Category News & Work

Digital Marketing Terms: An A-Z Guide



Digital marketing encompasses a wide range of services in order to convert users into customers and here at Chalk & Ward the digital team utilise these on a daily basis. With so many different technologies, terms and tools we thought that the creation of a glossary of digital marketing terms would be a handy thing to have. So here it is…



  • Analytics
    • Analytics is a key digital component and is the measurement, analysis and reporting on a websites performance. Related terms: Google Analytics / Bounce Rate / Pageviews / Direct Traffic / Exit Page / Landing Page / Organic Traffic / Referrals / Unique Visitors / Users / Visitors
  • AdWords
    • AdWords is Google’s online advertising platform that allows businesses to show ads to users based around targeted keywords. Businesses bid for keywords online and pay each time an ad is clicked. AdWords is used by existing businesses and new businesses who are trying to gain instant visibility whilst their site grows organically. Related terms: Pay-Per-Click / Organic Search Results / Remarketing.
  • Algorithm
    • Algorithms are a set of computer formulas designed to perform a set of functions such as calculations and data procession. Google use an algorithm called PageRank to rank websites when generated search results and is a way of measuring the importance of website pages.
  • Anchor Text
    • Anchor text is clickable text that links one page to another or related content within the same page. When using anchor text it is important that the linked text is relevant to the page it is being linked to.


  • Blog
    • Blogs are a business’s own personal news channel. They allow for regular news posts to be allocated into one stream, therefore not overcrowding the website. Blogs are also useful to provide a more ‘human’ feel to a corporate site and also for SEO purposes.
  • Browser
    • A browser is how users view websites. Browsers retrieve, translate and present HMTL allowing users to view websites correctly. Browser examples include: Chrome, Internet Explorer, Firefox, Opera and Safari.
  • Bing
    • Bing is Microsoft’s search engine and after Google is one of the largest search engines in the world.
  • Bounce Rate
    • One of the more important aspects of website performance. Bounce rate highlights the percentage of visitors who arrive on a site and then leave without having ever viewed another page on the site. Bounce rate is page dependent but if a page has a high bounce rate it could be an indication that it does not have the information the user was looking for and needs to be addressed.


  • Content
    • Content is king! Or at least it is when it comes to improved search engine rankings. Content is the text, images and video that is included within a website and webpages and is a key factor in determining how well a site will rank for a search query. Content must now be seen to answer what users are searching for, and sites/pages that do, will be ranked higher.
  • Competitor Analysis
    • Competitor analysis is the analysis of current and potential competitors, usually researched in a strengths and weaknesses format.
  • Code
    • Code refers to the binary language used by computers to perform processes. Code comes in a range of types depending on the program it is being used within. The most common language for internet pages is HTML.
  • Conversions
    • Conversions occur when a visitor to a website performs the desired action, E.g. purchases a product. The conversion rate is the percentage of visitors who have performed the said action.
  • Crawling
    • Crawling is the process of systematically browsing the internet for the purpose of indexing webpages. This makes it easier for databases and search engines to find relevant information quickly.


  • Description Tag
    • A description tag is a snippet of HTML code which is used to describe the contents of the page it is placed within.
  • Direct Traffic
    • Direct traffic is website visitors who come direct to a website through the URL, a link, email or other direct means. Visitors who arrive via search engine results or other websites are not direct.
  • Domain
    • A distinct section of the Web or a server with addresses sharing a common ending or under the control of a particular organization or individual. All URL’s ending in ‘.com’ are within the same domain group. A domain name is the individual URL.
  • Domain Authority
    • Domain authority is a measure of the dominance of a certain domain name. It is measured upon factors including popularity, age and size. It is one of the predominant factors in search engine ranking.


  • E-Marketing
    • Utilising the Internet and digital technology as a medium of your marketing communications.
  • Exit Page
    • An exit page is the page that visitors leave your site from. Looking into the most common exit page can allow you to identify at which page users are being deterred from converting.
  •  Exposure
    • The number of people who have seen an advert or piece of media.


