Glossary of Interactive Advertising Terms


Jun 1, 2008 by Sean Luce

If you want to talk the talk, best to know the meaning of key terms used in the industry.

ANA (Association of National Advertisers)
the trade association serving the needs of advertisers and marketers by providing leadership in advertising and marketing trends and best practices. See ana.net for more information.
ARF (Advertising Research Foundation)
a nonprofit trade association whose mission is profitable business through effective research and insights. See arfsite.org for more information.
Abandon
when a user leaves a shopping cart with something in it prior to completing the transaction.
Abort
when a Web server does not successfully transfer a unit of content or ad to a browser. This is usually caused by a user hitting the stop button, the ESC key, or clicking on another link prior to the completion of a download.
Activity audit
independent verification of measured activity for a specified time period. Some of the key metrics validated are ad impressions, page impressions, clicks, total visits and unique users. An activity audit results in a report verifying the metrics. Formerly known as a count audit.
Ad/advertisement
a commercial message targeted to an advertiser?s customer or prospect.
Ad audience
the number of unique users exposed to an ad within a specified time period.
Ad banner
a graphic image or other media object used as an advertisement. See iab.net for voluntary guidelines for banner ads.
Ad blocker
software on a user?s browser which prevents advertisements from being displayed.
Ad campaign audit
an activity audit for a specific ad campaign.
Ad centric measurement
audience measurement derived from a third-party ad server's own server logs.
Ad click
a measurement of the user-initiated action of responding to (such as clicking on) an ad element causing a re-direct to another Web location or another frame or page within the advertisement. There are three types of ad clicks: 1) click-throughs; 2) in-unit clicks; and 3) mouseovers. Ad click-throughs should be tracked and reported as a 302 redirect at the ad server and should filter out robotic activity.
Ad click rate
ratio of ad clicks to ad impressions.
Ad display/Ad delivered
when an ad is successfully displayed on the user's computer screen.
Ad download
when an ad is downloaded by a server to a user?s browser. Ads can be requested, but aborted or abandoned before actually being downloaded to the browser, and hence there would be no opportunity to see the ad by the user.
Address
a unique identifier for a computer or site online, usually a URL for a Web site or marked with an @ for an e-mail address. Literally, it is how one computer finds the location of another computer using the Internet.
Ad impression
1) an ad which is served to a user?s browser.   Ads can be requested by the user?s browser (referred to as pulled ads) or they can be pushed, such as e-mailed ads; 2) a measurement of responses from an ad delivery system to an ad request from the user's browser, which is filtered from robotic activity and is recorded at a point as late as possible in the process of delivery of the creative material to the user's browser -- therefore closest to the actual opportunity to see by the user. Two methods are used to deliver ad content to the usera) server-initiated and b) client-initiated.  Server-initiated ad counting uses the publisher's Web content server for making requests, formatting and re-directing content.  Client-initiated ad counting relies on the user's browser to perform these activities.
For organizations that use a server-initiated ad counting method, counting should occur subsequent to the ad response at either the publisher's ad server or the Web content server.  For organizations using a client-initiated ad counting method, counting should occur at the publisher's ad server or third-party ad server, subsequent to the ad request, or later, in the process. See iab.net for ad campaign measurement guidelines.
Ad impression ratio
Click-throughs divided by ad impressions. See click rate.
Ad insertion
when an ad is inserted in a document and recorded by the ad server.
Ad materials
the creative artwork, copy, active URLs and active target sites which are due to the seller prior to the initiation of the ad campaign.
Ad network
an aggregator or broker of advertising inventory for many sites. Ad networks are the sales representatives for the Web sites within the network.
Ad recall
a measure of advertising effectiveness in which a sample of respondents are exposed to an ad and then at a later point in time are asked if they recall the ad. Ad recall can be on an aided or unaided basis. Aided ad recall is when the respondent is told the name of the brand or category being advertised.
Ad request
the request for an advertisement as a direct result of a user's action as recorded by the ad server. Ad requests can come directly from the user?s browser or from an intermediate Internet resource, such as a Web content server.
Ad serving
the delivery of ads by a server to an end user's computer on which the ads are then displayed by a browser and/or cached. Ad serving is normally performed either by a Web publisher, or by a third-party ad server. Ads can be embedded in the page or served separately.
Ad space
the location on a page of a site in which an advertisement can be placed. Each space on a site is uniquely identified. Multiple ad spaces can exist on a single page.
Ad stream
the series of ads displayed by the user during a single visit to a site (also impression stream).
Ad transfers
the successful display of an advertiser's Web site after the user clicked on an ad. When a user clicks on an advertisement, a click-through is recorded and re-directs or "transfers" the user's browser to an advertiser's Web site. If the user successfully displays the advertiser's Web site, an ad transfer is recorded.
Ad view
when the ad is actually seen by the user. Note this is not measurable today. The best approximation today is provided by ad displays.
Ad window
separate from the content window.
Advertiser
the company paying for the advertisement.
Advertising revenue
revenue realized from the sale of advertising. See interactive advertising revenue.
Affiliate marketing
an agreement between two sites in which one site (the affiliate) agrees to feature content or an ad designed to drive traffic to another site. In return, the affiliate receives a percentage of sales or some other form of compensation generated by that traffic.
Affinity marketing
selling products or services to customers on the basis of their established buying patterns. The offer can be communicated by e-mail promotions, online or offline advertising.
Alternate text
a word or phrase that is displayed when a user has image loading disabled in their browser or when a user abandons a page by hitting "stop" in their browser prior to the transfer of all images. Also appears as ?balloon text? when a user lets their mouse rest over an image.
Animated advertisement
an ad that changes over time. For example, an animated ad is an interactive Java applet or Shockwave or GIF89a file.
Animated GIF
an animation created by combining multiple GIF images in one file. The result is multiple images, displayed one after another, that give the appearance of movement.
Anonymizer
an intermediary which prevents Web sites from seeing a user?s Internet Protocol (IP) address.
Applet
a small, self-contained software application that is most often used by browsers to automatically display animation and/or to perform database queries requested by the user.
Applicable browser
any browser an ad will impact, regardless of whether it will play the ad.
Artifacting
distortion that is introduced into audio or video by the compression algorithm (codec). Compressed images may have stray pixels (often white dots) that were not present in the original image. See codec.
Aspect ratio
the width-to-height ratio of the picture frame. TV broadcasts at a 4:3 (1.33:1) aspect ratio; digital TV will be broadcast with a 16:9 (1.78:1) ratio; and most feature films are shot in at least a 1.85:1 ratio. IMUs have an aspect ratio of 6:5 (330x 250; 336 x 280; and 180 x 150).
Audit
third party validation of log activity and/or measurement process associated with Internet activity/advertising. Activity audits validate measurement counts. Process audits validate internal controls associated with measurement.
Auditor
a third party independent organization that performs audits.
Bandwidth
1) the transmission rate of a communications line or system, expressed either as cycles per second/hertz for analog lines, or as bits (bps) or kilobits per second (Kbps) for digital systems; 2) line speed; 3) the amount of information that can be transmitted over communications lines at one time.
