Website Terms & Technical Jargon

Why you should go with Digital Fuse for your new website

Technical Website Jargon Explained

Here you will find some of the common technical terms and phrases ‘web jargon’ or ‘tech jargon’ that you might have come across. Or heard in discussions relating to web and graphic design and development. We have included their definitions and in some cases some examples to help explain what they mean!

Get to the Website Jargon!

Simply click a letter below to be taken to that section for the web jargon or just browse through, we hope you find it helpful! Please contact us for more information or to ask us a question!

A

B

C

D

E

F

G

H

I

J

K

L

M

N

O

P

Q

R

S

T

U

V

W

X

Y

Z

A

Accessibility

In terms of web design and development accessibility is the ease of which something is obtainable such as information that a user is looking for. We build our websites with great accessibility allowing the user to find what they are looking for with the fewest amount of clicks. Moreover, it also refers to the ease of access for visually impaired users.

ALT Tag – Alternative Text

Primarily these are used to help visually impaired users better understand what the image on a page is about via a screen reader which will read off the ALT tag text for them. It is also used in place of the image when the image cannot for some reason be rendered or loaded. It can also help search engines index the image more efficiently.

Anchor Link

An anchor link is a clickable link within a page that will scroll the user down to another section of the page. A perfect example is the alphabet listed at the top of this page, if you click a letter it will take you down the page to that letter’s definition section. This is a great way to direct users to certain information.

Application

A piece of software that will perform a specific function or task for an end result, or feed into another application.

B

Back End Development

The back end refers to the framework of a website along with the server side of things. Often involving databases and applications ‘behind the scenes’ which form the structure of a website and collect and manage data. For example – the workings of a website form or online shopping system and how it all connects with the database on the server. Back end developers will use more of the PHP coding language. Additionally they’ll be familiar with the workings of the applications, databases and server tools.

Bandwidth

Super website jargon that comes up a lot! This is the amount of data or traffic allocated to a website that is allowed to be transferred. If your bandwidth was set to 10 Gigabytes per month then you would be allowed as much traffic to your website as 10 Gigabytes allowed. Every user that visits your website is essentially downloading/transferring data to view it.

Bounce Rate

This refers to the length of time spent on your website or session length in percentage form. A high percentage bounce rate means that users session lengths are short. A low bounce rate would mean that users are spending more time on your website for longer periods. You’ll be looking for a low bounce rate percentage which will confirm a well optimised site with good, relevant content.

A set of links on a website that allows the user to see their current location in terms of pages within the website. For example: Services – Graphic Design – Infographics.

Browser or Web Browser

A window in which you can view web pages online, such as Chrome, Internet Explorer (IE), Safari, Firefox, Opera etc.

C

Caching

This is the process for storing data temporarily. You can cache website information via a server or via a browser. You can even control how long caches hold on to information for.

CDN – Content Delivery Network

A CDN is used to help display your website files quicker and more efficiently by spreading the information to multiple, distributed servers. When a user visits a website, the server nearest the user will serve them the website files.

CMYK

This is the abbreviation of the colours Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Key (Black) used in printing. For any printed materials the artwork is required to be in a CMYK format for the best colour output.

cPanel + WHM

A very popular online, Linux based control panel for controlling the options, settings and tools to manage the hosting of a website.

CSS – Cascading Style Sheet

Styling website jargon! A sheet of code which defines the way the elements of a website appear such as colour, size, font size, margin and padding.

CSV

A spreadsheet type file which can be fed into an application, system or database to import data, it stands for Comma Separated Values.

CTA – Call to Action

Specific elements on a web page or printed materials that are designed to steer the user into performing a specific action such as a phone call, filling out a form etc.

D

Disk Space / Disk Quota

Disk space is the amount of physical space available on a hosting server. Disk quota is the limited amount of space allocated to an account or particular service. If you were to have website and email account hosting with a disk quota of 15 Gigabytes of space then you would reach your quota (maximum space usage) when your website files and email account(s) file size combined total makes 15 Gigabytes.

DNS – Domain Name System

DNS translates the domain names into their unique IP address counterparts to make them readable by browsers.

Domain Name

This is the website URL you have chosen, for example digitalfuse.co.uk is our domain name.

A dropdown menu is a secondary menu that falls from beneath a link in the main navigation once hovered. For example you may have ‘Services’ in your top level navigation and once hovered, can display another list of links, one for each of your services.

E

Ecommerce

This stands for electronic commerce, or in simpler terms an online shop. The process of products being ordered through a website or user interface and financial transactions being completed online.

F

Feed

Weird sounding website jargon here, this is a collection of information fed into a specific area. A good example is a social media Twitter feed in a website sidebar, where a set number of your previous tweets are fed into a box housed within your sidebar. There are many types of feed, Blog feed, Social Feed and so on. Additionally you can have custom feeds where information of your choice is fed into a specific area of the website.

