Product Glossary

Common product management terms and definitions

Choose a letter or press “Ctrl/Command + F” on your keyboard to find word


A/B Test

Also known as split-run testing, this is a user research testing method whereby participants are shown one of two segments of a variable and comparing them against one another to determine which of the two is most effective. For example: a section of your user base is shown version A of a checkout page, while another section is shown version B. The version that has the best conversion rate from this experiment will then be chosen.

AARRR Framework

This is also known as the ""AARRR Pirate Metrics Framework. Created by Silicon Valley investor and founder of 500 Startups Dave McClure, this acronym stands for:

• Acquisition - How do customers find out about your product?
• Activation - Are users completing the desired actions in your product?
• Retention - Do activated users continue to return to use your product?
• Referral - Is your product so loved that your users are sharing it with others?
• Revenue - Are customers willing to pay for your product?

Dave developed these metrics to help startups focus on the metrics that directly relate to the health of their business and utilize the right data to determine the success of their product and marketing initiatives.

AC: Acceptance Criteria

Used in agile, they are a set of documented requirements that are predefined and determine when a user story is complete. They help the QA team establish testing criteria, reduce ambiguity for how the product/feature should function, block scope creep, and manage expectations. While not the only format for writing acceptance criteria, the Given/When/Then/And format is popular.

Acceptance Testing

Testing a product to determine if it passes the specified requirements to be considered "done”.

Actionable metrics

Metrics that provide insights into the performance of your feature, product, service, or business, and can be acted upon to make improvements.These are the metrics that really.

Actionable metrics are opposite to vanity metrics.


When customers choose to continuously use a product that fits their specific needs. Either they leave an existing product to use a new one, or they did not have an existing product but choose to rely on a new one since it solves their key pain points and provides them with value.

Affinity diagram

A helpful method used to understand large groups of information when there is mixed data. This diagram takes large groups of data and organizes them into natural relationships. In product management it is often used to group ideas that are gathered from a brainstorming exercise.

This is also known as affinity mapping.


An iterative approach to software development with the purpose of quickly delivering value to customers and enabling teams to respond to change.

Agile Manifesto

Published by the founders of the "Agile Alliance", the Agile Manifesto documents the four key values of Agile along with the 12 principles that the authors believed should guide the work of software developers.

Check out the manifesto here.

Alpha test

Alpha testing is performed by internal employees with the goal to identify all potential issues and errors in a product that should be resolved before release. Alpha testing is often performed in a test environment.

API: Application Programming Interface

A software intermediary that enables two applications to talk to one another.


A set of code packaged together that enables people to perform an activity. This is also known as application software or application program.

ARR: Annual Recurring Revenue

A relied upon metrics by SaaS businesses (software as a service) that shows the expected revenue per year over the life of a contract or a subscription.



A software development term that refers to the part of a program that users do not see (the frontend is the part of the program that users see and interact with, everything on the screen). Backend development is the behind the scenes work that makes a website function. It focuses on architecture, scripting, and databases.


A prioritized list of requirements for the development team to address to improve a product. It contains new features, enhancements, tech debt, spikes, and tasks.

Backlog grooming

The act of product owners regularly reviewing the development backlog to ensure that it is up to date, the most important items are surfaced, and important work is prepared for upcoming sprints. This is also referred to as backlog refinement.

Beta test

Testing a product with a group of real users to ensure product quality prior to final release. Unlike alpha testing beta testing does not require a testing environment or a lab.

BI: Business Intelligence

A process utilizing technology to analyze data and deliver actionable insights that can enable business leaders to make data-driven decisions to reach product and business goals.

Brand equity

A term used to describe the value of a brand to a customer. This is often determined by customer’s awareness, perception, and experiences with a brand.

Break-even point

This is the point where the total revenue of your product equals the total costs. At this point there is no profit or loss.


An error in the codebase that causes the program to deliver an incorrect or unexpected result to the end user.

Business plan

A written document that contains the objectives of a business and in detail, with supporting information, how it plans to accomplish these objectives.

Burndown chart

A chart that depicts how quickly a team is working through the users stories for a given sprint. It displays the remaining work for the team compared against the remaining time.

