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33 Important eCommerce Acronyms Every Retailer Should Know

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Conversion Optimization, eCommerce, eCommerce Strategy, Marketing

eCommerce Acronyms
How many times have you been reading something related to eCommerce and you’ve been lost because of all the acronyms that are plastered all over the page? eCommerce at first glance appears to be a real head-scratcher because of all the acronyms, but once you break them down, it becomes much easier to understand. We’ve compiled a list of some of the most common acronyms and their respective definitions, to help make the world of ecommerce a not-so-scary place for all of us.


Average Order Value tracks the average dollar amount spent each time a customer places an order on a website or mobile a pp. To calculate your company’s average order value, simply divide total revenue by the number of orders.
Related: Increasing your Average Order Value


Application Program Interface is a set of routines, protocols, and tools for building software applications. The Shopify Checkout API makes it possible to purchase products from a Shopify store programmatically.
Related: Infographic: Growth in Application Programming Interface (API)


Business to Business is the exchange of products, services or information (aka eCommerce) between businesses, rather than between businesses and consumers.
Related: B2B eCommerce: B2B Buying Behaviour Is Changing Rapidly


Business to Consumer is business or transactions conducted directly between a company and consumers who are the end-users of its products or services.
Related: The Power of CRM for B2C in eCommerce and Retail


Customer Lifetime Value is a prediction of the net profit attributed to the entire future relationship with a customer.
Related: How to Calculate Customer Lifetime Value: eBook


A Content Management System is a computer application that supports the creation and modification of digital content. It is often used to support multiple users working in a collaborative environment.
Related: Introducing Demac_BananaBread: Adding CMS Breadcrumbs From the Hierachy in Magento


Cost Per Acquisition measures how much it costs in advertising to convert one person from a visitor to a client for the company.
Related: Difference Between Cost Per Order (CPO) and Cost Per Acquisition (CPA)


Cost Per Click is factored into how much the advertiser bids on specific keywords and the relevancy of the ad to the landing page destination


Customer Relationship Management is a term that refers to practices, strategies and technologies that companies use to manage and analyze customer interactions and data throughout the customer lifecycle, with the goal of improving business relationships with customers, assisting in customer retention and driving sales growth.
Related: The Power of CRM for B2C in eCommerce and Retail


A Card Security Code is a security feature for payment card transactions instituted to reduce the incidence of credit card fraud. The CSC is in addition to the bank card number which is embossed or printed on the card.


Cascading Style Sheets describe how HTML elements are to be displayed on screen, paper, or in other media. CSS is time saving, as it can control the layout of multiple web pages all at once.
Related: Mini Tutorial: Pixel Perfect – Accurately Translating Photoshop Values int CSC


Enterprise Application Integration is the use of technologies and services across an enterprise to enable the integration of software applications and hardware systems.


An Email Service Provider is a company that offers email services, such as Oracle and Bronto.
Related: How to Select Your Next Oustanding Email Service Provider


Inventory Management Software is a software system for tracking inventory levels, orders, sales and deliveries.
Related: Inventory Management


An Internet Protocol address (IP address) is a numerical label assigned to each device connected to a computer network that uses the Internet Protocol for communication.


An Internet Service Provider is a company that provides subscribers with access to the Internet.


Key Performance Indicator is a set of quantifiable measures that a company uses to gauge its performance over time. These metrics are used to determine a company’s progress in achieving its strategic and operational goals, and also to compare a company’s finances and performance against other businesses within its industry.
Related: 25 KPIs to Grow Your Business


An Order Management System is an electronic system developed to execute securities orders in an efficient and cost-effective manner. Brokers and dealers use OMSs when filling orders for various types of securities and are able to track the progress of each order throughout the system
Related: OMS is an Omnichannel Imperative


Personal Home Page is a script language and interpreter, that is freely available and used primarily on Linux Web servers.
Related: Mini Tutorial: Evaluating PHP in Static Blocks and CMS Pages


Product Information Management is a classification of software products that support the global identification, linking and synchronization of product information across heterogeneous data sources.
Related: PIM for eCommerce: The Beautiful and Hard Truth About Product Information Management


Point of Sale is the place where sales are made. For example,retailers consider a POS to be the area where a customer completes a transaction.


A Request for Proposal is a type of bidding solicitation in which a company or organization announces that funding is available for a particular project or program, and companies can place bids for the project’s completion.
Related: Why You Should Stop Responding to RFP’s and Do This Instead


Return on Investment is a performance measure used to evaluate the efficiency of an investment. ROI measures the amount of return on an investment relative to the investment’s cost.
Related: The ROI Proof That Will Make Your Boss Approve Your Marketing Spend


Rate of Return is the gain or loss on an investment over a specified time period, expressed as a percentage of the investment’s cost.


The listing page a user is directed to when performing a search on a search engine such as Google, Bing or Yahoo.


Search Engine Optimization is strategies, techniques and tactics used to increase the amount of visitors to a website by obtaining a high-ranking placement in the search results page of a search engine.
Related: 9 Magento Tips for Your eCommerce Site


Search Engine Marketing is a form of Internet marketing that involves the promotion of websites by increasing their visibility in search engine results pages (SERPs) through paid advertising.
Related: SEM Budget Planning for the Holidays


A Service Level Agreement is a contract between a service provider and the end user that defines the level of service expected from the service provider.


Short Message Service is a text messaging service component of most telephone, World Wide Web, and mobile telephony systems.
Related: Infographic: Mobile Messaging For Your Marketing


Terms of Service are rules by which one must agree to abide in order to use a service. Terms of service can also be merely a disclaimer, especially regarding the use of websites.


A Unique Selling Proposition is a factor that differentiates a product from its competitors, such as the lowest cost, the highest quality or the first-ever product of its kind.
Related: Why Your Online Store Needs a Unique Selling Proposition To Thrive


The World Wide Web Consortium is an international community where Member organizations, a full-time staff, and the public work together to develop Web standards.


Extensible Markup Language is a metalanguage which allows users to define their own customized markup languages, especially in order to display documents on the Internet.
Related: Mini Tutorial: Changing the Order of Layout XML Blocks in Local.XML

Don’t you feel better already? Knowing these popular terms helps simplify the world of eCommerce and makes it much more understandable for all of us. Next time you’re discussing eCommerce with somebody, you’ll be sure to sound to pro!

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