A Glossary Of SEM Terms

By Rebecca Menezes | | Tagged Marketing your online store, Marketing your website, Online Marketing, Search Engine Marketing

Search Engine Marketing (SEM) may be a relatively new concept, but it’s a highly effective means of marketing on the world wide web. It encompasses dynamic options for a promotion that allows you to reach the specific audiences you want to target. However, to derive relevant results from these promotions, you need to understand the different concepts and jargon which marketers use to prepare a solid plan that delivers the outcomes you’re after.

For instance, to know what’s the latest trend in SEM, you need to understand the technical terminology. Fundamental knowledge of the digital marketer’s vernacular will enable you to interpret their marketing methods, make tweaks to your SEM strategy, and easily read your marketing results.

To help you get a grip on the technical aspects of SEM, the digital service experts at Webware.io have compiled a list of the top SEM related terms, which leave small businesses at a disadvantage when it comes to online marketing.


SEM stands for Search Engine Marketing. In other words, it means “marketing via search engines.” Promoting your products or services via search engines can be done in two main ways. Either you optimize your site, so it appears at a high spot in organic search results, or you pay for the clicks directly. With the latter option, your site is listed under the “sponsored listings” section which is a very prominent place in the search results.

Google Ads Tool.

Google Ads Tool is an online advertising platform developed by Google, where advertisers pay to display brief advertisements, service offerings, product listings, video content and generate mobile application installs within the Google ad network to web users.

Search Advertising.

In online marketing, search advertising is a method of placing online advertisements on web pages that show results from search engine queries. Through the same search-engine advertising services, ads can also be placed on web pages with other published content.

Display Advertising.

Display advertising is advertising on websites or apps or social media through banners or other ad formats made of text, images, flash, video, and audio content. The primary purpose of display advertising is to deliver general advertisements and brand messages to site visitors.


When someone clicks on your ad, like on the blue headline of a text ad, Google Ads counts that as a click. Clicks can help you understand how well your ad appeals to people who see it. Relevant, highly-targeted ads are more likely to receive clicks.


An impression is counted each time your ad is served on Google’s ad networks. Impressions help you understand how often your ad is being seen.

Click-Through Rate (CTR).

Click-through rate (CTR) measures how often people click your ad after it’s shown to them, which can help you understand the effectiveness of your ad.

Avg. CPC.

Average cost-per-click (CPC) is the amount you’ve paid for your ad divided by its total clicks.

Avg. Pos.

Avg. Pos. is a statistic that describes how your ad typically ranks against other ads. This rank determines in which order ads appear on the page.


An action that’s counted when someone interacts with your ad (for example, clicks a text ad or views a video ad) and then takes an action that you’ve defined as valuable to your business, such as an online purchase or a call to your business from a mobile phone.

Conversion Rate.

Conversion rate shows how often, on average, an ad interaction leads to a conversion. It is “Conversions” divided by the interactions with your ad.

Total Amount (Ad Spend).

The estimated total amount of money you’ve spent on your campaign, ad set, or ad during its schedule.

Now that you have more clarity on the terms that contribute to search engine marketing, you’ll find that doing SEM research is much smoother, your online marketing reports are easier to read, and you better understand the potential of your SEM program before launching it.

If you’re wondering how to use all that you’ve learned here to boost your digital marketing efforts, reach out to the digital service experts at Webware.io. We offer you a complete digital marketing tool kit designed to help small businesses like yours to easily navigate the online world. We help you establish your presence online successfully through self-sufficient websites and online stores, SEO, and digital marketing services.

To learn more about our services, please click here. If you have any questions about how we can help with your digital marketing needs, we’d love to hear from you. Please contact our experts here. Our head office is located in Toronto, and we serve clients across Canada and North America.