50+ Online Advertising Terms

For all the ones who are starting in the world of online advertising, today’s post on Online Advertising Terms will make you “dam” confident for sure.

Exploring online advertising or digital advertising has never been easy for the newbie.

Online advertising is simply a vast ocean.

It’s a fact that you will realize more as you step and move on to this journey of digital marketing.

You must be experiencing it, isn’t it?

However, once you go through this post, it can become smooth sailing for you.

Here we have come up with online advertising terms for digital marketers like you.

It’s a “full-blown” online advertising glossary with all the specialized terms you must be searching for so long.

We must let you know that your search has ended in the right place.

Now, all you have to do is to go through this post.

The world of online advertising will slowly and surely open for you.

It covers most of the digital advertising terms that you always wanted to know.

Online Advertising Terms

We have put across jargon-free explanations of the most common online advertising terms.

It will help you to understand and appreciate online advertising in a much better way.

You can then go on and build a successful media & advertising plan easily.

We have made sure that these online advertising terms are put across to you in simple glossary form with a precise and clear definition of every term.

As online advertising technologies are fast evolving, you need to update yourself on new advertising jargon and acronyms continuously.

You come up with new terms every now and again.

Terms such as DSPs, RTB, and retargeting might sound gibberish to you.

It’s just the tip of an iceberg.

There’s a lot in online advertising that you need to be clear with straight-up without losing any time.

The post lets you discover and know most of the common and widely popular online advertising terms.

You will certainly welcome this post that goes on to list out and explain more than fifty (50+) online advertising terms.

It offers you a good opportunity to get a handle on them.

Online advertising terminology will become easy for you.

Now, you get the opportunity to update yourself with the latest in online advertising.

These digital advertising terms are “must-know” in today’s online advertising world.

So, let’s begin and explore these online advertising terms one by one.

It will make you the “savviest” digital marketer in the online world.

Let’s get going.

50+ Online Advertising Terms

Here are the online advertising terms for you.

What’s an Ad?

With respect to online advertising, an ad can take the form of a banner, a graphic image, or an animated GIF.

It has a designated pixel size and byte size.

Moreover, an ad or set of ads that are used for a campaign is mostly referred to as “the creative.”

More specifically, the video ads, as well as the banners and other special advertising that have an interactive or commonly known visual element beyond the usual, are called rich media.

Ad Blocker

Well, an ad blocker is a software product that goes on to prevent advertisements from appearing with the content which the user is intentionally viewing.

In fact, there are many reasons for blocking an ad.

One of the major reasons is the fact that many find marketing ads mostly annoying and sometimes even stressful.

Moreover, interrupt marketing is mostly intrusive by design.

For example the interstitial ads.

They come in between the users and the content they like to view.

Likewise, the rollover ads also startup without any intentional act taken up by the user.

What is a Click?

A click is recognized to occur when a visitor interacts with an advertisement.

However, it does not imply simply interacting with a rich media ad. Rather it involves actually clicking on it so that the visitor heads over to the advertiser’s destination.

Ad Fraud

In simple terms, ad fraud is a type of scam.

It happens when a perpetrator is successful in fooling advertisers and makes them pay for something that is actually worthless to them.

The most evident example of this is fake traffic, fake leads, or even misrepresented and ineffective ad placement.

Ad Network

Ad Network is one of the online advertising terms that are probably the life-blood for a digital marketer. Simply speaking, an ad network is an intermediary company.

It functions as a broker between advertisers and publishers. The advertisers are the ones who want to purchase inventory and publishers are the ones who want to host ads.

What is Above The Fold?

This online advertising term applies to web design.

“Above the fold” denotes the portion of a Web page that becomes visible in a browser window when the page loads.

To make it more clear, you also need to understand “below the fold.”

It’s the portion of the web page that needs scrolling for you to see the content.

So, it’s important for you to keep your placement above the fold because areas below the fold are frequently not seen.

Ad Server

An ad server is simply software that goes on to store data about advertising content. Its other function is to deliver ads to websites and applications.

More specifically, you can understand ad servers as specialized web servers.

What’s an Ad Space?

Ad space can be understood simply as space on a web page that is being reserved for ads.

There’s what is called an ad space group.

It’s a group of spaces within a website that has the same characteristics and facilitates an ad purchase for the group of spaces.

What is Ad Rotation?

In digital marketing, it’s a common scenario that is related to ads. Ads are mostly rotated into ad spaces from a list. It’s automatic.

