Pay Per Click Dictionary

Definition of Pay-per-click

Definition of Pay-per-click

Are you tormented by the technology of your pay per click account? With so many variables, it’s all too easy to be baffled by the shortcuts, nicknames, and abbreviations associated with your AdWords, MSN, and Yahoo advertising.

Although it can sometimes seem that you need to learn a whole new language just to navigate around your PPC campaign, Top Position’s essential guide to pay per click terminology makes it easy to banish the jargon.


The name of Google’s pay-per-click advertising platform. Most advertisers associate PPC with AdWords, however Yahoo, and MSN along with other minor search engines also offer their own PPC advertising packages.

Call To Action

An important part of good PPC advert copywriting, a call to action phrase encourages the user to proactively engage with the advert. Examples of call to action phrases typically included in pay per click ad text include ‘Buy now’, ‘Sign Up Online’ and ‘Click here for more details’.

Definition of Pay-per-click

Conversion Rate

The conversion rate of your advert is a calculation of the number of advert clicks resulting in purchases. It is possible to define a conversion depending on the web site design. So, if your company doesn’t offer online purchasing, a conversion can represent a user filling in a form with their name and contact details.


Otherwise known as cost-per-click this is the price you pay as an advertiser each time someone clicks on your pay per click advert. The cost per click is determined by the amount you are willing to bid for each keyword, allowing you to control costs.

Cost Per Conversion

The cost per conversion is the cost of each conversion generated by your pay per click advertising campaign. This is calculated using the cost per click. As some users will comparison shop and click on the ad more than once, their visits can be tracked using cookies to ensure accurate data.


The CTR, or click-through rate, is the number of times that web surfers click on your AdWords, Yahoo, or MSN ad. This value is displayed as a percentage and is calculated by dividing the number of clicks by the number of impressions. A good CTR is one way of measuring the success of your PPC campaign.


A targeting option that allows you to show adverts only to users searching within specific geographical locations. This option is used to make adverts more relevant and to better use the daily budget by showing adverts in relevant areas. If for example, you can only deliver to the north of England, geo-targeting could be used to restrict ad displays to within that area.


The number of times your pay per click advert is shown to search engine users.

Mobile Ads

Pay per click ads is shown on mobile phone handsets. Mobile ads allow advertisers to target internet users accessing the web through their mobile phones. Advert performance can be tracked in the same way as traditional PPC campaign performance.


The ROI or return on investment of your campaign is subjective and difficult to accurately measure however it is a metric of the benefit gained compared with the cost of the PPC ads. Cost per click, conversion rate, and cost per conversion are commonly used to help determine whether the return from the campaign is favorable or not.

Time Targeting

A targeting option is also known as dayparting and time scheduling which determines at what time of the day and on which days of the week adverts are shown. This feature is a useful optimization tool. If your company has a primarily business clientele, time targeting means adverts can be set-up to show during business hours and turned off at evenings and weekends.


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