1 place to put your foot when climbing
ADJ. firm, secure
VERB + FOOTHOLD have | find, get, scrabble for He found a secure foothold and pulled himself up. scrabbling for a foothold on the steep grassy bank | give sb The bench gave me the foothold I needed to climb into the tree.
2 strong position for making further progress
ADJ. firm, secure | permanent | big | small
VERB + FOOTHOLD have | establish, gain, get, obtain, secure The company is trying to gain a foothold in the European market. | maintain | lose | regain | give (sb/sth), provide (sb with) I hope the textbook will provide a foothold for students of the subject.
PREP. ~ in The firm has a firm foothold in this market.