Business case

The justification for why a particular initiative should be taken. It contains expected value, estimated costs, evaluation of alternatives, and an understanding of what is happening in the industry that makes a particular time the best time to act.

Business model

The plan for how a business intends on making money. It details how the business will deliver value to customers while managing costs.

Business Model Canvas

Created by Alexander Osterwalder this visual tool helps business leaders understand their business model (or that of a competitor). It leads to insights on the customers to serve, the value that can be offered to them via various channels, and revenue opportunities.

B2B: Business-to-Business

When a business offers its products or services directly to other businesses.

B2C: Business-to-Consumer

When a business offers its products or services directly to consumers.

Buy a feature

A prioritization exercise where participants are required to pay for the features they believe are the most valuable.



When a company experiences a loss in sales due to launching a product in the market to the same target market. As a result of this, customers choose to purchase the new product rather than the old one.

Cash flow

The flow of cash that moves in and out of a business. Among many reasons, it is tracked to ensure that expenses can be managed as a business grows.

CPO: Chief Product Officer

A corporate title for the individual who leads the entire product strategy, execution, and product team for a corporation. This is one of the highest titles that a product manager can reach in their career.

Churn rate

The total number of customers who decide to stop using your product within a given time period. This is also referred to as attrition rate.

Churn rate = (Lost customers / Total number of customers at the beginning of the period) x 100

Competitive advantage

An understanding of what gives your product or business an edge over the competitors in your market.

Competitive analysis

An analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of your product (and company (against those of the competitors in your market.

Complete product experience

The entire experience that a customer has throughout their journey with a product and business. This starts from a customer realizing that they need a solution to a problem they are facing and factors in the tools, processes, and resources that the entire business uses to support them as they use the product.

Concept review

Sharing and assessing various concepts with the goal of determining which one(s) your team will invest further time and energy into.

Continuous delivery

A software development term that refers to when changes to the code base (new features, enhancements, bug fixes) are automatically deployed to an environment (like a staging environment).

Continuous deployment

A software development term that refers to when code that passes automated tests are immediately pushed to production for customers and users to experience the benefits.

Continuous integration

A software development term for when developers merge changes to the code base to the main branch as soon and often as possible.

Cost of delay

A metric that combines urgency and value and is used by product managers to prioritize initiatives. It is the financial impact of delaying a project (releasing a feature for example).

Cost of delay = Expected weekly profit per week / # of weeks it will take to complete the project

Continuous integration

A team that is composed of employees from different areas/departments in a company.

Customer acquisition cost

The total cost that a company incurs to acquire a new customer.

Customer acquisition cost = Total costs spent on acquiring more customers in a period / total number of customers acquired in the period the costs were incurred

Customer Advisory Board

A group of strategic customers that meet at regular intervals to share their advice and insights with a company.

Customer development

A process by which one works with their customers to develop a product. Customer development is beneficial for helping product managers validate their assumptions and steer them in the right direction throughout the product development process.

Customer empathy

Knowing your customers to the point where you have a solid understanding of their underlying needs, pains, and key motivations. Constantly putting yourself into the shoes of your customers to ensure that you are providing solutions that provide them with value.

Customer feedback

Suggestions, improvements, thoughts, experience and general sentiment on a product.

Check out this detailed guide that our founder wrote on this topic.

Customer health score

Relied upon mainly by customer success teams, this metrics measures the relationship between a product (or company) and their customers. It communicates whether there is a healthy relationship between a company and customers (happy customers) or the relationship is at risk (which may lead to churn).

Customer Journey Map

A visual depiction of each step that a customer/user takes as they interact with your product (or company) to accomplish a specific goal. This is also known as a User Journey Map.

CLV: Customer Lifetime Value

Also referred to as Lifetime Value, this is the total amount of money that you expect a customer will spend on your products, services, or in your business, during their lifetime as a customer.

Customer success

Ensuring that your customers reach their desired goals as they interact with your product, service, or company.


DAU: Daily Active Users

A metric that tracks the number of users that are active on a product (website or app) each day. "Active" is for the product manager to define, meaning which action(s) do they need to complete to consider them as an active user.

Data product manager

Product managers who place a key emphasis on data. They focus on developing products that enable their team to leverage data that can enhance a product through the product development process.

