Doing business online can be confusing. Nothing in the offline world prepares us to deal with terms like ‘autoresponder’ or ‘conversion ratio’. So I’ve compiled this list of terms to help.
If you find yourself confused about a term listed here, or need to understand a term not listed here, just enter a comment below and we’ll add the answer to your question to the site.
A site that sells ad packages comprised of ads from small ezines for a low price. These co-ops often sell classified ads, and sometimes offer sponsor or #solo ads as well. The ezines are usually bundled by subject or size of subscriber base.
A computer program that counts the number of times people click on a special link you create with the program. Some ad trackers can count the number of sales made as well as clicks.
Google’s advertising program for website owners (which Google calls publishers). AdSense ads are displayed on your site by Google based on the keywords appearing on your site. Google will pay you an undisclosed amount of money every time someone clicks on one of the ads being displayed on your site.
AdWords is Google’s contextual advertising program for advertisers. Advertisers can bid on certain keywords and Google will display text ads on the search results page when people use that keyword to search.
A special type of ad that looks and sounds like an article, but is in fact an ad. Very few publishers will allow advertorials.
A computer program that allows email to be sent to a list of subscribers on a scheduled basis. Email messages can be written once, and then delivered to each person who subscribes on a schedule you decide.
The term blog stands for Weblog. A weblog used to be a way for website owners to communicate with a small group of people. Today, blogs have become much more as website owners sell products, offer opinions, syndicate their content, and more with blogging software and services.
A law enacted in 2004 to help curb the amount of pornographic email and unsolicited commercial email being sent.
The number of letters and numbers making up one line of information.
A small text ad, usually appearing in an ezine. Classified ads are generally three to five lines deep by 65 characters wide.
This term simply means the words on your website but has taken on a new meaning as syndication is becoming more widespread. See syndication for more detail.
Generally understood to be the percentage of people who come to your site and take the action your site asks them to take. Example: If 2 out of every 100 new visitors buys something, your conversion ratio for sales is 2%.
Understanding this percentage is important because it tells you if your site is causing people to take the action you want them to take, be that subscribing to an ezine or buying something today.
The process of writing the words for a web page.
This is where a company helps you build your mailing list by getting their visitors to register for your mailing list. Some companies do this for a living and you pay them by the subscriber, usually anywhere from 15 cents to $1.50 per subscriber.
CPA stands for Cost Per Action. These are arrangements where the advertiser pays the publisher only when a particular action (typically filling in a form or taking a free trial offer) occurs.
CPM Stands for cost per thousand. CPM is a way of pricing ads where the advertiser pays a fixed cost per thousand subscribers to whom the ad is sent.
A common way to buy advertising offline, CPM pricing is not widely used online, but is an excellent way to compare costs between different advertising mediums.
CTR (Click through rate)
CTR is the number of people who click on your pay per click ad compared to the number of people who view the ad. Example: If 1000 people see your ad and 100 click the ad, your CTR is 10%.
A pay per click term meaning the web address (URL) you want people to see when they see your ad. In most cases it can be different from the Target URL, which allows you to use an ad tracker without people seeing the long ad tracker link.
Double or Verified Opt-in
The process of having subscribers confirm their desire to receive your information by clicking on a confirmation link sent to them via email. This second step ensures that the person verifying their subscription made the original request.
A term that describes the group of people in an MLM who have joined that program under a specific sponsor.
The process of saving a file to your personal computer from a website. On Windows PCs it usually involves clicking a link with the right mouse button.
On a Mac it usually involves holding down the shift key while clicking a link. In both cases, you then choose where on your computer to store the file.
An electronic book, suitable for reading on a computer monitor. Some eBooks come in EXE format and can only be viewed on a Windows computer. The new standard is to create eBooks in PDF format, which can be viewed by any computer, or (in most cases) printed.
A person who contributes content to an online publication or webpage. Unlike a webmaster, an editor is usually responsible for only certain pages on a website and can generally only add or edit contributions they make to the site.
Ezine (Electronic magazine)
Much like an offline newsletter, ezines exist primarily to deliver information to their readers. They support the costs of publishing by selling advertising. Like their offline counterparts, ezine publishers usually don’t write the articles they include in their ezine, but instead use the articles of others to create their ezine content.
Follow Up Series
A series of email messages delivered over time to prospective customers who have requested further information.
FTP stands for File Transfer Protocol. A computer program that allows transfer of files from your personal computer to a web server. Using FTP is the most common way to transfer web pages to a web server when you create a web site. Transferring files is accomplished using a program called an FTP program.
An online gathering of people with a common interest. Forums are run using a forum script (software) that allows the moderator to approve messages to display as well as displaying messages in subject order.
Stands for HyperText Markup Language, HTML is the code that causes web pages to display text and pictures.
Usually an agreement between a person who owns a mailing list and a person who wants to promote a product where the list owner mails an ad for the product and earns a percentage of all sales.
A “landing page” is simply the page people land on after they click the link you are promoting. A landing page could be a sales letter, #squeeze page, survey form, blog or any other page on the Internet.
A lead capture page is a web page that is designed to capture the contact details of the visitor so that the page owner can add that person to his or her mailing list. Often called a squeeze page, lead capture pages are usually short and tease the visitor into filling in a form to learn more.
This is often done by offering the visitor a gift or other premium to entice them to fill in the form. Click here to see one of my squeeze pages.
The process of getting people to ask for more information about a particular product. The term lead generation is often used in the MLM business, and sometimes used to describe the process of co-registration.
