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Glossary of Marketing Terms

We offer this definition tool as a way to help out when you have a question about some online marketing term. Please contact us if we can be of further help.


A measure of the ease or difficulty in the use of an application or internet resources, particularly for persons with disabilities.
A mathematical rule by which a search engine ranks results. Most are proprietary formulas kept secret by the search engine companies to prevent their use in gaining unfair advantage in search engine rankings.
Back links
The number of external links which point to a particular web site. Also known as link popularity.
Banner ad
An online advertising tool typically composed of a graphic which includes a call to action and a link to the advertiser’s web site. If the banner ad is hosted by a third party, the advertiser will often pay a per click fee.
Generic term for software which can download and display web pages, such as Firefox, Mozilla, Safari and Internet Explorer.
Click through rate (CTR)
The percentage of users who click on an online ad.
The practice of making a page available to search engines, but displaying a different page to visitors who click on the search engine link. The use of cloaking is forbidden by most search engines and those who employ such practices may be penalized.
Generally, the textual and graphical elements displayed to visitors to a web page. During production of a web site, the client may provide this content to the developer, or they may opt to have this provided for them. Content may also include audio and other media.
Conversion rate
The total number of desired outcomes received (such as purchases) by a web site, divided by the total number of visitors, expressed as a percentage.
Cost per click (CPC)
An amount paid by an advertiser for each click which brings internet users to the advertiser’s web site.
An advertising acronym meaning cost per thousand. In online marketing, it may refer to the amount an advertiser pays per thousand views (impressions) of an online banner ad.
Design comp
A preliminary visual presentation of the planned look and feel of a design project. On approval by the client of the design comp, final production is completed.
The base structure of file management on a computer or server typically represented by folder icons. The use of proper directory structure and naming is important on a web site, not only for navigation, but also for search engine rankings.
Domain name
The name by which a web site is located on the internet (as part of a URL), typically written in the form of name.com. Appropriate domain naming is an integral element of successful search engine marketing.
A method of collecting information on a web page. A form may be as simple as a request for a user name and password, or may be used to collect information from customers for ecommerce transactions.
Email blast
An email broadcast to a specified mailing list. Executed together with a database, an email blast may be customized to each individual recipient.
Conducting business communication and services online. Primarily, it refers to buying and selling goods and services over the internet.
Individual and unique visitors to a particular page or image located on your website.
HTML (Hypertext Markup Language)
The basic language in which web pages are composed.
A clickable link on a web page which connects to another page or document, either within the same web site or externally. Such links are the primary means of navigation on the internet.
Image optimization
The process of managing images so that size is minimized while maintaining maximum quality. The purpose of optimization is to minimize the amount of time an image takes to appear (download) on a web page.
A searchable catalog of web pages and online documents compiled by search engines.
Search terms and phrases on a web page used to achieve high search engine rankings for relevant searches.
Link popularity
A measure of the number of web sites on the internet which link to your web site. This factor is used by search engines in calculating a particular web site’s ranking.
Link text
Also called anchor text, this is the clickable text which appears as a hyperlink.
The information which appears as result of a search engine query. Typically, a listing will include a hyperlink title of a web page, its description and the page’s URL. Where your web page appears positioned among the other listings returned from a search is known as its ranking.
Meta search engine
A search engine which aggregates information from two or more other search engines to return listings for a search query.
Meta tags
Special HTML descriptors which provide information about a particular web page or document, particularly keywords and description tags. While meta tags are invisible to visitors to your web site, they are used by search engines to build their indices.
Meta description
HTML text used to briefly describe the content of a web page. Though hidden to visitors to your web site, this text is displayed in search engine listings.
The elements of a web page, including hyperlinks and buttons which enable a visitor to move about a web page, a web site or to other locations and documents on the internet.
Organic listings
Returns from a query which are based upon the search engine’s determination that they are significantly relevant to the query. They may include pay per click results.
Outbound links
Links on a web site which lead the visitor to a web page or document on another web site.
Paid inclusion
The online marketing practice of paying a fee for inclusion in a search engine’s index. This may be a one-time fee or may include a cost per click (CPC) amount, as well.
Paid listings
Listings sold to advertisers by search engines through paid placement and paid inclusion marketing programs.
Paid placement
Paid search engine listings based upon specific keyword search terms. Rankings are generally dependent upon how much the advertiser is willing to pay for their paid placement program.
Pay per click (PPC)
A paid placement program in which fees are determined by the number of times the listing is click on by visitors.
The resulting location of your web site in a search engine listing based upon your ranking.
A pre-production presentation of your planned web site which illustrates its look and feel, navigational elements and general organization. On your approval of the protosite, the development team completes the build.
A request by a search engine user which results in the return of relevant listings.
The relative positioning of a web site in a search engine listing. Higher rankings are the result of effective search engine marketing strategies.
Reciprocal link
The mutual interchange of links with other web sites, a practice designed to increase web site traffic.
Referral link
The link via which a visitor arrives on your web page.
Subjective measure of how well a given web page delivers the information a user is looking for and by which a search engine establishes rankings.
Results page
A web page of listings returned by a search engine for a query.
Return on Investment (ROI)
A measure of the gain on a given investment used to determine the level of success of a particular venture.
Search engine
A service such as Google or Yahoo which assists people in finding goods, services and information on the internet. Search engines compile massive databases of the content found on the internet, categorize this content according to proprietary algorithms and display them as listings in response to queries based upon their designated relevance.
Search engine marketing
Strategies and techniques for improving search engine listing rankings. This may include paid placements, keywords, banner ads, reciprocal links and…
Search engine optimization
The process of selecting targeted keywords reflect the content of a Web site, placing them within the Meta tag, creating a doorway page for each search engine, and testing the search engine results to make sure the site is well placed based on the keywords selected. It is an art and a science which, because of the technology, is constantly evolving.
Shopping cart
Software on an ecommerce web site that manages the collection of goods or services which a customer wishes to purchase or acquire. Generally, this term is often applied to an entire ecommerce application, known otherwise as a store front.
An automated software tool used by search engines to travel throughout the internet collecting information which it then returns to the search engine’s indices.
All the techniques involved when submitting a site to search engines or directories.
Generally, the total volume of visitors to a particular website. As a measure of successful search engine marketing, one must factor into it such variables as hits, page accesses and conversion rates.
Acronym for Uniform Resource Locator, a unique address string which provides access to the location of every web page or document on the internet (e.g., http://www.e-gti.com).
The measure of ease-of-use and satisfaction a visitor encounters on a web site.
One of countless potential customers who will be drawn to your web site once you have engaged Go Traffic Interactive to manage your online marketing strategies.

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