It’s carried on by an online software site or even at a central site administered by an ad broker. It can also be a server facility working for a network of websites.

Ad Exchange

An ad exchange is another very popular online advertising term. It’s a software-based automated marketplace. Using an ad exchange, the publishers can sell their ad inventory. It allows advertisers to bid on and purchase the inventory in real-time.

What is an Ad-Fraud Botnet?

Well, an ad fraud botnet can be understood to be a distributed network of computers that are controlled by a botmaster with the object to defraud advertisers.

In fact, a botnet is constructed of computers that have been infected with malware. Not only this, they have been co-opted without the knowledge of the owners.

What is Ad View?

An ad view is also known as an impression.

Well, an ad view is a single ad that appears on a web page. It appears on a web page when the page itself arrives on the viewer’s browser display.

In fact, ad views are what most websites sell or prefer to sell.

Moreover, a web page can go on to offer a space for a number of ad views.

However, it is apt to say that digital marketers generally use the term impression.

What is Banner?

A banner can be understood as an advertisement that comes in the form of a graphic image. A banner usually runs across a web page. It can even be positioned in a margin as well as other spaces reserved for ads.

In most of the scenarios, banner ads come in the form of GIF (Graphics Interchange Format) images. As per the display is concerned, many websites go on to limit the size of the file to a fixed number of bytes. It allows the file to display quickly. In fact, the larger banner ad is 468 pixels wide and 60 pixels high.

What is the Brand, Brand name & Branding?

A brand can be understood as a product, service, or concept which is mostly and publicly distinguished from other products, services, or concepts. This allows it to be easily communicated and usually marketed.

Now, comes the brand name.

It is described as the name of a distinctive product, service, or concept.

What is Branding?

Branding is the process of creating as well as disseminating the brand name.

It is applied to the whole corporate identity. Moreover, it is even applied to the individual product and service names.

When we look at online and other media advertising, it is mostly seen that there is either kind of branding value. It does not matter that a direct response can be measured by an ad campaign or not.

In fact, many companies have done a science out of creating as well as evaluating the success of their brand name products.

Brand Recognition

Brand recognition goes on to establish the extent to which a consumer can “correctly” identify a particular product or service simply by viewing the logo of the product or service, even the tagline, packaging, as well as advertising campaign.

Booked Space

Booked Space is described as the number of ad views that come with ad space and are not currently sold out.


In terms of internet advertising, the caching of pages with cache server or even the user’s computer relates and establishes that some ad views won’t be known with ad counting programs, which can be a source of concern.

In fact, several techniques are used in telling the browser not to cache particular pages. On the contrary, “no caching for all pages” mean that the users will have the site slower than you would like it to be.

What is Click Fraud?

Click fraud is also called as Pay-per-Click Fraud.

It is described as the practice of artificially ‘inflating” traffic statistics with respect to online advertisements. It is done through automated clicking programs which are known as “hitbots” or “low-paid humans.”

What is Clickstream?

A clickstream is said to be a recorded path of the pages that a user requests when they go through one or more websites.

Clickstream information is very helpful to website owners.

It helps the users to know and understand how the visitors use their site and which pages get the most use.

A clickstream is also helpful to advertisers in understanding how users get to the client’s pages. It even helps them to know what pages the users look at and how they go and order a product.

Clickstream Analysis

Clickstream analysis stands out as the process of collecting, analyzing as well as reporting aggregate data about all the pages that a website visitor visits and also in what order.

Auto-Play Video

It’s simply audiovisual content.

Mostly it contains advertisements or more commonly known as promoted content. It starts automatically whenever a user goes to the host web page. It is mainly employed to get the user’s attention.

Most importantly, it is successful in getting the user’s attention as long as the user has the sound turned on. One more important thing. Auto-play is highly popular with advertisers than with potential customers.

What is Content Marketing?

Content marketing can be understood as the publication of material with the intent of promoting a brand. It offers something of value to the viewer. It can be in the form of information or entertainment.

What is Contextual Advertising?

Contextual advertising is based on targeting people with respect to their behavior. It can be the search queries they use as well as the websites they visit.

The data that is gathered is related to the individual’s interest and guides decisions about the ads that will be served.

What is Clickthrough?

Clickthrough determines the ad click that is counted by the sponsoring site. In fact, click, and Clickthrough is used interchangeably.

However, Clickthrough adds on the “click” and implies that the user received the page. In fact, many advertisers are willing to pay for Clickthrough rather than for ad impressions.

