35 Performance Marketing Acronyms

Croud Luxe Marketing Team

20th May 2024

~ 8 min read

The number of ways to market and advertise products and services has proliferated since the widespread adoption of the internet and connected mobile devices. Concurrently, the terms used by marketers to describe how to measure the results they achieve for clients has also grown.

Below, we present the 35 performance marketing acronyms that every luxury marketer should know. Text appearing in bold indicates that this term has its own definition in the list.

API – application programming interface

Application programming interfaces allow you to download information from Google, Bing, Facebook, and other platforms automatically.

This data can then be analysed to determine ways to improve your advertising performance, for example into a customer relationship management (CRM) platform.

BL – brand loyalty

Brand loyalty is a measurement of how likely a customer is to continue purchasing from your company in preference to (but not necessarily to the exclusion of all) other brands.

There are various different ways to measure brand loyalty from engagement rates on social media to average lifetime value (LTV) and repurchase ratios.

CPA – cost per acquisition/action

Cost per acquisition or action measures the cost of acquiring a new customer or getting a website visitor to perform a desired action (for example, downloading an e-book). The cost element refers to advertising charges incurred in getting them to your website in the first place.

To work out CPA, divide the number of acquisitions or desired actions by the overall cost of a marketing campaign.

CPM – cost per mille

Most advertising is now sold on a cost-per-click basis meaning that you only incur charges when someone clicks through to your website.

Cost per mille is the price you pay for 1,000 exposures or displays of your advertisement regardless of whether consumers click through to your website or not.

CR – churn rate

The churn rate metric expresses in percentage terms the number of customers who stop purchasing from you within a given time period.

Although churn rate is of importance to all businesses, it is of particular importance to companies for which monthly recurring revenues (MRR) are their main source of income.

CRM – customer relationship management

Customer relationship management (CRM) systems track the different forms of interaction existing, potential, and lapsed customers have with a brand.

CRMs can measure in real-time statistics like return on ad spend (ROAS), lifetime value (LTV), cost per acquisition (CPA), and more.

CRO – conversion rate optimisation

With conversion rate optimisation, the goal is to improve the number of conversions from marketing campaigns. This could be conversions from a landing page linked from paid-for search engine advertising campaigns, social media campaigns, and email marketing campaigns.

Typical ways to improve conversion rates are to present slightly different versions of landing pages, social media posts, and emails to customers to see which results in the highest number of sales, enquiries, and so on.

CTA – call to action

A “call to action” is a specific request you make to visitors to your website, social media followers, and email recipients to respond to your advertising in the way that you want.

For example, on a product detail page (PDP), a call to action would be a “Buy” button.

CTR – clickthrough rate

Clickthrough rates measure in percentage terms the number of times a potential customer clicks through to your website or landing page from a search engine campaign, social media campaign, or email marketing campaign.

Clickthrough rates are calculated by dividing the number of clicks by the number of times your advert was seen.

CVR – conversion rate

Conversion rates measure the number of times users take the desired action like making a purchase or leaving their details for sales teams to follow-ups when at your website.

CX – customer experience

In retail environments, luxury brands provide a superior shopping experience to their clients making them feel part of a unique and exclusive community.

Luxury brands face the challenge of replicating as closely as possible the in-person customer experience on their websites and social media channels.

DMP – data management platform

DSA – dynamic search ads

Dynamic search ads deliver ads of relevance and interest to the target audience. 

For example, if you sell cameras and someone searches for a specific model of camera, dynamic search ads can create an advert for that specific camera. Google knows you stock it because it’s scanned the contents of a page and website prior.

DSP – demand-side platform

Programmatic advertising is an automated way to buy and sell online advertising slots allowing advertisers to purchase places on multiple ad networks and exchanges.

Advertisers use demand-side platforms to purchase ad space.

GA – general availability

General availability is the point at which a product or service becomes available for consumers to buy via a brand’s normal sales channels.

Those channels will often be determined during the go-to-market strategy (GTM).

GDN – Google Display Network

The Google Display Network contains over 2,000,000 websites that have outsourced display, video, and text advertising sales in whole or part to Google.

Brands can target which sites their ads appear on (directly and by contextualisation where Google scans the content of a site to determine relevance), by topic, and by audience. You can also use the Google Display network to retarget ads.

GSC – Google Search Console

The Google Search Console allows you to maintain, troubleshoot, and monitor your website’s performance in relation to Google’s search pages.

It let you know the number of times your site appears on Google search engine results pages, allows you to upload a sitemap and keep it updated, monitor for new incoming links, and track a wide variety of metrics.

GTM – go-to-market (strategy)

When preparing a new product or service for launch, brands create a go-to-market strategy.

