Paid Search Glossary


Do you know the difference between Google Ads and Microsoft Ads? How about CTR vs CTA? Have you got negative keywords set up?

Find out all the jargon used in paid search by browsing through our Paid Search Glossary.

The glossary is being updated all the time. If you think there is anything missing, please get in touch to let us know at justin@theonlineadvertisingguide.com

Please note: The below contains acronyms, abbreviations, synonyms, and terms related to paid search.

If you’re looking for something specific, we recommend you use the search box.

 

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  • 3rd Party Cookies
    Commonly used for analytics and conversion tracking, these are cookies that are not created by...   Learn More >
  • ABM
    Account-Based Marketing (ABM) is a highly-tailored marketing strategy that targets a specific...   Learn More >
  • Accelerated Delivery
    In ad platforms, this is an option to specify that ads should be delivered as soon as possible....   Learn More >
  • Account-Based Marketing
    Account-Based Marketing (ABM) is a highly-tailored marketing strategy that targets a specific...   Learn More >
  • Acquisition
    In online advertising, an acquisition means a purchase. It is most commonly used as the A in CPA...   Learn More >
  • Ad Agency
    What is an Ad Agency? An Ad Agency is a company that handles other companies marketing work,...   Learn More >
  • Ad Campaign
    An Ad Campaign refers to a set ads which are designed to run together.
  • Ad Extensions
    In Google Ads, Ad Extensions are extra bits that can be added to search ads. These include phone...   Learn More >
  • Ad Impression
    What is an Ad Impression? An ad impression is one successful ad call - one ad loading on a...   Learn More >
  • Ad Platform
    An Ad Platform is a generic term meaning the product a company uses to serve advertising....   Learn More >
  • Ad Pricing Model
    An ad pricing model is the way in which an advertiser pays for advertising, such as on a CPM,...   Learn More >
  • Advertise
    To advertise is the process of drawing attention to a something (such as a product, service or...   Learn More >
  • Advertiser
    An advertiser is a person or company who pays for any form of advertising.
  • Advertising Rate
    Before you can work out how much money your site will make, you have to understand the different...   Learn More >
  • AdWords
    AdWords is an Ad Platform from Google. It is a place where advertisers can run ad campaigns...   Learn More >
  • Analytics
    The measurable statistics of a website or an ad campaign (such as impressions). Typically...   Learn More >
  • Analytics Platform
    A provider of website analytics such as Google Analytics.
  • Auction
    An auction in digital marketing refers to the process of how an advertising platform decides...   Learn More >
  • Behavioural Segmentation
    Behavioural Segmentation is the process of splitting people by their activity (or lack of...   Learn More >
  • Bing Ads
    Microsoft’s answer to Google Ads, Bing Ads is where you can run search ads on the Bing search...   Learn More >
  • Broad Match
    When targeting keywords in Google Ads for paid search, broad match means inputting the keywords...   Learn More >
  • Broad Match Modifier
    Broad Match Modifier was a keyword match type that was retired by Google on 18th February 2021....   Learn More >
  • CamelCase
    Also known as Title Case. Camel Case Means Capitalising Every Word In a Sentence. This is used...   Learn More >
  • Click
    What is a Click? When it comes to online advertising, a click refers to a user clicking on an...   Learn More >
  • Click-Through Rate
    What does CTR mean? CTR stands for Click-Through Rate. It is the percentage of clicks on a link...   Learn More >
  • Conversion
    What is a Conversion? Conversion is the generic term used for an action or acquisition...   Learn More >
  • Conversion Pixel
    A conversion pixel is a 3rd party piece of code placed on a website that allows an advertiser or...   Learn More >
  • Conversion Rate
    The Conversion Rate (CR) of a campaign is the number of conversions achieved per click. It is...   Learn More >
  • Converted
    In online advertising, a converted user is someone who has seen or clicked on an ad and...   Learn More >
  • Cost
    Cost is a catch-all term in online advertising that refers to budget or payment. It is used...   Learn More >
  • Cost Per Acquisition
    What does CPA mean? The CPA price is the amount that gets paid when an ad leads to a sale (or...   Learn More >
  • Cost Per Click
    What does CPC mean? The Cost Per Click price is the amount paid every time a user clicks on an...   Learn More >
  • Cost Per Lead
    What does CPL mean? The CPL price means that every time the advertiser gets a lead (a potential...   Learn More >
  • Cost Per Thousand
    What does CPM mean? CPM is an ad pricing model used to buy advertising space, most commonly for...   Learn More >
  • CPA
    What does CPA mean? The CPA price is the amount that gets paid when an ad leads to a sale (or...   Learn More >
