Lingo & Cool Terms
IMPORTANCE: Understanding the various terms and lingo used by entrepreneurs will ensure you sound like you know what you’re talking about and can communicate with other entrepreneurs. This Glossary provides a list of popular entrepreneurial terms.
HOW TO USE: Go through this list and familiarize yourself with these terms and keep coming back!
Permanent redirect from one URL to another URL.
Temporary redirect from one URL to another URL.
Page not found error. Occurs when a page on a website is not found.
A star employee or team member or potential. Someone who is crucial to the team’s success be.
eg. Our team is made up of A-players and we hire only the best.
A popular marketing test, in which users are grouped and each group is exposed to different user experiences. The reactions of the groups determine which experience has positive results. May be restricted to more than two groups.
eg. Based on A/B tests we conducted in our ad campaign, we realized the default landing page leads to better conversions.
Above the fold:
The part of a webpage visible to a user without needing to scroll down.
A company that helps fast track the growth of few promising startups. It does this by taking a small amount of equity in the startup in exchange for providing mentors, training and capital investments.
An acquisition that’s done in order to add the target company’s employees to the acquiring company’s team. These are not as financially lucrative as strategic acquisitions and are generally done on companies that are still in early stages.
eg. Facebook’s current team was mostly built through acquihires.
A platform for serving contextual ads created by Google. It allows webmasters to place ads on their sites in order to generate revenue.
Google’s advertising network that allows advertisers to place ads across Google products.
An affiliate is someone who sells your company’s products for a commission on each sale.
Marketing someone else’s products for a commission on every sale or lead you generate.
A measure of the traffic to a website. This is provided by a company called Alexa. The lower the website’s rank the more traffic it gets.
Google Search Algorithm is a set of rules used to rank websites in search results.
When someone is afraid to or unable to step outside of their comfort zone.
The text that appears when you mouse over an image on a website. It is added as a bit of html code to an image.
When one is faced with so much data, that they are prevented from making a decision.
eg. After running multiple ad campaigns for his website, Raj suffered from analysis paralysis.
The collection and analysis of website traffic data for any given website. Usually associated with Google Analytics, Google’s platform for website analytics.
The clickable text of a link.
Someone who regularly provides financial backing for small start ups and entrepreneurs, generally with better terms than other lenders. Angel investors will usually invest in startups at an earlier stage.
eg. Our angel has given us enough to develop a working model and showcase for further funding.
Annual recurring revenue (ARR):
Aka run rate, this is the amount of recurring revenue a subscription-based company will collect in a year.
eg. Based on a 100 products, our annual recurring revenue would be ₹2,40,000.
Application Programming Interface (API):
A set of routines, protocols, and tools that specify how software components interact with each other.
eg. Many website use Twitter’s API to post tweets.
Creating hundreds of unique articles from 1 seed article by using alternate words and sentences. Aka content spinning.
The authority of a website depends on its popularity, traffic it receives, backlinks, shares on social media etc. The more popular a website, the higher its authority.
A site that is authoritative in its niche and is well established with good content and user experience.
Using bots to automate manual tasks such as filling in a web form or signing up for websites.
Average revenue per paying user:
The revenue calculated by dividing the total revenue by the number of users who paid any amount.
Average revenue per user:
The revenue calculated by dividing the total revenue by the total number of users. This is less than the average revenue per paying user.
Business-to-business. Refers to companies that sell their products to other companies and not directly to consumers.
eg. Indiamart.com is one of the largest Indian B2B portals.
Business-to-consumer. Refers to companies that sell their products directly to consumers.
eg. Apple is a very popular example of a B2C company.
A link back to your website from another website.
A summary of a company’s finances including assets, liabilities and equity.
Anticipating a decrease in the price of an asset. Also represents hesitation while taking a risk.
eg. Raj is bearish about hiring a new programmer and would rather do the work himself to save funds.
Below the fold:
The part of a webpage that is seen only when the user scrolls down.
Belt and suspenders:
Describes a situation in which a party is protected in a redundant way.
eg. The bank is asking for the belt and suspenders by asking us to fill out the kyc form as well as submitting address proof.
Black hat SEO:
An unethical form of search engine optimization that is done using automated tools and practices.
A website where someone publishes their thoughts and opinions in the form of blog posts and invite others to discuss and share their opinions.
A collection of blogs that are set up to provide each other with backlinks. Usually owned by the same person and operated anonymously.
