Glossary of web terms for startups

Aa

Above the fold

This is an old publishing term used to describe content that would be visible when a newspaper was folded. The most important information is always presented ‘above the fold’ to capture the reader’s attention. The same notion holds true in web design, where you ideally want a web visitor to understand who you are, how you can help them and what action they can take to make that happen all in the visibile screen area they first see before needing to scroll.

Accessibility

How accessible is your site to people with disabilities? This is one aspect of web design that is often overlooked. Not only is getting accessibility right good for your customers, but it’s good for Google too, and will likely help more people find you in a search.

We add the One Click Accessibility plugin to all Site Kite websites, and set it up for you as part of our setup process. 

Bb

Back end

The admin area of your website that a site visitor can’t see, but that your site ‘admins’ can see. The back end houses the theme or template used to form the structure of your site, any plugins or integratons needed to help run your site, and the CMS where you can edit your site posts, pages and media files.

Backlinks

Links on other websites that link back to your website. Having backlinks is a great way of spreading the word about your existence and boosting your search rank in the eyes of Google.

Bounce rate

The percentage of website visitors who leave your site without clicking through to another page. A high bounce rate is often an indication of poor information architecture (users can’t find what they’re looking for), low quality content (users don’t find the content useful or authoritative), or poor user experience (friction on the page is making the user frustrated).

Cc

Call to Action (CTA)

A direct request to your site visitors to take action. Web data show that people are lazy and like to be told what to do. If a user has made the big step of getting to your site in the first place, make it easy for them to take the next step by prompting them to take action.

Content

Take it literally — content is literally everything inside your website. Content is text. Content is images. Content is videos. Content is audio recordings. Just as the content of a glass jar might be jellybeans, the content of your website is all the things you want to put in it.’

Content management system (CMS)

This is the control centre for your website. It’s where you add pages, write blog posts, add images, update your site plugins, theme or template and control the other users (administrators, editors, contributors, subscribers) who you have allowed access to your website. The are many CMSs out there, with some of the most popular being WordPress, Squarespace, Wix, and Webflow, among others.

Copy

The text on your site.

Copywriter

A professional writer, often hired to provide expert help with website copy (text).

Dd

DNS

DNS stands for Domain Name System. For your website to open when someone types in www.yourdomainname.com, your DNS settings need to point to the website. This is done by adding some records to your DNS settings. 

DNS can be confusing, which is why we connect your domain to your site at setup. It’s worth knowing what these are though in case you need to make changes down the track (i.e. adding a .com.au domain to also point to your .com). Site Kite members can contact us for quick domain help, and Flywheel (our web host) have excellent DNS resources if you get stuck and need help in a hurry. 

Ee

e-Commerce

Literally electronic commerce. If you sell anything on your site, be it a physical product, a digital download, or a service, you need to connect your site to a payment gateway in order to process sales. Common payment gateways include PayPal and Stripe.

Ff

Favicon

The icon used to represent your brand in the browser address bar.
Front end: the ‘face’ of your website — the website as the general public sees it when typing your website url into their internet browser.

Hh

Hosting

There are two types of hosting (domain hosting and web hosting) and it’s easy to get them confused when all of this is new. Domain hosting is where your domain name (literally your website address) lives. So, for popdotmedia.com.au the domain lives on GoDaddy. Web hosting is where your website lives. This is a bigger deal as you want your website to be on a reliable, fast and secure server to ensure great site stability. The Popdot website is currently hosted on Squarespace. We’ll soon be moving to a WordPress website that will be hosted on Flywheel. Some web CMSs give you the option of purchasing both the domain name and hosting directly from them, so it can all be in one place, but most people keep them separate.

Ii

Icons

Icons are the little graphics that visually represent what you are trying to say. They are commonly used online to break up text with visual elements. Depending on how they are used, they can be quirky, professional or something in between.

The Elementor Pro page builder that your site is built on includes a large range of icons for you to choose from, or you can upload your own.

Index page

Apage that lists out (indexes) information in sections so that they appear on a single page. For example, if a website has only a few services or very thin content on the individual servcies pages, it may provide a better user experience for site visitors for all of the services to appear as different sections of the same page so that visitors aren’t frustrated by having to click to different pages that don’t have much content.

Information architecture

The structure of your website, think of this like the framework of your house. It’s what holds everything together.

