insights | 09.08.2022

Removing the fuss from the eCommerce buzz – your guide to important shopping terms

Shopping basket with shapes in
Article topics
  1. Average order value
  2. Call-to-action
  3. Conversion
  4. Cross-selling
  5. Customer lifetime value
  6. Ecosystem
  7. Omnichannel
  8. Sales funnel

Not sure what the difference is between a conversion or a call-to-action? Don’t worry; you’re not alone. The eCommerce world has a lot of unusual jargon and buzzwords that can be hard to get your head around. We’ve put together a short guide to some of the most commonly found online shopping terms to help you on your eCommerce journey.

Average Order Value

Average order value

The average order value, or AOV, is the average amount of money customers spend when placing an order in an eCommerce store. It’s calculated by dividing the total amount of revenue by the number of orders placed.

AOV is a valuable metric that can help determine how much money you’re making and if you need to take measures to encourage customers to spend more.

Website buttons


A call-to-action (CTA) is a prompt on a website that encourages a visitor to act.

As an example, the ‘add to cart’ button on a product page will be the call to action that incentivises a customer to make a purchase.

A CTA needs to be as easy to understand and find as possible. Some eCommerce retailers use A/B testing to identify the best call-to-action to use. This is when a webpage uses two different versions of a CTA to see which one performs best.


A conversion is when a shopper completes a particular goal on an eCommerce website. This can be anything from clicking on a link in an email, creating an account or buying a product.

By working out the conversion rate, you can get a good indication of how many people are converting on your site. This is the ratio of conversions to visits and can be a great way to see how your site is performing.

Conversion rate optimisation (CRO) is the process of improving your website to bring in as many conversions as possible.


Cross-selling is when you persuade a customer that has bought (or is in the process of buying) a product to purchase additional items.

This can be a great way to make additional revenue as you’re selling to someone who has already expressed an interest in buying from you.

A similar concept to cross-selling is upselling. This is when you encourage a customer to buy a more expensive version of a product. For example, if a customer wants to buy some chocolates, you can persuade them to buy a larger box.


Customer lifetime value

Customer lifetime value (CLV) is the average amount of money a customer spends with you. CLV is different to AOV. While AOV measures the average amount of money spent in a single transaction, CLV measures how much is spent during a customer’s relationship with you.

It’s important to foster brand loyalty with customers, as existing customers are a third more likely to spend more money. CLV can show precisely how much shoppers are spending.


While ecosystems are commonly found in nature, they’re also found in the world of eCommerce. An eCommerce ecosystem is a collection of systems that work together to provide goods to customers.

Your ecosystem will include your website, payment system, email notifications and even the social media accounts you use to promote your site. It’s essential to understand how all these elements work together to guide shoppers through the sales process.



When you work in eCommerce, you need to provide your customers with a seamless omnichannel experience. This is when multiple marketing and sales channels come together to provide shoppers with an excellent service.

For example, an eCommerce website can let customers save their shopping cart between desktop and mobile phone, meaning they can shop on any device. The website can also let shoppers reserve items online and pick them up at their nearest store.


Sales funnel

The sales funnel is the journey customers go through before buying a product. People visiting an eCommerce website will be at different stages of the purchasing process. Some will be carrying out research to see if a product is right for them, while others will be ready to buy.

When you identify where your customers are in the sales funnel, you can create marketing that’s relevant to their needs and increase the chances of them making a purchase.

Final thoughts

We hope this guide has given you insight into eCommerce jargon and how it’s used.

There’s a lot of eCommerce terminology out there, and this list has only scratched the surface. If you need any other buzzwords deciphering, just let us know.

Still confused? Xigen takes the jargon out of the eCommerce process. We’re dedicated to transparency, meaning when you work with us, we’ll explain what’s happening in a language you understand.

Contact us today for a chat with one of our expert team members.

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