The blogging community.
A meeting of the board of directors.
A person not on the board of directors, but is allowed in the board meeting.
eg. Our angel investor is a board observer.
Board of directors:
The people who are elected to supervise the activities of a company. They represent the interest of the stakeholders and usually have a broad scope of responsibilities.
eg. Our CEO heads the board of directors.
Sales for which contracts have been made but money has not been paid.
eg. Our company has ₹10 lakhs worth of bookings for the next year.
To bootstrap a company is to build it without any outside investment.
Bootstrap is also a powerful mobile front-end framework for faster and easier web development, developed by Twitter.
eg. The small team of 6 employees was able to bootstrap the business.
The percentage of visitors to a website that leave a website without visiting any other pages.
A trail describing how you navigated to the current page on a website and the previous pages in the hierarchy.
A backlink that returns to a non-existent page and hence returns a 404 error.
The opposite of bearish.
Anticipating an increase in the price of an asset. Also represents enthusiasm while taking a risk.
eg. Rohan didn’t care about the finances and was bullish about hiring a new programmer.
The amount of cash required by a company to carry out operations per month. Refers to the negative difference of the cash receipts minus cash expenses.
eg. Our company’s burn rate is ₹2,00,000.
Business intelligence (BI):
Companies and tools that help businesses extract insights from data.
eg. Adobe Digital Marketing is brilliant for gathering BI for your website.
The set of rules that dictate how a company will operate.
eg. The company bylaws state that an assessment meeting must happen once in 3 months.
An area of memory used to store static versions of dynamic web pages to reduce the server load, bandwidth consumption and increase the page load speed.
Call to Action (CTA):
Words or buttons that encourage a user to take a specific action.
eg. “Download Your Free Copy Now!”, “Subscribe Now!”
The main page when several pages have similar content.
Capitalization table (Cap table):
A document that lists the company’s owners and the number of shares each owns.
eg. The cap table indicates that the CEO has a 51% ownership.
A method taken to reduce spam by asking a user for a simple response, like the result of a basic math problem or the letters in an image.
Cascading style sheets (CSS):
A web language used to apply the same style to multiple elements.
Cash flow statement:
A summary of the cash inflows and outflows of a business. It also includes investments and financings.
eg. The cash flow statement showed a profit because of our new investor.
A situation that can’t be repaired.
eg. When our design head quit, the project became a catastrofuck.
Chicken and egg:
A scenario in which two factors are codependent in order to achieve success.
eg. Sanjay realized he was in a chicken and egg situation. He needed funds to develop his products and products to sell to get funds.
A policy designed to separate information.
eg. After taking on two competing clients, the law firm set up a Chinese wall between their knowledge about them.
When a customer who might have returned stopped being a customer. Churn rate is the percentage of customers lost in a specific time period (usually a month).
eg. After 5 customers churned in a week by canceling their subscriptions, the publication hired a customer service rep in hopes of reducing the churn rate.
A pointless discussion where participants just praise each other instead of discussing anything relevant.
eg. The “planning meeting” was such a circlejerk.
A mention of your business name or address on another website. May or may not include a backlink.
Click-through rate (CTR):
The percentage of people that clicked your ad to the people who saw it.
eg. Out of 100 people who saw the newsfeed ad, 40 people clicked on it. The CTR is 40%.
A period of time after which any stocks or securities on a vesting schedule begin to vest. This protects companies from employees who leave after a short tenure.
eg. Sohan’s company has a 1 year cliff for 40% of his options.
The act of serving different content to humans and search engines. Usually involves serving up a highly optimized page to search engine bots.
A network of remote systems that host data and act as a single machine.
eg. Dropbox is an example of a file sharing service that uses the cloud.
A company that rents or provides workspace to entrepreneurs or startups. They can be advantageous for startups as they provide the possibility of collaboration and reduce overheads.
An analysis in which customers are arranged into groups (cohorts) based on common attributes.
eg. By running a cohort analysis, we determined that newer customers have more spending power than older customers.
Content management system (CMS):
A simplified, user-friendly system for creating and managing content on a website.
eg. WordPress is a very popular CMS.
A conversion is when a user takes a desired action, such as a sign-up or purchase
The percentage of people that convert.
A form of loan in which a company borrows cash and repays the lender with stock in place of cash.
eg. Ramesh gave Suresh a ₹100k convertible note for when the company went public.
