In today’s world of brevity and shortening everything possible, business acronyms have become very popular in all forms of communication. What started out predominantly on social channels, especially Twitter with it’s original limit of 140 characters for communication, has now made its way into broad stream business communications.


Here is a list of the most popular business acronyms according to Sprout Social and what they mean:

API: An “application programming interface” is a set of rules for how pieces of different software applications interact and integrate with each other.

B2B: This “business to business” label refers to companies that are selling to other companies.

B2C: Whereas the “business to consumer” outlines a company that is selling to individuals.

CMS: A “content management system” is a tool used for editing, scheduling and publishing any written material for online purposes.

CPC: The “cost per click” is the amount of money an advertiser pays for every person who clicks on their online ad.

CR: The “conversion rate” is a simple equation: the number of people who take an action divided by the number who could have.

CTA: A “call to action” is a statement that asks the reader to do something, e.g. fill out a form to download a whitepaper.

CTR: The “clickthrough rate” is a particular type of conversion rate where the action in question is clicking on a link.

HTML: Stands for “Hypertext Markup Language.” It’s the coding language used to build all webpages.

KPI: A “key performance indicator” is a metric your business uses to measure success in achieving goals.

ISP: Your “Internet service provider” is the company powering your Internet service.

PM: “Private message” is the more general term for any one-on-one communication that’s not visible to the public. It also includes DMs – Direct Messages.

PPC: “Pay per click” is a metric for advertising costs that’s the same as CPC.

ROI: “Return on investment” measures the money you make in relation to the money you spent to make it.

SaaS: This is an abbreviation for “software as a service,” it is where 3rd party providers make their software available to users over the internet. It general works on a ‘pay as you use’ model. Business acronyms using as a service are becoming widespread.

SEM: “Search engine marketing” is how businesses leverage search engines for marketing purposes.

SEO: “Search engine optimization” is a form of SEM. It refers to the choices you make in your written content that are designed to make sure that your creations appear high in the rankings of the correct search terms.

UI: The “user interface” is the display that a person uses to control a software tool.

UX: The “user experience” is a person’s response and reaction to taking actions within a tool.

UGC: The term “user generated content” encompasses any written or visual material that the individuals using a platform create, from comments or blog posts, to photos or video clips.

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