A 404 Error, or Error page, is what is shown when a website cannot find the page the visitor was searching for. It is most commonly called a 404. This type of error indicates a website issue, not a browser problem. Individual websites can change their 404 error message, so the exact wording will vary. Common causes of 404 errors are when the administrator moves a page or edits the URL or when the visitor simply types the link in wrong.
4G stands for fourth generation mobile data protocol. Simply put, 3G and 4G are used to describe networking standards for cell phone data. 4G is the faster, newer standard, where 3G is the slower, older standard. Those standards are a good indicator of the speed consumers receive when choosing a wireless carrier. Companies like AT&T, T-Mobile, and Verizon used 4G to market their older 3G networks before true 4G came to market. Today, LTE is what is considered 4G in most parts of the world. To keep it really simple, it means faster Internet on mobile devices.
A/B Testing is the act of comparing two different versions of something, often a webpage or even a social media post, in order to see which one leads to more conversions. For example, a website administrator may choose two titles for an article and use each one for a set amount of time. After comparing data such as the number of clicks from the search results, the administrator will use the most successful version of the title.
ActiveX is an in-browser programming language made by Microsoft. It allows developers to design web apps that use interactive elements like buttons, media and other tools ActiveX controls, such as Internet Explorer’s Flash player, are often viewed as add ons.
The address bar is the home of the URL, or website address. In many browsers, the address bar also functions as a search box. It lives at the top of the browser.
AdSense is Google’s advertising marketplace. It allows website publishers to place display ads on their websites and mobile applications in return for a small cut of the profits. AdSense is a popular way to monetize a website or blog.
AdWords is Google’s advertising platform. It allows businesses to advertise their product or service in the search results. Advertisers choose a set of search terms related to their company and place a bid on those terms; the advertising space is â€œauctionedâ€ based on those preset bids. Because AdWords is cost per click (CPC) or cost per impression (CPM), businesses only pay when someone clicks on their ad, not by the number of views.
An affiliate is a person (usually a website publisher) who partners with a product/business to display banners or links on their website in return for a commission. For example, when a website uses the Amazon affiliate program, they receive a percentage of the profit when visitors to their website click the link to buy the product.
AJAX is a way to use coding languages that allow a website to load elements on a page without reloading the page. For example, a stock widget that updates in the sidebar without reloading the entire page uses AJAX.
Amazon is the largest web retailer in the world. It also runs Amazon Web Services which is one of the largest SaaS providers on the Internet.
Analytics is synonymous with statistics. In this case we’re talking website statistics. Visitors, unique views, page views, and bounce rate are all examples of stats that are contained within analytics.
An ANAME is a DNS record used for directing traffic from a website (or IP address) from one place to another. In many cases, it is used instead of a CNAME or MX RECORD. Its use is dependent on requirements of both the host and the domain registrar.
Apache is a web server technology that plays a pivotal role in how the Internet works. Essentially, it translates a web address (in the form of HTTP) to a URL.
An applet is a small application or utility. It differs from an app because applets usually have only one function. On the web, applets are usually made of Java.
Archives can have many connotations. It can be a past history of posts on a blog (usually done by the month), or it can also refer to a log of previous actions or software events. In general terms, an archive is the storage of past data.
When you see ASP, it can have two different meanings. The first is Application Service Provider, which means a service or company that provides applications, usually to enterprises. The second definition is Active Server Page, which is a page which is processed by an interpreter. It contains scripts and programing languages, and then is used for web server processes. It is part of the ASP.net framework, which is an web app programing standard.
The act of authentication or authenticating, refers to security certificates that pass through the standard of SSL. Specifically, it refers to the act of verifying the authenticity of a certificate versus a security hash (which can be anything like a credit card number or a password).
An avatar, in Internet technology terms, is a mug shot, selfie, or other image meant to represent the persona of an individual, group or business online. These are used all over the web, but are seen on social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter and Google+.
Aweber is an email marketing platform. It allows you to build and manage email subscription lists, send out newsletters, and embed sign up forms on a website.
AWS stands for Amazon Web Services. It consists of a number of software programs that provide a service, including Amazon Simple Storage Service (s3), Elastic Computing Cloud (ec2) and Cloudfront, as well as many others. It is one of the largest SaaS offerings on the Internet.
Azure is one of the main competitors for Amazon Web Services (AWS). It is owned and operated by Microsoft. It provides storage and servers for developers, as well as hosting for websites and Linux installations. It is a SaaS offering.
A backlink is a link given by another blogger or website owner to your own website. This is usually done in a reciprocal manner, often for SEO purposes.
