Unravelling Software Metrics for Profitable Investments

Unravelling Software Metrics for Profitable Investments

 Unravelling Software Metrics for Profitable Investments

Decoding Software Acronyms: A Guide to Understanding Key Metrics for Successful Investing

Investing in software stocks can be highly profitable, but it requires a solid understanding of the industry's unique language. Software acronyms can be confusing, leaving investors needing clarification about crucial metrics and their implications. In this article, we will demystify 16 common software acronyms, providing plain English explanations to help investors make informed decisions.


ARR - Annualized Recurring Revenue:

ARR represents the estimated predictable revenue generated per year from active customers. It encompasses revenue from subscription plans or multi-year contracts, providing insight into a company's guaranteed annual income.


ACV - Annualized Contract Value:

ACV refers to the contracted revenue a company expects from a customer within a year. For example, if a 3-year contract is worth $12 million, the ACV would be $4 million ($12 million divided by 3 years).


ARPU - Average Revenue Per User (ARPA - Average Revenue Per Account):

ARPU calculates the average revenue earned from each customer or account. It helps make pricing and marketing decisions by determining the overall revenue generated in relation to the customer base.


CAC - Customer Acquisition Cost:

CAC represents the average amount a company spends to acquire a new customer. It is calculated by dividing total marketing and sales expenses by the number of new customers. CAC helps evaluate the effectiveness and efficiency of customer acquisition strategies.


DAU - Daily Active Users:

DAU signifies the number of unique individuals actively using a product or service on a daily basis. It is a critical metric for advertising-funded platforms and provides valuable insights for companies like $META and $SNAP.


DBNER (DBNR/NRE) - Dollar-Based Net Revenue Expansion:

DBNER measures the year-over-year increase in spending by a cohort of customers, excluding churn. It highlights a company's effectiveness in upselling existing customers.


DBGRR (DBGR/GRR) - Dollar-Based Gross Retention Rate:

DBGRR indicates the percentage of Annual Recurring Revenue (ARR) or revenue retained after accounting for churn. It reflects the company's ability to retain existing customers and does not include revenue from upgrades.


DR - Deferred Revenue:

DR represents cash collected upfront from customers before services are performed. It is recorded as a liability on the balance sheet until the corresponding services are delivered.


GMV - Gross Merchandise Value:

GMV measures the total order value of merchandise sold within a specific time period. It is a crucial metric for eCommerce companies like $SHOP and marketplaces like $ETSY.


LTV (CLV) - Lifetime Value (Customer Lifetime Value):

LTV calculates the average profit a customer brings to a company throughout their entire lifespan. It considers factors such as average revenue per user, gross margin, and churn rate, providing insights for marketing decisions.


MAU - Monthly Active Users:

MAU represents the number of unique individuals actively using a product or service on a monthly basis. It is particularly relevant for advertising-funded platforms like $PINS that do not have less frequent users.


MRR - Monthly Recurring Revenue:

MRR estimates the predictable revenue generated per month from active customers. It provides a real-time view of a company's marketing and upselling strategies' effectiveness.


RPO - Remaining Performance Obligations:

RPO reflects the total value of future contracted revenue yet to be recognized. It is similar to a backlog, with the current RPO expected to become revenue within the next 12 months and non-current RPO beyond that timeframe.


RR - Renewal Rate:

RR represents the proportion of customers who choose to renew and extend their contracts at the end of a subscription period. It is calculated by dividing the number of customers who renew by the total number of customers up for renewal.


TCV - Total Contract Value:

TCV denotes the total value of a contract between a company and its customer. It signifies the total amount of money the company expects to receive over the contract's entire duration.



Understanding software acronyms is vital for successful investing in the software industry. The explanations provided for these 16 acronyms offer investors a clearer understanding of key metrics and their implications. By grasping these metrics in plain English, investors can confidently make more informed decisions and navigate the software stock market. So, decode the lingo and unlock the potential of software investments!

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