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25 Web Design Terms You Should Know

Web design term word cloud

The world of web design can be quite daunting to enter when you’re confronted with terminology and jargon that you don’t understand. To help get past this, I have put together a list of 25 common web design terms. Whether you are looking to build a website, or have one built for you, knowing these terms will help you get off to a better start.

301 Redirect

Permanently redirects you from one page to another. This is usually done to bring you from an old page to a new page on your website, or from your old website to your new one.

404 Not Found

You see a 404 error when you land on a page that does not exist. The page may have been deleted, or there could be an error in the URL that you have typed. Usually a 404 error is accompanied by an explanation of why the page does not/no longer exists and what you should do subsequently.

Below The Fold

Content that is “below the fold” is considered anything that is out of sight upon first glance at a website. Below the fold content requires scrolling to be seen.


A web browser caches (saves or downloads) files so when the page is revisited, it will load quicker.

Call To Action (CTA)

A CTA is anything that on a website page that prompts the visitor to act. The CTA itself can be anything from an image to a button, which has persuasive text that invites a particular action, for example moving you from one page, to the next, or to download something.


A cookie’s purpose it to determine information about visitors; what pages are visited, how often the visitor returns to the website, and information on the visitor themselves. This data is collected through small text files that are sent while on the particular website.

Content Management System (CMS)

A CMS is an application, or set of programs, that are used to create and manage online content, such as a website with text, images and videos.


A conversion is when a website visitor completes an action on your website such as making a purchase, submitting a form or subscribing to a newsletter.


Electronic commerce or, as it is better known, eCommerce, is the online purchasing and selling of goods an services through a website. eCommerce products or services can be digital (e.g. an eBook), or they can be physical. Digital products are delivered to you electronically, where physical products need to be shipped.


A favicon is a small icon that is customisable. They are usually 16x16 pixels in size - though they can be bigger – and are displayed next to your URL in the title bar. It also shows when bookmarked.

Adobe Flash

A multimedia system that is generally accessed through a web browser, it’s primarily used in websites to combine graphics, animation, video and sound. It is now rarely used, the new standard is HTML5.


HTML5 is the fifth major revision of the Hypertext Markup Language (HTML), which is the standard programming language for describing the contents and appearance of Web pages. The main change in HTML5 is the ability to combine graphics, audio, video, and interactive documents across desktop and mobile.

Hosting (Website & Email)

A website hosting server is where your website’s files are stored and maintained.

An email hosting services is basically the same thing as a website hosting server, with the difference that is stores emails.

Mobile Design

Mobile design is a seperate website design that optimises your website to be viewed on a mobile device. This means content is displayed vertically so that it fits within the mobile screen.


The way you move – or navigate – around a website is referred to as navigation. Navigation is primarily thought of as the “menu bar” which is commonly located either at the top or the side of the website, though it can also refer to links within the website.

Page Template

A page template is a layout for your website that is built through a CMS. A website may utilise many different template as pages might need to look different to suit the content being displayed.

Parallax Scrolling

A web design technique where the background of the website moves slower than the foreground, this creates an illusion of depth and immersion.


The appearance of the text on your website. It is made up of the font, size, and arrangement of the text.


Readability is how easily text can be read and understood. This not only refers to the content, but also the typography.


Your domain is the name of your website. People type this URL to visit your page. For example, my domain name is

Domain Registrar

The company where you have your domain name registered.

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)

SEO is the implementation of key words and content to help rank your website higher in search engines to achieve more organic visitors.


A document that shows a list of a website’s pages and content. A sitemap can also be a web page that offers links to all the pages within a website. They are use primarily used to help search engines find all the pages in your website.

User Experience

The interaction a user has with an interface. From a planning perspective, the user experience is typically defined in wireframes, but every aspect of the web design and development process—from wireframing to copywriting to design to programming—affects the user experience.

Visual Hierarchy

Visual hierarchy is when you position elements on your website to be viewed in a particular sequence that infers significance. This influences the way in which we perceive the information.

If you are still overwhelmed by the world of web design then contact me for help.


Toby helped us create a fantastic website at a very reasonable price. Toby is very proactive and diligent in his approach. I highly recommend Toby as a Wix expert.

Miles Bellman
Blackmore Capital

Toby McDowell | Google Reviews
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