, paid search marketing allows advertisers to pay to be listed within the search engine results pages for specific keywords or phrases. Paid placement listings can be purchased from a portal or a search network. Search networks are often set up in an auction environment where keywords and phrases are often associated with a cost-per-click (CPC) fee. Google Ads and Bing Ads are the two major players, but other sites also sell paid placement listings directly as well.
A good search engine marketing company offering this form of digital advertising will select an exhaustive set of industry-related search terms, set up your accounts, write advertising copy, create landing pages, control your bidding (how much you’re willing to pay per search term click) and budgeting, and test and refine your advertising for effectiveness.
Google doesn't have a monopoly on the paid search industry, but they are far and away the market leader.
, Google occupied about 90% of worldwide desktop market share as of January 2019, with Bing and Yahoo! combining for less than 6%.
There is some value in advertising through this medium on other platforms, but Google definitely drives the majority of activity in this marketing channel.
Compared to other marketing channels, paid search definitely does work.
, the average conversion rate in Google Ads across all industries is 3.75%.
Considering there are 3.5 billion searches per day in Google, that means over 131 million conversions are happening daily through this strategy.
The strategy for this is pretty simple:
The numbers vary by industry and keyword phrase, but the average CPC in Google paid search is about $2.00.
But there are extremes on both ends.
Millions of keywords for e-commerce products can cost just a few cents per click. Millions of keywords in enterprise B2B services or the legal industry can cost well over $50 per click.
To determine how much this is really going to cost your business, we suggest you
The Paid Search channel in Google Analytics comprises all of the traffic sources bringing visits to your site that are attributed as CPC, PPC, or paidsearch.
Note that this grouping may include traffic sources outside of Google, Bing and Yahoo!. Because of that, you may need to closely analyze your performance data if you are running ads on multiple platforms.
Paid search results and SEO are not the same. The way Google search engine results pages (SERPs) are currently structured, these results are typically located in the first 1-4 positions on the page. There may also be 1-4 of them located at the very bottom of a page, as well.
In contrast, links on Google SERPs that are placed from SEO efforts can be found on the remainder of the page.
The difference between paid and organic search is best explained by how rankings are acquired.
In paid, rankings are determined by a variety of factors including an auction-style bidding system.
In organic search, rankings are determined algorithmically by a variety of factors on the page, as well as off of the page.
Across every reputable search engine, these two search platforms do not directly affect each other. However, numerous studies have been done indicating that leveraging both paid and organic search together can be highly effective to produce results.
If you have any other questions about over 200 other marketing terms, please check out our entire glossary or chat us with your question! A team member will answer it as soon as possible.
Term popularized by search engines as a synonym for pay-per-click, stressing to advertisers that they are only paying for ads that ‘perform’ in terms of delivering traffic, as opposed to CPM-based ads, which cost money, even if they don’t generate a click.
Pay per Click (PPC) -
See Cost per Click (CPC), above. The most common type of digital advertising cost structures is PPC marketing. Google, Bing, Yahoo!, and many more search engines use PPC. This cost structure is also used for social media advertising platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Pinterest.
Permission Marketing -
Along the lines of Opt-in registrations, permission marketing focuses on receiving the consent of users before being contacted or, in some cases, even seeing an advertisement. Permission marketing is centered around the concept that people are increasingly tuning out the barrage of advertisements they see each day. Its focal tenet is that a business will have a better chance of gaining a client when the client first gives permission to be sent an ad or contacted. Search engine marketing by its nature can be thought of as a type of permission marketing – showing advertisements to people already searching for that information – as long as the ad is relevant to what they are searching.
Phrase Match -
This match type is more specific than broad, but not as specific as exact. This bid type allows your ads to show for phrases that exactly contain your keywords or are close variations.
An advertisement that opens in a new Web Browser window once you visit a particular page or take some other action. Considered less annoying than Pop-Up ads because the new window appears behind the existing one.
An extremely abused type of online marketing advertisement, pop-ups open new windows on your screen that partially or wholly cover your current Web Browser window. Some search engines ban ads that create a certain number (or even any) pop-up ads. Direct Online Marketing™ does not include pop-ups or pop-unders as part of its internet marketing services.
Premier Google Partner -
This valuable designation was added in 2016 to recognize the top performing agencies that meet additional certification and company performance requirements.
Press Optimization -
The optimizing of press releases for search engines. This process has many similarities to Search Engine Optimization, although it focuses much more on Keyword use in content creation in regards to how press releases are often picked up by Blogs and other forms of new media.
Price Extensions -
Additional information that can show with your mobile text ads, showcasing your services and range of products, and how much they cost.
Push Notifications -
are messages that pop up on mobile devices, that originate from a specific app or server. It’s not necessary to be using your mobile devices, or even be in the app, to receive push notifications. They act as a way to keep the user engaged with the app, and hopefully take action (ex: send a coupon, event notification, etc.).