Cookie:A text file used by websites and web browsers, to store data about user sessions and track user activity on a site.
Writing compelling articles to sell products or gain users’ attention.
Cost per click (CPC):
The amount you pay per click on your ad.
Cost per mille (CPM):
The amount you pay per 1000 impressions of your ad.
A piece of software that crawls the web in order to extract and index data. Aka bot or spider.
Cross site scripting (XSS):
A type of security vulnerability in Web applications, that allows attackers to inject client-side scripts into a website’s code and gain admin access.
A way of attracting capital from a large number of people through small investements. Some popular crowdfunding websites are RockThePost and Kickstarter.
Customer Lifetime Value (CLV):The estimated total value of a customer to a business.
eg. Our average CLV is around ₹2,000 and we want to increase it.
Daily Active Users (DAU):
The number of unique users on a website or service in a day.
eg. Facebook reported 556m mobile daily active users in Q4 2013.
A secure, digital locker used for hosting the documents required during any financial transaction. Key parties on both sides can access it and an activity log is maintained.
eg. The CFO uploaded the company’s cap table, cash flow statement and balance sheet to the data room.
DAU over MAU:
The ratio of DAU to monthly active users (MAU). This is a measure of the depth of engagement of users.
eg. DAU over MAU revealed that users were highly engaged with the website.
A slide-based presentation that can be transferred digitally.
eg. I submitted the deck to the CFO for review.
When you have a server that is dedicated to serving only your website and you don’t share the server with anyone else.
Having a deep bench means having a smart, hardworking and capable team that doesn’t rely on only the founder to drive results.
eg. The angel investor was impressed with our deep bench and is willing to invest.
When you create a backlink to any page of your website that is not the homepage.
The Disavow tool is a tool provided by Google with which you can tell Google which backlinks to your website it should ignore.
To introduce a game changer in an established industry, that no one has thought of before.
eg. With the introduction of the I-pod, Apple completely disrupted the audio industry.
DNS is the Domain Name Server, which is a distributed system for assigning names to any devices connected to the Internet as a means of identifying them.
eg. We’re seeing a DNS error because the changes in the DNS haven’t yet been fully updated.
A tag that is added to a backlink that tells search engine crawlers or bots to follow it.
When a company is confident enough in its products to use it themselves.
eg. Blackberry were dogfooding their smartphones to promote their enterprise server and increase sales.
A unique name for every website on the internet. It is made up of letters, numbers, dashes and periods.
In a sales funnel, the part where you try to sell a user something more affordable after they have rejected a more expensive product.
The right of the majority shareholder to force a minority shareholder to join the sale of a company with the same terms and price.
eg. Suresh was forced to sell because of the company’s drag along rights.
When you slowly carry out a certain action over a period of time.
eg. To dripfeed 50 backlinks over 10 days would dripfeed them at a rate of 5 a day.
When two websites have identical or very similar content. This is a major reason for Google Panda penalties.
Used to describe a company that is not large enough for an acquisition or fundraise. Aka subscale.
eg. Our company is still early. We will be ready in a month.
A company that has not yet reached a meaningful scale is said to be in its early stage.
eg. Until we had ₹20 lakhs, we were still considered an early stage company.
Earnings Before Interest, Taxation, Depreciation and Amortization. A calculation of a company’s profitability excluding non cash expenses and expenses that are tied to a business’s capital structure.
eg. The company could face debt upto double its EBITDA if it doesn’t improve sales.
The valuation of a company divided by its EBITDA.
eg. We are acquiring a company at 2x its EBITDA multiple.
A digital version of a book that is available in a range of formats.
Ecommerce stands for electronic commerce. This is the buying and selling of products and services on the internet.
A list of people that have signed up for your newsletter or purchased products from you.
A direct marketing tactic which uses emails. Email alerts about new products, blog posts or offers are sent directly to users’ inboxes.
Email service provider (ESP):
A third party that a company uses to handle its email delivery.
eg. GetResponse is a really popular email service provider.
An agreement with a publication to not publish a story until a predecided time.
eg. The Verge had an embargo to honor regarding the Android L announcement.
A domain previously owned by someone who did not renew it and therefore, it expired.
A stream of data that can serve a number of purposes.
eg. An RSS feed is used to get the latest updates from a site.
Collectively refers to the balance sheet, income statement and cash flow statement of a company.
eg. As part of the merger, the company wants our financial statements for the last 3 years.