  • CPC
    What does CPC mean? The Cost Per Click price is the amount paid every time a user clicks on an...   Learn More >
  • CPL
    What does CPL mean? The CPL price means that every time the advertiser gets a lead (a potential...   Learn More >
  • CPM
    What does CPM mean? CPM is an ad pricing model used to buy advertising space, most commonly for...   Learn More >
  • CR
    The Conversion Rate (CR) of a campaign is the number of conversions achieved per click. It is...   Learn More >
  • Cross-Device Conversion
    A way of measuring when someone visits a website on one device, but then only completes a...   Learn More >
  • CTR
    What does CTR mean? CTR stands for Click-Through Rate. It is the percentage of clicks on a link...   Learn More >
  • Dayparting
    Dayparting refers to optimising by the hour of the day (splitting a day into parts).
  • Demographic Segmentation
    Demographic Segmentation refers to splitting up an audience by their demographics. This is...   Learn More >
  • Demographics
    Demographics are factors such as age, race, gender, sex, location which are often used to break...   Learn More >
  • Device Targeting
    Device targeting is the process of making ads deliver on a specific type of computer - be it...   Learn More >
  • Discrepancy
    Discrepancy Definition Discrepancy means an unexpected (or unexplainable) difference between...   Learn More >
  • Dogfooding
    A phrase referring to the idea of Dog Food makers should test their own dog food (presumably on...   Learn More >
  • Downweight
    Downweight is a term used when optimising ads. It means reducing the appearance of an ad on...   Learn More >
  • Duck Duck Go
    A search engine with a focus on privacy in that it doesn't personalise results, and doesn't...   Learn More >
  • eCommerce
    eCommerce refers to buying or selling goods or services online, as well as online transactions....   Learn More >
  • eCommerce Conversion
    An online sale. A subset of conversion in general, which don't have to be sales or money related...   Learn More >
  • eCommerce Conversion Rate
    The conversion rate of online sales (as opposed to other types of conversions).
  • ECPC
    In Google Ads, ECPC stands for Enhanced Cost Per Click and is a setting where clicks are...   Learn More >
  • Enhanced Cost Per Click
    In Google Ads, ECPC stands for Enhanced Cost Per Click and is a setting where clicks are...   Learn More >
  • Enhanced Tracking Protection
    The way in which Firefox blocks all third-party cookies automatically, making analytics and...   Learn More >
  • ETP
    The way in which Firefox blocks all third-party cookies automatically, making analytics and...   Learn More >
  • Even Delivery
    In ad platforms, this is an option to specify that ads should be delivered evenly as possible...   Learn More >
  • Exact Match
    When targeting keywords in Google Ads for paid search, exact match means inputting the keywords...   Learn More >
  • FC
    What is a Frequency Cap? A frequency cap is a limit to the number of times each user sees an...   Learn More >
  • Fear Of Missing Out
    An acronym that stands for Fear Of Missing Out, which refers to the idea that people always...   Learn More >
  • Federated Learning of Cohorts
    FLoC was a way of tracking people for advertising purposes (both targeting and conversion...   Learn More >
  • FLoC
    FLoC was a way of tracking people for advertising purposes (both targeting and conversion...   Learn More >
  • FOMO
    An acronym that stands for Fear Of Missing Out, which refers to the idea that people always...   Learn More >
  • Freemium
    A service that has a basic version that is free to use, but for which a premium version of the...   Learn More >
  • Frequency
    What does Frequency mean? In online advertising, frequency refers to how often an ad appears to...   Learn More >
  • Frequency Cap
    What is a Frequency Cap? A frequency cap is a limit to the number of times each user sees an...   Learn More >
  • GA
    Google Analytics is one of the most commonly used providers of web statistics. It's free and...   Learn More >
  • Geo-Targeting
    In Digital Marketing, Geo-Targeting means aiming content (an ad, webpage etc) at a particular...   Learn More >
  • Google
    Google is the largest and most popular search engine. They also have a wide range of...   Learn More >
  • Google Ads
    Formerly known as Google AdWords (the name changed in 2018). Google Ads is one of the largest...   Learn More >
  • Google Analytics
    Google Analytics is one of the most commonly used providers of web statistics. It's free and...   Learn More >
  • Google Tag Manager
    Google Tag Manager is an efficient way of dynamically managing tagging on a website from Google....   Learn More >
  • Growth Engine
    The mechanism that makes a startup grow in a sustainable fashion. This can often mean a...   Learn More >
  • GTM
    Google Tag Manager is an efficient way of dynamically managing tagging on a website from Google....   Learn More >
  • Head Keyword
    Keywords that are one or two words long (usually less than 15 characters in total), which...   Learn More >