How well a particular Web page or website is listed in the Search Engine’s Results. For example, a Web page about apples may be listed in response to a query for “apples.” However, “rank” indicates where exactly it was listed – be it on the first page of results, the second page or perhaps the 200th page. Alternatively, it might also be said to be ranked first among all the results, or 12th, or 111th. Overall, saying a page is “listed” only means that it can be found within a search engine in response to a query, not that it necessarily ranks well for that query. Also known as position.
Another notable Google algorithm update is known as RankBrain. In October 2015, Google announced that machine learning (Artificial Intelligence) had been deeply ingrained into Google search and is supposedly the third most important search ranking factor. Going beyond just keywords, Google is trying to understand the diverse ways in which users turn to search engines to answer their queries.
Real Simple Syndication (RSS) -
An increasingly popular new technology that allows information to be easily shared on websites or given directly to users per their request. Click here for a feed to the Official Direct Online Marketing™ Blog. RSS feeds create new online advertising opportunities, although marketers are still debating how best to use them.
Reciprocal Link -
A link exchange between two sites. Both sites will display a link to the other site somewhere on their pages. This type of link is generally much less desirable than a one-way inbound link.
Results Page -
Also referred to as a Search Engine Results Page.
Responsive Ads -
Responsive ads automatically adjust their size, appearance, and format to fit just about any available ad space. For example, your responsive ad might show as a native banner ad on one site and a dynamic text ad on another, as it automatically transforms itself to fit precisely where you need it to go to meet your advertising goals.
Think of retargeting
like cyberstalking. Someone performs an action (often a visit to your site) and has a cookie placed on her or his browser. Then as they go visiting other sites around the Web, your ad appears in front of them, as a banner or other type of display ad, on whatever sites they visit – so long as that site accepts ads from the ad network you use for retargeting. Retargeting can be done through various ad networks and platforms.
Return on Investment (ROI) -
The key statistic for many companies: are your advertisements generating profits, and how much profit given the money you have had to pay. Direct Online Marketing™ always has its eye on ROI for all partners…and you should, too!
Rich Media -
Web advertisements or pages that are more animated and/or interactive than static Banners or pages.
A file used to keep Web pages from being indexed or to tell which pages you want a search engine to index.
Run of Site (ROS) -
A contract specifying Run of Site (ROS) means that a banner or other type of online advertisement can appear on any page, and usually in any open placement, of a particular website.
Schema Markup -
Schema markup is a piece of code you can add to a page’s HTML to help search engines understand what is your website about and what type of information it contains. It pairs up words with specific values that help the search engines to categorize and index your content. Basically, instead of hoping Google understands what you are, you tell it directly through pieces of code that the search engine robots are able to read, process and use to return more informative results to users. For example, if you’re a dentist or brick and mortar store you might want to point that out using the proper tags so you won’t have to rely solely on keywords. If you want to check which are Schema markups available and how to add the relevant ones to your website, check out their official website.
(this definition was submitted by Jessica from Guarana Technologies, a mobile app development agency based in Canada)
The process of copying content from one Web property and using it on another. In other words, stealing. Scraping
technologies have evolved because of the needs for content and to stay ahead of legitimate content creators trying to protect what they’ve written. Some companies offer content monitoring to help protect against scraping.
Search Engines -
Search engines are places people go to search for things on the internet, such as Yahoo!, Google, or bing. Most search engines provide websites two ways of appearing: Natural (free) and Paid. Natural Listings, also referred to as organic listings, appear based on the search engines’ own formulae. You can’t pay to have your site listed higher (although some search engines require that you pay to be included in the Natural listings), but you can perform Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Paid Listings usually appear above or to the side of Natural listings and are typically identifiable as advertisements. The most common cost for advertising on Paid listings through Paid Search is Pay per Click (PPC).
Search Engine Marketing -
All forms of marketing involving search engines – chiefly Search Engine Optimization and Paid Search Marketing. Sometimes this term will also be used to refer to Paid Search exclusively.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) -
A fancy way of saying “making your site search engine friendly.” Search engine optimization
is typically difficult to do on your own, especially given the increasing complexity and differences among all the search engines. Two important factors that rank highly in all major search engines are Link Popularity (how many websites – and how highly ranked those sites are – link to you) and relevant content (how pertinent information on your website or a particular Web page is to a search).
Search Retargeting -
A specific type of Retargeting
that allows an advertiser to show ads to searchers of given keywords who have never visited the advertiser’s site.
Search Terms -
A search term is a word or group of words that a person types into a Search Engine to find what they are looking for. Based upon what a company sells, a website should incorporate the most popular or most popular specific search terms into the copy as Keywords. Figuring out the appropriate search terms to put into a website and to advertise on is a huge part of a Search Engine Marketer’s job.
