Are you confused about small business website terminology and wish it was easier? It is! Listed below are some of the most common terms used in the website design and development world — with clear, painless definitions.
Accessibility / ADA Compliance
The practice of removing barriers that prevent website interaction by people with disabilities.
Admin / Back-end Area
An administration dashboard that controls the website’s content management system.
Adobe Illustrator (AI)
A program used by graphic designers to create vector illustrations and images.
Adobe Photoshop (PS)
Raster graphics editor designed to create and enhance photos, images and designs.
A graphic image that moves, typically in a loop.
Typically used in online advertising, banner ads are used to attract traffic to a website by linking to the advertising website.
The level of traffic and amount of data transferred between your website, users and Internet.
Below The Fold
Term that refers to the portion of a website that a user must scroll to see.
Percentage of visitors who view a website and leave immediately after viewing one page.
A type of secondary navigation that revels the user’s location on a website.
cPanel / Control Panel
Web-based interface provided by hosting companies that allows customers to manage their hosting service.
Call To Action (CTA)
A prompt on a website that tells a user to take a specific action. Example: Buy Now, Contact Us and Join Today.
Cache / Internet Cache
Temporary Internet files used to improve how fast data loads while browsing websites.
Cascading Style Sheet (CSS)
The language describing the presentation of a website including colors, layout and font.
Virtual website hosts interconnected around the globe.
Content Management System (CMS)
A software application used to create and manage digital content.
Small piece of data sent from a website and stored on the user’s computer by the user’s browser.
Database application designed to be managed and accessed online. Websites can display data stored in the database in a visual appealing format.
An item that has been superseded or is no longer considered efficient – but without completely removing it or prohibiting its use.
Your website name. The address where users can access your website.
Domain Name Server (DNS)
The internet equivalent of a phone book. The DNS translates your IP address to domain names.
eCommerce / eCom
Buying and selling goods and services online.
The little icon that browsers display next to the page’s title. Also used when a page is bookmarked.
File Transfer Protocol (FTP)
Transferring of files between computers and a website host.
Graphics Interchange Format (GIF)
Lossless format for image files that supports both animated and static images.
Hexadecimal / Hex Code
Color codes formatted so that a computer can interpret and display.
Large web banner, prominently placed, generally above the fold.
Hosting / Website Hosting / Server
Providing space on the Internet for websites.
Hypertext Markup Language (HTML)
Standardized system for tagging text files to achieve font, color, graphic and hyperlink effects online.
Hyperlink / Link
Reference to data that the user can directly follow either by clicking or tapping.
iFrame / Inline Frame
HTML document embedded inside another HTML document.
JPG / JPEG (Joint Photographic Experts Group)
Method of lossy compression for digital images.
Single web page that appears in response to clicking on a search engine result listing or online advertisement.
Local Host / Local Server / Local Machine / Local
Referring to the local computer that a program is running on.
Image compression method where the original information is lost and cannot be resorted, possibly affecting image quality.
Image compression method where the original information can be perfectly reconstructed from compressed data. Resulting in reduced file size and maintained image quality.
160 character snippet used to summarize a web page’s content.
Mobile Friendly / Responsive
An approach aimed at crafting website to provide an optimal viewing experience on computers, laptops, tablets and mobile devices.
Any program whose source code is made available for use or modification as user or developers see fit.
Photoshop Document (PSD)
Layered image file used in Adobe Photoshop.
URL that links to a specific web posting. Commonly used with blogs.
Piece of software that acts as an add-on to a website and gives additional functionality.
Pay Per Click (PPC)
Model of internet marketing in which advertisers pay a fee each time an ad is clicked.
User interface pattern that divides content into separate pages. Commonly used with blog post.
Portable Network Graphic (PNG)
Raster graphics file format that supports losseless data compression.
Top-level folder of your entire website.
Really Simple Syndication (RSS) / RSS Feed / Feed
Format for delivering regularly changing web content. Commonly used with news-related websites and blogs.
Number of horizontal and vertical pixels on a screen.
Search Engine Marketing (SEM)
The process of gaining traffic and visibility from search engines through both paid and unpaid efforts.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
The process of maximizing the number of visitors to a website by ensuring the site appears high on the search engine results page.
Shared Website Hosting
When multiple websites share a large server.
Information not part of the main content. Typically found to the right of the main content.
List of pages of a website.
Website / application that enables users to create, participate and share content on a particular network.
Social Media Marketing (SMM)
The process of gaining traffic or attention through social media sites through paid efforts.
Domain that is part of a larger domain. Example: blog.website.com, shop.website.com
Uniform Resource Locator (URL)
Address of your website. Also see Domain
Theme / Template
Look and style of a website, ranging from font types, sizes, colors and other aesthetics of the website.
60 character snippet used to declare the page’s title.
Small application with limited functionality that can be installed and executed within a web page by an end user.