Ad Tech

Ad tech stands for advertising technology.

It refers to all the technologies, software as well as services that are used to deliver, control, and target online ads.

Agency Trading Desk

An agency trading desk refers to a team within an ad agency that goes on to execute online media buying as a managed service.

Behavioral Targeting

Behavioral targeting is a technique that is generally employed by advertisers and publishers. It is used to utilize a web user’s previous web browsing behavior to customize the types of ads they receive.

Behavioral targeting can be categorized as onsite behavioral targeting or network behavioral targeting. The tracking can be deployed either on a single website or domain or across a network of websites.


A bot is a software application that runs automated tasks. These tasks are both simple and structurally repetitive.

What is Clickthrough Rate?

The clickthrough rate stands out as the percentage of ad views that resulted in clickthroughs. In fact, ad views that don’t lead to ad clicks are difficult to measure. However, ad views do have visibility and branding value attached to them.

Moreover, a Clickthrough has several values.

For example, it indicates an ad’s effectiveness. It helps the visitor to access the advertiser’s website.

CPC (Cost Per Click)

CPC is Cost per Click. It is the price that is paid by an advertiser to a publisher for a single click on the ad bringing the consumer to its intended destination.

What is Cost Per Engagement?

CPE or Cost per Engagement is the bidding strategy wherein the advertisers only pay when users actively engage with ads, that is they click, watch, rollover, etc.

CPI or Cost Per Install

Cost Per Install an advertising method wherein the advertisers only need to pay when their app is downloaded or installed.

CPM (Cost per Impression)

Cost Per Impression or CPM this bidding strategy, advertisers go on to pay based on the number of impressions the ad receives.

CPV (Cost per View)

CPV a bidding strategy wherein you pay when your video is played.

Data Management Platform

Data Management Platform offers a “data warehouse” that is used to house and manage cookie IDs.

What is Display Advertisement?

It is a form of online advertising wherein an advertiser’s message is shown on a web page. It is usually set off in a box at the top or bottom or even to one side of the content concerning the page.


DSP stands for the demand-side platform.

It is software used to purchase advertising in an automated fashion. It allows advertisers to buy impressions across a range of publisher sites with the help of ad exchanges. For example, TubeMogul is a Demand-Side Platform.

What’s an eCPM?

eCPM stands for effective cost per thousand.

It’s a metric used for measuring advertising revenue generated across various marketing channels.

It is being calculated by dividing total earnings by the total number of impressions that are counted in thousands.

Fill Rate

It’s the ratio of ad requests that are successfully filled to the total number of ad requests. It is expressed in percentage.


It’s the number of times when an ad is delivered to the same browser and in a single session or better known as the period.


It’s an ad that appears within a piece of content.

For example, it can be a pre-roll attached to a YouTube video or even a promoted Tweet that comes with a Twitter feed.

What is Insertion?

Insertion refers to the actual placement of an advertisement. It can be digital or otherwise and is recorded by the ad server.

What is the Insertion Order?

It’s a purchase order that occurs between the seller of advertising and a buyer which is usually via an advertising agency.

Specifically, it’s a formal, printed order to run an ad campaign.

It identifies the campaign name, even the website receiving the order and also the planner or buyer giving the order, the individual ads to be run.

Several other parameters are typically identified in insertion order.

It includes the campaign beginning and end dates the CPM, the total cost, discounts to be applied as well as reporting requirements and possible penalties.

What is Interactive Pre-Roll?

They are in-stream video ads that play before video content. They have interactive and rich media elements including overlays, video galleries, microsites, or zip code locators.

What is Geotargeting?

Here the ads are shown based on the mobile device location of people. The ZIP code information is submitted by people when they register to a site or service. GPS coordinates are collected by site/service.

Key Performance Indicator

Key Performance Indicator which is generally known as KPI comes as a measurable value that denotes the effectiveness of a company is achieving key business objectives.

What is Mid-Roll?

Mid-roll is a form of online video ad placement in which the ad is placed during a break and in the middle of the content video.

Open Exchange

It is an open digital advertising marketplace. It offers aggregated inventory from multiple partners.

Here buyers can bid either manually or programmatically for purchasing impressions.

What is Message Recall?

Message recall is a message used for evaluating an ad’s effectiveness in driving a viewer’s ability in remembering a brand or the message which was intended to communicate. It’s typically measured with control or exposed survey methodology.

Page Request

It relates to an HTML document that can appear on a browser window as a direct result when a user interacts with a website.

