Internet Marketing Definition & Meaning

Also referred to as online marketing, internet marketing is the process of promoting a brand or business and its products or services to customers through digital channels such as search engines, email, websites, and social media. It’s used to help drive traffic, leads, and sales for the business. The term is all-inclusive and includes a wide range of types, strategies, and tactics to engage with customers.

Types of internet marketing

There’s a myriad of internet marketing types that encompass different tactics and strategies, and the types listed below are not exhaustive. These types of marketing complement one another and are most effective when used together.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

SEO is the process of adjusting a website and digital content to improve its organic or “natural” placement in search rankings. The higher a webpage ranks, the more likely it is to be viewed by a potential customer. Search engines (specifically Google) use crawler bots (sometimes called spiders) to crawl the internet and build an index of the content available online. When a user searches a keyword, the search engine will provide the most relevant information.

There are two types of SEO: on-page and off-page. On-page SEO is the manipulations made directly to a web page to increase search engine ranking. It involves optimizing HTML code, content quality, and content structure. Off-page SEO is the SEO practices that take place outside of the website itself, such as backlinks, link relevancy, and social signals.

Content marketing

Content marketing is the creation and distribution of relevant online content in a way that’s strategically designed to attract and convert consumers. It focuses on communicating with customers rather than selling and is usually better received. Forms of content marketing include blog posts, infographics, ebooks, podcasts, case studies, and webinars.

Social media marketing

Social media marketing is the use of social media platforms to improve customer engagement and promote a brand. While it doesn’t necessarily drive sales, social media marketing increases engagement, builds links, and expands brand awareness. Popular social media platforms used for marketing include Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

Influencer marketing

One of the newer types of internet marketing, influencer marketing uses influencers, or someone with a large social following, to promote their product or service for a price. This can be highly effective if the influencer is in line with a company’s values and resonates with the company’s customers.

Email marketing

Email marketing is the process of using email to send direct marketing messages to consumers in an attempt to gain new customers and retain existing ones. It’s one of the most cost effective types of marketing and can be used to reach both a wide network of customers or a very niche one.

Affiliate marketing

Affiliate marketing describes any revenue-sharing plan where an online automated marketing program lets bloggers and website owners place an advertiser’s banner ads, buttons, or other advertising media on their own website. This could also be in the form of promoting a product through a blog or video. A payment is received for every sale made through a link.

Paid advertising

Paid advertising is when advertisers pay to show their advertisements of search engines and other online platforms. This is often referred to as Pay Per Click (PPC), meaning advertisers will pay a fee each time a user clicks on one of their ads. However, advertisers are now charged in different ways depending on their marketing objectives. Other means of charging include cost per thousand impressions, cost per view, and cost per action.

Internet marketing strategies

A strong internet marketing strategy can attract new customers and create consumers who are loyal to your brand. Strategies include investing in creating a user-friendly website, optimizing your website for search engines to increase traffic, creating social media campaigns that build customer engagement, and writing press releases to increase online coverage.


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Abby Dykes
Abby Dykes
Abby Dykes is a newly-graduated writer and editor for websites such as,, and When she’s not writing about technology, she enjoys giving too many treats to her dog and coaching part-time at her local gym.

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