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Common Digital Marketing Terms

Common Internet Marketing Acronyms Defined

  • Term
    Marketing Definition
  • B2B
    Business to Business

    Companies that market themselves to other businesses (vs. marketing directly toward consumers).

  • B2C
    Business to Consumer

    Companies that market themselves to consumers (vs. other businesses).

  • CRO
    Conversion Rate Optimization

    Typically used in reference to online marketing and website optimization. Conversion rate optimization is the process of making changes to your ads, marketing strategies or website with the goal of turning more viewers or visitors into conversions. What constitutes a “conversion” varies from company to company. A B2B company may say that a conversion has occurred when a website visitor downloads a case study, registers for a webinar or subscribes to an email newsletter. A B2C company will typically refer to an inquiry or lead as a conversion. Ecommerce websites might call an online sale a conversion. A common mistake made by many business owners is spending money to generate website traffic (via strategies like PPC, SEO, etc.), but not allocating any budget to improve their website’s conversion rate. You want traffic, but you need conversions!

  • PPC
    PPC – Pay Per Click

    Pay per click is one element of search engine marketing. Advertisers select and bid on keywords for which they would like their ad to appear when a query is performed on a search engine. The most common Pay per click platforms exist on Google (AdWords), Yahoo (Search Marketing) and Bing (Microsoft AdCenter). + Learn more – additional PPC terms and definitions

  • PPL
    PPL – Pay Per Lead

    Pay per lead advertising is self-explanatory. Most home service businesses have heard of Service Magic. This is a popular pay per lead campaign where the publisher (Service Magic) pays to generate the leads and then sells them to (multiple) advertisers. Some pay per lead platforms sell the same lead to multiple companies (like Service Magic) while others are exclusive to one advertiser.

  • ROI
    ROI – Return on Investment

    The percentage of profit or revenue derived from a particular advertising or marketing campaign / strategy. Broadly speaking, small medium sized businesses are best served using profit (vs. revenue) and focusing additional marketing budget on the advertising strategies with a positive ROI (those generating profit in excess of the advertising cost). NOTE: It is impossible to calculate an accurate ROI for advertising if you are not accurately tracking your advertising results!

  • ROAS
    ROAS – Return on Ad Spend

    Related to ROI, ROAS is the revenue generated per dollar spent. ROAS can be a useful metric when you want to compare the performance of two different advertising strategies. Cost per lead can be misleading. Suppose one Yellow Page ad has a cost per lead of $90 and the other has a cost per lead of $50, but the YP ad with the $90 cost per lead generates $700 jobs while the ad with the $50 cost per lead generates $300 jobs. Alternatively, what if one advertising strategy generates leads that convert to sales at a much higher rate? In both of these cases, calculating the ROAS would be helpful for determining which ad is actually more effective.

  • SEO
    SEO – Search Engine Optimization

    The process of changing your website’s code, structure, on-page and off-page content in a way that allows search engines to more easily find, index and rank your site relative to your competitors. Search engine optimization is typically thought of as a search engine marketing strategy (along with pay per click). For example, if someone searches for Maryland SEO companies, the companies that come up organically have invested years in optimizing their websites for this particular search term (whether it’s the right term or not is another issue!). + Learn more about SEO – Read our SEO FAQs

  • SEM
    SEM – Search Engine Marketing

    At the end of the day, each page of search results on Google, Yahoo, Bing and the other search engines is real estate. As a business owner, you want to maximize yours – more search engine real estate equals more (qualified) visitors, leads and sales! Search engine marketing is the process of increasing your search engine real estate using tactics such as SEO, PPC and Local Optimization (ex. adding your business to Google maps).

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