Bandwidth competition
a bottleneck, however brief, when two or more files are simultaneously transmitted over a single line. Unless the system is able to prioritize among the files, the effect is to slow delivery of each.
Banner
a graphic image displayed on an HTML page used as an ad. See iab.net for voluntary guidelines defining specifications of banner ads.
Barter
the exchange of goods and services without the use of cash. The value of the barter is the dollar value of the goods and services being exchanged for advertising. This is a recognized form of revenue under GAAP (Generally Accepted Accounting Principles).
BtoB/B2B (Business-to-Business)
businesses whose customers are other businesses.
BtoC (Business-to-Consumer)
businesses whose major customers are consumers.
BBS (Bulletin Board System)
software that enables users to log into e-mail, usenet and chat groups via modem.
Beacon
a snippet of code placed in an ad, on a Web page, or in an email which helps measure whether the ad, page or email was delivered to the browser and to track actions in general. Also known as a clear GIF or pixel tag.
Beta
a test version of a product, such as a Web site or software, prior to final release.
Beyond-the-banner
a term referring to any advertisement that is not a banner, e.g. an interstitial, streaming video ads, etc.
Bit
the smallest unit of data in a computer. A bit has a single binary value of either 0 or 1. There are eight bits in a byte.
Bit rate
a measure of bandwidth which tells you how fast data is traveling from one place to another on a computer network. Bit rate is usually expressed in kilobits (100 bits) per second or Kbps.
Bonus impressions
additional ad impressions above the commitments outlined in the approved insertion order.
Bot
short for robot. See intelligent agent, robot.
Bounce
what happens when e-mails are returned to the mail server as undeliverable.
Broadband
an Internet connection that delivers a relatively high bit rateany bit rate at or above 100 Kbps. Cable modems, DSL and ISDN all offer broadband connections.
Browser
a software program that can request, download, cache and display documents available on the World Wide Web. Browsers can be either text-based or graphical.
Browser sniffer
see sniffer.
Buffering
when a streaming media player saves portions of a streaming media file until there is enough information for the stream to begin playing.
Button
1) clickable graphic that contains certain functionality, such as taking one someplace or executing a program; 2) buttons can also be ads. See iab.net for voluntary guidelines defining specifications of button ads.
Cache
memory used to temporarily store the most frequently requested content/files/pages in order to speed its delivery to the user. Cache can be local (i.e. on a browser) or on a network. In the case of local cache, most computers have both memory (RAM), and disk (hard drive) cache. Today, Web browsers cause virtually all data viewed to be cached on a user's computer.
Cache busting
the process by which sites or servers serve content or HTML in such a manner as to minimize or prevent browsers or proxies from serving content from their cache. This forces the user or proxy to fetch a fresh copy for each request. Among other reasons, cache busting is used to provide a more accurate count of the number of requests from users.
Cached ad impressions
the delivery of an advertisement to a browser from local cache or a proxy server?s cache. When a user requests a page that contains a cached ad, the ad is obtained from the cache and displayed.
Caching
the process of copying a Web element (page or ad) for later reuse. On the Web, this copying is normally done in two places: in the user's browser and on proxy servers. When a user makes a request for a Web element, the browser looks into its own cache for the element; then a proxy, if any; followed by the intended server. Caching is done to reduce redundant network traffic, resulting in increased overall efficiency of the Internet.
CARU (The Children's Advertising Review Unit)
division of the Council of Better Business Bureaus that reviews advertising and promotional material directed at children in all media. See caru.org for more information.
CGI script (Common Gateway Interface)
CGI?s are used to allow a user to pass data to a Web server, most commonly in a Web-based form. Specifically, CGI scripts are used with forms such as pull-down menus or text-entry areas with an accompanying submit button. The input from the form is processed by a program (the CGI script itself) on a remote Web server.
Channel
1) a band of similar content; 2) a type of sales outlet (also known as channel of distribution), for example retail, catalogue, or e-commerce.
Chat
online interactive communication between two or more people on the Web. One can ?talk? in real time with other people in a chat room, but the words are typed instead of spoken.
Chat room
an area online where you can chat with other people in real-time.
Click down
the action of clicking on an element within an ad and having another file displayed on the user?s screen, normally below or above the initial ad. Click down ads allow the user to stay on the same Web page and provide the advertiser a larger pallet to communicate their message.
Click rate
ratio of ad clicks to ad impressions.
Clicks
1) metric which measures the reaction of a user to an Internet ad. There are three types of clicks: click-throughs; in-unit clicks; and mouseovers; 2) the opportunity for a user to download another file by clicking on an advertisement, as recorded by the server; 3) the result of a measurable interaction with an advertisement or key word that links to the advertiser?s intended Web site or another page or frame within the Web site; 4) metric which measures the reaction of a user to hot-linked editorial content. See iab.net for ad campaign measurement guidelines. See also ad click, click-through, in-unit clicks and mouseover.
Click-stream
1) the electronic path a user takes while navigating from site to site, and from page to page within a site; 2) a comprehensive body of data describing the sequence of activity between a user?s browser and any other Internet resource, such as a Web site or third party ad server.
Click-through
the action of following a hyperlink within an advertisement or editorial content to another Web site or another page or frame within the Web site. Ad click-throughs should be tracked and reported as a 302 redirect at the ad server and should filter out robotic activity.
Click-within
similar to click down or click. But more commonly, click-withins are ads that allow the user to ?drill down? and click, while remaining in the advertisement, not leaving the site on which they are residing.
Client
a computer that submits an information request to a server on behalf of a user or proxy.
Client-initiated ad impression
one of the two methods used for ad counting. Ad content is delivered to the user via two methodsserver-initiated and client-initiated. Client-initiated ad counting relies on the user?s browser for making requests, formatting and re-directing content. For organizations using a client-initiated ad counting method, counting should occur at the publisher?s ad server or third-party ad server, subsequent to the ad request, or later, in the process. See server-initiated ad impression.
Codec
short for compressor/decompressor. Codecs are computer algorithms that are used to compress the size of audio, video, and image files. Because these compressed files are much smaller, they do not require as much bandwidth when they are streamed or stored on a computer. The same codec that originally compressed the file must be used to decompress and open the file.
Communication error
the failure of a Web browser/Web server to successfully request/transfer a document.
Content integration
advertising woven into editorial content or placed in a contextual envelope. Also known as "Web advertorial".
Cookie
a file on the user?s browser that uniquely identifies the user?s browser. There are two types of cookies: persistent cookies and session cookies. Session cookies are temporary and are erased when the browser exits. Persistent cookies remain on the user?s hard drive until the user erases them or until they expire.
Cookie buster
software that blocks the placement of cookies on a user?s browser.
