What are you saying??? Adwords & PPC Terminology Explained

Ever been sat in a PPC meeting listening to a load of words being thrown around that meant absolutely zilch to you?

Yep, me too!

So, to avoid that rabbit in the headlights look next time your superior or a potential client mentions some new terminology, we here at DIGITAL BASE have compiled a list of essential PPC ‘key’-words (see what I did there) and their meanings.

The following list is by no means complete. As such a new and active industry, there’s bound to be a whole heap of new terminology rearing it’s head. The following definitions, however, should give you a better idea of what people are talking about and leave you feeling a little more in control.

Happy Reading…

AdWords Editor
An offline software application by Google allowing you to make account changes and only apply by posting when you’re ready.

Ad Group
Your campaigns are made up of one or more ad groups. An ad group contains one or more ads which target a shared set of related themed keywords.

Ad Rank
A calculated value that is used to determine whether your ads will show at all and if so your ad position. Ad Rank is calculated using; bid amount, Quality Score factors, and the expected impact of ad extensions / formats.

Ad Scheduling
Ad Scheduling allows you to specify which hours and days of the week you want your ads to show and set bid adjustments to increase or decrease your bids for specific days and times.

Application Program Interface (API)
Designed to let developers build applications that interact directly with the Google AdWords server. The API is flexible and you can use it to build an application that meets your needs, helping you manage large or complex AdWords accounts more efficiently.

Average Position
The average position your ad appears on the search results page. Position one is at the top and two underneath and so on. Average positions will be shown with a decimal place such as 1.2 or 2.4.

The price you are willing to pay for someone to click on your advert for a given keyword.

Bounce Rate
Percentage of people who reach your site but leave without visiting any other page.

Typically used to categorise the structure of your campaign based on products or services offered. Campaigns are made of ad groups, ads, keywords, and bids that share a budget and location targeting, amongst other settings.

A click is recorded when someone clicks on your pay-per-click ad.

Click-Through rate (CTR)
Used to measure the success of your ad copy. CTR is calculated by dividing the number of clicks on your ad by the number of times the ad was delivered (impressions):

Calculation: Clicks / Impressions

A conversion occurs when a website visitor takes an action that you believe to be of value. Conversions are usually; purchases, form submissions, calls, emails or downloads.

Conversion RateM
A calculation to determine the percentage of visitors who convert.

Calculation: Conversions / Clicks

Cost per Acquisition (CPA)
An AdWords Smart Bidding strategy that sets your bids to help get you as many conversions as possible.

Cost per Conversion
The calculation to determine how much it costs for you to achieve a conversion on your website.

Calculation: Conversions / Cost

Cost-per-Click (CPC)
The amount you pay for each click on your ads. You set a maximum cost-per-click bid and that’s the highest amount that you’re willing to pay for a click on your ad.

Cost per thousand impressions (CPM)
CPM bidding allows you to pay based on the number of impressions received. Used across Google Display Network.

Dynamic Keyword Insertion (DKI)
A way of potentially improving ad relevance, keyword insertion lets you automatically include the keywords in your ad group show in the ad copy.

A method of targeting visitors based on their location. Locations targeting includes; country, city, town, zip code etc.

The number of people who see your PPC ad.

A word or phrase that you use to trigger your ads in the search results.

Your PPC Journey

Get it right.

In this industry the volume of terminology is vast and new acronyms crop up but we hope the list supplied is comprehensive enough to assist you on your PPC journey.

Before you go check out some of the not so correct definitions we here at DIGITAL BASE have heard over our time in the industry:

PPC Nerd – “I work in PPC”
Response – “OH is that like something to do with the party planning committee?”
PPC Nerd – “Yeah, sure”

PPC Nerd – “Let’s make sure we have a comprehensive list of negative keywords”
Response – “Yes definitely. So, do you mean like if someone searches for something sad, because we definitely don’t want to be associated with a negative vibe?”

Similar to conversion however excluding on site purchases. A lead is typically seen as; form submission, phone calls, emails and downloads.

Longtail Keywords
A keyword phrase that consists of 3 or more words. Longtail keywords are typically lower search volume but used to target customers at or close to the “buying stage”.

Match types
Selected for each keyword in order to determine how closely the keyword needs to match the users search query in order to trigger your ad. There are three different match types, Broad, Phrase and Exact.

My Client Center (MCC)
An AdWords manager account used for handling multiple AdWords accounts. MCC is great for advertisers dealing with more than one account.

Negative keywords
A keyword that prevents your ad from being triggered by unwanted words or phrases. Negatives are key for qualifying traffic and improving account performance.

Pay-Per- Click (PPC)
A method of advertising where you pay for each click received on your ad on the search engine.

Placement targeting
Relevant websites or apps partnered with Google on the Display Network where you can choose your ads to appear.

Quality Score
Determined by the quality of your ads, keywords, and landing pages.

The total number of people exposed to your ad.

Return on Investment (ROI)
How much profit you’ve made from your ads compared to how much you’ve spent on those ads.

Search query
The exact keyword or keyword phrase entered by the user when searching on a search engine.

Search Engine Results Page (SERP)
The results a user sees in the search engine after typing in a search query.

As always, if you need any help with any of your on line marketing or advertising, don’t hesitate to contact us. We’ll be more than happy to see how we can help.

News & Resources

Every now and then we find a little piece of information we think might be helpful. Or we do something we’re pretty proud of. Check out all our news articles here

We use cookies to improve performance and good experience in using your website. You can read the details at Privacy Policy.

Privacy Preferences

You can choose cookie settings by on/off. Cookies of each type are available on request, except for essential cookies.

Allow All
Manage Consent Preferences
  • Always Active