There’s tons of phrases, abbreviations and acronyms associated with digital marketing, specifically PPC. Knowing all these terms can be difficult and remembering each one is near impossible. This list is designed to be a helpful resource for advertisers to reference when discussing pay per click. See something missing from the list? Please let us know.
Typically this is done with two separate landing pages (see below) to determine which one performs better. Testing can be tracked with software such as Unbounce or done manually with Google Analytics.
Account Health Score for Search
This measures how well your Search Network campaigns are running and will provide feedback on how to improve it. This can be found within the Opportunities tab of Google AdWords, there it will provide recommendations to the user which can help increase the performance of the campaign.
This term refers to the featured text of an advertisement that is clickable, in our case, a pay per click ad. The text within the ad copy will typically display within the second or third lines of the ad being displayed within the search results. Writing effective ad copy can influence how users interact with the ad and ultimate convert.
These additional incentives are added to ads to give users options when clicking and converting. Types of ad extensions are mentioned throughout the article, and some of these include adding a company’s phone number, links to other pages on the site, and an address to the brick and mortar store. Find out how AdWords extensions can help increase conversions to your site.
Each campaign is made up of ad groups, where keywords, ads, and bids are set. Each campaign will have a minimum of one ad group and these ad groups help advertisers organize their overall campaign. For instance, having related landing pages or keywords is how an advertisers would group their ads. If you have a shoe store you would not want ads showing in one ad group for both children’s athletic shoes and adult running socks.
Where your ad is being displayed within the search results refers to ad position. If your ad is being displayed in position 1 it will show at the top of the page and be the first one a user sees. Remember, position 1 does not mean position 1 for organic listing, rather position 1 for the paid advertising. Ad position can drastically affect your click thru rate, by being in a higher position the more likely users are to see your ad and click. However, this position does come with a price.
If you have multiple ads setup on an ad group your ads will rotate since only one ad will show from an account at a time. There are multiple settings a user can set including optimize for clicks, conversions, or rotate evenly.
- The optimize option utilizes signals such as keyword, device, location, etc to prioritize ads that perform better.
- The rotate indefinitely setting will place ads evenly into auction for an infinite amount of time and will not optimize the ads. Since it allows lower performing ads to run just as often as ads performing well it’s not recommended for most advertisers.
This setting allows for advertisers to set a specific time frame for their ads to show. Specific days of the week and times of the day can allow for ads to only be shown at the chosen time. This means you can restrict your ads showing at times when your audience are not active. For example, if you offer a commercial tax software you may not want to show ads on the weekend.
AdSense compensates websites that host ads related to content on the website. The site owner will create an AdSense account, copy and paste a particular code into the website, then Google will show ads on the site. The site owner does not have the ability to manage the ads, yet Google shows ads related to the site’s content.
This free, downloadable program allows for advertisers to manage multiple campaigns and make bulk edits at a time. The changes can be done offline and then uploaded when the user decides. Download Google AdWords Editor.
Google Analytics is a free service that allows for marketers to monitor and track metrics related to websites. The tool allows advertisers to see how paid traffic interacted on the site, monitoring visitors, bounce rate, conversions, revenue, and much more.
This extension allows for advertisers to link their ads to their app. Users can click either the headline to go to the site, or on a link which will take the user to the app. One ad can get users to both the site and the app, generating traffic and downloads.
When referring to an audience within PPC this is defined as customers who fit specific niches. Identifying your audience can help display ads to users who are most likely to purchase your item or services. For instance, if your products are targeted for women between the age of 20-40 you can set this within you ad settings. Identifying the targeted audience is not always as simple as the example above. Before creating any campaigns your team should sit down and determine who you are targeting.
Setting bids to automatic bidding allows for bids to be automated, which will help get the most out of your budget. Worried about going over your bid amount? Set the cost per click bid limit to ensure you don’t exceed a particular price for each click.
Automatically adjust ad statuses, budgets, and bids to make monitoring campaigns easier. Manually monitoring campaigns can take time that can be allocated elsewhere. These automated rules can be fine tuned to fit a company’s goals and expectations.
Average Cost Per Click (Avg. CPC)
This calculation is the average price you are charged when a user clicks on the ad. It is calculated by dividing the total cost of your clicks by the total number of clicks. This average will be different for different industries, keywords, and positions. There are a number of ways to decrease the average CPC including, trying different landing pages, lowering bids, and using different match types are a few.
Where the ad displays within the search results is the average position. For best results the average position should be close to the number 1, this means the ad is showing in the first position. See Ad Position
The maximum amount of money an advertiser will spend to have a user click on their ad.
