Nick Montagu
October 8, 2019

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23 digital marketing buzzwords worth knowing

It's time to ditch the jargon.

Every month, it feels like Google, Facebook or LinkedIn have changed something about their algorithm, policies or functionality. This keeps new buzzwords circulating, more acronyms, and more trending articles telling our clients that when it comes to marketing... they're doing it all wrong. (Our favourites are the super helpful "secret" tips to making thousands everyday while sitting on a beach).

Since the alphawhale team love simplifying what others have complicated, we've put together 23 of our favourite (or least favourite?!) buzzwords and paired them with short, simple explanations.

This removes the confusion, and keeps our customers and even curious strangers updated on the latest jargon in digital marketing. 

Look out for regular updates as the buzzwords train keeps delivering, and feel free to throw some buzzwords at us in the comments section if you feel we need to do them some justice.


A/B Testing

When you test two different versions of a web page, email headline, ad or CTA to see which one is better at attaining the desired result - i.e. one page says "Buy Now" and the other says "Buy Today".

Attribution model

A map of the journey someone took to go from being a lead to a customer of your business; and assigning value to the different touchpoints and channels they visited along the way.


Buyer persona

A representation of your ideal customer(s) based on market research and existing customer data. Buyer personas have the power to influence every aspect of your business, including marketing/content strategy, business development and website design.


The instructions you leave with your target audience to persuade them to take a desired action i.e. "Buy Now" "Learn More" "Subscribe" and many others! On a web page this is usually a button where both placement, size and colour matter.



Path Length

The number of page views and events (i.e. clicks, scrolls) it takes for a user to finally make a transaction or conversion goal on your website. Hot tip: Create virtual page views or scroll depth events in Google Tag Manager for one-page sites.

Re targeting

A form of online advertising where you can target users who previously visited your website with banner ads on display networks across the web, apps and social networks. Hot tip: Create an audience for your checkout page of users who abandoned without signing up for an account.

Event-triggered Email

An email that is sent to your subscriber based on an event occurring such as a welcome email when they sign up, an anniversary or an email with a discount code on their birthday. Hot tip: A florist who remembers when their customers buy anniversary or birthday flowers for their partners can improve year round demand.

Contextual Marketing

When you're shown a targeted ad based on your online browsing habits such as after researching holidays to Europe, you start seeing ads for discount flights to Italy and hotel offers in Paris. There's a fine line between helpful and stalker-ish.

Customer Journey

The roadmap to knowing your customer and walking in their shoes. How did they discover your brand, how do they navigate your products or services, what other interactions do they have with your brand before purchasing, what happens next? Your customer journey map should be able to tell you all of this and more.

Evergreen Marketing

Content that remains valuable and doesn't age in a hurry. It will continue to attract customers long after you publish it and requires little or infrequent updating. Depending on your industry this could be an 'annual trends' report or a 'how-to guide'. Evergreen - The gift (of traffic) that keeps on giving.

Inbound Marketing

People now have more the ability to research any product or service within seconds of thinking about it. Inbound marketing is about ensuring your site will have the helpful content customers are looking for as they navigate their buyer journey. Win loyal customers by providing value from the first encounter and not just the first transaction.

TOFU - Top of Funnel

The channels, content and advertisements you create to build awareness for your brand, educate visitors and "draw" them into your website to take the first step. While the 'funnel' methodology is being replaced with 'flywheel' we think these terms will stick around.


MOFU - Middle of Funnel

The content you show website visitors who are considering your product or business, i.e. comparison sheets, white papers or case studies.


BOFU - Bottom of Funnel

The approach or service you provide to start converting your leads into buyers. This includes free trials, consultations and discount codes.


Online stores and 'bricks and mortar' stores now support one another to give the customer the best experiences from both worlds. An online customer walks past a physical retail location and gets a special offer relevant to their last online purchase.... hello omnichannel!

AMP - Accelerated Mobile Pages

A project kicked off by google to improve the page load speed of your content. An AMP takes away the bells and whistles to ensure mobile users don't chew up data or time when they browse your content. Hot tip: Mobile page load speed is now a consideration in Google's page ranking algorithm.

Long Tail Keywords

Usually a short phrase of 3-4 words a user might input to find a product or service like yours. Think "Little black dress" and Coco Chanel or "Red sports car" and Ferrari. Hot tip: These are usually cheaper to bid on and have higher conversion rates.

giphySEM - Search Engine Marketing

The ability to have your ads served only when a user searches for a keyword (or phrase) that you are bidding on. Targeting can be narrowed by location, age, gender and other demographics. Retargeting can also be done via SEM allowing you to target website visitors or people who abandoned their cart but didn't leave their email address yet.

SEO - Search Engine Optimisation 

How discoverable your page is based on the key search terms that it relates too. To win at the SEO game you have to understand what search terms your customers use to find you and what rules Google has about reading and storing (crawling) your page content. SEO is never 'done'.

SERP - Search Engine Results Page 

There's more than just search results on the SERP these days. Search snippets that show products, movie times, definitions as well as ads also populate the page and help increase your chances of being clicked in conjunction with your organic results.


Snippets are a way for clever marketers to tell the search engine what information from your site should be shown to a user based on their search. A must have in the future of SEO with voice based search and AI needing as much help as you can give it. Also, as per above, snippets help you get prime position on the SERP. The most undervalued SEO strategy of 2018.


The moment that people turn to a device to get immediate information that will help them to make a decision, resolve a problem, buy something or go somewhere. This is usually done with smartphones and/or AI voice assistants like Siri or Alexa. Hot tip: Snippets, snippets, snippets.

PPC - Pay Per Click

An internet advertising model where you, as the advertiser, pay a certain amount (bid) to the ad platform every time a user clicks on your ads. Bidding strategies and payment methods are making it easier for marketers to get ROI on advertising.


That's the end of our list. If you made it this far, you are our kind of awesome. We know that it's unlikely one blog post could possibly answer all your questions that's why we created the button below, where you can literally ask us anything. Just click and send your questions through.

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Nick Montagu
Nick Montagu
Nick is the Founder/CEO at alphawhale. He loves to dream big ideas and then break them down into *almost* impossible plans. Eats analytics for breakfast.