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PPC Monday – Understanding Common Online Advertising Terms

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In our first PPC Monday blog, we talked about different types of online advertising. This post will dig into specific terms used during an online advertising campaign.


Quite simply, this is the number of times your ads were seen. It doesn’t measure the unique number of people who saw your ad but the number of times someone had your ad on their screen. Think of it like a billboard – how many times will someone drive past your billboard?


This is the easiest one on the list. How many times did someone click on your ad? Now with Facebook, we can make it a little more complicated in measuring which part of the ad they clicked on (your call-to-action or another part). But at the end of the day, an online advertising report will say your ads had X amount of clicks for the month.

Click-Thru Rate

This number (typically a percentage) is the amount of impressions divided by amount of clicks. Different types of campaigns will have different standards for a click-thru rate. For example, a remarketing campaign in Google will be much lower than a targeted audience campaign on Facebook.


This is a call-to-action for what you are trying to get someone to do? Apply, like, learn more, etc. An ad can be eye-catching and have good text, but if you aren’t hammering home the point of what you want the user to do, then it’s going to struggle to convert.

Landing page

One of the most underrated yet IMPORTANT parts of a pay-per-click campaign. Where are you sending someone when they click on the call-to-action in your ad? You want someone to land on a page that has one goal and minimal distractions or other places to click. This is the subject of a future PPC Monday blog post because it’s so important.


This is similar to impressions, but this metric measures the unique number of people who view your ad. The ad could have 10,000 impressions but a reach of 7,500 people.


How many times (during a specific time period) did the average person in your target audience view your ad? Let’s go back to that billboard example from earlier in the blog post. If there are 20 work days in a month and someone drives past your billboard once a day, then their frequency for the month is 20.00. But if they took a day off, it’s 19.00. If they drove past it twice one day, then it’s 21.00.


How did someone engage with your ad? Did they click on it? Did they like it? Did they share it? Different campaigns have different engagement goals, so it’s important to know before your online advertising campaign which engagement will result in success.


This is the cost-per-click of your advertising campaign. There are two different ways to look at the CPC of your ad. The first one is to look at the cost per click of the intended action of your ad (did they convert on the CTA you want them to accomplish?) The second one deals more with social advertising (namely Facebook and LinkedIn) but what is the CPC for any click on your ad – not just the intended goal but anywhere the user clicked on the ad.


This is “cost per thousand” (in Latin, mille means thousand and M is also the roman numeral for 1,000). CPM comes into play with impressions as it’s an easier number to understand for impressions. For example, one impression may cost $0.003 while 1,000 impressions would cost $3.00.

You may have heard some or all of these terms previously. Hopefully this guide helps with understanding online advertising for your staffing agency.

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