Terms and Definitions

CTA – A Call to Action refers to an image or button that prompts the user to do something. An example would be a big red button on the homepage of a site that says ‘Order Now and Receive 10% Off’. The button is prompting the user to order a product.

H1, H2, H3… Header – Headers are considered ‘titles’ on a web page. These headers are ranked by importance, and are styled accordingly. In example, an H4 will likely be smaller and be implemented less often than a H2.

Nav – Refers to the navigation of a website

PNav – The Primary Navigation refers to the main navigation used to move the user through a site. This likely consists of Home, About Us, Products, etc

GNav – Global Navigation is a much smaller navigation typically placed at the top right-hand side of large sites. This navigation may include a search bar, links to social media, login, and other links that may not be used by every user.

Footer – The Footer refers to the bottom section of a website

URL – The url includes the domain to a site, including a htt:// at the beginning of a domain and the domain extension following. This can be found at the top bar a internet browser.

Browser – A browser is the software program that interprets website code, allowing you to view and interact with the internet. Browsers include Mozilla Firefox, Opera, Google Chrome, Safari, Internet Explorer, etc.

Server – A computer that stores and delivers data to other computers. This is what ‘hosts’ your website files and contents.

Bandwidth – The transmission capacity of a system, and the speed of the transfers that system makes

Remote Backup – A Remote Backup is like saving all provided information at a remote location. Most small business use this to save important information such as a client list, web site, and other vital documents to a business. A remote backup allows you to access that information in case of a hardware malfunction, natural disaster, accidental deletion, and so on.

Client – An application or system that accesses a service made available by a server. The server is often on another computer, in which case the client accesses the time-sharing mainframe computer.

Configure –  An arrangement of programming units according to their nature, number, and chief characteristics. This typically pertains to the choice of hardware, software, firmware and documentation.

DNS – A Domain Name System provides domain name to IP address translation, making what we as humans read (a domain name) readable for computers (IP Address).

Hosting – A server that stores files on a 24/7 basis

Database – An online structure that stores large amounts of data. A server-side programming language displays this information onto a web page.

FTP – File Transfer Protocol allows the transfer of large files to all of those who have access, and is how developers update files from their computer to the site itself

Link – A link is what allows users to click on an object such as a button, image or text that takes them to another page or opens up a document within their browser.

POP – Post Office Protocol is a method of handling email. When the POP server receives your request for mail, it sends the entire message to your email program (such as Outlook). Once you receive the email, the message is no longer stored on the server unless you specifically tell it to keep a copy.

IMAP – Internet Message Access Protocol is very similar to POP, however when you request email from the server, it sends you a copy as opposed to the entire email. This keeps a copy of the email on the server while also keeping a copy on your computer.

Search Engine – Online software that searches other online documents specified by the words within content and the quality of the site’s development. Ie Google, Bing, etc

CMS – Content Management System is what allows website owners to easily update simple information on their site such as content, images and blog articles. Custom functions built into a CMS could allow business owners to add products to their online store, organize various elements on a site, and update information about their suppliers.

Print Material – Print material refers to any branding tools that can be physically held and are typically printed on paper. This includes everything from a business card, brochure, trade show posters to an annual report.

Markup – The programming language used and the specific elements of that language

Layout – the basic structure or a print or web element

HTML5 – HTML5 is a markup language not much different than standard HTML, consisting of a few additional tags. These tags can make regular content display more fluidly across various platforms (such as desktop vs mobile devices), and are often used to add simple transitions or animations to small elements on a website. HTML5 comes especially in handy when viewing a website on a mobile device. An example of this is viewing a contact page on a cell phone, using the tag to differentiate the address from normal content, allowing me to simply select the address, opening up my GPS app on my phone directing me to that specific address.

Wireframing – Wireframing is a step within the initial design process in which the designer will determine what elements of the website go where on which page. This is done without the use of image or content, and typically resembles multiple boxes drawn on a page with titles such as ‘Image Goes Here’. This gives a solid base for when the designer goes to design all elements in the website and how they will interact with one-another.

RGB & CMYK – Both RGB (Red, Green & Blue) and CMYK (Cyan, Magenta & Yellow) are different colour presets in which monitors and printers display and print colour spectrums.

Above the Fold – The fold refers to the top portion of a website that can be viewed in a browser without scrolling in any direction. Since this is the first thing that users will see on a site, objects of upmost importance are placed within this area, or ‘Above the Fold’. To ‘Fall Below the Fold’ means that a user must scroll through or navigate around a page to view a specific element.

Hover State – This is most commonly used in buttons, and is when the graphical state of a web element is changed once the user has placed their mouse overtop of it. This hover state may include a change in colour or size, indicating that the user has the ability to click on that button.

Slider – An Image Slider is primarily a group of images and text that transition on the homepage of a website, often prompting users to navigate to a specific page on the site.

Ecommerce – Refers to a website with the capability of performing business transactions or purchases online

Single-Page – A Single-Page site is when all of the content and images of a website are provided on a single page.

Usability – the ease of use of a print or web project, and how users interact with it.

User Interface – How users interact with a web page based on the location, design and implementation of various elements. This is directly related to a site’s layout, and dramatically affects usability.

Functionality – A combination of interface design, layout and script that determines how a website functions, or how a user interacts with the site.

Validation – Ensuring that client and server-side programming languages are accurate and up-to-date with current practices in web development.

Semantics – The proper and logical techniques and implementation of various programming languages to create a website. This means that the programming tags are chosen according to what they mean and what their purpose is.

Rendering – The generation of an image or graphic by a web browser

Vector – A Vector is a file typically produced in software such as Adobe Illustrator, creating a file that can be stretched or squished into any size without loosing quality. This is typically a requirement for business logos.

Kerning – The distance between two letters

Leading – The space between lines of text in a paragraph, also referred to as ‘Line Height’.

Analytics – An analysis or measurement of given information. Online, this typically refers to the amount and quality of traffic brought onto the site. Google Analytics is a free resource that allows website owners to view the number of times their site was viewed, for how long, and how users came across the site.

Infographics – Infographics are create and attention-grabbing images that display what would be considered boring information to read in it’s basic sentence form. Infographics can consist of point-form facts designed in a graphically attractive way that grabs user’s attention and increases the chance that users retain the given information by requiring both the left and right-hand side of the brain.

Colour Palette – A Colour Palette refers to the specific colours to be used in both print and web projects.

SEO – Search Engine Optimization is the improvement of how your website is viewed by search engines. When search engines give your site a ranking, this determines where your website places when users search for your business name or services. Elements that affect your web pages ranking can include the quality of written content, keywords used, the quality of the programming that makes up the site, amount of visitors your site receives, and so on.

Domain – A virtual address and extension, ie Spincaster.com

Noise – A slightly pixelated look that adds interest to an otherwise flat element

Texture – An image or graphic that promotes depth, authenticity, and encourages users to want to ‘touch’ or ‘feel’ an element that sparks the human sense of touch. This adds interest to otherwise flat elements in a design

Pattern – A flat repeated image or graphic, not relating directly to the human sense of touch. There is no sense of depth or texture to the pattern.

Form – A form is a short list of elements that collect data from a user. In example, a Contact Form may require a user to type in their Name, Phone Number, Email Address, and a Message. A Login Form requires the user to type in a Username and Password. This information can then passed onto the site admin, a database that holds the information, and more.