Companies select:

  • the audiences they’re targeting, 
  • the channels they’ll use to promote their product or service to those audiences, 
  • packaging and pricing, 
  • the message they’ll create around the product, and 
  • select a cost per acquisition (CPA) target for their campaign.

KW – keyword

Organic search results are the results on a Google page that appear under the adverts (and other elements like the Local Pack, Featured Snippet, and so on). They’re the results that Google deems as being the most relevant to what a searcher is looking for.

Searchers use keywords to find the information they want. Contrary to their name, keywords can be one word or a string of words.

LLA – lookalike audience

Based on the techniques used on data management platforms (DMPs), Facebook allows companies to choose lookalike audiences to target their marketing campaigns towards.

Lookalike audiences share similar interests and belong to similar demographic groups as audiences you’ve selected in Facebook Ads Manager.

LTV – lifetime value

The lifetime value of a customer is an estimation of an average client’s total spend with a brand.

Increasingly, brands are using artificial intelligence plug-ins to analyse the demographics of customers to determine those likely to have the highest lifetime value. They then use this information to create target campaigns and reward schemes to encourage further spending and lengthen the time they continue to make purchases.

MRR – monthly recurring revenue

Monthly recurring revenue refers to the total turnover taken by a business from customers who pay subscriptions and other fees once a month to a business. Payment is normally taken using Direct Debits or continuous card mandates meaning that customers’ accounts are debited monthly automatically.

MSV – monthly search volume

Monthly search volume is a measure of the estimated number of times a keyword is searched for.

Advertisers can find these how many times a keyword is searched for using Google Keyword Planner or tools like Ahrefs and SEMRush. 

Often, the most searched for terms are the ones that brands compete most for. There may be better and more immediate opportunities by creating content for keywords with lower levels of competition, a high enough monthly search volume, and the correct intent.

PDP – product detail page

Product detail pages, sometimes call product description pages, are pages that show details and images of a product to visitors.

From a product detail page, customers may choose variations on a product (size, colour, fabric, etc) before making a purchase.

RLSA- remarketing lists for search ads

Remarketing is a form of online advertising which allows you to display adverts to people who have visited your site. Different ads can be displayed depending on what they did on your site, for example, if they left without doing anything or they filled their shopping cart but did not complete the purchase.

ROAS – return on ad spend

Return on ad spend is a metric that measures the amount of revenue/turnover generated by marketing campaigns.

ROI – return on investment

Return on investment is a wider business term that measures the amount of revenue/turnover generated by undertaking a specific activity, for example investing in a new website or manufacturing facility.

Marketers generally use the term “return on ad spend” (ROAS) to describe revenue/turnover generated by marketing campaigns.

SKU – stock-keeping unit

Stock-keeping units are codes that retailers individually assign to individual products. This is in contrast to barcodes where individual products are assigned the same bar codes.

Many clothing retailers assign different SKUs to the same item of clothing where variations on size and colour exist.

SOV – share of voice

Share of voice is a measurement of your online visibility in comparison to your competitors.

For example, how often is your brand discussed on social media and how often are your competitors’ brands discussed? Share of voice is also an important digital PR measure for assessing the success of how many story placements you and your competitors achieve in the media and on 3rd party websites.

SSP – supply-side platform

Supply-side platforms are the opposite of demand-side platforms, described earlier in this article.

With supply-side platforms, publishers can sell advertising spaces across one or more ad exchanges. Supply-side platforms are used in programmatic advertising.

UX – user experience

“User experience” refers to how easy, quick, and intuitive a website or an app is for a client to achieve their end goal – for example, purchase something or leave an enquiry.

UX focuses on the simplicity of design and navigation with particular reference to how well websites or apps operate on different devices and at different screen sizes.

YoY – year on year

Year on year compares variables from two or more factors (one being time period) to determine performance.

For example, if someone said “return on ad spend is up 35% year on year in July 2022”, they would usually mean one of the following four things:

  • ROAS is 35% higher in July 2022 than in July 2021 (monthly comparison)
  • ROAS is 35% higher in May/June/July 2022 than in May/June/July 2021 (quarterly comparison)
  • ROAS is 35% higher in Feb-July 2022 than in Feb-July 2021 (six-monthly comparison)
  • ROAS is 35% higher in Aug 2021-July 2022 than in Aug 2020-July 2021 (annual comparison)

YTD – year to date

The year to date metric is used to compare performances from the beginning of a calendar year.

For example, if someone said “cost per acquisition (CPA) is 35% lower YTD in July 2022”, they would mean that the cost for acquiring each new customer is 35% cheaper in the period Jan 2022-July 2022 than it was in the period Jan 2021-July 2021.

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