The bottom most part of a website, usually sectioned off with a coloured strip and generally contains copyright information, sitemaps and contact information. The footer will in most cases, appear on every page of your website along with your header.

Front End Development

This is the name for the work being carried out on a website or application that faces the customer, for example the way that a website looks – colours, fonts, spacing, layout and images etc along with the usability and interactivity of the site. Front end developers tend to use more of the CSS, HTML and JS (Javascript) coding languages.

Full Stack Development

Full stack developers are people who basically cover both of the above – Front end and Back end development. Full stack literally means the full stack of technical components such as software applications, coding languages, hardware and tools to develop a website or application.

G

GDPR

The General Data Protection Regulation is an EU law implemented on the 25th May 2018 which covers data protection and privacy for all individuals within the EU. This means that before obtaining anyone’s personal information you need to make it clear what you will do with the information, where it is held and who by.

Google Analytics – GA

This is a tool for tracking website traffic and how users are coming across your website. For example, through referrals on other websites and social media platforms or through keywords in search engines. GA can also tell you how long user sessions are on your website and which pages have been visited. Now you can use this website jargon to show off your knowledge!

H

Similar to the footer in that it will appear on every page of your website, it is part of the main structure and framework that houses your logo, navigation or menu, and perhaps some contact information or social media links.

Hex Value / Hex Code

Simply put this is a colour value. A string of 6 values that range from decimal values 0 to 255 or from hexadecimal values of 0 to FF. The 6 values follow a ‘#’ which define a colour based on RGB values. The first pair of values relates to Red, the second pair to Green and the third pair to Blue – #RRGGBB. For example white would be #FFFFFF and black would be #000000.

Hosting

A server that hosts your website files or email accounts.

HTML- Hypertext Markup Language

The standard scripting language used in website building and applications to form pages and content.

I

Interactive

Something that is interactive in web development is something that allows the user to perform an action and get a result. For example clicking a button that links to another page is interactivity. Anything that allows the website to respond to the user’s actions or input.

IP Address – Internet Protocol Address

An IP address is a unique set of digits separated by dots which identifies an individual computer or device within a network. A common website jargon term!

J

JS / Javascript

A complex and useful programming language which is dynamic and enables a high level of interactivity.

K

Keyword Stuffing

This is the term used to describe the process of putting as many keywords in as possible with a view to boosting your SEO performance. However this will have the opposite effect as search engine’s algorithms are smart enough to pick up on this.

L

A link or hyperlink, allows a user to click and be presented with a result. Whether its a new page, a pop up on the screen, a sound being played, a movement and so on. A link hover is a state of the original link, for example you could have a red button on a web page with the text ‘Contact Us’ inside in white. On hovering this button (link hover state) the background colour of the button could change from red to blue, and the text ‘Contact Us’ could even change to another colour. You can change the shape, rotation, font style, colour and many other attributes.

M

Maintenance

This term is used to refer to ongoing work / regular edits or updating software, plugins and scripts.

Making a Site Live / Go live

We often use the term ‘making a website live’ which essentially means moving it to the live server location for hosting and making the site available to the public. We, more often than not, build a website on our development server which is available to anyone to view however they’ll need a direct link. This way the world can’t find the development website through search engines, the only way it can be viewed is via a direct link that we hand out. Allowing us to showcase the development progress of a website to our clients and furthermore it enables them to see exactly how it will look and function before being available to the public.

Margin

This is a web development technical term for pushing elements away from others by adding space outside the elements. We use this by stating whether we’d like margin top, bottom, left or right on one element and then by how many pixels we’d like it pushed away to create space between elements or to position things exactly.

Minify

You may come across the term minify or minifying code. This essentially means condensing the code to remove white space (spaces between symbols and characters) or removing unused characters but at the same time maintaining the functionality of the code.

Mockup / Design Proof / Visual / Wireframe

A visual representation in graphical format of how a website could look using text, colours and images to create a style and layout.

N

Website jargon that is often heard a lot! A website’s navigation is the set of links that make up the menu. Allowing the user to move through the website pages and choose which page they wish to view. A primary navigation is the main navigation of the website, usually situated in the header of the website at the top for easy access when the user first visits the website. A secondary navigation is a navigation that could use the same page links as the primary. Alternatively it could use another set of links completely that is situated further down the page or on a particular page within the website. Secondary navigation’s are often used to help break up more complex website page structures.

O

Optimise / Optimisation

This is the art of condensing, refining or simplifying the data within something or making the particular subject more effective to use. For example optimising an image is condensing its file size and/or reducing its dimensions to become smaller which is essentially removing data from the image file. Or optimising a websites loading speed is reducing the number of resources it uses, scripts, images and so on.