There are three different bidding types and each business will be focused on a different one. Clicks, impressions, and conversions are the three bidding types. Determining which one to go after will depend on the campaign and client. The reports that follow will be focused on one of these bidding types.
Paid ads that show within the Bing and Yahoo search engine are referred to as Bing ads. This allows advertisers to reach larger audiences outside of Google, although Google is the more popular search engine.
This percentage is based on the number of users who enter the site and immediately leave before visiting any additional pages. Reducing a site’s bounce rate can be done with some time and effort, which will help increase conversions and the user experience.
A branded keyword is a keyword that is associated with the name of the company or business. For a company like ours a branded keyword would be “Adficient”. There may be add ons to the keyword that are called brand-plus keywords that may look like brand keywords + product name, or +sale, or +coupon.
The matching option available in AdWords allows for targeted keywords, and variations of the keyword (including misspellings) to show your ad when the keywords are searched. In other words if a user searches the term “all mountain snowboards” they may be shown an ad related to “snowboards for all mountain types”.
Broad Match Modifier
By adding a + symbol to the beginning of a keyword, Google will know to show ads to keywords that are related to yours. Users must add it to one or more keywords, showing Google which keywords to show. An example would be using these two keywords “mens +shoes” which would show ads for users who searched,
- Running shoes for men
- Leather shoes
- Buy mens sneakers
It will not show an ad for a user who searched “mens tshirts”. The tool helps advertisers get their ad in front of more users without the exact term being searched.
Another example of a broad match modifier and how it can be helpful. Users are searching phrases such as “find a hotel in Denver”, “cheap hotels in Denver”, or “book a hotel in Denver online”. The two most common terms in the searches are Denver and Hotel.
A campaign’s budget is what the business would like to spend on advertising. Each campaign has a daily budget that can be set by the user. Although keep in mind your daily budget may be set to a specific number it may exceed that number. AdWords will adjust the numbers each day depending on different metrics.
A set of ad groups, which contain keywords, bids, and ads, and share a budget and other settings is a campaign. An AdWords account can have one or more campaigns running at any given time.
A part of AdWord’s extension which allows for advertisers to show the phone number of the business within the ad. When users see this number on a mobile device they can simply click the number and immediately call the business.
When a user sees the ad within the search results and moves from the results to the company this is registered as a click. Clicks to the site are great, however, cannot measure the overall success of the campaign. If users are clicking the ad to the site then immediately leaving (see bounce rate) then changes to the ads and site need to be done.
Click Thru Rate (CTR)
The number of clicks an ad receives divided by the number of times the ad appears (impressions) calculates the click thru rate. A high CTR shows that the ads are being engaging to users and the page they are landing on are relevant to the ads and keywords.
Once a user clicks on an ad, moves to the site, and completes an action it is registered as a conversion. A conversion can be different from site to site, for instance some may be a form fill out, an item purchased, or a phone call.
The percentage of of visitors who end up “converting” on the site divided by the number of clicks the ad receives generates the conversion rate.
This small file is saved to a user’s computer to help load websites along with gather information. Search engines use this information to help show retargeting ads to users who have visited a particular site or searched a term previously.
Cost Per Acquisition (CPA)
The cost it takes to get a user to convert on a site is defined as the CPA. It’s determined by the advertising cost, divided by the conversions. This gives companies an idea of how much needs to be spent to have a user convert on the site. Businesses need to monitor this number and always working to lower their CPA.
Cost Per Click (CPC)
Similar to CPA, however, this cost is covered by what it costs to get a user to click an ad.
When jumping into AdWords it can be difficult to digest all the data that’s available. Data filters allow for users to sort through specific metrics to only see data that interests them. If a company is looking to see how long users are staying on the site they can remove certain metrics and add in time on site.
Default Max CPC
This is set at the ad group level and shows the maximum amount an advertiser is willing to pay for a click. This number will change from each ad group depending on competition and AdWords will set its own recommended default max CPC.
This section of the ad is two separate lines that appear underneath the headline and reinforce the ad. The two 35 character length fields help users describe what the page in which the user will be visiting. Descriptions should be accurate and give users an idea of exactly what information the page holds.
The destination URL refers to the URL where traffic will end up after clicking your ads. This is often different than the display URL (see below) and will always direct users to the same domain as the displayed URL.
There are three device types users will see PPC ads on, desktop/laptop, mobile, and tablet. Within AdWords and analytics marketers can see what devices users are using to click, and visit, the website. Additionally, advertisers can opt to display ads for only one type of device if they would like.