DEEP Backlog

A concept that relates to how development backlogs should be groomed. The acronym stands for:

• Detailed - Enough details that a member of your team can work on the items independently
• Emergent - Work is flexible and fluctuates based on the team needs, business needs, and/or customer needs
• Estimated - Items with a high level of estimate are broken down into multiple items
• Prioritized - When the work for the sprint is completed early then pull the top prioritized item(s) into the sprint

Definition of done

Agreed upon criteria that determines when a project or user story is considered complete.

Definition of ready

Agreed upon criteria that determines when a project or user story is considered ready to be considered for an estimation or added to a sprint for work to begin.


Something that needs to occur before other work can be started or completed.


A set of practices, tools, and shared understanding in a company (or team) with the purpose of increasing a company’s ability to quickly deliver software and services to customers.


Distinguishing your product from those of your competitors. This helps determine what gives your product a competitive advantage over your competitors.

Digital transformation

Integrating the use of technology into the processes of a business to change how the business operates and delivers value to customers and users.

Divergent thinking

Also known as thinking outside of the box, this is generating creative ideas beyond conventional or expected ones. The goal is to find innovative ideas to improve a product, process, or service.


Also known as "eating your own dog food", this is when someone uses their own products and/or services. Product managers must dogfood their own products.

Dual-Track Agile

When a cross-functional agile team divides its daily activities into two parallel tracks: discovery and development. Discovery involves generating validated ideas which can be added to the development backlog, while development involves building these ideas so that they can be launched for user benefit.


Ecosystem (product)

When a business has multiple products and/or services that complement one another and their customers can purchase and use them in tandem.


Each and every step of a product’s development from initial scoping to when it is released.


A collection of user stories, tasks, spikes, and tasks, with one unified goal. Epics do not have a standard template and are used when a user story is too large to fit into a single sprint.

Extreme Programming (XP)

An Agile development framework that focuses heavily on producing high quality software that meets customers and user needs, while also improving the development experience for developers.

There are five key rules for every XP project with set guidelines that developers must follow. These rules are:

1. Planning
2. Management
3. Designing
4. Coding
5. Testing


FAB analysis

Features, Advantages, and Benefits Analysis. It is used to understand the features, advantages, and benefits of a product or service to assess why customers purchase your product (or service) and ensure that you are fulfilling customer needs.

FDD: Feature-Driven Development

An Agile methodology for developing software that focuses on customers, is iterative, and incremental. The goal of FDD is to continuously deliver tangible software results frequently and efficiently.


Functionality within a product that delivers value to users and allows them to accomplish their goals.

Feature audit

A tool that is used to map the features of your product and analyze its usage. The goal of a feature audit is to discover which features should be developed or improved and focus on the ones that matter.

Feature factory

A business that focuses on simply building features rather than building features that solve real problems. This is not a praiseworthy term.

Feature flag

A software development process that is used to enable or disable features without the need to deploy code. Product managers can use this to manage their feature releases.


Used in Agile software development, this refers to using the fibonacci sequence when estimating the effort of tasks to complete. The sequence is made up of numbers that add up to the two numbers before it.

The standard Fibonacci sequence is 0, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, 55, snd 89. The higher the number assigned to the story point the larger the size, complexity, and effort needed to see the user story through to completion.


This word literally means “accuracy in details.” It refers to how exact and complete something is. For product design it is broken down into two types: low fidelity and high fidelity.

First mover advantage

The ability of a business to establish a strong foothold in a market simply by being first in that market.

Five whys

An interview technique used to get to the underlying reason of a stated problem. Product managers can utilize this interview technique to really understand why something is a problem for customers.


Rules, ideas, beliefs, or processes that are used to find solutions to problems so that you can define next steps.


A popular business model where a business decides to offer features for free. It allows users to explore and experience the product, and if they need more functionality they can pay for a premium tier.


A software development term that refers to everything a user sees and interacts with when using a digital product. For web development it consists of HTML, CSS and JavaScript. This is also known as "client-side" development.

Fundamentally new product

A unique released product. It offers features and functionality that no existing product on the market has. These products are often seen as inventions and sometimes create new industries.


