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Web Design Glossary from the Urban Feather Website Team

The web is full of technical jargon and terminology that is sometimes hard to understand, here is an alphabetical list of some of the most commonly used terminology related to web design and development.

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Accessibility – This is the ability of a website to be used by visually impaired visitors using screen readers, hearing impaired visitors using no sound, colour blind people, or those with other difficulties. A website with low accessibility will be difficult for people with disabilities to use. Accessibility is particularly important for sites with the largest audiences of users, or sites that provide information to those with disabilities (healthcare sites, government sites, etc.), though it is an important aspect to consider when designing any site.


Backlinks – Backlinks are incoming links to a webpage. When a webpage links to any other page, it’s called a backlink. In the past, backlinks were the major metric for the ranking of a webpage. A page with a lot of backlinks tended to rank higher on all major search engines.

Bandwidth – Bandwidth is a measurement of the amount of data allowed to pass between a user’s website and the rest of the Internet. Bandwidth includes all incoming and outgoing data transfer from your server including but not limited to web traffic, ftp usage, all emails passing through our mail server, etc. Each VPS and Dedicated Server plan comes with a certain amount of bandwidth per month, measured in gigabytes (GB).

Back End – The back end of a website is referred to as the part of the site not seen by the end user, this could be the server side or the admin area of the website, including the websites code, files and infrastructure.

Below/Above the fold – The fold of a website page is where the bottom of the screen of the device meets the websites page. When viewing a website, you have a set area to view, this is what a user sees without scrolling down, scrolling down the webpage reveals “below the fold”. Above the fold is usually where you get the users attention, show them where to go and often includes imagery and graphics of some sort along with a short introduction/message on the website. Below the fold is where a website will provide more detail and keep the user reading and navigating through the website.


CMS – CMS or Content Management System is where the content of a website is added and settings are changed, some examples of a CMS are WordPress, Magento, and Joomla.

CSS – CSS or Cascading Style Sheet is a document that contains all of the styles for a website including fonts, colours, widths, heights, margins, paddings, font sizes, effects and transitions and much more.

Cache – A web cache is an information technology for the temporary storage (caching) of web documents, such as HTML pages and images, to reduce server lag. A web cache system stores copies of documents passing through it; subsequent requests may be satisfied from the cache if certain conditions are met.


DNS –DNS or Domain Name System is the Internet’s system for converting alphabetic names into numeric IP addresses. For example, when a Web address (URL) is typed into a browser, DNS servers return the IP address of the Web server associated with that name.

Domain – Domain names are used to identify one or more IP addresses. For example, the domain name microsoft.com represents about a dozen IP addresses. Domain names are used in URLs to identify Web pages.


E-commerce – E-commerce or electronic commerce is a way of doing business over large electronic networks such as the Internet. Also called e-commerce, electronic commerce greatly facilitates transactions between companies and consumers (B2C), between one company and another (B2B), and between individual consumers (C2C).


FTP – FTP or File Transfer Protocol as the name suggests, is used to transfer files between computers on a network. You can use FTP to exchange files between computer accounts, transfer files between an account and a desktop computer, or access online software archives.

Footer – The footer is the very bottom of a website, some footers are big and some are small, they often contain legal information, website links and accreditation logos.

Favicon – A favicon is the small icon used in the web browser tab for a specific website.

Fixed Width – Fixed width websites are don’t increase in size with the device’s screen, instead, they contain the website’s content within a set width.

Front End –The front end of a website is referred to as the area seen by the user, this can be web pages, login areas, contact forms and the general content of the website.


HTTP – Hypertext Transfer Protocol is an application protocol for distributed, collaborative, and hypermedia information systems. HTTP is the foundation of data communication for the World Wide Web.

HTML –  Hypertext Markup Language is a computer language used to build the structure of a website, it is what makes up all website pages

HTACCESS – htaccess is short for Hypertext Access, and is a configuration file used by Apache-based web servers that controls the directory that it “lives” in–as well as all the subdirectories underneath that directory.

Header – The header is the very top of a website, some of the most important areas of the site are including in the header including but not limited to the website logo, navigation, search bars, important messages and more.

Holding Page – A holding page is a temporary web page put in place of a website, this could be used when the website is in maintenance or under construction.


IMAP – IMAP or Internet Message Access Protocol is an Internet standard protocol used by email clients to retrieve email messages from a mail server over a TCP/IP connection.


Landing Page – A landing page is the first page you hit when entering a website, more often than not this is the Home Page.

Lorum Ipsum – Lorum Ipsum is used in web and graphic design as a dummy text, when a website is first designed, content is not always readily available, this is where Lorum Ipsum comes in handy, it’s a randomly generated mixture of words in paragraphs, titles, lists and more to fill the websites text areas with sample/dummy text.


Navigation –The navigation of a website is an area where all of the website pages are placed for easy access and as the name suggests, allows a user to navigate through the site, it’s basically a posh website term for Menu.


Plugin – A plugin is an application or add-on software within an admin environment that provides additional features, settings and functionality to a CMS.


RGB – RGB is an acronym for Red, Green and Blue and is a colour profile used in web and digital design.

Resolution – Resolution is the name used for the number of square pixels on a screen multiplied in width and height.

Responsive – Responsive website change layout and sizes of various page elements dynamically depending on the device that is been used to display the website.


SSL – SSL or Secure Sockets Layer is the standard security technology for establishing an encrypted link between a web server and a browser. This link ensures that all data passed between the web server and browsers remain private and integral.

SEO – SEO or Search Engine Optimisation is a method of optimising websites for search engines, making a website rank for specific keywords and providing users with the correct information on pages based on their search terms.

SMTP – Simple Mail Transfer Protocol is an Internet standard for electronic mail transmission.

Server – A server is a computer program that provides a service to another computer programs (and its user). In a data centre, the physical computer that a server program runs in is also frequently referred to as a server. That machine may be a dedicated server or it may be used for other purposes as well.

Stock Photo– Stock photos are images that are purchased on the internet but are sometimes free, they are not specific to a company or business but are more themed around industries or categories.


TLS – Transport Layer Security (TLS) is the successor protocol to SSL. TLS is an improved version of SSL. It works in much the same way as the SSL, using encryption to protect the transfer of data and information.

TCP –The Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) is one of the main protocols of the Internet protocol suite. It originated in the initial network implementation in which it complemented the Internet Protocol (IP). Therefore, the entire suite is commonly referred to as TCP/IP.

Template – A template in web design and development is referred to as a page that already contains the styles of a website or established page, this template can be used again with slight tweaks to keep the site looking consistent in line with the branding and colour scheme.


URL – URL stands for Uniform Resource Locator and is used to specify addresses on the web. A URL is the fundamental network identification for any resource connected to the web (e.g., hypertext pages, images, and sound files). The protocol specifies how information from the link is transferred.


WWW – is an acronym given for World Wide Web, The Web, or World Wide Web (W3), is basically a system of Internet servers that support specially formatted documents. The documents are formatted in a markup language called HTML (Hypertext Markup Language) that supports links to other documents, as well as graphics, audio, and video files.

Brigg Windows

I must admit that Jamie and Richard have been tremendous. They have tried to explain everything to me and I have pretended that I understand. The point is though, it doesn’t matter that I do not understand how everything works because I know without a shadow of a doubt, they do.

Maria Portess, Director, Brigg Windows & Conservatories
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