DEFINITION of 'End-User'

Simply, the end-user is the consumer of a good or service, but with a slight connotation of know-how innate in the consumer. In a literal sense, the term "end-user" is used to distinguish the person who purchases and uses the good or service from individuals who are involved in the stages of its design, development and production.

BREAKING DOWN 'End-User'

In order to create a successful product or service, the people who create, develop, test and market it must think not of their own needs, but of the end-user's. For example, a computer programmer designing a software platform for trading foreign currencies would need to think about the level of interface sophistication and the steps taken by the end-user — how this customer would approach a trade, what he needs to see, how he would access data and information, how he would execute a trade and what he has to do post-trade.

"End-User"-Speak

References to "end-users" are common in the technology industry, suggesting that a base level of technical expertise is expected of these customers. On March 1, 2018, Proofpoint, Inc., a cybersecurity company, announced an acquisition of a security awareness training company. The CEO of Proofpoint stated: "As cybercriminals continue to look for new ways to exploit employees, companies need to be vigilant about changing end-user behavior and reducing risk with cybersecurity education solutions." In the healthcare sector, the term is heard. "At the end-user level, our products are growing," commented the CEO of Dentsply Sirona, a dental supply company, in a quarterly press release in 2016. The end-user alluded to here is a dental professional, again someone who applies skills in usage of the product.

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