Gantt chart

Used by project planners, gantt charts help teams plan work required around defined deadlines and manage resources throughout the project duration.

GA: General Availability

When a product will be released to the general public. On this date customers and users can acquire the product (or feature) through a company’s normal channels.

Get out of the building

This phrase helps you understand where to focus your energy when performing customer research. In a nutshell it means going to where your customers congregate and speaking to them to validate your hypothesis. This is essential for customer development.

Growth product manager

A product manager who is responsible for leading growth initiatives and making data driven decisions to increase the user base, scale, impact, and sales of a product.

GTM: Go-to-Market Strategy

A company’s plan to convince customers to acquire their product or service while gaining a competitive advantage in their market. It includes many activities and departments including pricing, sales channels, product launches, branding, and more.

Guerilla marketing

Using unconventional marketing methods to increase sales and/or attract attention to a product, brand, or business.


Hard skills

Technical knowledge or training in specific areas that can be measured. They can be acquired via training, practice, and repetition. Some key hard skills that product managers should have include research and analysis, product management knowledge, strategic thinking, and technical development principles.

HEART framework

Developed by Google, this framework can be used to improve a product's user experience (UX). UX teams use this framework to focus on specific parts of their product's user experience that they want to improve. HEART is an acronym that stands for:

• Happiness
• Engagement
• Adoption

Task SuccessTo use this framework a team determines key goals, signals, and metrics for success.

Hook Model

This model describes the process of how businesses can create products and services that become habits in the lives of their users and customers. The model has 4 parts.

1. Trigger
2. Action
3. Reward
4. Investment

Check out the book "Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products" by Nir Eyal to learn more.


When competition is so intense among the companies in a market that it creates instability in that market.


ICE scoring

An acronym that stands for Impact, Confidence, and Ease of Implementation. ICE scoring is a prioritization method used to determine which ideas a team should focus on.

Idea management

A structured process within a business or team to generate, gather, organize, evaluate, and prioritize ideas from stakeholders.


The process of generating new ideas and solutions on a given topic. It is a stage 3 of the Design Thinking process.

Impact effort matrix

A prioritization method that assesses and ranks proposed solutions based on the impact they can create (value) and the effort associated with the required work.

Impact mapping

A strategic and collaborative visual mapping of the goals of a business and how they intend to achieve those goals. It starts by focussing on the business goals (why), then define the personas that will influence the outcome (who), impact to be created (how), and deliverables (what).

Implicit requirement

Hidden or assumed requirements that users and customers expect a product to have, though were not explicitly stated or defined during requirements gathering.

In-app messaging

Targeted notifications that are sent to users inside your product as they use it (mobile app, website, or desktop application).

Incremental innovation

When a business continuously makes small improvements to an existing product or service to wither add further value, or sustain value.


Implementing new ideas or processes that result in new products and services or an improvement in existing products and services.


Software integration is the process of bringing various software parts into one and ensuring that they function well.


Intuitive design is when a user or customer sees your product they know what steps to take. Intuitive design focuses on the user experience and ensures that users are able to accomplish their key goals without any barriers.


A good user story will follow the INVEST model. INVEST is an acronym that stands for:

• Independent
• Negotiable
• Valuable
• Estimable
• Small
• Testable


Repeating a process with specific outcomes in mind. For product development this refers to the practice of using feedback gathered from key stakeholders to release changes to the product at regular intervals with the goal of improving the better. Do note that "better” here should have a clear definition with metrics to track.



One of the most popular tools in the software industry for issue tracking and project management. Along with enabling agile processes, development teams use it to track user stories, bugs, plan releases, and more.

JTBD: Jobs-To-Be-Done

A popular framework relied upon by many product managers that defines the specific problems to be solved for customers and the underlying reasons why.


KPI: Key Performance Indicator

A metric that tracks progress towards an intended goal.


Lean Software Development

The application of lean principles into software development practices. The 7 lean development principles are:

1. Eliminate waste
2. Build quality in
3. Create knowledge
4. Defer commitment
5. Deliver fast
6. Respect people
7. Optimize the whole


A method that can be used to measure a product's usability. This acronym stands for:

• Learnability - How effectively can users learn how to use the product?
• Efficiency - How fast can users accomplish their tasks and goals?
• Memorability - How easy is it for users to remember how to use the product between their sessions?
• Error Management - How clear are errors and issues within the product communicated to users?
• Satisfaction - How visually appealing is the product design as a whole for users?