  • Impression
    What does Impression mean? Impression means when something (usually content, an ad or post) is...   Learn More >
  • Impression Share
    Impression Share is a metric in Google Ads. It is the percentage of impressions that your ads...   Learn More >
  • Insertion Order
    An IO is an Insertion Order which in online advertising is the contract that provides the...   Learn More >
  • IO
    An IO is an Insertion Order which in online advertising is the contract that provides the...   Learn More >
  • Keyword
    A keyword means something that is entered into a search engine. They can be targeted by Paid...   Learn More >
  • Keyword Targeting
    Keyword targeting is the process of targeting marketing activities at specific sets of useful...   Learn More >
  • Keywords Everywhere
    A plugin for Google Chrome that provides keyword suggestions for free within search results. You...   Learn More >
  • KISS
    An acronym standing for Keep It Simple Stupid. KISS is a sort of pseudo-ethos that advocates for...   Learn More >
  • Landing Page
    The page where a person enters a website (ie the page they "land on"). In online advertising,...   Learn More >
  • Last Click
    Sometimes referred to as Last Touch, this is the most common type of attribution for conversions...   Learn More >
  • Lead
    A potential customer, or a way to get in touch with a potential customer (eg email address,...   Learn More >
  • Lead Generation
    Lead generation (or Lead Gen) is the gathering of potential customers' contact information and...   Learn More >
  • Lifetime Value
    LTV (often called Customer Lifetime Value or CLTV) is an attempt at predicting the amount of...   Learn More >
  • Long Tail Keyword
    Multiple word keywords which really define the company targeting it.  These keywords have low...   Learn More >
  • Long-Tail
    The Long Tail refers to the vast majority of websites that get comparatively little traffic, but...   Learn More >
  • Low Hanging Fruit
    Low hanging fruit is an expression that means the easiest things to do. For example, the low...   Learn More >
  • LTV
    LTV (often called Customer Lifetime Value or CLTV) is an attempt at predicting the amount of...   Learn More >
  • Metrics
    Metrics are measurable statistics that are used in digital marketing to improve performance such...   Learn More >
  • Microsoft
    A technology company founded by Bill Gates. Microsoft makes a wide variety of the software...   Learn More >
  • MS
    A technology company founded by Bill Gates. Microsoft makes a wide variety of the software...   Learn More >
  • Multi-Touch Attribution
    Sometimes referred to as multi-channel attribution, this is a way of attributing conversions...   Learn More >
  • Navigational Search Query
    A search aimed at finding a specific website or webpage. While these searches generate a lot of...   Learn More >
  • Negative Keyword
    Keywords which are targeted away from as opposed to target towards. For example, an airline...   Learn More >
  • Non-Organic Traffic
    Non-Organic Traffic means traffic that has been paid for. This would include users on a site who...   Learn More >
  • Optimising
    What does optimising mean? Optimising means making changes to improve performance. It is a...   Learn More >
  • Outbound Marketing
    Outbound marketing means marketing activities where you go out and try and find customers. For...   Learn More >
  • Paid Media
    Paid Media refers to any advertising you have to pay for. This includes PPC or Display Ads,...   Learn More >
  • Paid Search
    What Does Paid Search Mean? Paid Search refers to ads placed in search engines above 'organic'...   Learn More >
  • Pay Per Click
    Pay Per Click (or PPC) is another way to say CPC (which stands for Cost Per Click). It is a type...   Learn More >
  • Phrase Match
    When targeting keywords in Google Ads for paid search, phrase match means inputting the keywords...   Learn More >
  • Pixel
    A pixel is what makes up the images displayed on your computer. They are minute dots of colour,...   Learn More >
  • Platform
    A platform is a generic term that means a computer/server which does something. An Ad Platform...   Learn More >
  • Post-Click Conversion
    A Post-Click Conversion, or PC Conversion is when a user converts after a click. This click can...   Learn More >
  • Post-Click Window
    The Post Click Window, or PC Window, is the amount of time after a user has clicked on an ad and...   Learn More >
  • Post-Impression Conversion
    A Post-Impression Conversion or PI Conversion is when a user buys a product after seeing an...   Learn More >
  • Post-Impression Window
    The Post Impression Window, or PI Window, is the amount of time after a user has viewed an ad...   Learn More >
  • PPC
    Pay Per Click (or PPC) is another way to say CPC (which stands for Cost Per Click). It is a type...   Learn More >
  • Quality Score
    Quality Score is a metric that Google Ads (formerly AdWords) uses to work out whether they...   Learn More >
  • Quarter