This tab, which can be accessed in different levels from campaign to ad group, lets advertisers view data based on selected metrics. Users can views statistics that range from geographic region, day, hour, or month. The table can be customized to fit the details required by the advertiser.
Millions of websites, videos, and apps where ads can appear is defined as the display network. Google and Bing have compiled a huge network of places where ads may appear, compared to limiting it to just search results. These ads are typically displayed as images.
Rather than the destination URL (see above) which points users to a specific landing page, the display URL is what users see in the ad. The ad may link to a URL that appears like the following https://www.example.com/products/small/widgets yet the display URL may look similar to www.example.com/smallwidgets. It’s short, simple, and shows users what they are clicking on. The URLs should represent both the ad headline, description and what items or content is on the page.
Dynamic Ad Targeting
Matching relevant searches with ads generated directly from your website automatically is dynamic ad targeting. These are the easiest ways to reach consumers who are searching for a precise deal or offer. By not utilizing these types of ads websites may miss out on relevant searches, or experience delays getting ads written for new products.
Each time a new keyword, ad, or extension is submitted to Google AdWords it goes through editorial review. This is done to ensure the guidelines and policies of Google are being met. The ads must be easy to interact with, professional in appearance, clear, and send users to content that is relevant to what they clicked on.
Exact match will only show your ads if the exact term is typed into Google. This option is often used to increase the relevance of the ad or if you want the ad to reach a specific customers. The exact match keywords are displayed within brackets like so [exact match].
These are ads that are under review by Google, yet may still appear within the search results. The ads are often reviewed within 1 business day, so an ad will typically only have the status of eligible for a short time. If a user has SafeSearch filtering turned on then these ads will not show to them.
Facebook advertising has become more and more popular over the years as more and more people continue to join the site. With over 1 billion users the social network allows for advertisers to focus on specific demographics, making sure ads reach a targeted audience. Facebook continues to reveal different types of ads and how they are displayed to users.
Facebook Exchange (FBX)
This is Facebook’s retargeting approach. As a user visits a website, looks at items or products, but does not convert they are then targeted on Facebook. The third-party site will pay for Facebook to show a specific item or product to the user as they use the social network in the hopes of convincing them to finish the checkout process.
First Page Bid Estimate
This approximate number is the suggested minimum bid an advertiser should pay to show their ad on page one of the Google search results. The bid estimate is based on each keyword’s quality score (see below) and competition from others. If you notice the first page bid estimate is very high the quality score of the keyword may be low and needs improvement. To find the first page bid estimate check the column “Est. first page bid” in the keyword table.
Great for local businesses, geotargeting targets users who are searching in a specific location. This allows for advertisers to show ads to only people in a certain location. No point in showing your gym in Phoenix to users who are in Buffalo.
The platform used to show ads within Google’s search results. Users pay per click for allowing their site to show above the organic results. The dashboard allows for keyword research, ad creation, reports, bid and budget setting, and much more.
This free reporting tool offered through Google allows for site owners and marketers to monitor traffic, conversions, revenue and more. The tool is excellent for reporting and viewing how users are interacting on the site in real-time. Every active website on the web should be utilizing the tool.
Google Forwarding Phone Number
For many businesses they may have one phone number that shows on multiple advertising platforms, for instance, billboards or tv. Advertisers can utilize a Google forwarding phone number which allows tracking from AdWords campaigns. The forwarding number allows users to see phone calls are coming from a specific marketing campaign, such as AdWords.
Google Merchant Center
This tool allows for advertisers to upload product listings and feeds which are used on Google Shopping.
A section of Google’s search, this is where customers can compare different products based on price, shopping, and features. The products are uploaded into Google Merchant Center and within AdWords advertisers will set the budget, manage bids, and create the ads.
With Google Display Network these ads will show images and graphics which help promote the business and products. Different image types are available such as static, animated, or flash.
Each time a user sees your ad it is registered as an impression. Impressions are used to calculate other metrics such as click thru rate.
Click fraud happens when illegitimate or unintentional clicks happen on an ad. This can happen with malicious or spammy software developed to run through a competitor’s budget.
Key Performance Indicator (KPI)
This measurable value helps show a business how well they are achieving key objectives. Companies will set KPIs which are used to evaluate the performance of specific campaigns. Selecting the correct KPIs will change from business to business and industry to industry. Tracking your KPIs can be done with multiple tools and tracking software which will help show how they are performing.
These specific words are added to an ad group which will tell Google which will be associated with specific groups. Keywords should represent the website’s services or products and specifically each landing page the user lands on.
Keyword Match Type
Allowing advertisers to select how similar the keyword needs to match to a user’s search query to see your ad. Keyword types include broad, modified broad, phrase, exact and negative match types. Advertisers also have the ability to specify if the exact match terms want to show plurals, negative keywords, or misspellings.