Shopping Ads -
Formerly known as Product Listing Ads (PLAs), these ads appear in both Google and Bing search results as images of individual products above the search results. These ads are specifically for ecommerce companies and instead of using keywords, ads are triggered by searches containing words in the product’s title, description, or attributes.
Site Retargeting -
The most common form of retargeting
: displaying your ads to a visitor based on a visit to your site, or individual page of your site. These cookie-based can appear on any publisher throughout the ad network being used. Various targeting options exist, including only showing ads when a certain page has been visited (such as a landing page) and an action has not been completed (e.g. a conversion).
Social Commerce -
Selling goods directly online through through social media channels is the definition of social commerce. Just like “electronic commerce” was shortened to “ecommerce”, social commerce is sometimes shortened to “s-commerce” or “f-commerce,” the latter short for “facebook commerce.”
Social Media -
A type of online media where information is uploaded primarily through user submission. Web surfers are no longer simply consumers of content, but active content publishers. Many different forms of social media exist including more established formats like Forum and Blogs, and newer formats like Wikis, podcasts, Social Networking, image and video sharing, and virtual reality.
Social Media Marketing (SMM) -
An online marketing mix that utilizes the different strategies available through social networking sites to promote a product or service. Social media marketing
combines traditional online advertising elements that are native to social networks with the creation of “shareworthy” content that users of social media are likely to promote through their accounts. A highly effective strategy for companies interested in driving brand awareness with highly targeted demographics.
Social Networking -
A type of Social Media, Social networking websites allow users to interact and create or change content on the site. These sites, of which businesses are now using for marketing purposes, allow users to create their own websites / online spheres (e.g. LinkedIn and facebook), share photographs (e.g. flickr), microblog / text small bits of information to their personal community (e.g. twitter) or recommend information for others to find on the Internet
(e.g. del.icio.us and Digg). The sites in this last grouping are also referred to as social bookmarking or social news sites. There are also a growing number of sites that are heavily dependent on mobile and geographic locations, such as foursquare.
Can refer to unwanted data sent via email or put on a website to game a search engine. You’re probably aware of spam in the classic email sense and hopefully also aware of the strict standards and penalties associated with the CAN-SPAM Act. Spam to a search engine is Web content that the search engine deems to be detrimental to its efforts to deliver relevant, quality search results. Some search engines have written guidelines about what they consider to be spamming, but ultimately any activity a search engine deems harmful may be considered spam, whether or not there are published guidelines against. Examples of spam include the creation of nonsensical doorway pages designed to pleased search engine algorithms rather than human visitors, or heavy repetition of search terms within a page (i.e., the search terms are used tens or hundreds of times in a row). Spam derives its name from a popular Monty Python skit.
A noun and a verb, Search Engines have spiders crawl through all the linked pages of a website to gather information to include the site in their Natural Listings and also use to determine their ranking on various Search Terms.
How often people return to a website. Constant updates, news feeds, and exclusive content are all ways to make a site stickier.
Structured Snippets -
Structured snippets allow your ads to highlight specific aspects of your products and services. These ad extensions provide context on the nature and variety of your products and services before visitors click through to your site.
Also refered to as a 3rd level domain is very simply, a domain that is part of a main domain. “22.214.171.124/dom” is a subdomain. “.com” is the top level domain, “directom” is the second level, and “www” is the third. Subdomains can be created at any time with no limit and with out a registrar. A common reason to create subdomains would be to differentiate a sector of your business such as “info.yoursite.com” or “tools.yoursite.com.”
The act of submitting a URL for inclusion into a search engine’s index. Unless done through paid inclusion, submission generally does not guarantee listing. In addition, submission does not help with rank improvement on crawler-based search engines unless search engine optimization efforts have been undertaken. Submission can be done manually (i.e., you can fill out an online form and submit) or automated, where a software program or online service may process the forms behind the scenes.
A page that appears below the top-level pages in a website’s navigation. These pages often appear as drop-downs in a top navigation bar or sidebar menu. Think of subpages as “child pages” of the “parent page.” For example www.yoursite.com/about-us/ would be a subpage of www.yoursite.com while www.yoursite.com/about-us/contact is a subpage of www.yoursite.com/about-us.
Words or phrases used to describe and categorize individual blog posts, videos, and pictures. Correctly using tags organizes content for users and can help with visibility through SEO and social media optimization.
Takeover Ads -
A type of display advertising typically reserved for high profile brands and products (consumer goods, new mass media releases, sporting events) on high traffic online publications. Commonly referenced on the homepages of sites like Yahoo!, MSN, or even ESPN.com, this advertising strategy is often called a “homepage takeover”. To deploy this as an advertising tactic, publishers allow an advertiser to place creative in each available ad spot in their layout. As web development has progressed, takeover ads can also incorporate creative into the site background, or even have some type of interactive component.