COPPA (Children?s Online Privacy Protection Act)
Congress enacted the COPPA in 1998 to prohibit unfair or deceptive acts or practices in connection with the collection, use, or disclosure of personally identifiable information from and about children on the Internet. Section 6502(b)(1) of the Act sets forth a series of general privacy protections to prevent unfair or deceptive online information collection from or about children, and directs the Commission to adopt regulations to implement those protections. The Act requires operators of Web sites directed to children and operators who knowingly collect personal information from children to: (1) Provide parents notice of their information practices; (2) obtain prior verifiable parental consent for the collection, use, and/or disclosure of personal information from children (with certain limited exceptions for the collection of "online contact information," e.g., an e-mail address); (3) provide a parent, upon request, with the means to review the personal information collected from his/her child; (4) provide a parent with the opportunity to prevent the further use of personal information that has already been collected, or the future collection of personal information from that child; (5) limit collection of personal information for a child's online participation in a game, prize offer, or other activity to information that is reasonably necessary for the activity; and (6) establish and maintain reasonable procedures to protect the confidentiality, security, and integrity of the personal information collected.
COPPR (Children?s Online Privacy Protection Rule)
issued by the FTC in October 1999 the Children's Online Privacy Protection Rule went into effect on April 21, 2000, and implements the requirements of the COPPA by requiring operators of websites or online services directed to children and operators of Web sites or online services who have actual knowledge that the person from whom they seek information is a child (1) to post prominent links on their Web sites to a notice of how they collect, use, and/or disclose personal information from children; (2) with certain exceptions, to notify parents that they wish to collect information from their children and obtain parental consent prior to collecting, using, and/or disclosing such information; (3) not to condition a child's participation in online activities on the provision of more personal information than is reasonably necessary to participate in the activity; (4) to allow parents the opportunity to review and/or have their children's information deleted from the operator's database and to prohibit further collection from the child; and (5) to establish procedures to protect the confidentiality, security, and integrity of personal information they collect from children. As directed by the COPPA, the Rule also provides a safe harbor for operators following Commission-approved self-regulatory guidelines. See www.caru.org for more information.
Copy
printed text in an advertisement.
Count audit
see activity audit.
CPA (Cost-per-Action)
cost of advertising based on a visitor taking some specifically defined action in response to an ad. "Actions" include such things as a sales transaction, a customer acquisition, or a click.
CPC (Cost-per-Customer)
the cost an advertiser pays to acquire a customer.
CPC (Cost-per-click)
cost of advertising based on the number of clicks received.
CPL (Cost-per-lead)
cost of advertising based on the number of database files (leads) received.
CPM (Cost-per-thousand)
media term describing the cost of 1,000 impressions. For example, a Web site that charges $1,500 per ad and reports 100,000 visits has a CPM of $15 ($1,500 divided by 100).
CPM pricing model
pricing model based on the cost of delivering ad impressions. See CPM and Pay-per- Impression.
CPO (Cost-per-Order)
cost of advertising based on the number of orders received. Also called Cost-per-Transaction.
CPS (Cost-per-Sale)
the advertiser's cost to generate one sales transaction. If this is being used in conjunction with a media buy, a cookie can be offered on the content site and read on the advertiser's site after the successful completion of an online sale.
CPT (Cost-per-Transaction)
see CPO (Cost-per-Order).
CPTM (Cost per Targeted Thousand Impressions)
implying that the audience one is trying to reach is defined by particular demographics or other specific characteristics, such as male golfers age 18-25.The difference between CPM and CPTM is that CPM is for gross impressions, while CPTM is for targeted impressions.
Crawler
a software program which visits virtually all pages of the Web to create indexes for search engines. They are more interested in text files than graphic files. See also spider, bot, and intelligent agent.
CRM
customer relationship marketing. Marketing specifically targeted to increasing brand loyalty.
Cyber Cafe
a place which contains computers with access to the Internet and which is available to the public.
Demographics
common characteristics used for population or audience segmentation, such as age, gender, household income, etc.
Digital signatures
signatures for electronic documents. They establish identity and therefore can be used to establish legal responsibility and the complete authenticity of whatever they are affixed to -- in effect, creating a tamper-proof seal.
Digital Video Server
a robust, dedicated computer at a central location that receives command requests from the television viewer through a video-on-demand application. Once it receives this request, it then instantly broadcasts specific digital video streams to that viewer.
Display
successful download giving the user an opportunity to see.
DHTML (Dynamic Hypertext Markup Language)
an extended set of HTML commands which are used by Web designers to create much greater animation and interactivity than HTML.
Domain name
the unique name that identifies an Internet site. Every domain name consists of one top or high-level and one or more lower-level designators. Top-level domains (TLDs) are either generic or geographic. Generic top-level domains include .com (commercial), .net (network), .edu (educational), .org (organizational, public or non-commercial), .gov (governmental), .mil (military); .biz (business), .info (informational),.name (personal), .pro (professional), .aero (air transport and civil aviation), .coop (business cooperatives such as credit unions) and .museum. Geographic domains designate countries of origin, such as .us (United States), .fr (France), .uk (United Kingdom), etc.
DPO (Distinct Point of Origin)
a unique address from which a browser connects to a Web site on the Internet.
Drill down
when an online user accesses more and more pages of the Web site, i.e., he or she goes deeper into the content of the site.
DSL (Digital Subscriber Line)
a high-speed dedicated digital circuit from a given location to the telephone company's central office, using normal copper telephone lines. DSL provides a separate channel for voice and fax, which means that phone calls and faxes can be carried at the same time high-speed data is flowing across the line. DSL is a general term that includes several variations: ADSL (Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line), ranging up to 1.5 Mbps; HDSL (High-bit-rate Digital Subscriber Line), 1.5 Mbps; SDSL (Single-line Digital Subscriber Line), 1.5 Mbps; VDSL (Very high-data-rate Digital Subscriber Line), ranging up to 2.3 Mbps; and RDSL (Rate Adaptive Digital Subscriber Line), various speeds.
DVR (Digital Video Recorder)
a high capacity hard drive that is embedded in a set-top box, which records video programming from a television set. These DVRs are operated by personal video recording software, which enables the viewer to pause, fast forward, and manage all sorts of other functions and special applications.
Dynamic ad placement
the process by which an ad is inserted into a page in response to a user's request. Dynamic ad placement allows alteration of specific ads placed on a page based on any data available to the placement program. At its simplest, dynamic ad placement allows for multiple ads to be rotated through one or more spaces. In more sophisticated examples, the ad placement could be affected by demographic data or usage history for the current user.
Dynamic IP address
an IP address that changes every time a user logs on to the Internet.
Dynamic rotation
delivery of ads on a rotating, random basis so that users are exposed to different ads and ads are served in different pages of the site.
E-mail
electronic mail. Text files that are sent from one person to another over the Internet.
E-mail campaign
advertising campaign distributed via e-mail.
Encoding
the process of compressing and separating a file into packets so that it can be delivered over a network.
Encoder
a hardware or software application used to compress audio and video signals for the purpose of streaming.
Encryption
the scrambling of digital information so that it is unreadable without the use of digital keys.
EPG (Electronic Programming Guide)
an application that allows the viewer to interactively select his/her television programming.
Ethernet
a networking technology that links computers together.