The person who controls which messages are displayed on a forum. The moderator is usually an expert in the subject of the forum he or she moderates, and helps keep inappropriate postings off the list of messages forum members see. Inappropriate messages are usually messages that contain foul language, hate, or blatant advertising.
A type of audio file that can be heard on personal computers or MP3 players. Most teleseminars are recorded in MP3 format for later listening.
A process invented by Jonathan Mizel that describes a short web page that teases the reader with some information and then encourages them to provide their name and email address to get further information. Name Squeeze is often used for lead generation.
Network Marketing (MLM)
A type of business that pays commissions to people based on the sales of other people that they recruit. The person who recruits others is called the upline, while the person who was recruited is called the downline.
Selling products and services to a group of people with a common interest. Although the name “niche marketing” is heard often these days, marketers have always focused on “niches” in order to make sales.
The process of a reader requesting more information from a site. The reader is opting to be included on a mailing list, hence opt-in. All legitimate email marketers use an opt-in process to ensure that their selling messages go only to people who want to receive them.
Ezines are only sent to people (subscribers) who ask for the ezine by emailing a request to receive the ezine or filling out a form on a website where the ezine is offered.
This opt-in process is important because it ensures that the ezine is delivered to people who are interested enough to request it. Ezines are not mailed to non-subscribers, and have nothing to do with bulk email or spam.
The process of sending email to people and telling them they must ask to be taken off the list in order to stop receiving email. Opt-out is a bad marketing technique and most often associated with spammers.
PPC (Pay Per Click Advertising)
A type of advertising in which the advertiser pays only when someone clicks on his or her ad. Google AdWords and Overture are the best examples of pay-per-click advertising, although some website owners now offer PPC to advertisers as well.
Stands for Portable Document Format. A trademark of the Adobe Company, PDF files can be read by any computer that has the free Adobe PDF reader.
The person or company who produces an ezine. In the case of a large ezine, there might also be an editor who is responsible for the content of the ezine. Most ezine publishers also edit their ezine.
Reverse Squeeze Page
A reverse squeeze page is a page that attempts to have the visitor opt in to a mailing list by providing a considerable amount of information before requiring the opt in and then requiring the visitor fill in a form to hear the rest of the story.
This is a powerful and underused selling method that relies on creating curiosity to hear more to the degree that the visitor will opt in to hear more. Conversions on reverse squeeze pages are generally much higher than standard squeeze pages.
RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication and is one format that websites use to syndicate content. To see content that is syndicated you need a special program (called an aggregator) or you can view it on certain websites designed for this purpose.
The words on a webpage that convince visitors to buy products.
A set of commands that cause a computer to act in a particular way. There are many scripting languages (such as PERL and PHP) and these languages are the “code” that programmers use to create programs.
A site that finds other sites or files based on keywords. Google is a search engine where Yahoo is a directory.
SEO Stands for Search Engine Optimization. This is the process of changing your webpage so that it is more attractive to search engines. When a webpage is properly optimized it is shown more often and in a higher ranking on the search engine results page.
A script or service that allows website owners to have autoresponders, create order forms, create a catalog of products, manage client lists, deliver digital products, run an affiliate program, and more – all from one site or using one piece of software.
An ad that is mailed to a list of ezine subscribers on its own. Since no other ads are included in the email sent to subscribers, the ad can be said to be running “solo”.
The process of sending visitors to different sales pages in order to test the effectiveness of those sales pages. Often called A/B split testing, a program sends visitors to alternative sales letters randomly even though they clicked the same link.
An ezine ad that is larger than a classified but smaller than a solo. Sponsor ads are generally 10 to 20 lines deep by 65 characters wide and appear at the top of the ezine. They can also appear in the middle of the ezine (middle sponsor) or the bottom of the ezine (bottom sponsor). The prices of these ads vary, with top sponsor ads costing the most and bottom sponsor ads the least.
A squeeze page is a web page designed to capture the contact details of the visitor so that the page owner can add the visitor to his or her email mailing list. Squeeze pages are usually short and tease the visitor into filling in a form to learn more. (See also Reverse Squeeze Page)
Squeeze pages often contain video or audio messages that are usually very short. This is often done by offering the visitor a gift or other premium to entice them to fill in the form. Click here to see one of my squeeze pages.
A person who asks to join a mailing list.
The process of selling goods and services to a group of people who have a common interest. This term is identical to niche marketing.
The process of running one ad multiple times in the same ezine and changing one element of the ad (such as the headline) each time. The goal of testing is to discover which combination of ad elements (headline, body copy, call to action) work best with each other. Testing can also mean running the same ad in different ezines to see how it performs in front of different audiences.
The process of putting a tracking link in your ad. A tracking link is one that, when clicked, will record the click and redirect the reader to the site you want them to see.
Target URL is also called the destination URL. A pay per click term meaning the website where people will go when they click on your ad.
A phone call where many people can listen and (usually) several experts discuss a particular topic. Teleseminar calls are often recorded and provided to customers in MP3 format for later listening.
Thank You Page
The page a customer is sent to upon successful payment for a product. The thank you page is often where links are provided to download the product purchased.
An email that relates to a purchase made by a customer and one that does not contain a selling message.
The process of transferring a file from a local computer to a web server. Uploading is most often done using software and a process called FTP.
See Double Opt In listed above.
A company that rents space on a web server to customers who want to have a web page.
The person who runs a website from a technical standpoint. The webmaster is usually the person who creates and uploads the webpages to the web server and maintains control over the entire site.
This stands for What You See Is What You Get and means that the page that is printed or displayed will look identical to the one that is composed.