  • FTP
    • FTP or File Transfer Protocol is a method of digitally transferring files. It is frequently used when transferring websites from one host to another.
  • Feed
    • A web feed is a platform used to provide visitors with regularly updated, fresh content.
  • Facebook
    • Facebook is a social media website started in 2004 and currently one of the largest in the World.
  • Flighting
    • An advertising schedule where volume is strategically increased and decreased at certain times to maximise effectiveness.


  • Geolocation
    • Geolocation is the process of identifying the location of a digital object E.g. smartphone or computer. Many websites and apps now restrict where their users can come from via this method.
  • Google
    • Google is one of the World’s largest search engines. The company also owns Android and YouTube.


  • HTML
    • HTML or Hyper Text Mark-up Language is the code format of most webpages, which is interpreted into visuals by the web browser.
  • Hashtags
    • A hashtag or ‘#’ icon is most notably used by social media pages such as Twitter to group words posted by users that have the icon in front of the word itself. E.g. #Marketing.


  • Internet Service Provider (ISP)
    • An Internet Service Provider is the company-owned network which provides your computer with an internet connection. Common providers include BT, Sky and Virgin Media.
  • Impressions
    • An impression is achieved when a user sees the media in question. In terms of advertising, it occurs when an advert appears on a page the user is viewing.
  • Images
    • An image is a static formation of pixels defined by the relevant code, typically JPEG.


  • JavaScript
    • JavaScript is a coding format most commonly used within interactive webpages. It is frequently used within contact forms to check the inputted data is acceptable.


  • Keywords
    • A keyword is a specific term that is directly related to your website, webpage or post. Most frequently used within SEO and PPC, keywords are used to increase advert relevance or to increase search engine rankings.
  • KPI
    • KPI or Key Performance Indicator is a tool used to benchmark progress or results. It identifies when a certain level or target is met and can be used to track performance leading up to a deadline.
  • Knowledge Base
    • A website sector containing useful information, downloads, T&C’s and FAQ’s.


  • Links
    • A link is where the URL of a site is placed within another website, allowing users to directly travel from one website to another.
  • Landing Page
    • A landing page is the first page a user lands on when visiting the site, typically the home page. However, this can be varied because of page-specific links and advert site links.
  • Long Tail Keyword
    • A keyword which is more than 3 words in length and usually takes the form of a question or query.


  • Micro-Blogging
    • Micro-Blogging is the term used for posting a series of short blog posts, E.g. Facebook or Twitter status updates.
  • Meta Data
    • Meta Data is the description or definition of the data it is tagged within. It is useful for explaining to search engines what the page is about.


  • Navigation
    • Navigation refers to the structure and layout of a website, incorporating the importance of ‘ease of use’ within the user experience.
  • Newsletter
    • A newsletter is a periodically issued report-style publication, typically by a business, which is delivered to customers and contacts.
  • No follow
    • A backlink which doesn’t affect the search engine result rankings. It’s usually just a snippet of extra code which tells search engines not to follow that link.


  • Organic Search Results
    • Organic Search Results are the results from search engines, which are ranked on factors such as domain authority and relevance.
  • Organic Traffic
    • Organic Traffic is traffic that is not driven by any kind of advertising or campaign, but comes naturally from search engine results.
  • Opt-In
    • When a user decides to receive marketing messages or newsletters, they are opting in for that content. This is now a legal requirement, with companies having to give customers the choice of opting out of any contact.


  • Page views
    • A page view occurs when a user clicks on to a webpage. Each new page viewed is one page view.
  • Pay-Per-Click (PPC)
    • Pay-Per-Click (PPC) is a form of online advertising where the advertiser is charged based on the number of clicks the advert receives and hence the number of visitors to that website.
  • Promote
    • Sometimes referred to as ‘Boost’, it is a term frequently used when advertising on social media, involving pushing posts to users news feeds who are not followers of your page.
  • Permission Marketing
    • Marketing efforts based solely on getting the users to opt-in to any marketing messages, E.g. to sign-up to a newsletter.


