The A-Z of Digital Marketing Jargon

SEO, PPC, content marketing, re-targeting… if you’re new to digital marketing, the sheer amount of terminology and phrases to get your head around can seem daunting at first. Don’t get left behind – here’s our comprehensive A-Z of the most popular terms to make sure you stay in the know!

AdWords Agency

An AdWords Agency is an agency that uses Google AdWords (Now Google Ads), a Pay Per Click (PPC) platform where advertisers bid to place their ad above the organic listings in the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs). Clever Marketing are an AdWords Agency.

Agile Marketing

Adidas using the 2014 tube strikes to advertise running trainers. Oreo jumping on the Super Bowl Blackout of 2013 with the slogan “you can still dunk in the dark”. These are both examples of agile marketing – brands quickly and relevantly responding to a current event for marketing purposes. There’s no limit to the opportunities on social media for real time marketing, which means a number of brands have been able to use this to their advantage.

Black Hat SEO

Practitioners of SEO can work “by the book” or they can use questionable techniques to try and rank web pages. “Black hat” SEO is the practice of using tricks that violate search engines’ terms of service. The term is allegedly a hat tip, pardon the pun, to western movies where the good guys wore white cowboy hats and the bad guys wore black hats. The marketing metaphor can also be seen as an acknowledgement tof Edward De Bono’s “Lateral Thinking for Management” from 1971.

Black hat SEO techniques include doorway pages, keyword stuffing, hidden text, hidden links etc.

Conversely, “white hat” SEO is the art of optimising websites using only methods inline with the search engines’ terms of service.

Additionally there is the practice of “grey hat” where SEO consultants will work within the Ts & Cs but attempt to use methods which skirt boundaries of acceptable practices.

The problem with black hat SEO techniques is that they can result in penalties and even bans from the search results. The best SEO companies will be totally transparent with their clients and apply only white SEO methods.

Big Data

One of the most ubiquitous marketing buzzwords of recent years, ‘Big Data’ simply refers to the amount of information about customers that companies now have available, which requires sophisticated and accurate systems to make sure it is correctly analysed.

Content Marketing

Content can be anything your business produces, from brochures to emails, while content marketing is the practice of creating and sharing that content with the purpose of attracting, informing and converting customers. The content marketing movement recognises the need to veer away from the dry, hard sell, and into more engaging, brand building territory.


A piece of data that a website stores on your browser when you visit. Cookies are useful for containing information such as your website preferences, like language, login, and browsing history, to improve your user experience. E.g. if you had to login to a website every time you visited within a 24 hour period, that wouldn’t be helpful. So the cookie remembers who you are and keeps your session open.

Cookies: First Party

Cookies that are provided directly from the website you visit.

Cookies: Third Party

Cookies provided from a source other than the website you are visiting. This has been common until 2024 when Google started phasing out third party cookie support.

Click Through Rate (CTR)

You’ll often hear digital marketers mention CTRs or click through rates. When you run an ad on PPC, then it’s good to know which ads are attracting the clicks, hence why you look to attain a high CTR.

Cost Per Acquisition (CPA)

Running PPC campaigns, you’ll always need to know how much you are spending to achieve a click or to gain a lead or a sale. Whatever your goals are in a Pay Per Click campaign, look for your CPA and work to try and drive this down. In a competitive arena, this can be hard work but with some good exploration, you should be able to find low cost, high traffic terms.

CPA Calculator

The simple formula that calculates the Cost Per Acquisition. The basic maths is: ad spend divided by conversions. So if you spent £1,000 on your PPC ad campaign and got 20 leads and half of those converted, your CPA would be £100.


Disruption is a term commonly used in the digital marketing space to refer to a technology that creates a wave of change – and along with it, a brand new market.

Experiential Marketing

Experiential marketing aims to create a more personal and memorable impression on a consumer by immersing them in a full, real time event. Remember the Lindt Easter Bunny hunt we talked about a couple of weeks ago? That’s a great example of experiential marketing.


Your online “findability” is how visible your site is to search engines.

Google Analytics

GA or Analytics is the most popular analytics tool on the planet. By setting up an account and installing a JavaScript in every page of your website, you can monitor all visits to your site – checking the keywords that attract visits, which channels work and which are your best performing pages.

Growth Hacking

This is another phrase which will earn you big points in a game of buzzword bingo. It simply refers to the way smaller companies are able to achieve significant growth and exposure through unconventional means and without big budgets.


Your website needs to be hosted to allow it be accessed over the internet. The term “hosting” means the way in which it’s stored on online servers.

Inbound Marketing

Inbound marketing is any activity which brings your company or brand to the attention of new customers through interesting and valuable content.


JavaScript is one of the world’s most common programming languages, used to create interactive effects within web browsers.


One of the cornerstones of modern SEO, keywords help search engines like Google to decide whether or not your website is relevant enough to serve up to a user. Deciding on your keywords and integrating them into your site is one way to make sure your site is as visible as possible online.

Landing Page

A landing page is a web page created solely for the purpose of driving traffic to it. They are an essential focus of inbound marketing, from a PPC campaign, email newsletter or social media campaign. Landing pages are also called lead capture pages, destination pages or even single property pages as they have one purpose – to convert. Landing pages are subject to the process of Conversion Rate Optimisation (CRO).

Link Building

Search engines also judge the quality and relevance of your site by your “back link profile” – that is, how many sites are talking about and linking back to you. The quality of the sites in question matters too – and you can be punished by Google algorithm updates for a poor or manufactured-looking back link profile.