What is a Cookie?

It’s a file on a web user’s hard drive.

It is kept with one of the sub-directories under the browser file directory.

Cookies are primarily used to record data about the user.

Moreover, some ad rotation software uses cookies for seeing which ad the user has just seen. It allows them to rotate different ads into the next page view.

What is the Cost per Action?

Cost Per Action is what an advertiser pays for each visitor.

It requires a specifically defined action in response to an ad which is beyond just simple clicking.

One such example can be when a visitor visits an advertiser’s site and subscribes to their newsletter.

What is Cost Per Lead?

It’s a specific form of cost per action wherein a visitor provides enough information at the advertiser’s site that is used as a sales lead.

What is Customer Acquisition Cost?

It is the investment made for convincing a consumer in buying your product or service. It includes research, marketing, and advertising costs. However, customer acquisition costs should be considered along with other data, specifically the value of the customer to the company.


Pixel is a piece of code that is provided by the company that wants to track the end user’s behavior.


It is the data that shows the size and characteristics of a population or audience. It has a number of variables such as gender, age group, income group, personal preferences, purchasing history, and so on.


It relates to the serving of ads to a specific market that is usually based on the geographic location of potential buyers.

A variety of situations prevails around the world and often constitutes a niche market for specific products and services based on a given time, city, state, or country.

What is Google Adsense?

Google Adsense is known as a program that is run by Google and allows enterprises to display Google advertisements on Websites. They get to earn revenue from hits generating traffic from Google search engines.


An interstitial is a page that is being inserted in the normal flow of editorial content structure on a website. It is used for advertising or promotion. It is more or less intrusive. However, the reaction of viewers depends on how the entertainment quotient of the message.


It’s the total number of ad views that a website offers for sale over a specific period.

What is a Native Advertisement?

Native advertising integrates marketing content with a website or service so that it is not distinct from the remaining material presented there in the form of content, format, style, or even placement.

Push Advertising?

Push advertisement is a form of traditional marketing wherein promotional material is presented to people through different channels, including flyers, magazines, television, radio, and billboards. However, online push advertising includes email campaigns, banner ads, and interstitials.


It’s an online ad that can infect the viewer’s computer with malware.

What is Real-time Bidding?

It’s an automated auction process that involves purchasing individual ad impressions on websites and even other online venues, including apps and games.

RTB is also an integral component of programmatic advertising. It goes on to automate the processes involved in buying and placing ads.


Retargeting is also known as remarketing.

It’s a form of digital advertising which features specific products or services. Then, it goes on to target an individual who has viewed them online.

It is the technology behind ads that go on to follow people from one site to another.

What is Rich Media?

Rich media is a form of advertising that contains elaborate interactive elements usually not found in banner ads. However, they are more challenging to create and serve. That said, rich media ads are more effective than ordinary animated banner ads.

ROI (Return on Investment)

ROI or Return on Investment determines how successful an ad campaign was in terms of returns.

Rollover Ad

It’s an online ad that appears as a static image unless the cursor touches the image and goes on to activates it. Here, the movement of the cursor over the image is called a rollover. The rollover ad causes the expansion of the ad.

What is Search Engine Marketing?

Search engine marketing is recognized as a method of promotion and advertising which endeavors to help companies rank content higher among search engine traffic.

Social Media Marketing

Social media marketing comes as a form of online marketing that involves social networking websites as a marketing tool. Its main purpose is to produce content that can be readily shared by users on their social networks. It helps companies increase brand exposure and broaden their customer reach.

What is SSP?

SSP or Supply-Side platforms enables publishers to offer their inventory to ad exchanges as well as demand-side platforms. It essentially refers to the supply of advertising space which is what the publisher is offering.

Targeted Ad

A Targeted Ad is an advertisement that is being served to a specific audience. It could be a particular demographic, a group, or an individual.


A sponsor is simply an advertiser who has sponsored an ad.

They can even support a special feature of a website.

Unique Visitor

A unique visitor is someone who has a unique address and is entering a website for the first time that day. So, if a visitor returns to the same website on the same day, it is not counted twice. It tells you how many different people there are in your audience during the stipulated period.


Well, these are some of the main online advertising terms. It is not an exhaustive list. However, we will be soon updating the list and will include many more online advertising terms.

The post will surely help to move into the world of digital marketing with confidence.

We hope that the post proves helpful to you. Do let us know your take and leave your valuable comment and suggestions below with the comment section.

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