Glossary of Web Design Terms
A small Java®
program which allows a Web page to display animation,
calculators, sound effects or other interactive functions.
The rate at which
information travels through a network connection, usually
measured in bits per second, kilobits (thousand bits) per
second, or megabits (million bits) per second.
Bookmark (add to favorites)
A file within a
browser in which an Internet user can save the addresses of
interesting or frequently used Web sites, so that they are
readily available for re-use.
A program that allows
a user to find, view, hear, and interact with material on the
World Wide Web. Microsoft Internet Explorer and Netscape
Navigator are examples of popular browsers.
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Canonicalization is the process of converting data that has more
than one possible representation into a "standard" canonical
representation. This can be done to compare different
representations for equivalence, to count the number of distinct
data structures (e.g., in combinatorics), to improve the
efficiency of various algorithms by eliminating repeated
calculations, or to make it possible to impose a meaningful
All of the viewable
information on a given web page. Includes all text, files and
graphics in a given page.
The actual text of a
specific web page and all written information.
Digital Imaging Services
A term to describe
the process of creating, photographing, restoring and
manipulating digital images.
Domain names are the
alphabetic names used to refer to computers on the Internet. A
Web site address, including a suffix such as .com, .biz, .org,
.gov, or .edu. The suffix indicates what type of organization is
hosting the site.
- com - Originally stood for "commercial," to indicate a
site that could be used for private, commercial purposes,
but now the best well known top level domain, and used for a
wide variety of sites
- biz - Alternative commercial domain when the com suffix is
- net - Originally intended for site related to the Internet
itself, but now used for a wide variety of sites
- edu - Use for educational institutions like universities
- org - Originally intended for non-commercial
"organizations," but organizations now used for a wide
variety of sites
- gov - Used for US Government sites
- mil - Used for US Military sites
- us - used to indicate a business or organization within
the United States
To transfer (copy)
files from one computer to another. "Download" can also mean
viewing a Web site, or material on a Web server, with a Web
DSL (Digital Subscriber Line)
A means of accessing
the Internet at very high speed using standard phone lines.
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E-mail (Electronic Mail)
Messages sent through
an electronic (computer) network to specific groups or
individuals. Though e-mail is generally text, users can attach
files that include graphics, sound, and video. E-mailing
requires a modem to connect the telephone line to the computer,
and an e-mail address.
FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)
Pages which list and
answer the questions most often asked about a Web site,
newsgroup, etc. The FAQ page often provides useful information
for a new user of a Web site, mailing list, discussion group, or
The first page on a
Web site, which introduces the site and provides the means of
Hosting Service Provider
A company that sells
space for files and web pages on their servers for direct access
to the Internet.
HTML (Hypertext Markup Language)
The coded format
language used for creating hypertext documents on the World Wide
Web and controlling how Web pages appear.
HTTP (Hypertext Transfer Protocol)
The standard language
that computers connected to the World Wide Web use to
communicate with each other.
An image or portion
of text on a Web page that is linked to another Web page, either
on the same site or in another Web site. Clicking on the link
will take the user to another Web page, or to another place on
the same page. Words or phrases which serve as links are
underlined, or appear in a different color, or both. Images that
serve as links have a border around them, or they change the
cursor to a little hand as it passes over them.
For our purposes -
photographs, logos, and similar graphic files that will be
manipulated to be web ready for display on a web page.
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A solid Information Architecture is the key to an effective
website. We will work with you to ensure that your content is
organized in an effective manner. This will provide visitors to
the site with ease of navigation and increased usability.
A global connection
of computer networks, also referred to as the "Net," which share
a common addressing scheme.
A private network
inside a company or organization, which uses software like that
used on the Internet, but is for internal use only, and is not
accessible to the public. Companies use Intranets to manage
projects, provide employee information, distribute data and
information, etc. Learn More...
ISP (Internet Service Provider)
A company that sells
direct access to the Internet, most often through dialing a
local phone number. Unlike some online services, ISPs provide
little or no proprietary content or online services.
programming language invented by Sun Microsystems. Using Java,
Web developers create small programs called "applets" and
"scripts" that allow Web pages to include animations,
calculators, scrolling text, sound effects and games.
A word that is
entered into the search form or search "window" of an Internet
search engine to search the Web for pages or sites about or
including the keyword and information related to it.
KPI - Key Performance Indicators
counts, Key Performance Indicators as related to web
analytics (web metrics) are the predefined measurable
qualitative and quantitative data sets that help website owners
measure the success of their internet marketing actions such as;
page views, page views per visit, unique visitors, returning
visitors, popular pages, keyword analysis, referring sites,
abandonment, visitor paths through the site and entry and exit
Words and code
embedded in the HTML code of a webpage, provide useful
information that are not defined by other HTML elements. Their
function is to provide information about a document and about a
document's content. Search engines use this information to
categorize, prioritize and rank websites.
A system of hyperlink
paths set up on a Web page to enable visitors to find their way
around the website.
