Marketing and Commerce Term Glossary

Go beyond simple definitions. In this glossary, you’ll find in-depth discussions with industry experts about topics that are relevant to marketing and commerce professionals today. 

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Account-based marketing is a B2B strategy that collectively engages contacts within a target account.

Advertising is the process of using content to attract and convert customers on a non-owned property.

Analytics is the process of defining a method to transform data into action. 

Attribution is the practice of assigning credit to marketing touchpoints. Learn more. 

Audience targeting is the ability to take your full audience of prospective customers and segment it into groups based on different criteria. 

A model used to automate content delivery according to a customer’s journey with a brand. 



Behavioral segmentation refers to grouping audiences based on common actions. Learn how it works and why it leads to better results.

The term “big data” refers to large data sets, usually measured in terabytes or petabytes, that are analyzed to provide business insights.

A bounce rate is the percentage of website or app visitors who view one page or one piece of content and then leave the site.

Business analytics uses data science to build decision-making models to improve organizational processes. Learn more.

Business intelligence refers to a subdiscipline of data analytics. Discover how to manage BI and more.

B2B marketing is marketing that targets individual companies and their decision makers as customers (business-to-business marketing) rather than targeting individual consumers as customers (B2C or business-to-consumer marketing).

B2C marketing is marketing that targets individual consumers as customers (business-to-consumer marketing) rather than targeting other companies as customers (B2B or business-to-business marketing).

Behavioral analysis is a data analysis practice that identifies how users interact with a brand property like a mobile app or website, and how aspects of that property drive customer engagement.



Content management refers to the sourcing, creation, management, and delivery of digital content.

A software application or set of tools and capabilities to create, manage, and deliver content.

Content marketing refers to the strategy and business processes that deliver digital assets to a defined audience.

A calculation that reveals how well online traffic is converting into revenue.

Cross-channel marketing is the ability for brands to connect with their customers on an array of different communications channels. 

Customer acquisition is the process of bringing in new paying customers. Learn about acquisition models, metrics, and more.

A customer data platform helps manage customer data by aggregating data from multiple systems. Learn more.

Customer experience refers to brand interactions through every touchpoint. Learn how it is different from user experience and customer service.

The process advancing a customer’s journey through the sales funnel.

Delivery of coordinated customer experiences to advance customers through the sales cycle.

A data file that compiles traits and behaviors of an individual. 

Customer segmentation groups customers depending on certain characteristics using data sources. 

Cluster analysis is a form of exploratory data analysis in which observations are divided into groups that share common characteristics. Those groups are compared and contrasted with other groups to derive information about the observations.

Correlation analysis, also known as bivariate analysis, is primarily concerned with finding out whether a relationship exists between variables and then determining the magnitude and action of that relationship.

The number of customers an organization loses in a given timeframe. 

Cookieless refers to a marketing strategy with less reliance on browser cookies to inform marketers about consumer behaviors. Learn how to adapt and more.

Consumer marketing is selling goods or services to individuals for their personal use and promoting these goods and services through various marketing strategies, including using consumer data for personalized experiences.

The customer journey is the series of steps — starting with brand awareness before a person is even a customer — that lead to eventual customer loyalty.



Data analytics is the act of pulling out important business insights from the different kinds of information that you have about your customers. 

A data warehouse is a large repository of information pulled from databases, transactional systems, and other sources. Learn more.

A demand-side platform (DSP) aggregates access to supply-side partners so that advertisers can message their consumers across channels. 

The execution of a marketing strategy through a single online channel or multiple channels for the purpose of improving conversion rates.

Display advertising includes text- and image-based advertisements that live on websites, apps, or other digital properties. 

Drop shipping is a distribution method where the retailer does not physically store products, but works with a drop-ship supplier to allocate orders to a manufacturer. 

A dynamic web page assembles the content as the visitor requests it, typically to integrate content or data that is specific to the visitor.

Data-driven decision-making is the practice of using insights derived from data to make better decisions.

A data lake is a central repository for all of the raw customer data a company collects, as well as any relevant third-party data.

Data visualization is the practice of visually representing data to aid in decision making.

Descriptive analytics is the practice of gaining insights from existing historical data.

