Website Design Glossary

Your survival guide through the jungle of website design industry jargon

Welcome to your essential resource for website development and design. Aimed at both beginners and seasoned professionals, this comprehensive guide demystifies the most fundamental terms and concepts critical to creating, optimizing, and managing digital websites. From the basics of HTML and CSS to the nuances of responsive design and user experience, our glossary offers succinct definitions that provide a quick yet thorough understanding of the technical and artistic aspects involved in website design. Ideal for developers, designers, project managers, and web design enthusiasts alike, this glossary is a valuable tool for anyone looking to enhance their digital literacy and create more engaging, accessible, and effective websites in the dynamic digital landscape.


  • Accessibility: The practice of making websites usable for as many people as possible, including those with disabilities. This includes considerations for screen readers, keyboard navigation, and more.
  • API (Application Programming Interface): A set of rules, protocols, and tools for building software applications. APIs specify how software components should interact and are used when programming graphical user interface (GUI) components.


  • Bounce Rate: The percentage of visitors to a website who navigate away from the site after viewing only one page, indicating engagement levels.


  • CSS (Cascading Style Sheets): A language used to describe the presentation of a document written in HTML or XML. CSS describes how elements should be rendered on screen, on paper, in speech, or on other media.
  • CMS (Content Management System): A software application or set of related programs used to create and manage digital content. Examples include WordPress, Joomla, and Drupal.


  • Domain Name: The unique address where a website can be found on the internet, such as


  • Email Marketing: The act of sending commercial messages, typically to a group of people, using email to promote products or services, or to nurture leads.
  • Engagement: The interaction between users and brands on online platforms. Engagement can be measured in likes, shares, comments, and other forms of user interaction.


  • Front-End: The part of a website that users interact with directly. It includes everything that users experience directly: text, images and videos, navigation, and interaction.
  • Favicon: A small, iconic image that represents your website in a browser tab, bookmarks, and other shortcuts.
  • Framework: A standardized set of concepts, practices, and criteria for dealing with a common type of problem, which can be used as a reference to help approach and resolve new problems of a similar nature.


  • Ghosting: In digital marketing, ghosting refers to the practice where ads or content unexpectedly disappear or are not displayed to the audience, often due to being blocked or filtered by ad blockers, or when platforms restrict visibility due to policy violations or quality issues. It can also refer to the abrupt end of communication with no explanation in the context of professional relationships or online interactions.
  • Google Analytics: A web analytics service offered by Google that tracks and reports website traffic, providing insights into user behavior and website performance.


  • HTML (HyperText Markup Language): The standard markup language used for creating web pages. It provides the basic structure of sites, which is enhanced and modified by other technologies like CSS and JavaScript.
  • HTTPS (HyperText Transfer Protocol Secure): An extension of HTTP that is used for secure communication over a computer network, widely used on the Internet. In HTTPS, the communication protocol is encrypted using Transport Layer Security (TLS).


  • Information Architecture: The structure and organization of information on a website. It involves the categorization of information into a coherent structure, preferably one that most people can understand quickly.


  • JavaScript: A programming language used to create dynamic content on websites, including animations, interactive maps, and more. It runs on the user’s web browser without the need for server-side processing.


  • Keyword: Words or phrases used in digital content to improve search engine rankings. Keywords are used in SEO and SEM strategies to attract and drive targeted traffic to websites.


  • Landing Page: A single web page that appears in response to clicking on a search engine optimized search result or an online advertisement. The landing page will usually display directed sales copy that is a logical extension of the advertisement or link.


  • Meta Tags: Snippets of text that describe a page’s content; they don’t appear on the page itself, but only in the page’s code. Common uses of meta tags are to include information for search engines, like keywords and descriptions.



  • Prototyping: The process of creating an incomplete model of a website or web application. Prototypes are used for user testing and to refine and validate the design before moving into development.


  • Responsive Design: An approach to web design that makes web pages render well on a variety of devices and window or screen sizes, from desktop computers to mobile phones.


  • SEO (Search Engine Optimization): The practice of increasing the quantity and quality of traffic to your website through organic search engine results. It involves making changes to your website design and content that make your site more attractive to a search engine.
  • SSL Certificate (Secure Sockets Layer Certificate): A digital certificate that provides authentication for a website and enables an encrypted connection. It’s a security protocol that creates a secure link between a website and a visitor’s browser.


  • Target Audience: A specific group of consumers most likely to respond positively to your marketing campaigns. This group is defined by similar characteristics, such as demographic and psychographic traits.


  • UI (User Interface): The point of interaction between the user and a digital device or product, like the touchscreen on your smartphone or the navigation on a website.
  • User Persona: A semi-fictional character based on your target audience’s research and data, which represents the needs, goals, and observed behavior patterns of your target audience.
  • UX (User Experience): Encompasses all aspects of the end-user’s interaction with the company, its services, and its products. The goal of UX design in business is to improve customer satisfaction and loyalty through the utility, ease of use, and pleasure provided in the interaction with a product.


  • Viral Marketing: A business strategy that uses existing social networks to promote a product. Its name refers to how consumers spread information about a product with other people, much in the same way that a virus spreads from one person to another.


  • Web Analytics: The measurement, collection, analysis, and reporting of web data for purposes of understanding and optimizing web usage.
  • Web Hosting: A service that allows organizations and individuals to post a website or web page onto the Internet. A web host, or web hosting service provider, is a business that provides the technologies and services needed for the website or webpage to be viewed in the Internet.
  • Web Standards: Guidelines established by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) for building and rendering web pages. They promote consistency in the design code that makes up a web page and ensure that it can be accessed by as many devices and browsers as possible.
  • Wireframe: A visual guide that represents the skeletal framework of a website. It is used for planning a site’s structure and functionality.