Researching keywords to determine search volume, difficulty level, bid prices, etc is part of the process of developing a keyword list. Research needs to be conducted to ensure the proper keywords are being utilized. By selecting keywords that are highly competitive and expensive a campaign may run through it’s budget quickly without netting conversions.
Google offers a free keyword planning tool which provides a number of metrics that allow for marketers to select the proper terms. The tool returns information on suggested bid prices, search volume, and even for specific regions. Looking for suggestions? The tool also allows for advertisers to get new keyword ideas that they may not have considered prior.
These free keyword research tools are separate from Google’s yet are just as helpful.
This is the first page a user lands on when they click an ad, also known as the final page or final URL destination. The landing page should offer features and information related to the query the user used to get to the page. A proper landing page must have multiple features including unique selling proposition, call to action, and hero shot to name a few. Visit this page for landing page design help and inquiries.
When a user submits some type of information into a website which can be used as a potential conversion it’s defined as a lead. The information being submitted can be downloading a whitepaper, filling out a form, or signing up for a newsletter. The information submitted can be used by a sales team to reach out and find the next step in the conversion process.
With over 500 million active professionals this self-service allows advertisers to place text ads on pages across the social network. The ads can target goals such as leads, brand awareness, and event registrations. The ads take only minutes to create with the easy ad builder and show across different devices.
This extension allows for the business’s address to be displayed within the text ads. An easy way to get users to see exactly where the brick and mortar store resides. Users can simply click the business address and within Google Map directions will be shown.
Long Tail Keyword
These are keywords that are typically longer and more specific. For instance, if a focused keyword was “snowboards” a long tail equivalent would be “all mountain wide snowboards”. These terms often have lower search volume, along with lower competition levels. Good practice is to find a focused keyword then research long tail keywords that are worth going after. Users who are searching longer tail keywords are typically further down the conversion funnel or looking for specific results or pages.
This is the maximum amount an advertiser is willing to pay for a click on a specific keyword.
Selecting your maximum or minimum bid amount manually. Advertisers start by setting a maximum cost-per-click (CPC) bid for the entire ad group (called your default bid), but then can also set separate bids for individual keywords.
This option lets advertisers tag their URLs manually with “utm” (see below) which can help track campaigns within analytics.
Allowing advertisers to control when their ad shows for a specific search query or term.
This ad add-on allows for advertisers to display an icon, that is clickable, which will open a text message where the user can contact the business. Some users prefer to send a message to the business rather than jump on the phone and talk in person. The ad extension is designed to show to users who are only using a mobile device.
This is the minimum amount an advertiser is willing to spend on a click, this number is dictated by the quality score (see below) of the keyword.
Ads that show strictly on mobile devices are considered mobile ads. They may display different than a typical desktop and are often the only ad a user will see on mobile since the screen is much smaller. Make sure the landing pages users are going to are mobile friendly when coming from a mobile ad.
Advertisers will add negative keywords to their campaign which tell Google the ad should NOT show if it a user searches that keyword. For instance, if you are selling “mens shoes” you would add the word “women” and “woman” to the negative keyword list so when a user searches “womens shoes” your ad for mens shoes does not show. Advertisers should review the search terms being used to ensure the ads are showing for keywords that are relevant.
A user that searches a query of yours but does not match your targeted audience.
This feature allows for advertisers to select certain sites where they wish their ad wouldn’t show. If you don’t want your ad showing on specific apps, video, websites add those to your negative placement list. By selecting automatic placement AdWords will select websites to show your ad based on keywords associated with your site.
This is a still image on a video prior to a video being played. A compelling opening image can help influence users to click on the video, thus seeing the ad on the video.
When a user searches a specific query a list of 10 results will show within the search engine results. These are the organic results. Paid ads will show above the number one organic listing or below the tenth position. Paid ads will display a small piece of text that says “ad” letting users know it is a paid advertisement. Improving organic results is known as search engine optimization or SEO
This is an abbreviation for pay per click, which is paid advertising, where you pay for each time a user clicks on the ad.
The number of times a page is viewed by a user on a specific site.
Pay Per Click Management
A service provided by a marketing agency or individual where all AdWords related tasks are done by the agency. The agency handles the keyword research, ad creation, bid scheduling, maintenance, and more. Reports are provided to the business by the agency showing trends with KPIs that are identified prior to the campaign starting. PPC management lets a professional take over the campaigns, rather than having an internal employee handle it who may not have formal training in PPC.
