Digital marketing terms and what they mean for you

Digital marketing terms are thrown around, often in acronym form. Definitions are often unwieldy and unnecessarily written in tech-speak. Here’s a rundown of some common digital marketing terms and what they mean in real terms for you.

You don’t need to be a digital marketing expert to make use of digital marketing tools, but an understanding of basic digital marketing terminology will help you make the most of the tools at your disposal. This isn’t an exhaustive list by any stretch of the imagination, but it will give you a good base to work with.

General digital marketing terms

  • Abandonment rate:Abandonment is a commonly tracked analytic that let you see how many people started a process but did not finish it. This could be people who put items in a trolley on an e-commerce site but don’t buy, someone who starts to fill a landscaping quote form but doesn’t submit etc.
  • Backlinks:A backlink is a way to appear authoritative on the web. It is when another website links back to yours. The authority and relevance of the site backlinking affect how beneficial this is to your business. If you are a gardening firm and have backlinks on gardening magazines, this is great, but if you are linked to by a toy company, this will look odd and may negatively affect your search engine placement.
  • Conversion rate: Your conversion rate is one of the most important tools in digital marketing as it shows whether what you are doing is worthwhile. It measures the ratio of people who complete an action, such as opening an email or clicking on a banner. Conversion rates can vary wildly depending on the action and your industry so do some homework to know whether you are performing well.
  • CTA (Call to Action):All good digital marketing content should include one clear CTA. Without it, your content lacks purpose. With too many, people will have decision fatigue and likely not act. Consider why you are creating each piece and end it strong with a call to get in touch, download a trial or purchase a good or service.
  • CTR (Click Through Rate): CTR is most often used as an indicator of success for email marketing or digital advertising. Like conversion rates, it can vary dramatically, so research what is standard in your industry before you take it to heart.
  • Lead Magnet: An asset given for free in exchange for addition to the mailing list. For more details.
  • SEO (Search Engine Optimisation): This is a big one. Search engines are now so vast that sites can get lost in the void. It may come as a surprise to find out “the void” is anywhere but the top five organic slots. Placement on search engines is essential and SEO is the process of optimizing your site, so it features higher up the rankings for a variety of relevant terms. For example, you may not score well under café (it’s far too broad) but “best café in Moncton” can be achievable. The process of SEO is complicated and often ongoing, so we shall go into specifics another day.
  • SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages): This is the technical name for the results you get when you type a term into a search engine. Nothing more, nothing less – just some unnecessary jargon!
  • SEM (Search Engine Marketing): Search Engine Marketing is the collective term for digital marketing practices that aim to increase a website’s search engine ranking. This includes SEO amongst others.

Email marketing

  • A/B testing: This is the process in which you send two (or more) variants of an email and see which is more effective. It may be as simple as a different title or a different image. Most email marketing apps such as Drip and MailChimp include A/B testing but it can also be done manually.
  • Funnels:A funnel is a series of steps that you walk the customer through in order to reach an end goal. For example, you may teach people over 4 weeks how to choose the best vintage fountain pen using examples your stock and then follow up with a timed offer if they choose to buy a pen from you.

Digital advertising

  • CPC (Cost Per Click):Digital advertising costs are often measured in CPC. Advertising is often free until somebody clicks on your ad, at which point you are charged for each click. It is then up to you to optimise your site, so your abandonment rate is low, and your ROI is high.
  • Geo-targeting: A method of targeting potential or repeat customers through tailoring to the customer’s location. This is often done by larger chains who have customers in many different countries, but you can also use it to run offers exclusive to those in Riverview but not Toronto.
  • Impression: When a digital ad is displayed to a user on social media or through ad apps, this is called an impression. Each impression is a time the ad has been seen. This stat isn’t affected by what people do so is best compared to CTR, allowing you to see how many people clicked on your ad and how many just ignored it.
  • PPC (Pay Per Click): Any advertising where you pay each time someone clicks on your ad. If this is your only advertising cost, it should be the same as your CPC.

Websites and pages

  • Landing page: A page either on your website or created through an app such as MailChimp that is a destination for people who have come from a specific action. For example, you may launch a special offer through your email newsletter where people can click to access their discount code, or you may have a “friends and family” package that you don’t want to make readily available. Often, landing pages contain links to the main site but contain exclusive information or incentives.
  • Long-tail keyword: SEO keywords come in two forms – long and short-tail. A short-tail keyword would be “best café” whereas a long-tail keyword would be “the best café that sells pizza”. Long-tail keywords can also be questions such as “where is the nearest café that sells pizza?”. Long-tail keywords are often easier to rank for because they are more specific.
  • Organic search: When you get your search engine results it will usually have some paid links at the top. All the remaining links are called organic results. They happened naturally, without additional advertising spend.
  • Schema mark-up: Your web developer will be able to help you with this one. It is a section of code installed on your website that helps search engines to read your site and categorize it correctly.
  • Tracking pixel: A snippet of HTML code, such as Facebook Pixel, that is added to your site to track data such as user behaviour and conversions.

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