P

Padding

Another technical term for the organisation of and defining attributes of a website element. Similar to margin in the way that you can use it to push elements apart however padding is more the cushioning of the element by adding extra space inside of it.

PHP – Hypertext Preprocessor

Automation script used on the server to generate dynamic page content and process data.

Plugin

A feature or add-on that can be bolted on to your website to enhance its usability.

R

Responsive

If you hear the word responsive or responsiveness in web development it will in most cases be used to describe whether or not a website is scalable. By this we mean whether or not the website elements will wrap and stack up as you scale or drag down the size of your website browser. Responsive websites also wrap and scale down for tablet and mobile devices.

Retina Display

For retina display, images and graphics are uploaded at twice the dimension sizes that they are needed to display at. Ensuring that twice the amount of dots per inch are crammed into the same amount of screen pixels. This essentially produces a sharp image or graphic on the latest computers and devices which have retina screens. A small side-effect of this is that page speed score results may flag up ‘Serve scaled images’ which is advised for a faster load time. This means that the images could be scaled down to save file size but then of course they won’t appear as sharp on retina screens. A trade off all in all and ‘Serve scaled images’ can be taken with a pinch of salt if its a case of saving a few kb’s of file size.

RGB Value

This is another commonly used colour value to define the colour of an element. Red, Green, and Blue combinations make up the final colour. The value is separated by commas and each colour Red, Green and Blue have values ranging from 0 to 255 so you have (256 colour levels). For example white would be 255, 255, 255 and black would be 0, 0, 0. You may see RGBA used in web development. This includes the use of transparency or alpha. The alpha level will range from 0 to 1 with 0 being fully transparent and 1 being fully opaque. For example RGBA(0, 0, 0, 0.5) would be fully black but with 50% transparency.

S

SEO – Search Engine Optimisation

Add keywords, descriptions and other useful data to your website. This is to tell search engines what your website is about. Furthermore it gives your website a higher chance of appearing in results for certain key phrases. Paying for an SEO service does not directly guarantee more work or engagements. It just increases your chances of being found in search engine results for certain keywords and phrases.

Sitemap

A list of your website pages that are indexable by search engines to quickly check your website. Also to ensure the content is the most recent version that you have published. You can submit your sitemap manually to speed up the process.

Speed Optimisation

A simpler form of website jargon. The process of reducing physical page sizes to increase loading speeds. This can be done by reducing calls to URLs, scripts and images, optimising images to be smaller in file size, leverage browser caching, minifying and condensing scripts such as JS and CSS, removing performance inhibiting features such as panel animations, big fancy sliders with more than 2-3 slides and much more!

SSL Certificate – Secure Sockets Layer Certificate

Safe and secure website jargon! Enabling an encrypted connection between web servers and your browser ensuring all data passed between them remains private. If you have this security your website domain name will use https:// instead of the default http:// prefix.

T

Tab

A tab can refer to an element on a web page where content can be arranged in tabs. Similar to clip folders filled with paper information using cardboard tabs to separate and label certain sections. Alternatively it could refer to the browser tab. The same principle but whereby a web browser, for example; Google Chrome, has multiple tabs open and within each tab a website being displayed. You may see in web development the checkbox option to open any links or hyperlinks in new tabs. This means to open another browser tab to show the link target instead of moving from the page you are currently viewing.

Typography

In web development typography is a website jargon sort of term to describe the use of different font and text styles to apply to content – headings, subheadings body text or paragraph text.

U

URL

This stands for Uniform Resources Locator. It is a unique address for the location of an information resource, document or image on the web.

Usability

The ease of use of something, in this case websites! The usability of a website is the degree of ease in which the website can be used. Is it easy to navigate and find your information quickly? Is it effective? If so it has great usability.

W

White Label

Secret website jargon! White label or white labelling is the system of one company producing or providing the product or service, but another company is marketing, selling or promoting it (with permission of course). A marketing company may white label a web design company’s service whereby the marketing company will make the web design sale to a client but the web design company will be completing the work unbeknownst to the client.

Widget

A widget, in web development, refers to the components that can be added via an interface to enhance or add a function. For example a sidebar widget for a blog page can be added that will showcase recent posts. This widget will pull in blog posts within a specific date range chosen by the user.

WordPress

WordPress is a framework in which a website can be coded with features and add ons, regarded as being one of the top user friendly frameworks or prebuilt CMS – content management system.

Z

ZIP File

A ZIP file is a compressed collection of files and or folders to reduce the overall file size to save hard drive space and to make transferring the file more efficient. ZIP files help keep the many files within bundled up into one place so its much less likely that the odd file or folder will go astray! The last of our website jargon for now!

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