Any element that is constant across several websites.
eg. Sites using WordPress CMS have the “Powered by WordPress” footprint.
A prediction of the amount of revenue a company will have in the future (usually a year).
eg. Based on their forward revenue, this company looks like a good investment.
Fear, Uncertainty and Death. Refers to information or misinformation used for sales to promote a negative image of the competition.
eg. Reports that HP Laptops were overheating was excellent FUD for Dell sales reps.
Used to refer to a financial package including all potential value.
eg. With incentives, Raju could earn six figures fully-baked.
Refers to the illusion that there is more room for progress than there actually is.
eg. The company hit a glass ceiling on their sales projection when their products were poorly received.
A company’s plan to gain a share of the market.
eg. Micromax executed their go-to-market strategy perfectly and got a huge share of the mobile market.
A situation in which several people, have their own take on events and their own agendas.
eg. The annual management meeting was such a goat rodeo, no one actually talked about the company goals.
Google’s search crawler software that is used to spider and index the web.
A term used to refer to negative SEO. This is intentionally trying to lower a competitor’s website’s Google ranking.
When a website’s Google rankings are fluctuating frequently and are not stable, it is called the Google dance. Usually happens with a new website, or when new link building is carried out.
A newbie, someone who has no experience.
eg. The computer engineer we hired is so green on marketing matters.
An opportunity that has no prior constraints or limitations.
eg. Tapping into the field of sustainable development is a Greenfield because there aren’t too many companies doing it.
When a colleague or contact smiles giving you a false hope when you know the outcome is not what you desire.
eg. Our client was grinfucking us when he said he’d look at our proposal and consider it.
The revenue after subtracting the value of the goods sold.
eg. Our gross margin is ₹60, or about 40%.
A company’s total sales.
eg. Our gross revenue is ₹10,000 before subtracting transportation costs.
A team member responsible for driving growth of the company with technical projects and execution.
eg. The growth hacker managed to increase our conversion rate by 15% in a month.
When someone invites you to post on their website or blog and credits you with the post. You also get a backlink to your website and this helps increase engagement and awareness about your brand.
A highly skilled computer programmer who seeks and exploits vulnerabilities in website security. Hackers can be either ethical or malicious (also called crackers).
The number of times a user visits your website.
Hockey stick curve:
A chart plotting a company’s growth rate which has slow initial growth that suddenly increases to a faster rate indefinitely. The resulting chart looks like a hockey stick.
A really enticing offer that’s used to attract new customers.
eg. Offering 50% off on all new purchases for one day was the perfect honey pot.
An Apache web server configuration file that can be used to increase your website’s security by creating redirects and blocking spammers.
Hypertext Markup Language (HTML):
The programming language used to create websites.
When a user views your website or ad.
A backlink that points to your website.
Income report or statement:
A report showing a company’s or website’s revenue, expenses and profit or loss over a given period. Used to track growth and progress.
eg. Our income statement shows we’ve doubled our revenue in the last year alone.
When a website has been included in Google’s web index.
Indication of interest (IOI):
A brief that outlines the terms of a potential deal.
eg. We’ve received an IOI from Microsoft and it sounds pretty good!
When sales representatives do not need to travel to meet potential customers face to face.
eg. Our product only requires an inside sales team of 5 members.
An automated software test that checks interaction between the different parts of your product.
eg. Sumit managed to solve the API bug that was causing our product to fail the integration test.
A link on a web page that points to another page on the same website or domain name.
Using the internet to market any product or service as the business owner or affiliate. Aka Online marketing.
The graph representing a customer’s profitability over time for a company. Time is on the x-axis and profit per customer is on the y-axis. Generally takes the shape of a J, hence it is called the J-curve.
Any word or phrase that you want your website to rank for when a user searches for it. Hence, your website has to be optimized for your keywords.
The number of times a keyword appears on a web page in comparison to the rest of the text.
eg. If your page has 50 words and 5 of them are your keyword, your keyword density is 10%.
Researching possible keywords for your website in order to assess their search volumes, commercial intent and the strength of competition in search engines. This is an important first step in building your website.
When a keyword or keyword phrase is repeated several times on a page through different methods in order to manipulate the search engine ranking of the page.
The page a new visitor to your website first sees. Usually contains a clear call to action.