ETV (Enhanced Television)
a type of interactive television technology which allows content producers to send HTML data and graphical "enhancements" through a small part of the regular analog broadcast signal called the Vertical Blanking Interval. These enhancements appear as overlays on the video and allow viewers to click on them if they are watching TV via special set-top box/software services.
Expandable banners
a banner ad which can expand to as large as 468 x 240 after a user clicks on it or after a user moves his/her cursor over the banner. See iab.net for the IAB IMU guidelines.
Extranet
an intranet that is partially accessible to authorized outsiders via a valid username and password.
Eyeballs
reference to the number of people who view, or "lay their eyes on," a certain advertisement.
Family/Ad family
a collection of one or more ad creatives. Also called ad campaign.
FAQ
frequently asked questions.
FTP (File Transfer Protocol)
Internet protocol which facilitates transfer of files.
Filtering
the process of removing robotic activity and error codes from measurement records to make the remaining records representative of valid human Internet actions.
Filtration guidelines
IAB voluntary guidelines for removing non-human activity in the reported measurement of ad impressions, page impressions, unique visitors and clicks. See iab.net for ad campaign measurement guidelines.
Finger
an Internet software tool for locating people on other Internet sites. A finger is also sometimes used to give access to non-personal information, but the most common use is to see if a person has an account at a particular Internet site. Not all sites allow incoming finger requests.
Firewall
a security barrier placed between an organization's internal computer network and the Internet. A firewall is based on rules which allow and disallow traffic to pass, based on the level of security and filtering a network administrator wishes to employ.
Flame
an inflammatory opinion or criticism distributed by e-mail or posted on a newsgroup.
Flash?
Macromedia?s vector-based graphics file format which is used to display interactive animations on a Web page. This form of rich media technology is available via a plug-in.
Flash downloading
the ability to automatically send software upgrades to a set-top box network.
Floating ads
an ad or ads that appear within the main browser window on top of the Web page's normal content, thereby appearing to "float" over the top of the page.
Fold
an ad or content that is viewable as soon as the Web page arrives. One does not have to scroll down (or sideways) to see it. Since screen resolution can affect what is immediately viewable, it is good to know whether the Web site's audience tends to set their resolution at 640 x 480 pixels or at 800 x 600 (or higher).
Frames
multiple, independent sections used to create a single Web page. Each frame is built as a separate HTML file but with one "master" file to control the placement of each section. When a user requests a page with frames, several files will be displayed as panes. Sites using frames report one page request with several panes as multiple page requests. IAB ad campaign measurement guidelines call for the counting of one file per frame set as a page impression.
Frame rate
the number of frames of video displayed during a given time. The higher the frame rate, the more high-quality the image will be.
Frequency
the number of times an ad is delivered to the same browser in a single session or time period. A site can use cookies in order to manage ad frequency.
GIF (Graphic Interchange Format)
a graphic format which uses compression to store and display images.
GIF89a/Animated GIF
an extension of the .gif format which creates animation through a sequence of images being stored in a single image. A delay is customizable between ?frames? to render the appearance of animation, much like a flappable picturebook.
Gross exposures
the total number of times an ad is served, including duplicate downloads to the same person.
GSM (Global System for Mobile)
the wireless telephone standard in Europe.
GUI (Graphical Interchange Format)
a way of enabling users to interact with the computer using visual icons and a mouse rather than a command-like prompt/interpreter.
Head end
the site in a cable system or broadband coaxial network where the programming originates and the distribution network starts. Signals are usually received off the air from satellites, microwave relays, or fiber-optic cables at the head end for distribution.
Heuristic
a way to measure a user's unique identity. This measure uses deduction or inference based on a rule or algorithm which is valid for that server. For example, the combination of IP address and user agent can be used to identify a user in some cases. If a server receives a new request from the same client within 30 minutes, it is inferred that a new request comes from the same user and the time since the last page request was spent viewing the last page. Also referred to as an inference.
History lists
a pull-down menu which displays the sites you've recently visited so you can return to the site instantly or view your latest session. The same mechanism makes it possible for servers to track where you were before visiting a particular site.
Hit
when users access a Web site, their computer sends a request to the site's server to begin downloading a page. Each element of a requested page (including graphics, text, interactive items) is recorded by the site's Web server log file as a "hit." If a page containing two graphics is accessed by a user, those hits will be recorded once for the page itself and once for each of the graphics. Webmasters use hits to measure their servers' workload. Because page designs and visit patterns vary from site to site, the number of hits bears no relationship to the number of pages downloaded, and is therefore a poor guide for traffic measurement.
Home page
the page designated as the main point of entry of a Web site (or main page) or the starting point when a browser first connects to the Internet. Typically, it welcomes you and introduces the purpose of the site, or the organization sponsoring it, and then provides links to other pages within the site.
Host
any computer on a network that offers services or connectivity to other computers on the network. A host has an IP address associated with it.
Hotlists
pull-down or pop-up menus often displayed on browsers or search engines that contain new or popular sites.
Hot spot
see Hyperlink.
House ads
ads for a product or service from the same company. ?Revenues? from house ads should not be included in reported revenues.
HTML (Hypertext Markup Language)
a set of codes called markup tags in a plain text (*.txt) file that determine what information is retrieved and how it is rendered by a browser. There are two kinds of markup tags: anchor and format. Anchor tags determine what is retrieved, and format tags determine how it is rendered.
HTML page
a HyperText Markup Language document stored in a directory on a Web server and/or created dynamically at the time of the request for the purpose of satisfying that request. In addition to text, an HTML page may include graphics, video, audio, and other files.
HTTP (Hyper-Text Transfer Protocol)
the format most commonly used to transfer documents on the World Wide Web.
Hybrid pricing
pricing model which is based on a combination of a CPM pricing model and a performance-based pricing model. See CPM pricing model and performance-based pricing model.
Hyperlink
HTML programming which redirects the user to a new URL when the individual clicks on hypertext.
Hypertext
text or graphical elements on a page which activates a hyperlink when clicked.
iFrame (inline frame)
a floating frame inserted within a Web page which is not bound to the side of a browser window.
Image map
a GIF or JPEG image with more than one linking hyperlink. Each hyperlink or hot spot can lead to a different destination page.
Impression
a measurement of responses from a Web server to a page request from the user browser, which is filtered from robotic activity and error codes, and is recorded at a point as close as possible to opportunity to see the page by the user.
IMU (Interactive Marketing Unit)
the standard ad unit sizes endorsed by IAB. See iab.net for more information.
Inference
an assumption. See heuristic.
Insertion
actual placement of an ad in a document, as recorded by the ad server.
Insertion order
purchase order between a seller of interactive advertising and a buyer (usually an advertiser or its agency).
Instant messaging
a method of users communicating one-to-one or in groups over the standard IP protocol. Users can assemble ?buddy lists? and chat with friends, family and colleagues.
Intelligent agents
software tools which help the user find information of specific interest to him/her. The user?s profile is continually refined and improved based on the user's acceptance or rejection of recommendations over time.
Interactive advertising
all forms of online, wireless and interactive television advertising, including banners, sponsorships, e-mail, keyword searches, referrals, slotting fees, classified ads and interactive television commercials.