    A quarter is a three month reporting period (as in a quarter of the year). There are four...   Learn More >
  • Responsive Ads
    A type of text ad in Google Ads where you can add multiple different headlines and descriptions,...   Learn More >
  • Return On Ad Spend
    What is ROAS? Return On Ad Spend (ROAS) is a metric used in online advertising to calculate how...   Learn More >
  • Return On Investment
    What is an ROI? ROI stands for Return on Investment and means the amount of money you get back...   Learn More >
  • Revenue
    The total amount of money taken in by a person or company, before any expenses (such as taxes...   Learn More >
  • RFP
    An acronym standing for Request For Proposal. This is what is put out when an organisation is...   Learn More >
  • RLSA
    An acronym standing for Retargeting List for Search Ads. It is a feature in Google Ads to target...   Learn More >
  • ROAS
    What is ROAS? Return On Ad Spend (ROAS) is a metric used in online advertising to calculate how...   Learn More >
  • ROI
    What is an ROI? ROI stands for Return on Investment and means the amount of money you get back...   Learn More >
  • SaaS
    A business model where users are charged a subscription fee for using software as opposed to a...   Learn More >
  • SEA
    SEA is a rarely used acronym that stands for Search Engine Advertising. It is generally referred...   Learn More >
  • Search Engine
    A search engine is a website that attempts to index all websites and then allows users to search...   Learn More >
  • Search Engine Advertising
    SEA is a rarely used acronym that stands for Search Engine Advertising. It is generally referred...   Learn More >
  • Search Engine Marketing
    Search Engine Marketing (or SEM) is a type of marketing where you focus on improving the...   Learn More >
  • Search Engine Results Page
    SERP stands for Search Engine Results Page. A SERP is a webpage loaded by a search engine in...   Learn More >
  • Search Query
    The actual words used in a search engine by a user. Contrasts to keywords, which are groups of...   Learn More >
  • Search Ranking
    Search Ranking refers to how high up in search results a website appears for a certain term on...   Learn More >
  • Segmentation
    Segmentation can take place in any form of digital marketing, and simply involves breaking...   Learn More >
  • SEM
    Search Engine Marketing (or SEM) is a type of marketing where you focus on improving the...   Learn More >
  • SERP
    SERP stands for Search Engine Results Page. A SERP is a webpage loaded by a search engine in...   Learn More >
  • SERPs Domination
    SERPs Domination is when a single website is returned for all the results on the first page for...   Learn More >
  • Software as a Service
    A business model where users are charged a subscription fee for using software as opposed to a...   Learn More >
  • Split Testing
    A way of testing whether one thing is better than another. For example, you could split test two...   Learn More >
  • SWOT
    An acronym standing for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats. SWOT is used to start...   Learn More >
  • Third-Party Cookies
    Cookies that are dropped onto a person's computer when visiting a website that are not from the...   Learn More >
  • Tracking Links
    A hyperlink that is designed to be easily trackable, often by adding UTM parameters, or else by...   Learn More >
  • Traffic
    Traffic in online advertising is a catch-all term for visitors to a site (the online equivalent...   Learn More >
  • Trafficking
    Trafficking in online advertising is the process of uploading, troubleshooting, managing,...   Learn More >
  • Troubleshooting
    The process of systematically testing for, finding and fixing problems (such as broken ads,...   Learn More >
  • Underdelivery
    When an ad campaign does not fulfil the specified amount of impressions/clicks/conversions etc.
  • Uniform Resource Locator
    The web address of a website or webpage. For example, the address of this website is...   Learn More >
  • Unique Selling Point
    An acronym standing for Unique Selling Point. This is a concept based around how a...   Learn More >
  • Unoptimised
    If something is unoptimized, it has not had any efforts put in to improve its performance.
  • Upweight
    An Upweight in online advertising is a term to do with optimising ad campaigns. It means when a...   Learn More >
  • Urchin Tracking Module
    UTM parameters are 5 tracking parameters you can add to the end of a URL which can be read by...   Learn More >
  • URL
    The web address of a website or webpage. For example, the address of this website is...   Learn More >
  • USP
    An acronym standing for Unique Selling Point. This is a concept based around how a...   Learn More >
  • UTM
    UTM parameters are 5 tracking parameters you can add to the end of a URL which can be read by...   Learn More >
  • Value For Money
    What Does VfM Mean? If you are unable to track conversions for your ad campaign, there is a...   Learn More >
  • VfM
    What Does VfM Mean? If you are unable to track conversions for your ad campaign, there is a...   Learn More >