  • Quality Score
    • A quality score is a ranking determined by Google to gauge the relevance of an advert and keyword to its linked webpage.


  • Reputation Management
    • Commonly associated with PR, reputation management is the control and maintenance of a company or brands reputation.
  • RSS Feed
    • An RSS feed is a form of personalised news feed, where users can add various websites feeds into one platform.
  • Referrals
    • A referral is where one website sends traffic to another website, by the use of a link.
  • Remarketing
    • Remarketing is a way of displaying targeted adverts to users who have previously visited a certain website or app and not converted.


  • Search Engine Optimisation
    • Search Engine Optimisation or SEO is the process of optimising a websites format and content to increase its ranking in search engine results. The use of relevant, updated content with keywords helps here.
  • Spiders
    • A spider is an internet bot which carries out the crawling of webpages, for the purpose of saving information and judging relevance.
  • Search Engines
    • A search engine is a website where users can search the web for specific keywords or phrases.
  • SERP
    • ‘SERP’ is the abbreviated version of ‘search engine results page’. It’s the list of results that a search engine displays for a query.


  • Twitter
    • Twitter is a social media platform where users can receive updates of people they follow in the form of a news feed, or ‘tweet’ content themselves.
  • Targeting
    • Targeting is the process of categorising groups of people and selecting a specific proportion to communicate marketing messages towards.
  • Two-Tier Affiliate Program
    • Where affiliate sites earn a commission on any sales that come from their site, as well as earning commissions from sales produced by other affiliates they have introduced to the program.


  • URL
    • URL or ‘Uniform Resource Locator’ is a website-specific address which is used to locate its content on a server. URLs are also used when linking to a site from an advert or other website.
  • Unique Visitors
    • A unique visitor is an individual user of a website, determined by their unique IP address. If the same computer is used to access a website more than once, it counts as only one unique visit.
  • Users
    • A user is the individual who is accessing and navigating the website.
  •  User Experience
    • User experience is a measure of how well the website delivers its content and how it is used. It incorporates everything about a website including navigation, engagement and ease of use.


  • Vlog
    • Vlogs are similar to blogs, however are produced in a video format with the ‘V’ meaning ‘video’. Frequently seen on video sharing sites such as YouTube, vlogs offer increased flexibility in content and visual creations.
  • Visitors
    • A visitor, similar to the term ‘unique visitor’, is the term for identifying the actual person who visits a website regardless of how often they visit.
  • Viral Marketing
    • When a piece of content goes ‘viral’, it means it has generated a large amount of impressions and has been shared many times within a short period.


  • Wiki
    • A wiki is a website or database which is developed collectively by a group of users, each adding individual content. A popular wiki website is Wikipedia which has millions of users adding content to the site on a daily basis.
  • Webinar
    • Webinar is a term which is a hybrid of the words ‘web’ and ‘seminar’. It is a seminar which is conducted over the internet and could involve multiple users at one time.
  • Webmaster Tools
    • Webmaster tools is a platform that allows users to analyse and improve the effectiveness of their SEO efforts. The platform allows for sites to be given a health rating, which is determined by its overall relevance and performance.


  • XML Sitemap
    • An XML Sitemap is a single XML file which lists URLs on a website that are ready for crawling. Submitted to search engines, it allows websites to be crawled and ranked more effectively.


  • YouTube
    • YouTube is the most common and used platform for sharing and viewing video online. It is owned by Google, incorporates HD streaming and allows customised user subscriptions. It is also the second largest search engine in the world!
  • YOY
    • YOY is an acronym for ‘year on year’, used when analysing or forecasting strategy results.


  • Zone File
    • A zone file is a list of processes used to convert a web domain name to an internet protocol address.
  • Zero Action
    • Similar to bounce rate, this occurs when a user makes no action when visiting a website. They do not click on any pages or attempt to navigate the site in any way.

Want to know more about digital marketing and how it can help your business? Get in touch.

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