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Important Terms and Definitions Related to Web Development

Below is a list and definition of the top terms in the Web Design, Development, SEO and E-commerce industries. If you are confused by any of the words after this document, please feel free to contact us and we will help you figure out what the worlds mean and how they apply to you.

Web Design – This is a field where the primary goal is to make your website look aesthetically pleasing to the user and also a secondary goal of web design is to ensure the website organizes information in a way that makes the site easy to use and meets the goals of the website.

Web Development – This is the field that deals with actual functionality of a website. This can be simple functionality as in url structure and rewrite programming, or more complex as in building sites that can store personal information and interact with the users on the website. Web Development usually is closely tied to Database Development, since most websites need to store persistent information and call that and save that information based on the situations the users are in.

E-Commerce – This is the process of selling something on your website and taking that order, fulfilling the order for the customer. Most e-commerce software is prebuilt, however we build proprietary software for our customers based on a core set of e-commerce libraries we built so we can help you achieve any website goal that you may have or need.

HTML – The way data is parsed and displayed on the web. Even the most complex of websites, all the data is interpreted as HTML by the browsers.

SEO – A common way to get free or virtually free traffic through your website using search engines such as Google. The goal here is to make your website rank as highly as possible for the keywords that will help you make the most from your business.

SEM – Stands for Search Engine Marketing, which is very much related to SEO or Search Engine Optimization. Don’t let the buzz words that some companies try to use, confuse you. The goal of SEM is to get the most out of the optimization you are performing on your website for the specific goal of higher search rankings in the search engines.

SERPs – Stands for Search Engine Results Page, and really the goal is to see your site in the top SERPs when dealing with Search Engine Optimization. This is a common term you will here in the industry and it just related to the results when you type in a query, and where your site corresponds to the results that are displayed.

Domain Name – Simply speaking it allows the ability to map a friendly human name to a computer address also known as an IP Address. Most websites are accessed through the web, from machine to machine using IP Addresses. A long time ago, someone realized that no one would remember numbers; also if you wanted to move your server from one server to another, the IP Address usually changes. So someone decided to create something that maps IP’s to Domains, which means you can just change the IP at any point and just repoint it to the existing domain.

Cookie – This is not what you think it is. A cookie is not something you eat for dessert, at least when it comes to the computer and web industry. A cookie is a way that allows different pages to store information across different pages. The one thing beginners don’t know about the web, especially since cookies are used so often on the web, is that every time you changes pages, information from the previous page isn’t passed on to the next page (unless you pass information through Query String, which that would just clutter up the url so that’s not a general practice anymore). The use of cookies allows information to be stored in the cookie and then all subsequent pages can access the cookie and access the information stored within it. A general practice is to store the UserId of the user in a cookie. So each page can see the UserId, and then that information about that user can be pulled out of the database.

CSS – This term is related to web design, when creating a fancy looking website, CSS or Cascading Style Sheets is a very important thing. It’s important that when you use a style sheet that you import it and use it to over right existing styles. This allows your HTML code to look a whole lot cleaner and helps search engines who might be indexing the data on the page, a whole lot easier to read.

PPC – Stands for Pay Per Click, which is a type of online advertising where you pay a company to list your ad on their website, when someone clicks on your ad to visit your website, that click will cost you a certain amount of money which is either discussed ahead of time, or that you can adjust.

SSL – Stands for Secure Socket Layer, and is the principal technology behind protecting personal information from users on the web. Without it, there would be really no way to protect users from getting hacked over the web for their personal credit card information. An SSL Certificate allows information between your computer and the server in which the website sits, to have information travel through the web encrypted. This includes your personal information such as credit card numbers. If you ever visit a web form where you are filling in your phone numbers or address, or even more secure information such as Social Security, EIN, Credit Card Numbers, or Bank Account numbers, the form needs to have SSL, or you should find another site to visit, because there’s a decent chance your information might get stolen from an outside company and you are taking a risk whenever you don’t.

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