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This section has been written to help marketers, agency executives, and publishers understand the evolving language of interactive marketing. Whether you are new to the industry or just looking for a reference, you should find standard definitions in our glossary of advertising terms which has been combined with the help of other IABs worldwide as well as IAB Australia Councils.

To explore the set of definitions, simply click on any of the letters or search by keyword.

If you think we have missed something or that a definition needs an update, just contact us!

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302 Redirect

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.


Third Generation mobile network infrastructure. As of 2007 being deployed (or already deployed) by mobile operators in most of Europe, East Asia, and North America. Supports much higher data speeds than previous mobile networks, in some cases approaching wired broadband connections.


The emerging standard for even faster data transfer, close to or even exceeding broadband internet speeds and up to 20 times faster than existing 3G networks

AB Testing

AB testing refers to two different versions of a page or a page element such as an ad, a heading, an image or a button. AB testing is aimed at effectiveness against key performance indicators including click through rates, conversion rates and revenue per visit.


When a user leaves a shopping cart with something in it prior to completing the transaction.


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 or clicking on another link prior to the completion of a download.

Above The Fold

Term derived from printed media, which is used to indicate whether a banner advertisement or other content is displayed on a web page without the need to scroll.

Access Platform

Method for customers to access digital media. Depending on usage of term, it may consist of hardware and or a browser.

Access Provider

Company providing services to enable a company or individual to access the Internet. Access Providers are divided into Internet service providers (ISPs) and online service providers (OSPs).


Programming language standard developed by Microsoft, which permits complex and graphical customer applications to be written and then accessed from a web browser.

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 Audience

Number of unique users exposed to an ad within a specified time period.

Ad Banner

Graphic image or other media object used as an advertisement.

Ad Blocker

Software on a user's browser which prevents advertisements from being displayed.

Ad Campaign Audit

Activity audit for a specific ad campaign.

Ad Centric Measurement

Audience measurement derived from a third-party ad server's own server logs.

Ad Creative

Design and content of an advertisement.

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.

Ad Exchange

Virtual marketplace where participating suppliers auction their impressions to eligible buyers. The ad exchange announces each impressions, in real time, and asks buyers if they are interested to buy said impression and at which price.

Ad Impression

An advertisement impression transpires each time a consumer is exposed to an advertisement.

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