LeSS: Large Scale Scrum

A framework for applying scrum principles to large teams that work together on a single project.


Market segmentation

Segmenting a large group into smaller more defined segments with similar characteristics. This helps businesses tailor their communication and value propositions to the right groups.

The four types of market segmentation are:

1. Geographic
2. Demographic
3. Psychographic
4. Behavioral

MRD: Market Requirements Document

This document defines a market's requirements and/or demands for a specific product. It is written by a product manager or a product marketing manager.

Market share

The percentage of the total revenue or sales in a particular market that come from a business.

Mission statement

A statement that defines the purpose of a product or company, it defines the purpose the product or business exists.


A popular analytics tool that tracks user activity in web and mobile products (among other features).


A model of a product or feature created to be shared with stakeholders for communication purposes and it not functional. In the design process mockups generally come at the end of the lo-fidelity phase and right before the hi-fidelity phase.


A prioritization technique used to manage requirements for a product. When using MoSCoW each requirement will fit into one of these four labels:

• Must have
• Should have
• Could have
• Won't have

MRR: Monthly Recurring Revenue

Income that a business expects to receive every single month.

Monthly Recurring Revenue = Total # of active customers x Average billed amount

MVP: Minimum Viable Product

A functional version of a product that contains enough features to place into the hands of users and customers, provide them with value, and they can provide feedback to help determine the next steps.



Research to identify the needs in a market for a particular solution. While insights are gained from customer research assumptions are made on what customers may want. Customers may not articulate their needs or not be aware of what they are. As a result, needfinding also involves meeting customers and viewing them as they conduct their daily routines to draw insights on what their unmet needs may be.

NPS: Net Promoter Score

A customer loyalty metric that determines how likely customers are to recommend your product to others. Customers provide a score on their experience with your brand and will be classified as either promoters, passives, or detractors.


OKR: Objectives & Key Results

A goal setting framework used by businesses, teams, and individuals to set broad, ambitious goals with measurable results that can be tracked.

Opportunity cost

The loss of value or benefit incurred when choosing one option over another.


Page views

A metric that defines the total number of pages viewed (on a website) within a given time period.

Pair programming

An agile software technology practice where two developers work in tandem on one codebase. One developer, the "driver", writes the code, while the second developer, the "observer" or "navigator", reviews the code as it is written.


When a business changes its strategy in accordance to changing customer preferences, the industry, or other factors that may impact its goals or profitability


The act of deciding the importance and urgency among various initiatives to determine which one(s) to move forward with. There are many methods and frameworks that product managers use to prioritize including impact to effort, ICE scoring, buy a feature, and more.


A solution to a problem shared by many.

Product designer

The one who oversees the entire process of a product's design. They are skilled in many design competencies and employ many tools to ensure the best user experience possible for end users and customers.

Product development process

Defines all of the steps needed to take a product from idea to launch. though defined in different ways it generally has the following six stages:

1. Define the problem
2. Prioritize the problem
3. Design the solution
4. Build the solutionT
5. Test the solution
6. Ship & measure success

Product discovery

Activities performed with the goal of understanding if a product should be improved, and if so, where and when. At the end of this product managers should deeply understand their customers' needs to build products that meet their needs.

PX: Product Experience

The portion of the user journey that happens inside the product (website or app). It factors in a user's emotions, thoughts, and rationale as they utilize the product

Product lifecycle

The process all products go through from when they are first introduced in a market to when they decline and are retired. There are four stages of the product lifecycle are:

1. Introduction
2. Growth
3. Maturity
4. Decline

Product manager

Though there are many definitions for what a product manager is, their role boils down to 3 key responsibilities:

1. Being the champion of their customers (remain customer focused)
2. Working with stakeholders to define, prioritize, and build digital solutions that solve problems for customers and accomplish business goals
3. Making data-driven decisions

Product market fit

"Product-market fit means being in a good market with a product that can satisfy that market." - Marc Andreessen, co-founder and General Partner, Andreessen Horowitz

Product marketing manager

A product marketing manager focuses on how the product should be positioned in the market and ensuring that its value is communicated and that it reaches its sales and marketing goals.