Meta Description

The meta description is an important piece of HTML mark-up in your webpages. In the HTML <head> of your page, the meta description is, quite simply, a description of what your page is about. The meta description is useful for users as it is displayed in the Search Engine Results Pages and allows searchers to determine what you think your page is about so that they can decide whether they should click through.

The meta description length is the number of characters and is approximately 160 characters. This is the optimal meta description length, readable by humans in the SERPs and is one of the ranking factors that search engines use to determine where your page will appear in the results.


What with social media, online and print advertising, we now have more touch-points with potential customers than ever before. Building a strategy that plays to the strength of each department is known as multi-channel marketing.

Native Advertising

Content platforms such as LinkedIn and BuzzFeed publish a significant amount of articles per day. Some of these are sponsored by brands and used to promote their products, but it isn’t immediately obvious that they’ve been paid for. Creators of such content must strike the balance between keeping the article in the house style of that publication, while also making sure it fulfils its purpose as an advert.


Google NavBboost is a ranking factor that improves search results for navigation-oriented queries by analysing user click data. It essentially learns from past searches to understand what users typically find most helpful.

Organic Search

There are two main types of search: paid and organic. Organic search refers to web traffic that has come to your site through users entering search terms and keywords into a search engine such as Google, Bing, or DuckDuckGo, and clicking on the natural results not the paid, sponsored, or advertised results.

Paid Search

As opposed to organic search results, which naturally appear in the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs), paid results are those which advertisers pay to be listed, via PPC platforms such as Google Ads or Microsoft Advertising.


PPC (pay per click) is the other side of the SEO coin. It is the practice in which you pay a fee to the third party website where your ad is hosted whenever a user clicks on it.

PPC Agency

A digital marketing agency that specialise in PPC. Clever Marketing are a PPC Agency in Hampshire.

Responsive Web Design

Responsive web design (RWD) is a web design approach that makes websites adjust to fit any screen size, from desktops to mobile phones and tablets in between.


The process of using visitor data to then display follow-up display ads on ad networks. Can be extremely useful for reminding users they have items in an e-commerce site’s shopping cart, thus helping to avoid cart abandonment and increase conversion rates.


SEO (search engine optimisation) means building a website with Google and other search engines in mind. The main aim of a search engine is to offer up useful and relevant content to a user, so your site is assessed on a number of factors before it is ranked on your search results pages. Your position on these pages can seriously affect the amount of traffic you get to your site, and your revenue as a direct result.


Search Engine Results Pages are often abbreviated in the digital marketing industry to just SERPs. If you look up Clever Marketing Ltd you’ll see us in these SERPs for Bing and Google.


Unlike in the physical world, in the online space a lot of traffic is a good thing. Traffic basically refers to how many online users are finding and browsing your website.

User Experience

A positive user experience (UX) might be easy to understand navigation, full product information and a quick checkout. Adversely, a negative one would be a slow, unresponsive website and 404 errors.


Vine is was a social media platform from Twitter focused on the creation, distribution and sharing of short video clips.

Webmaster Tools

Webmaster Tools is a Microsoft product for its Bing search engine. It is a suite of diagnostic tools to help webmasters and marketers to analyse site visits, rankings, submit XML sitemaps etc. Google’s equivalent tool-set, Google Webmaster Tools was renamed Google Search Console (GSC).

White Hat SEO

The opposite of “black hat” SEO, white hat SEO is the technique of optimising web pages using only methods that comply with the search engines’ terms and conditions. White hat SEO consultants, like Hampshire’s Clever Marketing, follow best practices and do not risk penalties on clients’ websites through questionable techniques.

XML Sitemap

Think of a sitemap like a road-map of your website –  A regular sitemap shows all of the important, top-level pages on your site, as well as how they connect together. HTML Sitemaps are of benefit to website visitors and are well-presented and easy to read.

An XML sitemap is a machine-readable sitemap written in XML which is used by the search engines. Using Google Search Console (Formerly Google Webmaster Tools) website owners can submit their XML sitemaps to Google or, using Bing Webmaster Tools, make sure their web pages are crawled by Microsoft’s Bing search engine.

A typical XML sitemap consists of the URL of the page, post or item and the last date the page was modified. The “last mod.” data is really useful for webmasters to see where old content can be updated and refreshed. Renewed content can be resubmitted to the search engines to prompt fresh crawls and re-indexation.


With more than 1 billion active users, YouTube is one of the most popular and widely used social media networks in the world. Like Vine, it is a video sharing platform, but content tends to be longer and more immersive. The success of the channel has led to a number of YouTube stars, who make videos in their bedrooms but now rake in six figure salaries due to their value to big brands.

Zero Click Searches

A zero click search is a search in Google, Bing, or any other search engine that displays a result on the search engine results page itself, with enough information to satisfy a user, this resulting in no click-through to the website that provided the answer.

That search engines have been extracting data from websites and effectively displaying it as their own, has been a controversial move, with organic traffic to originating websites dropping as the search engines have benefited from this activity.

Clever Marketing - Digital Marketing Agency in Hampshire, Surrey and Berkshire. Have we missed anything in our A-Z of digital marketing? Do you need a better explanation of some digital marketing jargon?

We’ll be more than happy to guide you through the minefield of digital marketing jargon and can manage your accounts so you don’t have to deal with all the TLAs. Give us a call on 01276 402 381 or fill in our easy contact form and let us know.

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