Interactive advertising revenues
revenues realized from the sale of interactive advertising.
Internal page impressions
Web site activity that is generated by individuals with IP addresses known to be affiliated with the Web site owner. Internal activity that is associated with administration and maintenance of the site should be excluded from the traffic or measurement report.
Internet
a worldwide system of computer networks providing reliable and redundant connectivity between disparate computers and systems by using common transport and data protocols.
Interstitial ads
ads that appear between two content pages. Also known as transition ads, intermercial ads, splash pages and Flash pages.
Intranet
a network based on TCP/IP protocols that belongs to an organization, usually a corporation, and is accessible only by the organization?s members, employees or others with authorization.
In-unit click
a measurement of a user-initiated action of responding to an ad element which generally causes an intra-site redirect or content change. In-unit clicks are usually tracked via a 302 redirect. Also known as click-downs, click-ups and click-withins. See ad click; 302 redirect.
Inventory
the number of ads available for sale on a Web site.
IP (Internet Protocol)
a protocol telling the network how packets are addressed and routed.
IP address
Internet protocol numerical address assigned to each computer on the network so that its location and activities can be distinguished from other computers. The format is ##.##.##.## with each number ranging from 0 through 255 (e.g. 125.45.87.204)
IRC(Internet Relay Chat)
1) a facility that allows people to chat in real time. The chats, or forums, are typed remarks, and they can be either public or private; 2) a protocol that allows users to converse with others in real time. IRC is structured as a network of servers, each of which accepts connections from client programs.
ISDN (Integrated Services Digital Network)
high-speed dial-up connections to the Internet over ordinary copper phone wires. DSL has in large part replaced ISDN. See DSL.
ISP (Internet Service Provider)
an organization that provides access to the Internet. An ISP can be a commercial provider, a corporate computer network, a school, college, university, or the government.
ITI (Information Technology Industry Council)
represents the leading U.S. providers of information technology products and services. It advocates growing the economy through innovation and supports free-market policies. See itic.org for more information.
iTV (Interactive Television)
any technology that allows for two-way communication between the audience and the service provider (such as the broadcaster, cable operator, set-top box manufacturer) via standard or enhanced television appliance.
JPEG (Joint Photographic Experts Group)
file format that uses a compression technique to reduce the size (number of bytes) of graphic files.
Jump page ad
microsite which is reached via click-through from button or banner ad. The jump page itself can list several topics, which are linked to either the advertiser's site or the publisher's site.
Keyword search revenues
fees advertisers pay to retrieve the hyperlink opportunity to the advertiser?s site or to serve an ad related to the user?s search.
LAN (Local Area Network)
a group of computers connected together (a network) which are at one physical location.
Large rectangle
an IMU size. The IAB?s voluntary guidelines include seven Interactive Marketing Unit (IMU) ad formats; two vertical units and five large rectangular units. See iab.net for more information
Latency
1) time it takes for a data packet to move across a network connection; 2) visible delay between request and display of content and ad. Latency sometimes leads to the user leaving the site prior to the opportunity to see. In streaming media, latency can create stream degradation if it causes the packets, which must be received and played in order, to arrive out of order.
Link
an electronic connection between two Web sites. Also called "hot link" and hyperlink.
Listserv
a mailing list comprised of e-mail addresses.
Listserver
a program that automatically sends e-mail to a list of subscribers or listserv.
Load
usually used with up-load or down-load, it means to transfer files or software from one computer or server to another computer or server. In other words, it is the movement of information online.
Log
a file that keeps track of network connections.
Log file
a file that records transactions that have occurred on the Web server. Some of the types of data which are collected are: date/time stamp, URL served, IP address of requestor, status code of request, user agent string, previous URL of requestor, etc. Use of the extended log file format is preferable.
Login
the identification or name used to access a computer, network or site.
Makegoods
additional ad impressions which are negotiated in order to make up for the shortfall of ads delivered versus the commitments outlined in the approved insertion order.
M-commerce
a term referring to mobile commerce which is the ability to conduct monetary transactions via a mobile device, such as a WAP-enabled cell phone.
Media objects
files, other than HTML documents, which can be displayed or executed within HTML documents, or in a stand-alone fashion. Examples currently include GIFs, JPEGs, video, audio, Flash objects (SWF), PDF, Java applets, and other objects which can be viewed through a browser or using a ?plug-in? (see plug-in).
Megabyte
a million bytes.
Metcalfe's Law
the value of a network increases geometrically with the number of people who use it.
Micro-sites
multi-page ads accessed via click-through from initial ad. User stays on the publisher?s Web site, but has access to more information from the advertiser than a standard ad format allows.
MIME (Multi-purpose Internet Mail Extensions)
a method of encoding a file for delivery over the Internet.
MIP (Mobile Internet Provider)
ISPs dedicated to providing wireless service.
.MP3
a computer file format that compresses audio files by a factor of 12 from a .wav file.
Modem speeds
the speed at which one connects to the Internet through his/her computer's modem. There are dial-up and cable modems. The dial-up modem speeds include 14.4, 28.8, 33.6, 56K and ISDN. Cable modem speeds range between 500 K and 2.5 Mbps. T1 and T3 are high-speed connections that do not require a modem. See also DSL.
Modem
device which transfers digital signals to analog signals and vice versa suitable for sending across phone or cable lines.
Moore's Law
the speed of computing doubles every 18 months.
Mouseover
the process by which a user places his/her mouse over a media object, without clicking. The mouse may need to remain still for a specified amount of time to initiate some actions.
MPEG
1) the file format that is used to compress and transmit movies or video clips online; 2) standards set by the Motion Picture Exports Group for video media.
MRC (Media Rating Council)
a non-profit trade association dedicated to assuring valid, reliable and effective syndicated audience research. The MRC performs audits of Internet measurements as well as traditional media measurements.
Multi-camera angle or individualized television
a technology that allows viewers to control camera angles during live events, select which commercials they want to watch, and generally control a selection of choices content producers provide as part of the broadcast. E-commerce and interaction with those commercials is possible. In the backend, servers collect choice information and offer viewers further selections based on those choices.
Net TV
televisions which have the ability to dial up to the Internet. Often, a manufacturer has integrated or offers a special set-top which permits the viewer to connect online over telephone wires.
Netiquette
a term that is used to describe the informal rules of conduct ("do's and don'ts") of online behavior.
Newsgroup
an electronic bulletin board devoted to talking about a specific topic and open to everybody. Only a handful of newsgroups permit the posting of advertising.
Non-registered user
someone who visits a Web site and elects not to, or is not required to, provide certain information, and hence may be denied access to part(s) of the site.
Nonqualifying page impressions
page impressions which should be excluded from traffic or measurement reports, such as unsuccessful transfers of requested documents, successful transfers of requested documents to a robot or spider, and/or pages in a frame set. See frames.
On-demand
the ability to request video, audio, or information to be sent to the screen immediately by clicking something on the screen referring to that choice.
On-site measurement
when a server has an appropriate software program to measure and analyze traffic received on its own site.
