35 Marketing & Business Acronyms You Need To Know

The marketing and business worlds are awash with confusing acronyms that can make you feel like you’re speaking another language at times. So to help, we have created a list of 35 marketing and business acronyms that you need to know.
Simon Patchett

The marketing and business worlds are awash with confusing acronyms that can make you feel like you’re speaking another language at times.

So to help, we have created a list of 35 marketing and business acronyms that you need to know.


1) AIDA – Attention/Awareness, Interest, Desire, Action

The four steps of the purchase funnel, where customers move from awareness to purchase.

2) BR – Bounce Rate

Bounce rate can refer to websites and emails. On a website, bounce rate refers to the percentage of visitors that leave without clicking on anything else.

In terms of email, bounce rate refers to the rate at which an email was undelivered to a recipient. High email bounce rate generally indicates a poor quality list that may be outdated.

3) B2B – Business-to-business

Companies that sell to other companies.

4) B2C – Business-to-consumer

Companies that sell directly to consumers.

5) CAC – Customer Acquisition Cost

This is the cost each acquired customer cost your business. To work this figure out add up your advertising or marketing spend, salaries, bonuses & commission for a specific period (e.g. month, quarter, year). Divide this figure by the number of new customers in the same period.

6) CMS

CMS stands for Content Management System. An example of a CMS is WordPress.

7) CPC – Cost Per Click

Stands for the average cost of a click when running a digital advertising campaign.

8) CPL – Cost Per Lead

This is the average cost to your business to acquire a lead. Not all leads will become customers, so this is an important figure to measure.

9) CPM – Cost Per Thousand

Cost per thousand is a term that the price for 1000 advertisement impressions. The “M” is the Roman numeral for 1000.

10) CR – Conversion Rate

A conversion rate is the percentage of people filling out a desired outcome on a web page, for example filling in a form.

11) CRM – Customer Relationship Management

A CRM is a piece of software that lets somebody track everything they do with their existing and potential customers. It usually lets you store contact information, personal details, notes and contact histories. They are integral to most businesses.

12) CRO – Conversion Rate Optimisation

Optimising conversions on your website involves lots of testing and data, plus design techniques and principles in order to improve the performance of your webpage, social media profiles, calls-to-action, plus much more.

13) CSS – Cascading Style Sheets

Cascading Style Sheets are a programming language that creates the colour, look and feel of your website, in combination with HTML.

14) CTA – Call To Action

Calls to action are one of the most important things on your website. These can come in text, button or image form, but the thing they all have in common is that they encourage a website visitor to take a desired action, whether that is fill in a form, sign up for a newsletter or make a purchase.

15) CTR – Click Through Rate

Click Through Rate is the percentage of your audience that clicks through from one step of your campaign to the next, for example, the percentage of people that clicked a link in an email to read more. This can be worked out by dividing the number of clicks by the number of opportunities people had to click (e.g. pageviews or emails sent).

16) DNS – Domain Name Server

A server that translates a web address into an IP address.

17) GA – Google Analytics

A service by Google that provides detailed information about users of your website and how they interact with it. Studying this data allows you to improve the experience you provide and make smart business decisions among others.

18) HTML – Hyper Text Markup Language

The programming language that provides the framework for your website, landing pages, and emails.

19) KPI – Key Performance Indicator

A KPI is a measurement that allows you to evaluate the success of your marketing activity. KPI’s are used to track progress towards an overall objective.

20) MoM, (or QoQ or YoY) – Month-over-Month, (or Quarter-over-Quarter or Year-over-Year)

Evaluating KPI’s and progress should be done over a specified time period in order to better understand changes. These are typically Month-over-Month, Quarter-over-Quarter or Year-over-Year comparing one period to the previous one.

21) PPC – Pay Per Click

PPC is a form of Internet advertising where the advertiser is charged when their ad is clicked. This can be based on flat rate or can be bid-based like Google Adwords.

22) PR – Public Relations

PR is about getting a company and their messages in front of a relevant audience through target media such as publications, TV, radio and online. PR is about positioning a business, or an individual, in a particular light.

23) PV – Page View

A page view is a request to load a single web page.

24) ROI – Return on Investment

ROI is a performance measure that evaluates the efficiency and profitability of a particular activity. The formula is a simple one:  gain from investment – the cost of investment, divided by the cost of the investment. Obviously, you want a high return on your investment.

25) RSS – Rich Site Summary

RSS is a web feed that publishes frequently updated information like blog posts, news, and podcasts. Subscribers no longer have to visit your website to access new content but will be updated when the subscribed site is. It is sometimes known as “Really Simple Syndication.”

26) SEM – Search Engine Marketing

SEM covers both SEO and PPC and is concerned with the positioning of a website within search results in order to increase visibility and the share of traffic from search results.

27) SEO

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimisation. The practice involves implementing techniques that will help a website to rank better in organic search results. SEO is complex so speak to us to find out more.

28) SLA – Service Level Agreement

SLA’s are agreements that define the minimum standard of service level that can be expected by a client. These agreements might include the number of leads to be generated per month or they may even define the levels of communication.

29) SMB – Small-to-Medium Business

This usually defines a business that has between 10 and 500 employees.

30) SMM – Social Media Marketing

The marketing of a product or service to customers, potential customers influencers, employees (and anybody else) via social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter.

31) SWOT – Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities & Threats

A SWOT analysis allows you to pinpoint your strengths and weaknesses as a business, what opportunities you have and what threats threaten the business. This analysis allows you to create a high-level action plan containing the most important tasks.

32) URL – Uniform Resource Locator

Also known as a web address. This is displayed in the address bar in your favourite web browser (e.g. Google Chrome).

33) UX – User (and Customer) Experience

Customer Experience is the overall experience a customer has with a particular business, from discovery and awareness to purchase and advocacy. Providing an excellent experience is what will keep users returning to do business with you.

User Experience might typically be focussed on the experience users have with a website or app and how easy it is to achieve what they want to achieve, whether that is to make a purchase or find out an answer to a question. Poor experiences online will typically see users switch to a competitor.

34) WoM – Word of Mouth

Is the passing of information from one person to another. Technically, this is oral communication but today, it includes online communication. All businesses should look to generate positive recommendations from customers, employees, influencers, and advocates in order to increase business as it is inexpensive and is much more likely to convert.

35) YTD – Year-to-Date

A time period used for measuring activity. The period begins at the start of the current year and ends at the current date.


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