A banner ad is an image or text ad that appears in a certain amount of space on a website. There are skyscrapers, horizontal skyscrapers and other sizes that publishers on the Internet rely on to make money. AdSense is the primary sources of banner ads on the Internet.
BCC stands for blind carbon copy. It is the act of sending an email to someone without letting them know who else received the same message. Think of it as a way to send along those cat memes without letting everyone in the email chain have access to everyone else’s email address.
Big Commerce is an e-commerce platform meant for setting up stores on the Internet. Its primary rivals include Shopify and WooCommerce. It is another example of SaaS.
Big data is the term given to a lot of data. Big Data is collected en mass from people on the Internet and in the real world, and then stored in huge databases. It is then analyzed using analytical software to discover trends and project other types of data.
Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency, meaning it is a currency that is used and traded online only. It is meant to allow users to complete monetary transactions completely anonymously without using a bank or broker. It is also what is called a math-based currency, since it is “mined” using super computers doing extremely difficult mathematics. There will only ever be a certain amount of Bitcoin in existence.
BitTorrent is a P2P (person to person) file transfer protocol. It is most often associated with piracy, but is actually useful for other things like transferring large files between people, and sharing other files amongst a large group of people. It is completely legal, though not everything done through it is.
Blogging is the act of writing on the Internet. Blogs are text-based articles in a chronological stream, meant to be read often by visitors. Blog posts are typically more informal then an article, but can encompass a wide range of topics from personal stories to how tos.
A bookmark, or a favorite, is something that is saved for later. This is most often used in browsers where visitors bookmark a website for future enjoyment.
A bot is a computer that is set up to work on a problem or action without supervision. It is most often associated with malware and botnets that are meant for stealing and storing information through the use of phishing and spam scams. Legal bots technically include those that index the Internet (known as spiders) as well as those set up to cure cancer and find really big numbers.
A botnet is a group of bots. The more computers you have acting towards one goal, the faster that goal can be achieved.
A bounce is defined as the action of a website visitor visiting exactly one web page and then leaving without visiting any other page.
The bounce rate is defined as the number of bounces divided by the total number of unique views.
Box.net is an online cloud storage platform. Its main competitors are Dropbox and Google Drive. It is used by consumers and enterprises to store and share files in the cloud.
A browser is a tool that is used to access and “browse” the Internet. Popular browsers include Chrome, Internet Explorer, Safari, and Firefox, though there are several hundred more available to those who dislike the mainstream.
There are two different definitions of buffer. First is a web company named Buffer, which takes content and then aggregates it to the various social networks over the course of a period of time. The other definition is the act of a video or audio file pre-loading to prevent skipping once it starts playing. This type of buffering is what allows YouTube videos to play in high definition without stuttering.
A cache is a small file which is saved on a computer or server that is meant to help distant (non-local) files load quicker by accessing locally stored content. For example, after you visit a website once, the browser will cache the logo on your computer so that it doesn’t have to download it each time you go to a new page that uses the same logo, allowing the webpage to load faster.
CAPTCHA is a method of determining the difference between a human and a bot operator. There is an image of a CAPTCHA box to the right. What it does is ensure that the person typing text into the form is actually a person and not a bot.
CC stands for carbon copy. It is the method by which you send a copy of an email to someone without them being the primary recipient. It is used most often in enterprise where businesses need clear lines of communication.
CDN stands for content delivery network. A content delivery network is a large group of server farms located throughout the world that store content in order to deliver that content to website visitors more efficiently and with swifter speed. For example, if you live in Michigan, USA, and access a website, it will load faster for you if it uses a CDN that has some or all of its content stored on servers located closer to your computer.
A certificate is a digital assurance measure which tells both ends of the digital transaction (Client and Server) that the destination is legitimate. These are transferred through SSL, which allows the client and the server to know that the certificate is legitimate. This is a method of securing transactions on the Internet.
chmod is a UNIX and Linux command which allows the user to change and access permissions on the file system. Most web servers run on Linux that can be controlled using chmod.
A client is one end of the digital transaction. When you visit a website, that is a digital transaction between your computer (the client) and the server (where the website is stored). Non-technically, a client can also be a customer or business partner.
The Cloud is the term given to information stored, accessed, and coded on remote servers. The cloud can be used to store information, transfer it between clients, use digital applications, and more.
Cloud computing is the use of the cloud to accomplish certain tasks. For example, using Amazon Web Services to store and distribute information through a native app would be a method of cloud computing.
CMS stands for content management system. A CMS is any system by which content is posted, edited, and distributed on the Internet. There are hundreds of these online, ranging from simple homespun code CMSs, to widely used options like WordPress, Drupal and Joomla.