Their role involves communicating the value of a product to the market, training sales on selling the product, developing marketing materials, developing marketing tools, and working closely with the marketing team on marketing campaigns, among other tasks.

Product operations

An operational role that works to improve the relationship between product, engineering, and customer success teams. They own many of the behind the scenes tasks of a product team while helping cross-functional product teams operate. Some of these behind the scenes tasks include managing the tools that the product team uses, working with sales, support, and customer success to improve the customer experience, and developing new business processes that streamline product development.

Check out this detailed guide written by our founder on product operations.

Product owner

The individual in a scrum team that manages the development backlog and ensures that the strategic initiatives that a product manager has set are implemented. Their tasks include working with their implementation team to reach sprint goals, grooming and prioritizing the backlog, working with a product manager to clarify requests, and addressing concerns that the development team brings up during the development process.

Product portfolio

All of the products and services that a business offers.

Product portfolio management

Strategically managing the collection of products and services that a business offers to reach business goals.

Product spec

A document that details the blueprint for a product outlining what is being built, the requirements, who it is being built for, and the desired outcome.

Product stack

The tools and solutions that product managers use to launch a product into the market. This includes recording tools for customer interviews, roadmapping software, user tracking and analytics software, project management tools, user surveying tools, and more.

Product strategy

The goals for a product, how it will be accomplished, and how these goals tie into the overall strategy of the business as a whole.

Product vision

While the company vision describes how the overall company expects the world to be once they accomplish their mission, the product vision describes how the future should be based specifically on the offered product. Some of the key ingredients for a well-crafted product vision are that it be:

• Clear and specific
• Problem- and customer-oriented
• Achievable
• Engaging

There is no formal way to create a product vision. There are numerous methods that have their merits. Check out Geoffrey Moore’s (the author of Crossing the Chasm) product vision template, which uses the following format:

For [target customer] who [customer need to be solved the [product name] is a [product category] that [benefits, unique selling points]. Unlike [competitor product] our product [main differences].

PLG: Product-led growth

When the product serves as the primary driver for user acquisition, conversion, retention, and expansion rather than a separate team or department.

Project manager

Project managers manage projects. Projects have a defined scope, timelines, and resources that need to be managed to ensure that the scope is delivered on time.

Project managers do not represent customers, they do not interact with users, they do not make strategic decisions regarding the solution, nor do they define the “what” and “why” of the work they are doing. These activities and decisions are made by a product manager.


An early model of a solution used to test, experiment, and validate assumptions before moving forward.


QA: Quality Assurance developer

A QA developer is a software engineer whose focus is to prevent defects in the production codebase and improve the software development process. They test code to ensure that it is working as intended and that end users have a positive experience with the application.


R&D: Research and Development

Actions and initiatives undertaken by businesses to introduce innovative solutions into a market.


A software development term that means rewriting existing code with the purpose of improving it.

Release demo

Demonstrating the latest improvements to a product prior to releasing it to customers.

Release notes

Documentation that is produced alongside the release of a product. It outlines key information about the product as well as what is included in the release.


A meeting held after the release of a product. Team members discuss what went well, what went poorly, and what needs to be improved. Insights from this meeting should be applied when developing and launching future products.

Return visitors

Visitors who come back to your site or application.


A strategic document that informs stakeholders how your business plans on improving a product. Product roadmaps are used for communicating internally and externally what the plans for the product and the business are, plan for resources, position the product the market, align the entire team on specific, focus, and set the product vision for the product.

ROI: Return On Investment

A metric used to calculate the profitability of an undertaken investment.


SAFe: Scaled Agile Framework

A popular Agile framework used by larger organizations. It is a flexible framework (due to the fact that it borrows the most successful components from other Agile frameworks). Larger organizations who have trouble dealing with the fast pace of the software industry and scaling their Agile teams should use SAFe. With it businesses can choose the best options of various Agile frameworks that meet their specific needs.

Sales forecast

A report that estimates the sales and revenue of a product or service within a given time period.

