecting your name. Using your favorite SEO keyword research tool, check the search volume and competitiveness of the name you are considering. This will help you get better results on Google, when potential clients or customers are searching for what you have to offer.

Really Simple Syndication (RSS)

Really simple syndication can be difficult to understand. An RSS refers to the way website format feeds are collected. These collected feeds are stored and then woven together in a way that makes it easier for the user to digest the content. It’s essentially a system that allows readers to see the content they would like to see all in one place, rather than viewing multiple websites. The user just needs to find a website’s RSS feed, then copy and paste it into their RSS reader.

Secure Sockets Layer (SSL)

SSL’s create encrypted links between a website user and a website owner when making purchases online. They establish a secure and protected connection when private information is transferred across the internet. SSL’s relate to marketing for a few reasons. First, if you are practicing SEO to improve your search result rankings, it’s a good idea to get an SSL on your website. Google has mentioned that they prefer websites with secure sockets layers over those that do not. It’s also a great idea to have an SSL to protect your customer’s information. It can be a selling point for customers knowing their information is protected when they use your website.

Open Rate (OR)

The term “open rate” is primarily used in the context of email marketing. OR is the percentage of people who open your emails. An open rate can tell you a lot about your subject line. If your open rate is high, then that is a great sign your email’s subject line is engaging and interesting to your readers. On the other hand, if your open rate is low, you should take that as feedback to change up the way you are making your subject line.

Expert, Authoritative, Trustworthy (E-A-T)

This term describes what Google and other search engines look at when determining how to rank a website. Websites with content that is expert-level, authoritative, and trustworthy (E-A-T), can expect to have higher search result rankings. If you practice on-site SEO, you should look to E-A-T as a general rule for your website’s content. When drafting your content, you should ask yourself, Does this follow E-A-T? If it doesn’t, don’t expect to rank as well in search results, and maybe even consider rewriting.

Questions About Other Online Marketing Terms?

We hope defining the above marketing terms is helpful for you. If you have questions about any of the online marketing terms talked about, or any other relevant term we didn’t talk about, please let us know. You can contact us by this, or any other online marketing topic, by filling out the contact form below. We look forward to hearing from you!

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