OPA (Online Privacy Alliance)
a group of corporations and associations who have come together to introduce and promote business-wide actions that create an environment of trust and foster the protection of individuals' privacy online. See privacyalliance.org for more information.
OPA (Online Publishers? Association)
trade association representing a segment of online publishers. See online-publishers.org for more information.
Opt-in
refers to an individual giving a company permission to use data collected from or about the individual for a particular reason, such as to market the company's products and services. See permission marketing.
Opt-in e-mail
lists of Internet users who have voluntarily signed up to receive commercial e-mail about topics of interest.
Opt-out
when a company states that it plans to market its products and services to an individual unless the individual asks to be removed from the company's mailing list.
OTS (Opportunity to See)
same as page displaywhen a page is successfully displayed on the user's computer screen.
Packet sniffer
a program used to monitor and record activity and to detect problems with Web transactions on a network.
Page
a document having a specific URL and comprised of a set of associated files. A page may contain text, images, and other online elements. It may be static or dynamically generated. It may be made up of multiple frames or screens, but should contain a designated primary object which, when loaded, is counted as the entire page.
Page display
when a page is successfully displayed on the user's computer screen.
Page impression
a measurement of responses from a Web server to a page request from the user?s browser, which is filtered from robotic activity and error codes, and is recorded at a point as close as possible to the opportunity to see the page by the user.See iab.net for ad campaign measurement guidelines.
Page request
the opportunity for an HTML document to appear on a browser window as a direct result of a user's interaction with a Web site.
Page view
when the page is actually seen by the user. Note: this is not measurable today; the best approximation today is provided by page displays.
Password
a group of letters and/or numbers which allow a unique user access to a secured Web site and/or a secure area of a Web site.
Pay-per-Click
an advertising pricing model in which advertisers pay agencies and/or media companies based on how many users clicked on an online ad or e-mail message.
Pay-per-Impression
an advertising pricing model in which advertisers pay based on how many users were served their ads. See CPM pricing model.
Pay-per-Lead
an advertising pricing model in which advertisers pay for each "sales lead" generated. For example, an advertiser might pay for every visitor that clicked on an ad or site and successfully completed a form. See CPL.
Pay-per-Sale
an advertising pricing model in which advertisers pay agencies and/or media companies based on how many sales transactions were generated as a direct result of the ad. See CPS.
PDF files (Portable Document Format)
a translation format developed by Adobe used primarily for distributing files across a network, or on a Web site. Files with a .pdf extension have been created in another application and then translated into .pdf files so they can be viewed by anyone, regardless of platform.
Performance pricing model
an advertising model in which advertisers pay based on a set of agreed upon performance criteria, such as a percentage of online revenues or delivery of new sales leads. See CPA, CPC, CPL, CPO, CPS, CPT.
Permission marketing
when an individual has given a company permission to market its products and services to the individual. See opt-in.
Persistent cookie
a cookie which remains on the user?s hard drive until the user erases it.
PII (Personally Identifiable Information)
refers to information such as an individual?s name, mailing address, phone number or e-mail address.
PIN (Personal Identification Number)
a group of numbers which allow a unique user access to a secured Web site and/or a secure area of a Web site. See password.
PIT (Page Information Transfer)
the successful transfer of the text of a Web page to a browser.
Pixel
picture element (single illuminated dot) on a computer monitor. The metric used to indicate the size of Internet ads.
Platform
the type of computer or operating system on which a software application runs, e.g., PC, Macintosh, Unix or WebTV.
PLI (Privacy Leadership Initiative)
a partnership of CEOs from 15 corporations and 9 business associations using research to create a climate of trust that will accelerate acceptance of the Internet and the emerging Information Economy, both online and offline, as a safe and secure marketplace. See understandingprivacy.org
Plug-in
a program application that can easily be installed and used as part of a Web browser. Once installed, plug-in applications are recognized by the browser and their function integrated into the main HTML file being presented.
Pop-under ad
ad that appears in a separate window beneath an open window. Pop-under ads are concealed until the top window is closed, moved, resized or minimized.
Pop-up ad
ad that appears in a separate window on top of content already on-screen. Similar to a daughter window, but without an associated banner.
Pop-up transitional
initiates play in a separate ad window during the transition between content pages. Continues while content is simultaneously being rendered. Depending primarily on line-speed, play of a transitional ad may finish before or after content rendering is completed.
Portal
a Web site that often serves as a starting point for a Web user?s session. It typically provides services such as search, directory of Web sites, news, weather, e-mail, homepage space, stock quotes, sports news, entertainment, telephone directory information, area maps, and chat or message boards.
Pre-caching
storing advertising or content in a computer's RAM or hard disk memory before it is displayed on the user's screen, rather than at the time that it plays, to reduce delays in rendering. See cache, caching.
Privacy policy
a statement about what information is being collected; how the information being collected is being used; how an individual can access his/her own data collected; how the individual can opt-out; and what security measures are being taken by the parties collecting the data.
Privacy seal program
a program that certifies the Web site owner complies with the site?s proposed policy. Examples include TRUSTe and BBBOnline.
Profiling
the practice of tracking information about consumers' interests by monitoring their movements online. This can be done without using any personal information, but simply by analyzing the content, URL?s, and other information about a user?s browsing path/click-stream.
Process audit
third party validation of internal control processes associated with measurement. See audit.
Protocol
a uniform set of rules that enable two devices to connect and transmit data to one another. Protocols determine how data are transmitted between computing devices and over networks. They define issues such as error control and data compression methods. The protocol determines the following: type of error checking to be used, data compression method (if any), how the sending device will indicate that it has finished a message and how the receiving device will indicate that it has received the message. Internet protocols include TCP/IP (Transfer Control Protocol/Internet Protocol), HTTP (Hypertext Transfer Protocol), FTP (File Transfer Protocol), and SMTP (Simple Mail Transfer Protocol).
Proxy servers
intermediaries between end users and Web sites such as ISPs, commercial online services, and corporate networks. Proxy servers hold the most commonly and recently used content from the Web for users in order to provide quicker access and to increase server security.
Push advertising
pro-active, partial screen, dynamic advertisement which comes in various formats.
PVR (Personal Video Recorder)
set-top box that stores up to 30 hours of TV programming and works with cable and satellite systems. Viewers can pause or rewind live TV shows, record a season's worth of episodes, and skip past commercials.
Re-direct
when used in reference to online advertising, one server assigning an ad-serving or ad-targeting function to another server, often operated by a third company. For instance, a Web publisher's ad management server might re-direct to a third-party hired by an advertiser to distribute its ads to target customers; and then another re-direct to a "rich media" provider might also occur if streaming video were involved before the ad is finally delivered to the consumer. In some cases, the process of re-directs can produce latency. See ad serving, latency.
Reach
1) unique users that visited the site over the course of the reporting period, expressed as a percent of the universe for the demographic category; also called unduplicated audience; 2) the total number of unique users who will be served a given ad.
RealAudio?
a software program that downloads and plays streaming audio files.
Real time
events that happen in real time are happening virtually at that particular moment. When one chats in a chat room, or sends an instant message, one is interacting in real time since it is immediate.
