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Website Terminology Glossary: Web Design, Vol. 2 

Website Terminology Glossary: Web Design, Vol. 2 

Website Design Glossary

When you’re hustling, time is money and that money comes in coins, not bills. It’s why we made our Website Terminology Glossary for web pros. This free resource for designers, developers, marketers or anyone else makes it easier explaining technical stuff to clients.

Rather than a lengthy back-and-forth, quickly find definitions that break it down in real terms. Start getting time back — and put more of those coins in the bank.

Website Terminology Glossary: Web Design, Vol. 2

Which content goes where, and why does it look that way? Ensuring clients can identify different aspects of a web design lets you more effectively explain your decisions. It also helps clients avoid feeling like they’re not involved in the process when it’s their money on the line.

Help them (and yourself) smoothy get through the build process with these basic terms related to web design.

Related: Website Terminology Glossary: Web Design, Vol. 1


Accessibility

Design decisions that make your website easier to use by anyone, regardless of impairments or disabilities, fall under the broader category of accessibility. For example, text might enlarge to be more easily read by people with visual impairments. Or that text could be broken into smaller sections and written in a simpler fashion to accommodate visitors with difficulty reading.

It’s kinda like

In some areas, buildings are required to have ramps and handrails to make them more accessible to disabled individuals. Those features are like brick-and-mortar versions of a website’s accessibility design elements.

You also might hear

ALT tag, user experience (UI), a11y


ALT Tag

To help the visually impaired experience a website, images can be tagged with descriptive text that a browser reads aloud. This text is referred to as an ALT tag, and not only helps visitors, but can also improve the website’s search engine ranking.

It’s kinda like

A personal assistant to the visually impaired might describe objects or situations to their client. ALT tags are those descriptions, delivered by a web browser instead of another person.

You also might hear

image description, image title, image search engine optimization (SEO)


Column

Containers on a web page that display content like text and images vertically, or one atop another, are columns. A wider column positioned in the center of the page might display important text. A narrower column placed on one side of that page might be used to conveniently place contact information, a map or a contact form.

It’s kinda like

Did you ever play the game Battleship as a kid? When you lined up that aircraft carrier vertically, it was like placing web content in a column on the page.

You also might hear

user experience (UI), row


CSS

The visual appearance of features on a web page is usually specified by a cascading style sheet (CSS). Your CSS can determine things like fonts, the drop shadow beneath an image or text, or animation effects. Once you set up CSS, it can be used across multiple pages of a website.

It’s kinda like

When you’re building a house, a general contractor takes care of stuff like framing and electricity. Once they’re done, an interior decorator handles finer details throughout the home like carpet and wallpaper. CSS is like the interior design of a home.

You also might hear

styles, user experience (UI), attribute, parent, child


Favicon

Have you every opened a website and seen on the tab of your browser the company logo or another small image? Those are called favicons and can be uploaded to your website so they display in visitors’ browsers. Many marketing experts today will insist that favicons are essential to building a brand online.

It’s kinda like

In an office building, individual businesses might place signs outside to help visitors know where they’re going. Amid a bunch of open browser tabs, favicons can provide the same experience.

You also might hear

browser, tab, logo


Hamburger

In streamlined web design, such as mobile layouts, visitors click on a stack of horizontal lines to open the website menu. This “hamburger” has become a universal symbol to let people know where to start navigating a website.

It’s kinda like

The unique shapes of stop and yield traffic signs let motorists know, at a glance, how to proceed on the road ahead. The hamburger gives website visitors the same kind of heads-up.

You also might hear

navigation, menu, mobile design, responsive design


Landing page

Online marketing content like emails or social media ads usually encourage the audience to click a button for more information. Those buttons take them to landing pages, which include content specific to the offer. Landing pages also let marketers measure the effectiveness of their ads, as they’re directly connected.

It’s kinda like

If you watch daytime TV, you’ll eventually see an infomercial urging you to call a toll-free number. It’s likely that number is dedicated to that ad campaign and not for general use — a verbal landing page of sorts.

You also might hear

call to action (CTA), email marketing, click-through rate (CTR), display advertising


Orphan

When text gets added to a web page, space limitations can cause the first sentence of a paragraph to break with only a single, longer word in it. These orphans — so called because they have a future but no past — make text difficult to read and clutter a design. If your page displays an orphan, it’s wise to choose a shorter word or adjust the overall length of text.

It’s kinda like

If you build a brick wall, chances are bricks on the ends will be too long and need to be cut to fit. Orphans are like those bricks.

You also might hear

user experience (UI), widow


Responsive design

Modern web design tools let designers create multiple versions of a page. They can detect a device used to view it, and then serve up the version of the design that best fits. It’s common to have responsive designs accommodating desktop view, as well as tablets and smartphones of various sizes.

It’s kinda like

Professional photographers usually carry several lenses to ensure an idea field of view for different types of images. Responsive design ensures your website is always viewed through the most appropriate lens.

You also might hear

user experience (UI), mobile view, desktop view, breakpoints


Row

Containers on a web page that display content like text and images horizontally, or side by side, are rows. In web design, placing rows above or below vertically placed content can enhance the layout by avoiding a sense of repetition.

It’s kinda like

Did you ever play the game Battleship as a kid? When you lined up that cruiser horizontally it was like placing web content in a row on the page.

You also might hear

user experience (UI), column

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