SEO, SEM, PPC – the A to Z of digital jargon explained

There is a lot of jargon in digital marketing, so to help you understand what it’s all about, here are 22 of the most important jargon terms explained.

  1. Algorithm – this is a computer programme used by search engines like Google. It contains the rules those search engines use to rank websites on search results pages.
  2. Backlink – a backlink is when a third-party adds a clickable link on its website that links back to yours. When the third-party is a reputable website, Google regards the backlink as being like a vote of confidence in your site. In other words, backlinks help with SEO.
  3. Black Hat – this refers to SEO strategies that go against Google’s policies. They are sometimes referred to as spamming.
  4. Bounce Rate – this is a metric in Google Analytics. It is the percentage of people who visit your website but only look at one page before leaving.
  5. Conversion Rate – this is the percentage of people who convert into a sale or lead after visiting your website. You will often calculate conversion rate per advertising campaign, so you can measure return on investment.
  6. CPC – this stands for Cost Per Click. In PPC advertising, this is the average price you pay for each click on your ad.
  7. CPM – this stands for Cost Per Mille. Mille is the Latin word for thousand so it means cost per thousand. It is an alternative charging model to PPC. With CPM, you pay for every 1,000 views of your ad.
  8. CTA – this stands for Call To Action. It is a phrase on your website or ad that asks people to take the action you want them to. Examples include “Buy Now” or “Get Discount”.
  9. CTR – this stands for Click Through Rate. It is the percentage of people who click on your ad after seeing it.
  10. Email Marketing – this marketing strategy involves building a list of email subscribers and then sending periodic emails to them to promote your business, products, sales, or other events.
  11. Impression – this is the number of times your ad is viewed during an advertising campaign.
  12. Keyword – the phrases that people type into Google when doing a Google search. If you optimise your page and/or ad for the keywords that people use, you will be more likely to get clicks.
  13. Landing Page – the page that users click to from your ad. It is a crucial page for turning that user into a sale or lead.
  14. Long Tail Keyword – normal keywords are two to four words long. A long tail keyword is a phrase that people type into Google search that is longer than four words.
  15. Meta Description – when you look at a Google search results page, the two-line description of each website is the meta description. Optimising this for the relevant keyword can help with SEO.
  16. Organic Traffic – this is the traffic you get to your website that doesn’t come from ads. It can include non-paid traffic from Google, traffic from social media, etc.
  17. PPC – this stands for Pay Per Click. It is an online advertising model where you only pay when a user clicks on your ad. This means you don’t pay for ad views.
  18. Quality Score – Google AdWords works on an auction basis. That auction is based on the quality score of your ad plus your budget. A good quality score will normally mean a better position for your ad.
  19. Remarketing – this method of advertising involves displaying ads to people who have previously visited your website while they are browsing other sites on the internet.
  20. SEO – this stands for Search Engine Optimisation. It covers actions and strategies that optimise your website for Google and other search engines. The objective is to get your website higher up search results pages.
  21. SEM – this stands for Search Engine Marketing. It refers to paid advertising that promotes your website on search results pages. For example, AdWords would be part of an SEM strategy.
  22. SERP – this stands for Search Engine Results Page. It is the page Google displays to users after they search. It contains organic search results and can also contain paid results, local business results, videos, Google Shopping ads, and more.