Referral link
the referring page, or referral link is a place from which the user clicked to get to the current page. In other words, since a hyperlink connects one URL to another, in clicking on a link the browser moves from the referring URL to the destination URL. Also known as source of a visit.
Referral fees
fees paid by advertisers for delivering a qualified sales lead or purchase inquiry.
Registration
a process for site visitors to enter information about themselves. Sites use registration data to enable or enhance targeting of content and ads. Registration can be required or voluntary.
Repeat visitor
unique visitor who has accessed a Web site more than once over a specific time period.
Return visits
the average number of times a user returns to a site over a specific time period.
Rich media
a method of communication that incorporates animation, sound, video, and/or interactivity. It can be used either singularly or in combination with the following technologies: streaming media, sound, Flash, and with programming languages such as Java, Javascript, and DHTML. It is deployed via standard Web and wireless applications including e-mail, Web design, banners, buttons, and interstitials.
Robot
a program that runs automatically without human intervention. Typically, a robot is endowed with some artificial intelligence so that it can react to different situations it may encounter. Two common types of robots are agents and spiders. Commercial robots are programs that are used to fetch Web pages, but the user never has an opportunity to see the content of the requested documents. Personal robots provide the user with the opportunity to see the requested Web pages, usually in an offline mode. Also known as bots.
ROI (Return on Investment)
Net profit divided by investment.
RON (Run-of-Network)
the scheduling of Internet advertising whereby an ad network positions ads across the sites it represents at its own discretion, according to available inventor. The advertiser usually forgoes premium positioning in exchange for more advertising weight at a lower CPM.
ROS (Run-of-Site)
the scheduling of Internet advertising whereby ads run across an entire site, often at a lower cost to the advertiser than the purchase of specific site sub-sections.
Router
a device that connects any number of LANs. Routers use headers and a forwarding table to determine where packets go, and they communicate with each other to configure the best route between any two hosts.
Sampling frame
the source from which the sample is drawn.
Scripts
files that initiate routines like generating Web pages dynamically in response to user input.
SDSL (Symmetrical Digital Subscriber Line)
a type of DSL that uses only one of the two cable pairs for transmission. SDSL allows residential or small office users to share the same telephone for data transmission and voice or fax telephony.
Search engine
a program that helps Web users find information on the Internet. The method for finding this information is usually done by maintaining an index of Web resources that can be queried for the keywords or concepts entered by the user.
Sell-through rate
the percentage of ad inventory sold as opposed to traded or bartered.
Server
a computer which distributes files which are shared across a LAN, WAN or the Internet. Also known as a "host".
Server centric measurement
audience measurement derived from server logs.
Server-initiated ad impression
one of the two methods used for ad counting. Ad content is delivered to the user via two methodsserver-initiated and client-initiated. Server-initiated ad counting uses the publisher?s Web content server for making requests, formatting and re-directing content. For organizations using a server-initiated ad counting method, counting should occur subsequent to the ad response at either the publisher's ad server or the Web content server, or later in the process. See client-initiated ad impression.
Server pull
a process whereby a user's browser maintains an automated or customized connection or profile with a Web server. The browser usually sets up a unique request that is recorded and stored electronically for future reference. Examples are: requests for the automated delivery of e-mail newsletters, the request for Web content based on a specific search criteria determined by the user, or setting up a personalized Web page that customizes the information delivered to the user based on pre-determined self selections.
Server push
a process whereby a server maintains an open connection with a browser after the initial request for a page. Through this open connection the server continues to provide updated pages and content even though the visitor has made no further direct requests for such information.
Session
1) a sequence of Internet activity made by one user at one site. If a user makes no request from a site during a 30 minute period of time, the next content or ad request would then constitute the beginning of a new visit; 2) a series of transactions performed by a user that can be tracked across successive Web sites. For example, in a single session, a user may start on a publisher's Web site, click on an advertisement and then go to an advertiser's Web site and make a purchase. See visit.
Session cookies
cookies which are loaded into a computer?s RAM, and only work during that browser session. When the browser exits, these cookies are erased. They are ?temporary cookies?, and no cookie is written to a user?s hard drive. See cookie.
Set-top box
an electronic device that sits on top of one?s TV set and allows it to connect to the Internet, game systems, or cable systems.
SGML (Standard Generalized Markup Language)
the parent language for HTML.
Shockwave
a browser plug-in developed by Macromedia which allows multimedia objects to appear on the Web (animation, audio and video).
Shop bot
intelligent agent which searches for the best price.
Site-centric measurement
audience measurement derived from a Web site's own server logs.
Skins
customized and interchangeable sets of graphics, which allow Internet users to continually change the look of their desktops or browsers, without changing their settings or functionality. Skins are a type of marketing tool.
Skyscraper
a tall, thin online ad unit. The IAB guidelines recommend two sizes of skyscrapers: 120 X 600 and 160 x 600.
Slotting fee
a fee charged to advertisers by media companies to get premium positioning on their site, category exclusivity or some other special treatment. It is similar to slotting allowances charged by retailers.
Smart Card
identical in size and feel to credit cards, smart cards store information on an integrated microprocessor chip located within the body of the card. These chips hold a variety of information, from stored (monetary)-value used for retail and vending machines, to secure information and applications for higher-end operations such as medical/healthcare records. The different types of cards being used today are contact, contactless and combination cards. Contact smart cards must be inserted into a smart card reader. These cards have a contact plate on the face which makes an electrical connector for reads and writes to and from the chip when inserted into the reader. Contactless smart cards have an antenna coil, as well as a chip embedded within the card. The internal antenna allows for communication and power with a receiving antenna at the transaction point to transfer information. Close proximity is required for such transactions, which can decrease transaction time while increasing convenience. A combination card functions as both a contact and contactless smart card. Specific to interactive television, the viewer can insert smart cards into the set-top box to trigger the box to decrypt contact programming.
SMPT (Simple Mail Transfer Protocol)
the protocol used to transfer e-mail.
Sniffer
software that detects capabilities of the user's browser (looking for such things as Java capabilities, plug-ins, screen resolution, and bandwidth).
Space
location on a page of a site in which an ad can be placed. Each space on a site is uniquely identified. There can be multiple spaces on a single page.
Spam
slang term describing unsolicited e-mail.
Spider
a program that automatically fetches Web pages. Spiders are used to feed pages to search engines. It is called a spider because it crawls over the Web. Because most Web pages contain links to other pages, a spider can start almost anywhere. As soon as it sees a link to another page, it goes off and fetches it. Large search engines have many spiders working in parallel. See robot.
Splash page
a preliminary page that precedes the user-requested page of a Web site that usually promotes a particular site feature or provides advertising. A splash page is timed to move on to the requested page after a short period of time or a click. Also known as an interstitial. Splash pages are not considered qualified page impressions under current industry guidelines, but they are considered qualified ad impressions.
Sponsor
1) a sponsor is an advertiser who has sponsored an ad and, by doing so, has also helped sponsor or sustain the Web site itself; 2) an advertiser that has a special relationship with the Web site and supports a specific feature of a Web site, such as a writer's column or a collection of articles on a particular subject.