Latent semantic indexing (LSI):
A method of indexing and retrieval that is used to determine which words are relevant to other words.
eg. Google associates the words engine, automatic, vehicle, repair with the word car.
A term used to describe loss of a company’s customers. In the same way you have to plug the holes in a bucket to prevent water from leaking, you have to take steps to retain your customers and prevent any dissatisfaction.
eg. The sales head has been given a month to fix the leaky bucket.
A business methodology that is used mostly in the software sector. Companies that adopt this methodology, work in cycles between iterating product features and accepting customer feedback resulting in a final product.
Letter of intent (LOI):
Also called a terms sheet, it is a document that details a transaction that two parties plan to conduct. It includes major terms and conditions of the transaction and timing of the process.
eg. Microsoft has sent us the LOI for the potential deal.
A transaction in which an individual or group acquires a company and acquires a loan to help pay for the transaction. The company being acquired is used as collateral for the loan.
eg. Tata Tea acquired Tetley in a leveraged buyout.
Any content that is created in order to generate backlinks from other websites.
When someone creates backlinks to a website they own or control.
A structure of backlinks to your website that takes the form of a pyramid. Your website sits at the top and has several backlinks. Each of those backlinks has several more backlinks pointing to them and so on. Aka tiered link building.
The speed at which backlinks to a website are created or removed.
A benefit of being an investor in which, in case a company is being liquidated, investors get their money back before others receive money from the sale. This scenario occurs when a company is being liquidated for less than its valuation.
An opportunity that is easy to capture.
eg. Our existing customer database is low hanging fruit for our new product launch.
Made for Adsense (MFA): A website that is built specifically for earning money through Google Adsense.
Magic Quadrant: A diagram that was created by Gartner, a market research firm, which scores companies based on completeness of vision and ability to execute. If a company ranks well on both, it is said to occupy the magic quadrant.
Meta Description: The description of a webpage that appears in the search engine results pages. It is defined in the Meta Description tag in the page header.
Meta Keywords: The keywords that tell a search engine what the page is about.
Meta Robots: A meta tag that tells search engine spiders whether to index or follow a page.
Meta Tags: A collection of meta tags including Meta description, Meta keywords and Meta robots that each serve a different purpose.
Meta Title: The webpage title that appears in the browser taskbar and in search engine results.
Micro VCs: A new type of Venture Capital firms that search for newer companies which are not big enough for traditional VC firms to invest in.
Minimum Viable Product (MVP): A cheap, working product prototype that a company releases to learn more about its potential markets.
eg. When we released our MVP, we realized that the remote feature we chose to omit would have been useful and are working on including it in the next generation.
Monetize: Adding features like banner advertising or affiliate marketing to a website that allow it to make money.
Money Site: The website you mainly use to generate income.
Monthly Active Users (MAU): The number of unique users on a website or service in a month.
eg. Facebook reported 1.32 bn monthly active users as of June 30, 2014.
Monthly Recurring Revenue (MRR): The amount of revenue a company gains from recurring monthly payments.
eg. Our MRR has shown an increase since we introduced the premium package for customers.
Multi-armed Bandit: A kind of split testing in which the performance of a variation determines the frequency of showing it.
eg. I plan to use a multi-armed bandit test to help decide which home page variation we will use.
Mutual NDA: A type of non disclosure agreement where both parties agree not to reveal each other’s confidential information.
eg. As a show of good faith, we signed a mutual NDA.
Negative SEO: The malicious practice of intentionally trying to lower a competitor’s website’s Google ranking.
Net Promoter Score (NPS): This is a way of measuring customer satisfaction. Customers are asked the question, “How likely are you to refer us to your friend?” Answers are on a scale of 1-10. The net promoter score is calculated by subtracting the percentage of 1-6 answers from the percentage of 0-10 answers.
eg. Google search had an NPS of 53% in 2013.
Net Revenue: Total sales of a company minus the pass-through revenue. Also calculated by subtracting cost of goods sold.
eg. Our flagship store sold ₹50L worth of goods but our net revenue after adjusting for the cost of goods, is ₹35L.
Network Effect: The effect that a single user of a service has on how valuable the service is to other people.
eg. LinkedIn has over 300mn active users and it has a high direct network effect and is useful for new users.
Niche: The specific target market or topic you target with your website.
NoFollow: A tag that is added to a backlink that tells search engines or bots not to follow them or give them any weight when calculating the site’s rankings. Paid or affiliate links must always be nofollow.