Nn

Navigation

The structure by which a visitor navigates through your site. This is commonly thought of as your site menus and will often include ‘top navigation’ in your site header, ‘footer navigation’ in your site footer and ‘not linked navigation’ for pages that are linked to within your general website content but aren’t visible to a user from a menu.

Rr

Resolution

The sharpness of images on your site. Your images should have a pixel height and width equal to the pixel dimensions they take up on the screen. If an image is enlarged across an area bigger than the pixel dimensions of the image it will appear ‘pixelated’ and blurry.

Responsive layout

Does your site layout automatically respond and adapt to different screen sices? With Google favouring mobile first in search results it is crucial for websites to either have device-specific layouts or responsive layouts that adapt to different screen sizes. If a website looks cut off when viewed on a mobile device it is not responsive. All Site Kite websites are responsive and optimised for mobile.

Ss

Search rank (or page rank)

Where you appear in search results. Most people want their website to rank on Page 1 of Google. This doesn’t happen by magic, sites are optimised to increase their visibility to search engines. Also see SEO.

Site map

Literally a ‘map’ of your site. Your site map shows how each page of your site connects to every other page. It will look like any other flow chart used for your business — your staff org chart, for example. Most web builders/CMSs (WordPress, Squaresapce, Wix) automatically generate a site map for you. Google needs your site map to understand how to read your website and how all of your content fits together.

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)

The process of maximising your ability to appear in a Google search. If you want to be found in search, optimising your site for Google is a must.

Style Guide

You may have heard it before — a logo is not a brand. Your brand is the culmination of your logo, typography, colour palette and graphic styles. A style guide or brand guide is the ‘bible’ for your brand, outlining exactly how, when and where specific brand elements should be used to ensure that your brand is applied consistently everywhere it is used. Businesses without a style guide often wonder why their business isn’t resonating with their customers. While there can be many reasons for this problem, a strong contender is often that the brand isn’t strong enough for a user to connect to it. Having a style guide helps to shore up all of your brand decisions to keep your brand consistent and more recognisable.

Tt

Thin content

Pages without much text. Google doesn’t like pages with ‘thin content’. But sometimes you just don’t have much to say and it’s definitely better to keep a page short and easy to understand than to waffle on with no substance just to add more words for the sake of it. Just think about how a user will experience this content — will they be annoyed at having clicked through to page with hardly anything on it? Or will they be glad the page is straight to the point? What function does the page serve to a site visitor? Do you want this page to appear in search results? Google likes good, long content, so writing in-depth quality, authoritive content will help you rank, but it depends on the purpose of the page in question and not every page on your site needs to appear in search results.

Typography

The fonts used on your website.

Uu

Unsplash

Unsplash is a free stock image library that we have integrated into all Site Kite websites. You can add an image directly within your website without having to first download it from Unsplash and then upload it to your site. Better yet, the alt description and photographer details are automatically populated for you, so you are copyright secure and Google-friendly all in one easy swoop.

User

A visitor on your website.

User experience

The experience a user has when visiting your website — is your site intuitive and easy to navigate? Can they easily find what they are looking for? Good user experience keeps visitors on your site for longer. This not only makes it more likely that they will take action on your site, but good user experience also increases your search rank.

Ww

widgets

A widget is like a mini unit of functionality that sits within the larger application that is your website. A single widget has to interact with other widgets on your site to work, but in and of itself, it has a very specific function. Just about everything you see on your website is an individual widget, collectively they combine to form your site.

Widget examples:

  • Text Editor
  • Image
  • Video
  • Google Maps
  • Reviews
  • Facebook Embed
  • Share Buttons
  • Media Carousel

 

For a full list of widgets available to you via the Elementor and Elementor pro license, click here.

There are loads and loads of WordPress add-ons that you can access. However, not all of these will work well with you site. For additional trusted third-party widgets that can be relied on to work well with Site Kite sites, click here. Note that if you want to use Essential Addons for Elementor, we can apply our license to your site, so you don’t have to pay for it. We don’t add this plugin out-of-the-box because there’s a lot of overlap with Elementor native widgets and we think too many widgets will confuse beginners. We’re happy to upload it for Kite Pro members if there’s something in it you might need. Just ask.

 

Extras to add to blog (ultimate guide to web terminology for startups – change name of this post…)
landing page
layout
lead conversion
metadata
plugin
schema
tag
category
template
theme
web standards

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