Sponsorship
an association with a Web site in some way that gives an advertiser some particular visibility and advantage above that of run-of-site advertising. When associated with specific content, sponsorship can provide a more targeted audience than run-of-site ad buys.
Static ad placement/Static rotation
1) ads that remain on a Web page for a specified period of time; 2) embedded ads.
Stickiness
a measure used to gauge the effectiveness of a site in retaining individual users. Stickiness is usually measured by the duration of the visit.
Streaming
1) technology that permits continuous audio and video delivered to a computer from a remote Web site; 2) an Internet data transfer technique that allows the user to see and hear audio and video files. The host or source compresses, then "streams" small packets of information over the Internet to the user, who can access the content as it is received.
Streaming media player
a software program which decompresses audio and/or video files so the user can hear and/or see the video or audio file. Some examples are Real Player?, Windows Media and Quick Time Player.
Superstitials?
an interstitial format developed by Unicast which is fully pre-cached before playing. Specs are 550 x 480 pixels (2/3 of screen), up to 100K file size and up to 20 seconds in length.
Surfing
exploring the World Wide Web.
T-1
a high-speed (1.54 megabits/second) Internet connection.
T-3
a very high-speed (45 megabits/second or higher) Internet connection.
TCP/IP (Transfer Control Protocol/Internet Protocol)
a software standard used by the Internet to understand all computer languages and most computers.
Target audience
the intended audience for an ad, usually defined in terms of specific demographics (age, sex, income, etc.) product purchase behavior, product usage or media usage.
Terms & Conditions
the details of the contract accompanying an insertion order. See iab.net for voluntary guidelines for standard terms & conditions for Internet advertising for media buys.
Textual ad impressions
the delivery of a text-based advertisement to a browser. To compensate for slow Internet connections, visitors may disable "auto load images" in their graphical browser. When they reach a page that contains an advertisement, they see a marker and the advertiser's message in text format in place of the graphical ad. Additionally, if a user has a text-only browser, only textual ads are delivered and recorded as textual ad impressions.
Third-party ad server
independent outsourced companies that specialize in managing, maintaining, serving, tracking, and analyzing the results of online ad campaigns. They deliver targeted advertising that can be tailored to consumers' declared or predicted characteristics or preferences.
302 Redirect
the process of a server sending a browser the location of a requested ad, rather than sending the ad itself. Ad servers use 302 redirects to allow them to track activities such as ad requests or ad clicks.
Throughput
the amount of data transmitted through Internet connectors in response to a given request.
Token
tracer or tag which is attached by the receiving server to the address (URL) of a page requested by a user. A token lasts only through a continuous series of requests by a user, regardless of the length of the interval between requests. Tokens can be used to count unique users.
Total ad impressions
the total of all graphical and textual ad impressions delivered, regardless of the source. See ad impression.
Total unique users
see unique user.
Total visits
total number of browsers accessing a Web site within a specific time period. Total visits should filter robotic activity, but can include visits from repeat visitors.
Total visitors
total number of browsers or individuals which have accessed a site within a specific time period.
Traffic
the number of visits and/or visitors who come to a Web site.
Transfer
the successful response to a page request; also when a browser receives a complete page of content from a Web server.
Transitional ad
an ad that is displayed between Web pages. In other words, the user sees an advertisement as he/she navigates between page ?a? and page ?b.? Also known as an interstitial.
Transitional pop up
an ad that pops up in a separate ad window between content pages.
Triggers
a command from the host server that notifies the viewer's set-top box that interactive content is available at this point. The viewer is notified about the available interactive content via an icon or clickable text. Once clicked by using the remote control, the trigger disappears and more content or a new interface appears on the TV screen.
Unduplicated audience
the number of unique individuals exposed to a specified domain, page or ad in a specified time period.
Unique user
unique individual or browser which has either accessed a site (see unique visitor) or which has been served unique content and/or ads such as e-mail, newsletters, interstitials and pop-under ads. Unique users can be identified by user registration or cookies. Reported unique users should filter out robots. See iab.net for ad campaign measurement guidelines.
Unique visitor
a unique user who accesses a Web site within a specific time period. See unique user.
Universe
total population of audience being measured.
Unresolved IP addresses
IP addresses that do not identify their 1st or 2nd level domain. Unresolved IP addresses should be aggregated and reported as such. See also domain.
Upload
to send data from a computer to a network. An example of uploading data is sending e-mail.
URL (Uniform Resource Locator)
the unique identifying address of any particular page on the Web. It contains all the information required to locate a resource, including its protocol (usually HTTP), server domain name (or IP address), file path (directory and name) and format (usually HTML or CGI).
URL tagging
the process of embedding unique identifiers into URLs contained in HTML content. These identifiers are recognized by Web servers on subsequent browser requests. Identifying visitors through information in the URLs should also allow for an acceptable calculation of visits, if caching is avoided.
Usenet
Internet bulletin-board application.
User
an individual with access to the World Wide Web.
User agent string
a field in the server log file which identifies the specific browser software and computer operating system making the request.
User centric measurement
Web audience measurement based on the behavior of a sample of Web users.
User registration
information contributed by an individual which usually includes characteristics such as the person's age, gender, zip code and often much more. A site?s registration system is usually based on an ID code or password to allow the site to determine the number of unique visitors and to track a visitor's behavior within that site.
Viral marketing
1) any advertising that propagates itself; 2) advertising and/or marketing techniques that "spread" like a virus by getting passed on from consumer to consumer and market to market.
Visit
measurement which has been filtered for robotic activity of one or more text and/or graphics downloads from a site without 30 consecutive minutes of inactivity and which can be reasonably attributed to a single browser for a single session. See iab.net for ad campaign measurement guidelines.
Visit duration
the length of time the visitor is exposed to a specific ad, Web page or Web site during a single session.
Visitor
individual or browser which accesses a Web site within a specific time period.
VRML (Virtual Reality Modeling Language)
programming language designed to be a 3D analog to HTML.
WAN (Wide Area Network)
a group of computers connected together (a network) which are not located at the same physical location.
WAP (Wireless Application Protocol)
a specification for a set of communication protocols to standardize the way that wireless devices, such as cellular mobile telephones, PDAs and others can be used for Internet-based access.
WAP device
any device (e.g., mobile phone, PDA, or simulator) that allows access to wireless content.
WAP phones
mobile phones which utilize wireless application protocol technology to access the Internet. The screen on a WAP phone can be used to deliver ads.
WASP (Wireless Applications Service Provider)
an organization that provides content and applications for wireless devices.
Web beacon
a line of code which is used by a Web site or third party ad server to track a user?s activity, such as a registration or conversion. A Web beacon is often invisible because it is only 1 x 1 pixel in size with no color. Also known as Web bug, 1 by 1 GIF, invisible GIF and tracker GIF.
Web site
the virtual location (domain) for an organization's or individual's presence on the World Wide Web.
Web bug
see Web beacon.
Webcasting
real-time or pre-recorded delivery of a live event?s audio, video, or animation over the Internet.