Google Adwords Glossary

Not sure what everything in your Adwords report means?

Click / Click-Through

This occurs whenever a user sees your ad and clicks on it.

Click-Through Rate (CTR)

CTR is the number of clicks an ad receives divided by the number of times that ad has been viewed (the number of impressions). This is expressed using a percentage. CTR is a good indication of ad performance:

  • High CTR means an ad is performing well.
  • Low CTR means poor performance.

Cost-per-click (CPC)

The amount you will pay for a single click on your ad.

Cost Per Thousand Impressions (CPM)

A pricing model that charges for every 1,000 impressions an ad has rather than by click, as in CPC bidding.


The number of times an ad has been shown and viewed by users.

Key Metrics

Key Metrics are also known as performance indicators or key performance indicators (KPI). This is industry jargon for a type of performance measurement.

Common key metrics in Google AdWords include:

  • Cost-per-click
  • Cost-per-conversion
  • Clicks
  • Impressions
  • Click-through rates

Pay-per-click (PPC)

(Also called cost-per-click) is an Internet advertising model used to direct traffic to websites, where advertisers pay the publisher (typically a website owner, or in the case of Google AdWords, Google) when the ad is clicked. With search engines, advertisers typically bid on keyword phrases (also known as search terms) relevant to their target market.


Return on investment. It measures the efficiency of an investment; the ratio of money gained or lost (whether realised or unrealised) on an investment relative to the amount of money invested.


If you spend $1000 on Pay Per Click ads, and you make $2000 in profit from sales, then your Return On Investment would be 100%

Content Targeting

This refers to ads that you have running in an AdWords campaign on the Google Display Network.

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