This setting tells Google to only show your ad when the search query matches the exact phrase or close variations. Phrase match is less forgiving compared to exact match and more accurate than broad match. This option requires the phrase be set in a specific order for the phrase to show your ad. For instance, your ad would only show if the phrase “all mountain snowboard” is used in that order. Your ad would NOT show if a user typed in “snowboard for all types of mountains”.
A formula created by Google, that takes a number of factors into consideration, that ranks how relevant your keywords are to the landing pages and ads. This is then multiplied by your max CPC to calculate your Ad Rank which will determine where your ad is placed. The 1-10 scale adjusts as the relevancy between keywords, ads, and landing pages are changed. There are a number of ways to increasing quality score.
Recommended Daily Budget
The recommended daily budget reflects what amount is needed to acquire a particular number of clicks each day. This number is based on how much traffic is possible with the current keywords in a campaign. If the daily budget is set below the threshold recommended by AdWords the ads will still show, but won’t show for every search. The ad will be spread throughout the daily to not exhaust the budget too quickly.
Targeting users who have visited your site, but did not make a purchase or conversion is remarketing or retargeting. Programs utilize a user’s browser cookies to determine which sites they have been to and show their ads. This is done to remind potential customers they were looking at a specific item.
Return on Investment (ROI)
This calculation is done to determine the efficiency of an investment or multiple investments. The formula is created by dividing the benefit (return) by the cost of the investment and is often shown as a percentage or ratio. For PPC it is often shown as the total revenue received through paid divided by the cost of the campaign (management, budget, etc).
This ad extension allows for reviews to be shown with your ads which can be extremely beneficial for ecommerce type sites. Users respond best to these ads when used with broad match keywords and branded keywords. These extensions will only show in display network ads and on desktop computers, no mobile devices.
Review extensions must provide “an accurate, current, credible, non-duplicative third-party review of the advertiser’s business.” – Google Support Team
The reviews may get disapproved for a number of reasons including,
- Review more than a year old
- Source not credited
- Review of an item or product, not of the company
- Reviews from sources that are not credible.
A collection of search related websites where advertisers can choose to show their ads, these include Google search sites and search partners.
This ad extension allows for additional website links to be added to an ad, giving users additional options to click. The links display just below the the main ad description and are links that are closely related to the main query, but point to a different URL. For example, if a user searches “road bikes” some sitelinks that may display beneath would be “kids road bikes”, “road bike gear”, or “used road bikes”.
Search Engine Results Page (SERP)
After a search query is entered into the search bar a page displaying 10 organic results and a few ads is called the search engine results page.
The process of creating an additional ad alongside an ad that is currently active to compare results is split testing.
Target CPA Bidding
An AdWords Smart Bidding (formally known as Conversion Optimizer) strategy that helps set bids to receive as many conversions as possible at the target cost-per-acquisition (CPA) set by the advertiser. By automatically optimizing bids and auction-time bidding the machine learning program sets bids for each auction. It uses tracking data to avoid clicks that that may not be beneficial, thus getting more conversions at a lower cost. It will set higher CPC bids for more valuable clicks and lower CPC for clicks that may not be valuable.
A portion of the targeted audience within a campaign where ads show to a specific geographic location, gender, age, or behavior.
How an advertiser chooses to show ads to a particular audience based on the ads and campaign. An advertiser may choose a target method that focuses on keywords or placements.
These are ads that a strictly text only, no images or videos will display within the ad. It is the most common ad shown within the search results and features a headline, two description lines, and a display URL.
Text Overlay Ad
This text ad is shown over top video content on Display Network sites and are great for raising brand awareness.
Abbreviation for “uniform resource locator”, this directs users to a specific domain or page within the domain after they click an ad.
A user who visits a site once within a given time frame, the user can view multiple pages while being counted as just one unique visitor. If the same IP address visits a site multiple times it is registered as one unique visitor to ensure tracking accuracy.
Urchin Tracking Module (UTM)
A simple piece of code that is added to a URL in order to assign metrics to a particular campaign. There are five parameters to the UTM which help users receive accurate data.
- Source – Identify the advertiser, site, publication, etc. that is sending traffic to your site.
- Medium – The type of advertisement, could be email, banner, newsletter, PPC, etc.
- Campaign – Name of the campaign for the product.
- Term – The paid search term used to reach the website.
- Content – Used to differentiate the links within a specific medium. For example, if you have multiple call to actions within a newsletter you can set different content tags for each section.
These are ads that display as video rather than text or images. Typically, these ads show prior to a video starting, which is known as pre-roll ads, however there has been talks of video ads showing within search results. These types of ads range from just a few seconds long to full length 30 second ads.