If you’re starting an eCommerce store (or already own one), you will quickly realize there is a lot more to it than just building a site and listing products. eCommerce is the amalgamation of commerce and technology, and while you can be a master of one, you most probably are a jack of the others.
As your store grows, you will quickly find yourself bombarded with jargon that you know is important but cannot understand. The secret between making or breaking an eCommerce business sometimes lies in understanding these terms.
We’ve curated this list of important eCommerce terms that every store owner must know and understand. We have listed its meaning and also its implications on eCommerce.
Glossary of Important eCommerce Terms
A/B Testing, or Split Testing, is an analysis technique where two (or even more) variants of a web page with selected differences are published. The idea is to send equal visitors to both variants and measure which one has a higher performance rate so that the two selected differences can be judged.
An affiliate is a person or a company external to your eCommerce site that is paid to promote and sell your products, for a commission or a fee. Affiliate marketing involves reaching out to multiple affiliates and creating relationships for continued sales.
Depending on the type of business, you may want to allow users to checkout products without having to create a user account. While this may restrict the amount of user data you collect, it will reduce the steps involved in the user’s journey and could increase the chances for conversions.
Average Order Value (AOV)
AOV is the average amount of money a customer spends per transaction on your eCommerce store. Dividing total revenue by the total number of orders will give you your store’s AOV, and this is often used as a measure of performance.
Average Time on Site
Tools like Google Analytics can and must be used to extract your online store’s performance metrics, and one of these is ‘Average Time on Site’. This number, measured in seconds/minutes/hours, tells you how much time a user spends on your site on average. You can clearly deduce which pages/products on your site are getting the most and least user attention and then work on them accordingly.
Bounce Rate is the percentage of users who visited your website and exited from the first page they visited, without visiting any other page on the store. By analyzing which pages have the highest bounce rate, you can analyze which pages need improvement.
A buyer’s persona is the depiction of your ideal customer, on paper. It is created by performing market research and analyzing existing user data. This gives you a sense of what users are going to visit your store, helping you set it up to cater to their needs.
A CTA is an element (a button, a word, or a link) on your eCommerce store that prompts users to take action. The design and placement of CTAs play a big role in nudging users forward in their journey.
Indicates how many users have moved products into their online cart but haven’t completed a purchase. Separately targeting these users with reminder messages and offers can help increase your store’s conversion rate.
Your store’s conversion rate is the percentage of visitors who purchased one more product. This percentage is always the most important measure of performance for a store because it directly impacts earnings.
Cross-selling is the technique of promoting one or more products to users who are in the process of purchasing a product on your online store. What to cross-sell can be decided based on user purchase data. For example, if users who purchase a shirt tend to also purchase a pair of jeans, you can cross-sell the pair of jeans to the next user who is in the process of purchasing the shirt.
CTR is the percentage of users who clicked a link (on your store or an ad) vs. the number of users who saw it. A low CTR can indicate poor copy or visuals.
Dropshipping is a model of eCommerce where the online store that facilitates customers does not store any physical products themselves but has an arrangement with manufacturers who directly ship products to customers. Amazon is an example of Dropshipping.
Your store’s inventory depicts the number of products available for purchase. Monitoring inventory is important to maintain good CX. Your online store should not list products that are currently not available for shipping. A good eCommerce platform (like Shopify) can automatically track inventory.
A landing page is often a stand-alone page created to provide visitors with information specific to a product or service. These pages are created for paid ads or for organic traffic. Each page is created with a specific business intention in mind.
Omni-channel marketing is a model where all communication channels within your business are integrated and coherent. A customer can visit any channel - the website, social media handles, email, a physical store, etc., and experience consistent brand messaging and values. Integrating these mediums also means customers can bounce across channels and still continue their purchase journey seamlessly.
SKU or Stock Keeping Unit
An SKU is a unit used to differentiate between different products (shirts and pants), between similar products (a large shirt and a medium one), and also to keep stock of inventory. It is a unique identification system.
Upselling is the method of presenting a customer with a better version of the product they are purchasing. Where cross-selling is promoting different products that are generally bought together, upselling is promoting a more expensive option with more features. For example, a customer about to purchase a 3-month course on Udemy or Skillshare is prompted to purchase the 1-year course, which provides additional features but also costs more.
Whether you’re the business owner, eCommerce head, the IT specialist, or the analyst, it's important to have an all-round understanding of these eCommerce terms that travel across domains. An eCommerce store and its marketing strategies can easily be fine-tuned by simply understanding what these terms and their values mean.
On a side note, if you manage an eCommerce business and are struggling with conversion rate, AOV, cart abandonment, and so on, you should definitely consider using Argoid's AI-driven product recommendation engine. Argoid AI-enabled eCommerce stores are already seeing a minimum of 20%% increase in conversion rates, and 1200% ROI. Learn more here.