Vol 1: The Basics
It’s time for your company’s website design meeting. You’re either meeting internally to discuss a plan or you are meeting with an agency to figure out the next steps. Before you go into either one of these situations you need to make sure you are armed with the latest and greatest website related terminology. Here is a list of 10 need-to-know terms before your next website design meeting begins.
- Responsive: This refers to your website automatically resizing to fit the device it’s being viewed on in the most optimal way. Basically is the same thing as mobile friendly. Have you ever noticed how a website that you view on your desktop computer looks different than when viewed on your phone? Well that’s because it’s in responsive mode. If you want more info on this topic check this out.
- Hamburger Menu Button: A little menu icon at the top of the screen that looks like three or four little lines that’s visible when a website is in responsive mode. It resembles a hamburger, with a little imagination. It signals that by pressing it a menu of some sort will appear, usually the main navigation. As the site moves into responsive mode on a mobile device it replaces the main navigation.
- Wireframe: In school you created outlines before writing a paper, in web design a visual outline is created to illustrate the framework of the website before any design gets started. It’s a very basic mock-up of where all the bits and parts of a website go.
- Content Management System (CMS): A way for non-website design types to be able to update editable areas of a website. A back-end portal is installed that allows anyone with given permissions the ability to login and make updates to a website. The developer works with the client to identify the areas the client wants to change.
- WordPress: A very popular Content Management System (CMS) that is free and is open-source. Which means that a community of users are able to create plugins and modifications to the source code. It’s one of many content management systems out there and it’s very popular. It may or may not be a good choice for a website design project.
- HTML: HTML is the basic underlying code of your website. It tells the browser how the information structure, the “skeleton” of your website is structured.
- CSS: We just told you about the skeleton of your website, the HTML. CSS is the skin, hair, height, and eye color of your website. CSS is also what tells the browser how to adapt to different screen sizes.
- Browser: A program that allows you to browse web pages. Examples are Google’s Chrome Browser, Apple’s Safari Browser, and Microsoft’s Internet Explorer Browser. There are many different versions and sub-versions of browsers and websites do not appear the same on all of them.
- Web Safe Fonts: Your phone, your computer, and your tablet come with a few fonts built into them. While each mobile or desktop operating system is different and has different fonts, they do all have some fonts in common. We call these “web safe” fonts because they occur on everyone’s system and we can safely use them.
- Drop Down: A function of a navigation menu that allows the user to see a submenu. The menu usually “drops down” from the main menu allowing the user access to other choices under the menu’s main item.