Online Marketing

What Does Online Marketing Mean?

Online marketing is a set of tools and methodologies used for promoting products and services through the Internet. Online marketing includes a wider range of marketing elements than traditional business marketing due to the extra channels and marketing mechanisms available on the internet.


Online marketing can deliver benefits such as:

  • Growth in potential

  • Reduced expenses

  • Elegant communications

  • Better control

  • Improved customer service

  • Competitive advantage

Online marketing is also known as internet marketing, web marketing, or digital marketing. It includes several branches such as social media marketing (SMM), search engine optimization (SEO), pay-per-click advertising (PPC), and search engine marketing (SEM).

Techopedia Explains Online Marketing

Effective online marketing programs leverage consumer data and customer relationship management (CRM) systems. Online marketing connects organizations with qualified potential customers and takes business development to a much higher level than traditional marketing.

It also helps a company raise its brand awareness by establishing its online presence across the Internet.

Online marketing combines the internet’s creative and technical tools, including design, development, sales and advertising, while focusing on the following primary business models:

  • E-commerce.
  • Lead-based websites.
  • Affiliate marketing.
  • Local search.
  • Social media.

Online marketing has several advantages, including:

Low costs

Large audiences are reachable at a fraction of traditional advertising budgets, allowing businesses to create appealing consumer ads. Many advertising platforms also allow for scalable ads with different levels of reach that are proportioned to the advertising budget. Rather than committing a large amount of money to advertising, smaller companies can spend a small amount and still increase their reach.

Flexibility and convenience

Consumers may research and purchase products and services at their leisure. Business blogs can be used to let consumers and prospects conduct their own research on the business’s products as well as provide their feedback and reviews.


Efficient statistical results are facilitated without extra costs. Many advertising tools include their own analytics platforms where all data can be neatly organized and observed. This facilitates business intelligence efforts and data-driven decision making.

Multiple options

Advertising tools include pay-per-click advertising, email marketing, interstitial ads and banners, social media advertising, and local search integration (like Google Maps). Digital marketing companies usually offer their services across various online advertising channels by tuning their offer to the individual client’s needs.

Demographic targeting

Consumers can be demographically targeted much more effectively in an online rather than an offline process. Coupled with the increased analytics potential explained above, organizations can improve their targeting over time, have a clearer understanding of their customer base, and create specific offers that are shown only to certain demographics.

The main limitation of online marketing is the lack of tangibility, which means that consumers are unable to try out, or try on items they might wish to purchase. Generous return policies are the main way to circumvent such buyer apprehension.

Online marketing has outsold traditional advertising in recent years and continues to be a high-growth industry.

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Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.