Digital rights management (DRM) includes the processes, policies, and technologies that organizations use to control how content creators use and share digital assets.

Digital transformation means reorienting your organization to operate effectively in a digital economy.

Data science is a multidisciplinary field that brings together mathematics, statistics, programming, computer science, and domain knowledge to extract insights from data and create efficiencies in business tasks.

Data mining means preparing data for insights by finding anomalies, patterns, and correlations.

Deep learning is a subset of machine learning that uses algorithms and unstructured data to cluster, classify, and make predictions for future data.



E-commerce describes the action of buying or selling goods or services through digital channels like the internet.

Software that enables buying and selling via a frontend and backend system.

The creation, optimization, delivery, measurement, and analysis of a single or multi-step email engagement with an  audience.

A technology vendor that offers enterprise-level marketing via an email channel.



A content management system that separates the presentation layer from the delivery layer of content.

Heat maps are a type of data visualization tool that use color to convey data points in a simpler format. The shade of color in a heat map typically indicates the volume of a data point.  



Inbound marketing refers to campaigns where engagement is initiated by the consumer.

The Internet of Things is a conglomerate of interconnected computing devices in the physical realm, often quite small, that performs specific actions and collects information.



The tools and technology used to map a customer’s interactions with a brand.

A tool to understand a customer journey and deliver personalized experiences for engagement along the journey.



The process of identifying and nurturing customers through the conversion funnel.

A landing page is a standalone website page that exists to primarily convert visitors. Learn how to include it in your marketing strategy and more.

Lead generation is the process of identifying and nurturing potential customers for your business.



Machine learning refers to the subset of artificial intelligence that uses models to improve performance when given more data. Learn more.

The technology that automates the orchestration of interactions with customers.

Mobile analytics allows companies to track and analyze the behavior of customers on mobile applications and devices. 

Mobile app development refers to the process of creating software used on mobile devices. Learn more.

Mobile commerce or m-commerce specifically refers to consumers or businesses making a purchase through a mobile device like a smartphone or tablet. 

Connecting with and delivering messages to customers via mobile channels and devices. 

Market segmentation is the practice of grouping customers together based on certain characteristics that they may share.

Multivariate analysis involves analyzing multiple variables (more than two) to identify any possible association among them.

A marketing plan documents an organization’s marketing objectives and what it will do to achieve those objectives.



Omnichannel marketing is the process of driving customer engagement across all channels with seamless, targeted messaging.

The practice of personalizing content to create unique interactions with individual customers.



Personalization is taking what we know about a person and their digital behavior and delivering the next best experience. 

Programmatic advertising is the automation of buying and selling advertisements using mainly real-time bidding. 

Predictive modeling is a statistical technique and process used to forecast future outcomes. It is most closely associated with predictive analytics, which focuses on using machine learning to predict what might happen next.

Prescriptive analytics uses data and machine learning to provide recommendations for the next steps a company can take for growth or optimization.

Psychographic segmentation is a market targeting practice built on insights about a person’s affinities or preferences. Learn how to it works.

Push notifications provide real-time alerts from an app on a phone or other device. Learn more about how they work.



Qualitative research involves collecting and analyzing non-numerical data to better understand customer experiences. Learn more.


A recommendation engine is a software system that personalizes experiences by identifying the right offer, product, or content. 

Responsive web design means creating web pages that are consistent in quality across a variety of devices and screen sizes.



Search engine marketing uses paid ads that appear at the top of a search engine results page to drive customer action and engagement. 

Social media marketing refers to managing a brand’s social media presence across multiple social networks. Learn more.

Split testing is when you take incoming traffic into a digital experience, like a website or mobile app, and randomly assign each person into a different group. 

A supply chain is the sequence of processes involved in producing and distributing a commodity. Learn more.



A tag manager allows users to quicklyupdate marketing tags without directlymanipulating source code. Learn more.



User experience refers to the digital experiences people have using a platform like a website or app. Learn more.



A recommendation engine is a software system that personalizes experiences by identifying the right offer, product, or content. 

Video marketing refers to the use of video format to promote a brand, message, product, or service. Learn more.



Website design means planning, conceptualizing, and arranging content online.