Scope creep

Changes in the scope of a project (adding new features or functions into a product being developed for example) that were not initially planned. This causes the work related to bringing the product to market to extend beyond what was originally intended.


A software development methodology where teams come together to prioritize work, set short term goals, and work as a team to bring products to the market. There are three main roles in a scrum team: Product owner, scrum master, scrum team.

Scrum's five key rituals are:

1. Story time
2. Sprint planning
3. Daily stand up
4. Sprint review
5. Retrospective


Scrum and kanban mixed together.


To "ship" something means to release it. Product managers should always be shipping.


SMART is an acronym that outlines a beneficial strategy for setting and reaching specific goals. When setting goals they should be:

• Specific
• Measurable
• Actionable
• Realistic
• Timely

Soft skills

Character traits and interpersonal skills that characterize one's relationship with others. Some of the key soft skills that product managers should have include: time management skills, communication skills, problem-solving skills, leadership skills, research and analytical skills, diplomacy skills, and persuasion skills.


A unit of time in which work is performed to accomplish a specific sprint goal. They are typically two weeks in length, however they can be shorter or longer.

Sprint planning

A scrum ritual where the scrum team meets to determine what can be completed in the sprint, how it will be achieved, and the sprint goal. This meeting kicks off a new sprint.


There are two types of stakeholders that product managers work with: internal and external stakeholders.

• Internal stakeholder - someone who affects or can be affected by the work a product manager performs. Examples of internal stakeholders are product designers, developers, and the executive team.
• External stakeholder - someone who is interested in or has influence over the product. Examples of external stakeholders are shareholders, consultants, and industry analysts.

Stakeholder management

The process of managing and maintaining a good amicable relationship with your stakeholders. This is one of the most important parts of a product manager's job.


A daily meeting where the team gathers to discuss progress, work to perform for the day, and help required. It is one of scrum’s key rituals (though not exclusive to scrum).

Story point

A number assigned to planned work which estimates the overall effort required to complete it.

Sunk cost

Money that has already been spent on an initiative and can not be recovered.

SWOT analysis

This acronym stands for:

• Strengths
• Weaknesses
• Opportunities
• Threats

A SWOT analysis analyzes these 4 aspects of a product or business to understand how it fares in the market.


Technical debt

A software development term that refers to development work that has to be redone due to previously performing work in a quick manner to accomplish a specific goal. This is also known as tech debt or code debt.

TPM: Technical Product Manager

Product managers who have a deeper understanding of software development who can work with technical teams to define specific products and navigate deeper technical discussions. They are required in cases where a product manager works more closely with their development team rather than the other departments in their business due to the makeup of their product.


A grouping of user epics, user stories, and initiatives that relate to one another.


A brief message displayed on a screen when a user interacts with a particular part of the user interface. They are used to provide additional information to users about a specific function in a product,

TAM: Total Addressable Market

A type of market sizing that demonstrates the total revenue opportunity for a product or service in a particular market. This is also referred to as Total Available Market. There are four ways to calculate TAM:

1. Top-down approach
2. Bottom-up approach
3. Value theory
4. Referencing external research (reports from industry analysts for example)


The number of visitors that a product receives.


USP: Unique Selling Proposition

Also known as Unique Selling Point or Unique Value Proposition, it is a succinct statement about the benefits of your products and services to your customers. Its purpose is to distinguish your company from your competitors and focus on solutions that meet the needs of your target customers.

UVP: Unique Value Proposition

Also known as Unique Selling Proposition or Unique Selling Point, it is a succinct statement about the benefits of your products and services to your customers. Its purpose is to distinguish your company from your competitors and focus on solutions that meet the needs of your target customers.


Usability is a quality attribute of products that determines how easy user interfaces are for end users to use. It also refers to improving the ease of use for users during the design process. Usability is considered part of user experience design.

When assessing usability as a whole, there are four main areas that are analyzed:

1. Utility: Does the product do what the user needs?
2. Usability: Does the product enable the user to accomplish their tasks?
3. Desirability: How does the user feel when using the product?
4. Brand experience: What is the user’s overall experience of the brand/product?