Shaping internet marketing campaigns to attract certain specific groups of prospective clients. Examples of Targeting include women, gun owners, and Medicare recipients. Behavioral Targeting is a newer, specific type of focus for advertisers.
Topic Modeling -
An SEO strategy used when creating or optimizing content based on the primary keyword selected for a page. Identify keywords related to the same subject of the primary keyword to utilize as secondary keywords. Then include / optimize content around the new keywords for a more robust page around the same topic.
Text Ad -
An online advertisement that contains only written copy. Paid listings found on the results pages of the main Search Engines are currently Text Ads, although this is starting to change. Soon you should expect to see video ads pop up here occasionally.
Three Way Linking -
A link building strategy designed to create two one-way links between sites that want to complete a link exchange. When using this link building tactic, one website owner involved in the exchange of links typically has access to more than one property. After adding an external link from one site (in this example, “Site A”) to another destination (“Site B”), then Site B places a external link to a third domain (“Site C”). Therefore, a three way link exchange is completed when Site A links to Site B, and Site B links to Site C.
TLD stands for Top Level Domain. The TLD is determined by whatever comes at the end of a domain name at its root – meaning without any page names. So for example, the TLD for our site, 126.96.36.199/dom, is “.com.”
Tracking Code -
Information typically included in the URL that allows an advertiser to track the effectiveness of various aspects of an advertisement. Commonly tracked items include Search Term and referring Search Engine. Direct Online Marketing™ relies heavily on tracking code because tracking results is the only way to determine how effective our internet marketing services are.
TrueView Ads -
A video ad created in Google Ads. TrueView video ads come in two formats: in-stream and in-display. In-Stream ads appear before videos on YouTube and the Display Network. In-display ads can appear in YouTube search results, videos, or on Partner websites.
Twitter Retargeting -
Twitter Tailored Audiences are used to create retargeting campaigns
that can serve ads to people who have previously interacted with your brand. There are three ways to use Tailored Audiences including lists, website retargeting with the Twitter tag, and mobile app interactions.
Uniform Resource Locator. These are the letters and symbols that make up the address of specific Web pages. This page’s URL is “http://directom.com/dom/semresources/internetmarketingtermglossary/”.
Unique Value Proposition (UVP) -
In essence, what it is that sets your product, service, or company apart from others and why potential clients should care enough to choose you.
Universal Search -
The placement of multiple types of results within a general search so that a user receives images, videos, local search results, news articles, and more next to general Web pages. Also called blended search.
How easy it is for a user to navigate a website and find the information he or she is seeking.
User-Generated Content -
Brands with a dedicated audience will sometimes try to include them in the content creation process. Known as user-generated content, or “UGC,” users or community members of a brand will create and contribute their original content for the brand. This content is usually posted via social media or directly on the brand’s website. These are great for increasing community engagement, gaining insight on brand sentiment, and adding diversity to a brand’s content portfolio.
Web 2.0 -
A trendy buzzword for the internet marketing services industry, but also a legitimate idea and movement: the internet as a platform. Wikis, MySpace, and user-edited search all operate under this premise.
Web Browser -
The program you use to access the internet. Common browsers include Microsoft Internet Explorer (IE), Apple’s Safari, and Mozilla Firefox.
“Web Seminar”. These virtual seminars allow people from anywhere in the world to attend via an internet connection. They offer tremendous opportunities for businesses to reach out to people over large geographic areas at low costs.
Weibo refers to microblogging in the Chinese market. Unlike the rest of the world where Twitter is the only major player at this point, China has two major competing Weibo services: Sina Weibo (#1) and Tencent Weibo (#2). A key advantage of these Weibo platforms over Twitter is the amount of information individual Mandarin characters can convey. Therefore, a single Weibo post (tweet) of 140 characters can convey as much information as two paragraphs in English and other languages.
White Hat SEO -
Used to describe certain Search Engine Optimization (SEO) methods, being “white hat” means using only SEO techniques that are completely above board and accepted by the Search Engines. Doing the opposite (Black Hat) can lead to your website seeing its rankings drop drastically – or being banned altogether – even if the search engine optimization tactics aren’t currently banned by search engines.
A user-written, -controlled, and –edited site. Anyone with web access can change information appearing on Wikis, which can be about broad or specific topics. Wikis are becoming increasingly popular websites as people search for quality and (hopefully) unbiased information. The best known example is Wikipedia.
WordPress (WP) is an extremely popular Content Management System. Developed originally for blogs, WP offers a great degree of flexibility and functionality. This site – and our digital marketing blog
– are examples of sites built using this system.