A CNAME is a DNS record which is used to direct a domain or IP address from one web server to another. It helps the HTTP (Hyper-Text Transfer Protocol) establish identities of websites on the Internet. The settings for each CNAME is handled through a registrar or host.
Cost Per Click
Cost Per Click (or CPC)Â is a financial advertising term which denotes how an advertiser is charged for a banner advertisement. In this case they are charged only when a visitor clicks on the ad, not for every visitor that simply views the ad. Cost Per Click is also the method by which Google and other advertising vendors compensate publishers for website visitors clicking on banner ads placed on their website.
Cost per Mille
Cost Per Mille, CPM, or Cost Per Thousand Impressions, is an alternative to Cost per Click. It is the method of determining the cost of 1,000 impressions, or views, for either charging the advertiser or paying the publisher. It is the default method of paying for banner ads using Google’s ad services.
cPanel is an interface which makes it easier to manage a web server. It is one of the two most popular web server interface software platforms, the other being Plesk. cPanel is most often used in managed hosting situations because of its ease of use and inexpensive nature.
CPM is an abbreviation for Cost Per Mille or Cost per Thousand Impressions. It is a method of measuring how much to charge advertisers or reimburse publishers based on the number of impressions (per 1000).
CPP stands for Cost Per Point. Like CPM, it is the cost of an advertising campaign, only instead of per mille (thousand) it is the cost per rating point. It is most often used in video, radio and television. A rating point describes the number of people watching or listening.
CPRP is another acronym for Cost Per Rating Point. It is the cost of an advertising program per rating point. It is used in video (like on YouTube), radio and television. A rating point describes the number of people watching or listening.
CRM stands for Customer Relationship Management. It is a business term that describes strategies and solutions for developing, maintaining and managing customer relationships. It is one of the core acronyms of e-commerce.
CSS stands for Cascading Style Sheets. It, along with HTML, is one of the three core coding languages of web design, the other being PHP. CSS is responsible for telling the browser how to style certain HTML elements.
CTR stands for Click Through Rate. It is the rate at which visitors/viewers/readers click through a certain part of a website, usually a banner advertisement. The metric can also be useful in conversion and landing page analytics.
denial of service
Denial of Service is a type of attack perpetrated by hackers. It is the effort by a hacker to make one or more computers (or web servers) unavailable. The abbreviation is DoS. These attacks can come from one machine, or they can come from a distributed network of machines. Then it is called a DDoS attack (distributed denial of service). These attacks have become very common place over the last few years as hackers try to bypass web server security with brute force attacks.
DHCP is an acronym for Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol. It is used to assign IP addresses to connected computers. It is done through what’s known as a DHCP server, which a computer then connects to and gets an IP address which allows it to connect to the greater Internet.
Direct Digital Marketing
Direct Digital Marketing (or DDM) is a form of marketing where you (the product owner/marketer) correspond directly with a potential customer. This is done through an email address, a mobile phone number, or a web browser. The opposite of DDM would be banner advertisement where the audience is broader than a single person.
DNS, or Domain Name System, is the system of translating an IP address to a domain name. Every single web location on the Internet has an IP address or location. The DNS will translate that into a domain name so that we can all visit catmemes.com instead of having to remember a long number like 22.214.171.124.
A DNS Record, or Resource Record is a type of DNS service which points to a particular category of online location. For example MX Records, a type of DNS record, are responsible for translating the DNS IP address to a specific email address. Other types of DNS records include CNAME, ANAME, and more. Each DNS Record has a name, a type, a class, and is meant to be used for a specific type of Internet transaction.
A domain name is a word-based equivalent to a location on the Internet. Examples include yahoo.com, facebook.com and twit.tv. DNS servers translate IP addresses to domain names and back and forth, allowing users to remember names instead of the IP addresses of each site on the Internet.
A domain suffix is the part of a domain name after the period. There are a ton of these out there, but the most common are .com, .net, and .co. Other examples include .tv, .xxx, and .info. There are specific domain suffixes for each country. For example a domain out of the UK would be domainname.co.uk or from Canada would be domainname.ca. Governments also have their own domain suffix. The United States has .gov, while other countries use extensions of that most times, for example domainname.gov.uk.
Dropbox is an online cloud storage and file sharing platform. It works by placing a folder or app on a device or computer, and storing files in those folders both locally and in the cloud.
Drupal is a popular Content Management System (CMS). It is used for corporate and enterprise websites, but also for blogging and e-commerce. WordPress is its biggest competitor.
EC2 stands for Elastic Compute Cloud. It is a SaaS service provided through Amazon Web Services. It is primarily used for hosting applications and websites.