Usability testing

Evaluating a working product, or prototype, with target users and observing them complete defined test cases, noting down their interactions. The main goal of usability testing is to confirm whether the design is understandable and intuitive for users to accomplish their goals.

Use case

A description of how a user will use a product to accomplish a specific goal.

User feedback

Information (qualitative and quantitative) from users on their likes, dislikes, and requests for a product.

User flows

A diagram that outlines the path that users take as they navigate through a website or an app.

User interface

Everything that a user sees on an application (app or website). It includes the colour, spacing, visual elements, font, etc. that the user sees and can interact with via the screen.

User onboarding

The process of introducing customers to a product or service and helping them set up their account so that they can use the product to accomplish their goals.

User persona

User personas, also known as customer personas or buyer personas, are used to assist product managers and other stakeholders with defining who their product is for. A user persona is an archetype of a customer based on research performed.

User research

Methodical tasks taken to understand the behaviour, needs, pains, and motivations of users through observation and feedback methodologies. Customer interviews, user personas, surveys, usability testing, and prototyping are all part of user research.

User segmentation

Separating users into groups based on shared characteristics (device, age, behaviour, region, etc.).

User story

A user story represents the needs of users. It is a piece of business value that the team can deliver to key stakeholders within a sprint. User stories are generally written in the following format:

As a (user) I want to (goal to be accomplished) so that I can (reason behind the goal)

A good user story will follow the INVEST model. INVEST is an acronym that stands for Independent, Negotiable, Valuable, Estimable, Small, and Testable.

User story mapping

A diagram that outlines a customer journey within a product including the activities and tasks they perform to accomplish a specific goal.

UX: User Experience

User experience is focused on the end user, aiming to make the process for the user to reach their goals as seamless and as frictionless as possible. Good user experience has three main characteristics:

1. Useful: the product/feature solves a need for users
2. Usable: the user can use the product to accomplish their task easily and efficiently
3. Desirable: users enjoy and actually want to use the product

A user experience designer concerns themselves with user research, interaction design, wireframing, preparing design prototypes for testing, determining information architecture, user scenarios, and more.

UX Designer

User experience design is the process of enhancing user satisfaction and loyalty by improving the usability, ease of use, and pleasure provided in the interaction between the user and the product.


Value gap

The difference between the perceived value of a product or service and the actual value; when customers expect something but receive something else instead.

Value proposition

A statement that outlines the benefit that customers will receive if they use your product or service.

Vanity metrics

Metrics that make your feature, product, service, or business look good when communicated but do not assist in actionable metrics to improve. An example of this is the number of instagram followers a brand has.


A number that measures the amount of story points that a software development team can complete in a sprint.

VOC: Voice of Customer

The process of collecting feedback from your customers to draw insights on the views, experiences, and unmet needs.



With Waterfall software development a team does not move forward to the next stage until the current one is 100% complete.

It has 7 main stages according to the Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC):

1. Conception
2. Analysis
3. Design
4. Coding
5. Testing
6. Implementation
7. Maintenance

Weighted scoring

A prioritization method that provides a structured format for making decisions based on evaluating benefit versus costs against multiple criteria and scores to determine the best option to pursue.

WSJF: Weighted shortest job first

A prioritization method used to plan the progression of work (features, epics, capabilities) based on the ones that can produce the highest value.

What Not How

Emphasizing what a feature or product should do and now how. Product managers define the "what" and the "why" and rely on their teams to define the "how".


A low fidelity illustration that lays out the information architecture of a product and is used for usability testing. Though often low fidelity, wireframes can be high fidelity as well.

WIP: Work in Progress

Work that is not 100% complete i.e. it is still being developed. When presenting Work in Progress to stakeholders, make it explicitly clear that the work you are presenting is Work in Progress.

Working backwards

This method requires product teams to start from the end, a released product, by drafting an internal press release on the finished product to enable the team to focus on the product's benefits and on delivering the most appealing solutions and core benefits to the customers. This is also known as the Amazon method as it was pioneered by their product teams.



We don't know of any product management words that start with the letter x. If you know any please let us know.



We don't know of any product management words that start with the letter y. If you know any please let us know.



We don't know of any product management words that start with the letter z. If you know any please let us know.