NoIndex: A tag that is used to tell search engine spiders not to index the current page. To do this with multiple pages, use the robots.txt file
Non-compete: A clause in an employee’s contract that states that they cannot work for the company’s competitors for a certain period of time.
eg. Google offered me a job immediately, but I couldn’t accept it because of my non-compete.
Non-disclosure Agreement (NDA): A legal agreement in which the signing party agrees not to reveal any information it may learn about the other party.
eg. I had to sign an NDA when I started working.
Offsite SEO: SEO techniques that are done without making any actual changes to your website.
eg. Link building, Increasing social signals
One Way Link: A link that points to a website which does not provide a link back.
Onsite SEO: SEO techniques that are done by making changes to a website.
eg. Updating meta description
Opt-in: When a user signs up for your mailing list.
Organic Link: A backlink to your website that is created by another webmaster.
Outbound Link: A link on a webpage that points to a different website or domain name. Aka external link.
Page Rank: Google’s algorithm, named after Larry Page, that measures the relative importance of web pages and returns them in search results.
eg. Facebook has a Page Rank of 9/10.
Pay Per Action (PPA): The advertising model where you pay only for successful actions taken by users such as subscribing for a mailing list or completing a purchase.
Pay Per Click (PPC): The advertising model where you pay a fixed amount every time a user clicks on your ad.
Penalty: A search engine penalty that is either manually applied or automatically based on algorithms.
PHP: Short for Hypertext Preprocessor, this is a programming language that is used for serving dynamic content and database interactions.
Ping: To check in with someone briefly.
eg. Ping me in a week, I’m busy right now.
Pivot: When a startup changes direction and pursues a new business model.
eg. YouTube began as a video dating site, until a failure in gaining any traction, made the founders focus only on video sharing.
Platform As A Service (PaaS): A type of cloud computing, in which application hosting, a development environment and other services needed for rapid development are provided to developers.
eg. Heroku and Cloud Foundry are two examples of PaaS.
Plugin: A piece of software that can be installed without any complications to add extra functionality to your website or cms.
Popunder: A webpage or ad that automatically triggers and appears underneath your current browser.
Popup: A webpage or ad that automatically triggers and appears on top of your current browser.
Post-money Valuation: The value of a company after an investment has been made. It is the sum of the pre-money valuation and the amount of new cash that has been invested.
eg. Our post-money valuation rose to ₹45 lakhs after our angel investor invested ₹25 lakhs.
Pre-money Valuation: The value of a company before any investment has been made.
eg. Our pre-money valuation was ₹20 lakhs.
Predictive Analytics: A kind of data analytics in which analysts attempt to predict future trends based on current scenarios.
eg. Based on our predictive analytics model, we expect a 50% rise in subscription in the following quarter.
Principal: 1. Position just below partner at a venture capital or private equity firm.
eg. He was made a partner at his firm after being a principal for nearly 10 years.
2. The loan amount on which interest is calculated.
eg. The bank is offering us a principal of ₹10 lakhs for loan.
Private Equity: A kind of investing where instead of investing in public shares, or buying stock through public exchanges, an investor invests in the equity of companies through negotiated transactions. Usually associated with late-stage companies.
eg. We’re anticipating buyout offers from private equity firms by next year.
Private Label Rights (PLR): A type of license on any digital content where the author of the content gives away most of their rights on the content. This allows you to use the content in any way- modify it, reuse it or resell it.
Private Proxies: A proxy that is not accessible to the public and requires authentication to use. These are faster and more reliable than public proxies.
Proxy: A proxy is a provision that allows a user to hide their actual IP address and remain anonymous by appearing to be using a different computer in a different location.
Public Proxies: A publicly accessible proxy that can be used by thousands of people. These are shared among all the users and hence are slower and unreliable.
Public Relations: Managing a company’s image, reputation and awareness with the public. Includes press coverage and relations.
eg. The upcoming cover feature in TIME will be a huge boost for our public relations.
Public Relations Firm: A firm that is responsible for maintaining a company’s public relations.
eg. Ogilvy PR are a reputed PR firm in India.
Purchase Funnel: The series of steps a customer goes through before they make a purchase. At every step, a percentage of customers drop off. This gives it a funnel shape. Aka sales funnel.
eg. In our purchase funnel, we’ve identified key steps as creating an account, viewing cart and checkout.