E-Commerce is the act of selling things online through a digital marketplace. There are several e-commerce platforms out there to choose from, including Shopify and BigCommerce. E-commerce has become one of the fastest growing ways to make money on the Internet.
EdgeRank is the algorithm that Facebook uses to determine which posts and statuses are put into a reader’s News Feed. They use this method instead of just showing everyone everything that each person/page posts. It has generated a huge amount of controversy because of the way Facebook generates money through sponsored posts. EdgeRank has not been confirmed as the name that Facebook gave this process, but it is what everyone on the Internet calls it.
An editor, in most Internet contexts, is a text box that allows you to type more than just a few words. Examples include the WYSIWYG editor, that allows you easily edit what you see, and an HTML editor that allows you to make updates using code. This word can also pertain to the person that edits the website.
An emoticon is a digital representation of expression on the Internet. These can be pictorial representations (like a yellow smiley face) or text representations like this 🙂
Encryption is the process of securing or encoding messages or data so that only someone with authorization can access it. Unlike a firewall, it doesn’t prevent hackers from stealing the data, but instead prevents them from reading it without some sort of encryption key to unlock the data’s true form.
Facebook is the largest social network in the world. It consists of people adding other people (or pages run by a business or personality) as friends and sharing content. People share photos, music, moods, and other status updates on the social network. Facebook has been the subject of a lot of controversy due to its privacy policies, or lack thereof, over the last decade.
A favicon is a small icon that is attached to a website. The favicon is displayed in a browser’s address bar or title bar, and is saved when someone favorites or bookmarks a website.
Specifically speaking, a feed is a stream of data that is distributed in some sort of order, usually chronological. Examples include Facebook’s News Feed, Twitter’s stream, and RSS feeds which curate content from websites.
A firewall is a software barrier that prevents unauthorized access to a computer system. It can also prevent users on a network from accessing certain places outside of the network. For example, schools and even China’s government uses a firewall to prevent access to certain websites.
Flash, also known as Adobe Flash or Shockwave Flash, is a browser plugin that allows computers to stream digital media, access interactive webpages and more. It has generated a lot of controversy in the past because it is one of the most insecure pieces of software ever made and is frequently targeted by hackers. HTML 5 hopes to make Flash unnecessary, since it has aspects which allows it to run video and games without a plug-in.
A follower is a person on a social networking site which subscribes to another person’s stream of content. Follower is specifically what Twitter calls people who subscribe to a particular person’s stream of Tweets. Other social sites can use different terms, like “friends” on Facebook.
A footer is the bottom element of a webpage. Most sites use this area for copyright messages and contact info. WordPress and other CMSs use this area for widgets.
A forum is a message board where people congregate to talk about certain topics. Usually forums are divided into boards, which are highly specific topic areas where you can only discuss certain things. Forums are one of the top places people go to for help on the Internet.
FTP or File Transfer Protocol is a technology that makes it easy to transfer files between a local system and a distant web server. It is the primary means of transfer used to place files on web servers, and it is used by most web hosts.
GitHub is a web storage and hosting company that specializes in software development. It offers web developers a means of storing and sharing files that are collaborated on by several designers and developers.
Google is the world’s largest Internet company. In reality, most of the money that it makes comes from advertising, so you could say that it is an advertising company that has its hands in many cookie jars. It is also the primary partner of the Android Open Source Project, which manages Android, the world’s most popular smartphone operating system.
Google Ads Display Network
Businesses design and create display ads with the Display Network, and Google will display them on websites participating in the AdSense program. Where AdWords displays ads on search results, Display Network will display ads on individual websites.
Google Drive is an online storage platform similar to Dropbox. Users can store and synchronize locally stored files to their Google Drive and have those files appear on other computers as well as in the cloud. Google Drive is also used for storage of other Google products like Google+ images, Gmail, and Google Docs.
Google+ is a social networking site, similar to Facebook. It is built around the idea of sharing content with specific groups of people, called circles. It is very popular amongst people who focus on SEO – the idea is that the more active you are on Google+, the better off your SEO efforts will be.
A gopher is an application layer protocol of TCP/IP. It is designed for distributing and searching for documents over the Internet. It is similar to a spider in many ways, but can be used for other purposes besides indexing a page for a search engine.
A hacker is a computer expert who accesses data on a remote or local network without authorization. The term has become synonymous with cybercriminal over the last five years.
A Hangout is a video chat that is conducted using Google+. There are two types, those not recorded, known simply as Hangouts, and Hangouts on Air, which are recorded. These conversations are meant to be video chats for between two and 10 different people using Google’s video technology.