Global Navigation refers to
the ability for a visitor on you web site to be able to get
to any page on your web site from
any page on your web site.
PageRank by Google
PageRank as follows;
PageRank relies on the uniquely democratic nature of the web by
using its vast link structure as an indicator of an individual
page's value. In essence, Google interprets a link from page A
to page B as a vote, by page A, for page B. But, Google looks at
considerably more than the sheer volume of votes, or links a
page receives; for example, it also analyzes the page that casts
the vote. Votes cast by pages that are themselves "important"
weigh more heavily and help to make other pages "important."
Using these and other factors, Google provides its views on
pages' relative importance.
Term for unsolicited
advertising that appears as its own browser window.
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Publishing (web pages)
Once all the web
pages for a web site are completed they need to be published
(uploaded and/or delivered) to a server to be viewed at your
ROI (Return On Investment)
ROI is calculated by
considering the financial benefit for the desired period divided
by the initial financial investment amount.
Search Engines are
basically huge databases containing website info. If you want
someone to find your website by searching, then you need to
market/promote your website to them. They are a tool that
enables users to locate information on the World Wide Web.
Search engines use keywords and metatags configured and entered
by web developers to find Web sites which contain relevance to
the information sought.
SEO - Search Engine Optimization
A form of online
marketing, search engine optimization (search engine marketing
or organic SEO) is the process of making a site and its content
highly relevant for both search engines and searchers.
Successful search engine optimization (marketing) helps a site
gain top positioning for relevant words and phrases. Not to
be confused with PPC or pay per click wherein site
owners bid to out-position other site owners by paying a fee for
the keywords they desire. While PPC can be fruitful -
independent studies show there is a greater Return On Investment
(especially long term) via search engine optimization.
SEM (Search Engine Marketing / Promotion)
Once all the web
pages of a web site are published they should be promoted
(marketed). Submitting the website to search engines is one
example of promoting (or marketing) your web site.
SERP (Search Engine Results Page)
The SERP is otherwise
known as the Search Engine Results Page. This is the page that
users see after typing their search query into a search engine.
Since conversion starts at the SERP, it is important to have
relevant metadata leading to well designed pages with relevant
and customer focused copy.
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A special computer
connected to a network that provides (serves up) data. A Web
server transmits Web pages over the Internet when it receives a
Web browser's request for a page. A server can also be called a
host or node.
e-mail sent to large numbers of people to promote products or
services. Also refers to inappropriate promotions to search
Splash pages consist
of a large graphics or a Flash animations for your home
page—after that, you get to enter the site. Personally, I feel
splash pages are a waste of your visitor's time. When someone
finds your site, they're looking for information - not full
feature films that slow them down.
A software program
that "crawls" the Web, searching and indexing Web pages to
create a database that can be easily searched by a search
human investigation and link analysis to discern reputable web
pages deploying ethical linking techniques from 'spammy' web
pages seeking to earn higher rankings in the SERP's by
manipulating linking practices in an effort to deceive search
engines. TrustRank was first established as a term in a paper by
Copying or sending
files or data from one computer to another. A Web developer, for
example, could upload a document to a Web server,
URL (Uniform Resource Locator)
World Wide Web address of a site on the Internet. The URL for
this web designer is
Usability Testing or Website Usability
is the term used to refer to how effective your website is for
your visitors. This is an additional service offered by David
Williams - testing the ease with which users can use and
navigate a web site.
UCD (User Centered Design), UFD (User Friendly Design) and the
newer terms UXD or UED (User Experience Design)
rather general terms used to describe a person's perceived
interaction with (for our terms) the usability and enjoyment of
the design and function of a web page including findability
(ease of finding what they are seeking) to the graphic interface
and ease of navigation.
“User Experience” was a term coined in the early 1990s by
Donald Norman, a User Experience Architect in the fields of
Cognitive science & Usability engineering.
Not to be confused
with a web developer* - One who designs web sites. Web designers
like graphic designers are primarily concerned with the layout,
schemes and aesthetic values of a web site. *Note - David
Williams is both a web designer and a web developer.
Not to be confused
with a web designer* - One who specializes in the development of
Web sites. Web developers handle all programming aspects of
creating a Web site including HTML programming, creating and/or
manipulating graphics, MetaTag development, copy writing,
creating the navigational structure and related links, and
everything else that goes into building a Web site. *Note -
David Williams is both a web designer and a web developer.
A collection of
"pages" or files linked together and available on the World Wide
Web. Web sites are provided by companies, organizations and
On the internet, a
white paper is often a paper (article) written by a lead
designer to explain the philosophy and operation of a product or
service in a marketplace or technology context. Many Web Site
designers and developers include a white paper or a
frequently-asked questions (frequently-asked questions) page for
more detailed explanations of products, services and/or articles
written to disseminate information in their area of expertise.
The World Wide Web.
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Definitions courtesy (in part or in whole):
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