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25 Must-know digital marketing acronyms

25 Must-know digital marketing acronyms

Marketing acronyms are used every day to boil complicated ideals down into digestible conversations. An acronym is an abbreviated version of a phrase, often presented as the initial letter of each word of the phrase. They streamline emails, save time and support the fast and efficient running of a digital marketing agency. 

However, the sheer number of acronyms can be overwhelming for industry newbies. So, instead of assuming what’s being said around you, this helpful list of digital marketing acronyms should provide you with enough knowledge to hold your ground. And if you’re already an acronym fiend, perhaps you’ll discover one that you’ve never heard of!


Stands for Search Engine Optimisation. Sometimes referred to as organic or natural optimisation, SEO is the process of curating content and technical elements of an online presence (website) in order to increase search engine visibility. Good SEO will push brands/services to the top of Google/Bing results without the need of significant paid promotion.


Means Search Engine Marketing. This, unlike SEO, is the practice of increasing a business’ standing in search engine results through paid advertisements rather than organic and natural optimisation. 


Refers to Google My Business. GMB is a free tool that allows your business to hold an online presence across Google services such as Search and Maps. GMB gives businesses the opportunity to showcase a contact and information card in search results and on Google Maps. 


Stands for Pay-per-Click. PPC is when advertisers pay by the click for a visit to their website. PPC is used on Google, Yahoo! and Bing. All three use a bidding system to ascertain the cost of each click. 


Refers to View-through-Click. This doesn’t mean a customer saw your ad and clicked it. It actually means when a customer sees your advert, does not click it but comes back to visit your website or service in a later session. 


Means Customer Relationship Management and it encapsulates the improvement and maintenance of the relationship between business and customer. CRM involves monitoring a customer’s experience with your service on all digital spaces such as the website, social media channels, email marketing and even direct call leads. 


Stands for Search Engine Results Page. SERPSs are the results users see after entering a query into a search engine. In marketing, SERPs are usually referred to when testing for SEO and keyword management. 


Means Call to Action. It is usually a call from a brand or business to consumers to complete an action. CTAs often come in the form of clickable buttons that are labelled with commands like ‘Book Now’ or ‘Call Now’.

DR Ads

They refer to Direct Response Advertisements. This is when an advert is designed to engage a consumer and draw an immediate reaction. Often this will come in the form of a clickable CTA prompting the user to complete an action. 


Means Return on Advertising Spend. It is fundamentally a way of tracking how much your company earns in response to the money spent on advertising. For example, if you spent £100 on online ads that generated £2000 in sales, your ROAS would be 20x your initial investment. 


Stands for Click-Through-Rate. CTR is a way of measuring and analysing an online campaign. The term can be applied to online data and email data as well. It allows marketers to see how engaging a certain element or piece of content is. 


Means Cost-per-Acquisition or Cost-per-Action. It refers directly to the budget of an advertiser when dealing with a transaction whether that be with PPC or SEM.


Or Cost-per-Click is the monetary value of one click on a website’s advert and is charged by the search engine hosting the advert. Again, the price is determined by a bidding system where advertisers set their maximum bid. 

B2B and B2C

B2B refers to business-to-business trade whilst B2C refers to Business-to-consumer trade. In both cases, financial trade for a product or service is made between the two parties. 


Stands for Content Management System. This is an application used to manage the content on a website. A CMS system will allow multiple admins and users to manage and curate every aspect of website content such as text, imagery and video, as well as technical aspects such as page titles, meta descriptions and alt tags.


UX refers to User Experience … i.e. the experience a person has when using a website or service. UX is vital to product creation as it is needed to deliver a product that speaks to your target audience. 


Stands for Customer Experience. CX is the process of keeping a customer engaged with a brand or service. Good CX keeps a brand in front of its competitors.


Often used when referring to Google Analytics. This is a free web analytics platform created by Google to help marketers to track and measure website traffic, performance and user analytics. It is essential to any marketing strategy. 

WoW, MoM and YoY

Standing for week-on-week, month-on-month and year-on-year, these three terms are used when discussing performance of websites and social media channels and even revenue. You will also see them used when comparison tasks are being completed to see if your marketing strategies are having an effect.


Refers to Key Performance Indicators. This can be a quantitative or qualitative measurement used to ascertain the success of a business or one particular online campaign. KPIs are often the targets in a marketing campaign and can be measured through landing page traffic, number of newsletter sign ups, rate of conversions, number of sales etc. 


Stands for Return on Investment. ROI is usually a percentage calculation used to measure how efficient a business’ investment truly was. It is totalled by dividing the cost of the investment by the sales generated and them multiplying by 100.


Refers to a Designated Market Area. You will see this term be used in larger marketing campaigns that need to be specific with their target areas. DMAs often refer to a specific country, state or region and are a way to label target geolocations. 


No, NAP doesn’t refer to sleeping, it stands for Name, Address and Phone Number. Marketers will use the term NAP when discussing a business’s online listings. You may sometimes hear the term as NAPU, with the added U representing URL (i.e. the client’s website)


Stands for Transport Layer Security. When your site is awarded a TLS certificate, you will see a lock symbol appear next to the site address in the URL bar. It is a sign to visitors that your site is secure and provides a boost to your SEO rankings as well, as Google gives TLS websites priority.


Usually refers to Bounce Rate. BR is the percentage of visitors who visit a webpage but then leave without visiting any other pages. This is also called a ‘First Impression Fail’ when the conclusion is made that the landing page failed. However, it could mean that the webpage was so good that the visitor got all their answers instantly. 


Digital marketing acronyms can be confusing if you don’t know what they mean. Hopefully, you are no longer in the dark about them! 

Our informative team at Caliston Ltd are all about solutions and simplifying marketing, which is why we’re the perfect option for you!

What are some marketing acronyms we’ve missed and what are some new ones that we need?