Purchase Pretzel: A complex non linear purchase funnel.
eg. One customer kept returning over a period of 3 weeks, repeatedly comparing items before he finally made a purchase. We went through a purchase pretzel with him.
Purchasing Power Parity: An economic theory according to which currency exchange rates are modified to reflect the relative purchasing power of the parties’ economies.
eg. We adjusted for our foreign customers’ purchasing power parity by inflating our prices in their regions.
Really Simple Syndication (RSS): A standard data feed that is used to deliver the latest updates and content from websites you select.
Reciprocal Link: When a website that you link to provides a backlink to your website.
Redirect: When you redirect a user from one page to another.
Red Herring: A misdirection, something that leads a person to focus on the wrong thing.
eg. The unit test failure of our website was a red herring. The actual problem was because of a bad DNS entry.
Return On Investment (ROI): A performance measure used to evaluate or compare the efficiency of an investment. To calculate ROI, the benefit of an investment is divided by the cost of investment.
eg. The ROI for our Facebook ads was nearly 150%.
Revenue: The income of a company from its sales.
eg. Every company is looking for ways to increase its revenue.
Revenue Multiple: The valuation of a company divided by its revenue.
eg. A fast growing SaaS company can sell at 10x revenue multiple.
Rich Snippets: HTML tags that allow you to mark up specific data like reviews or ratings that Google will display in search results. Used to attract customers to your page.
Right Of First Refusal: A company holder’s right to buy or invest in it before the owner can enter the same transaction with a third party.
eg. LG cannot sell its smart watch technology before consulting with Google as they have right of first refusal.
Robots.txt: A text file placed at the root of a website that gives instructions to bots and spiders crawling your website. Defined by the Robots Exclusion Standard.
Run Rate: The extrapolation of a company’s current financial performance to predict long term performance.
eg. Based on this month’s profit, we’ll finish the year at a ₹4 lakh run rate.
Runway: The time left before a startup goes out of business, based on current expenses and income.
eg. After a meeting with our CFO, we realized we have a runway of about six months.
S-Curve: A J-curve, after a customer stops generating any revenue.
Sales: The amount of revenue generated from selling products.
eg. After hiring 5 more sales executives, we saw a double in sales figures in a month.
Sales Cycle: The amount of time it takes a prospective customer to go through your sales funnel.
eg. The average sales cycle for this quarter was 2 weeks.
Scale: To grow.
eg. We aim to scale our business in a manner similar to Google.
Scraper: A piece of software that spiders the web scraping or collecting data.
Search Engine Marketing (SEM): Using search engines to market your product to your target audience. Done using SEO or paid advertising.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO): Optimizing your website so that its search engine rankings increase.
Search Engine Results Page (SERP): The results page you see after performing a search.
Security: A finance term for a tradable asset, such as stock.
eg. The startup team was also given a choice between stock options or other security with a 1 year vesting schedule.
Seed Round: An initial round of funding for an early stage startup.
eg. We held a press conference announcing our seed round.
Serial Entrepreneur: A person who has started several companies in quick succession.
eg. Ashok Soota is a reputed serial entrepreneur in India.
Series A: The first major round of VC funding a company undertakes. Investors are issued Series A stock.
eg. Having just had completed our seed round, we intend to have a Series A round in a year.
Shared Hosting: When one server is used to host different websites that share its resources equally.
Site Audit: A complete analysis of a website done with a specific outcome in mind.
eg. An audit to check user experience will check for broken links.
Site Speed: The speed at which a website loads.
Sitelinks: A list of inner page links that appear under specific search engine results.
Sitemap: A page that links to all the pages on the website. It helps spiders easily find all the pages of your website.
Social Bookmark: A kind of backlink that is created when a user bookmarks your website on a site such as Reddit.
Social Media: A website or service that is used for social reasons.
eg. Facebook, Twitter
Social Media Marketing (SMM): Using social media sites like Facebook or Twitter to market your products.
Social Share: When a user shares your webpage on a social media site.
Social Signals: The number of times your webpage has been shared on social media sites. Used as a SEO measurement to determine how popular a webpage is.
Soft Landing: A scenario in which a troubled startup avoids going out of business and incurring complete losses.
eg. The company needed a soft landing after their flagship product proved to be a dud.
Software As A Service (SaaS): A form of computer software that is hosted externally and accessed via a web browser.
eg. Microsoft Office 365 and Google Apps are examples of SaaS.
