Marketing Terms offers a detailed list of marketing terms.

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e-tailers (also Electronic Retailers)

Retail format represented by retailers that confine most of their selling through Internet websites thus providing customers with the convenience of anytime shopping.

Early Adopters

The second category within the Diffusion of Innovation consisting of a sizeable though not large percentage of a market who are primarily characterized as being enthusiastic but practical about new products and often communicate their experiences with the next category (i.e., Early Majority) and in this way serve as Opinion Leaders.

Early Majority

The third category within the Diffusion of Innovation consisting of up to one-third of the overall market who represent the beginning of the mass market and who are primarily characterized as liking new products but prefer to wait until they have received positive opinions for other (e.g., Early Adopters) before purchasing.

Elastic Demand

Refers to market conditions where a certain percentage change (positive or negative) in the price of a product results in a larger and opposite percentage change in demand (i.e., purchases) for the product.

Elasticity of Demand

Refers to conditions that describe the effect a change in a product’s price may have on the target market’s demand for a product and includes conditions that are elastic, inelastic or unitary.

Emergency Products

A category of consumer products which customer purchase due to sudden events and which often involve little pre-purchase planning.


From a business decision-making perspective this relates to what is right and what is wrong though the line between what is considered ethical and unethical is difficult to distinguish since it depends on such factors as nationality, culture, and industry norms.

Ethnographic Research

A form of Observational Research where researchers follow customers at work, home and when shopping in order to see how they make decisions, use products and learn other information.

Exclusive Coverage Distribution

Distribution strategy that attempts to have products made available to a very select or exclusive group of outlets either because these are high-end products targeted to a relatively small number of customers or because the marketer limits supply to their own outlets.

Existing Customer

Those who have purchased or otherwise used an organization’s goods or services, typically within a designated period of time.


Method of data collection that falls within the category of Causal Research in which one variable, called the independent variable, is manipulated to see how it may affect another variable, called the dependent variable.

Exploratory Market Research

Marketing research method that uses a less structured and often less scientific approach to discover general information about a topic that is not well understood by the marketer.

External Forces

Factors considered outside the control of marketers but that potentially influence marketing decision-making and include demographics, economic conditions, governmental environment, influential stakeholders, cultural and social change, innovation and competitors.