Startup: A newly established business that aims to scale with a new technology or service.
eg. Every year, several hundred new startups are established and a handful achieve complete success.
Stock Options: A security that gives you the right to purchase or sell stock at a pre-determined price. Usually given to employees as a form of compensation.
eg. I made a tidy profit by selling the stock I got from my options at ₹40 per share.
Strategic Acquirer: A company that acquires another company at a higher price to gain a strategic benefit.
eg. Google are renowned strategic acquirers.
Strategic Investors: A company that invests in a start up.
eg. Several international companies are strategic investors in Indian companies.
Straw Man: A false argument in which an opponent will attack a position not held by the other party.
eg. The VC firm’s point that print media is not dead is a straw man argument to our statement that digital is about to boom.
Strike Price: The predetermined price of a stock option.
eg. The strike price on our options is a ₹10.
Subscriber: A user that subscribes to your website. This can be done by a mailing subscription, a RSS subscription or a social media follow.
Syndicates: A recent development, this basically refers to collaboration between angels. The lead angel investor pools together money from other investors and earns a percentage of the profit as a “carry” before the remaining profit is shared among the other investors.
Target Audience: A group of people that you think could be interested in your product.
Tent Pole: A successful project that supports other less successful projects.
eg. Our tent pole is our flagship product.
Top Of Mind Awareness: A measure of how well a brand ranks in the mind of a consumer. Normally, the percent of customers who, without prompting, name a specific brand or product when asked about ads in a certain product category.
Traffic: The number of visitors to your website.
Traffic Driving or Generation: Any activity to increase the traffic to your website.
Trailing Revenue: A company’s revenue from the last 12 months.
Uniform Resource Locator (URL): The address of a webpage on the internet.
Unit Test: A test carried out on a single piece of computer software.
eg. After carrying out unit tests on the different components, we identified the problem in our memory access module.
Upsell: In a sales funnel, the part where you try to sell a user something which is more expensive right after they have purchased something.
Usability: How user friendly a website is. A website should be easy to use to increase conversions.
User Generated Content (UGC): When a user creates content on your site. This could be a comment, creating a forum topic or uploading a video.
Value Proposition: The benefit that a customer stands to gain by using a product or service.
eg. Photoshop has a stronger value proposition than most other editors for serious photographers and designers.
Vanity Metrics: Data collected about a company that is irrelevant in helping entrepreneurs make decisions.
eg. Web traffic is just a vanity metric when it’s not correlated with successful conversions.
Venture Capital: Investment made in a startup in exchange for a stake in the company.
Venture Capital Firm: A firm that generates revenue by investing in startups and then selling their stake when the value has increased.
Vesting Schedule: The time period over which a holder of stock options gains ownership of that security.
eg. I got stock options on a 1 year vesting schedule, which means I can’t quit before a year is up unless I’m willing to lose them.
Viral Coefficient: A way of measuring virality, by calculating average no of invites per user times the conversion rate of the invites.
eg. Gmail had a high viral coefficient when it first launched as invites were hard to come by.
Virality: How successful any service or app is that makes its existing users want to invite new users to use it.
eg. Virality is the aim of any app developer.
Virtual Private Server (VPS): A virtual server that could be used remotely. Usually runs Windows or Linux. Can be used to host websites or to run link building software uninterrupted.
Wantrepreneur: A person who is a wannabe entrepreneur.
Web 2.0: The second generation of the internet where the focus is on dynamic pages that allow sharing and interaction.
Webmaster: The owner of a website.
Webmaster Tools: The set of tools that provide you with information about your website’s status in search engines. Refers to Google Webmaster Tools or Bing Webmaster Tools.
White Hat SEO: Improving your website’s search engine ranking using ethical SEO methods.
Wireframe: A low-res description of a website or user interface. Used as a base for higher level functionality and layout.
eg. We’ve made detailed wireframes for the design team’s reference.
XML Sitemap: A list of pages that you want search engines to find. Created in standard XML format.
Yak Shaving: A seemingly meaningless task that has to be completed before you can complete your original task.
eg. I wanted to finish editing the photos but ended up yak shaving because I had to update my Photoshop and change all the formats.
Zombie Startup: A company that claims to be operating but has shown little or no web traffic in the previous year.
eg. Their website has had no traffic for the last year. They’re a zombie startup.