A hashtag is a word that is turned into a link by the use of the â€œ#â€ number sign. It is used predominantly on social media, but has become a household phrase because of its use on Twitter. Examples include #Catturday and #hashtag.
The header portion of a website is the section directly above the navigation area on most websites. In HTML terms, it is the section that comes before the <body> tag.
Heartbleed is a server vulnerability that became public in 2014. Left unpatched, it would allow hackers to access data on web servers, bypassing security without leaving any trace behind. It is considered one of the biggest vulnerabilities ever found.
A hit is another term for a page view. When someone visits one page on a website, that view is considered a hit.
Hosting is simply the space that stores all the data that makes up a website. Web hosts store data on servers and distribute that data in the form of websites to visitors around the world. Examples of web hosts include MediaTemple and Host Gator.
HTML is a web coding standard; in fact it is the main web coding standard. It is responsible for the structure of the website, namely things like headings, paragraphs and links. Its counterpart, CSS, takes care of the styling of those elements.
Hypertext Transfer Protocol
Hypertext Transfer Protocol (or HTTP) is the system that the other protocols use to link locations on the web. In technical terms, it is the protocol the Internet (and the services that run it) use to request and send hypertext documents (HTML). The standard was passed in 1999, by the World Wide Web Consortium and the Internet Engineering Task Force.
A hyperlink is a link (or actionable button) which can be clicked on. That button or link will then take the clicker to another location. These are most usually used on the Internet, and known simply as links, though other platforms like PowerPoint, Word and PDF editing software use them as well for linking to local files and locations within documents.
Hypermedia is an extension of hypertext, which allows for the transfer and use of multimedia like photos, videos, and audio files. In technical terms, it allows for multimedia to be turned into a hyperlink.
Hypertext is meant to denote text which can be used as a hyperlink. It is this basis that makes up standards like HTTP, HTML, and other web protocols. It was first used in the 1960s. The idea behind the Internet is a series of pages in text linked together (known as the web). The use of Hypertext, and all the protocols that go along with it, allows those pages to be linked together.
Most companies host most of their storage and computing power onsite, and then just use the “cloud” for specific purposes. When a company uses IAAS, or infrastructure as a service, they outsource everything. Storage servers, computing power, networking, everything. Their goal is to save money on IT costs.
ICANN stands for the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers. This organization is responsible for assigning and selling top level domains (TLD). A TLD is simply a domain name like yahoo.com. The organization assigns these names the coordinates (IP addresses) that DNS servers use to bring the client and the web server together using a domain name.
IMAP or Internet Message Access Protocol, is a standard for accessing and sending email between a remote server and a local client. It is a protocol that is used in the underlying transfer protocols of the Internet to established communication between hosts. In this system, all emails are stored on local computers, and then sent between hosts, with little involvement from servers. POP3, the main alternative, differs by storing emails directly on servers instead of with the local client.
An impression happens when a visitor to a website visits a page on that website. It has become synonymous with hit and page view. Website owners pay attention to this metric as it is a core indicator of how much traffic their site is receiving.
IP Address stands for Internet Protocol Address. It is a numerical address that gets assigned to any connected device. It is used to uniquely identify each connected device on the Internet. These are assigned by a DNS server, which can then allow for communication between those addresses.
Internet protocol Version 4 is the system that provides the numbers for IP addresses. More specifically, it is the set of all possible numbers that an IP address can take. It uses 32 bit addresses, meaning there is a limited number of total addresses available to be assigned by DNS. The world has or is about to run out of IPv4 addresses, so most ISPs and web hosts have transitioned to the next version.
IPv6, or Internet Protocol Version 6, is the next step in the Internet protocol system, which provides the numbers for IP addresses. Version 4, the previous version, was 32 bit, which limited the number of connected devices with assigned IP addresses, specifically around 4 billion connected devices. IPv6 fixes that by using 128 bit addresses, which increases the total number of devices with IP addresses to a larger number (340,282,366,920,938,463,463,374,607,431,768,211,456 to be exact.)
Internet Service Provider, or ISP, is the name given to a company that provides Internet services to businesses and consumers. Examples in the U.S. include Comcast and COX, while international examples include Rogers and Free.
Joomla is a popular content management system (CMS). It is used a lot in enterprise situations for corporate websites, but it is also used for blogs and landing pages. Its main competitors include WordPress and Drupal.
Keywords are a search engine term for related words and categories. Search engines like Google use keywords to associate relevant terms with the content on the page. For example, a page about blueberry recipes could have the keywords blueberries and recipes. Search engines will take that relationship and associate it with certain searches for example, a blueberry pie search on Google might bring up that page that had the keywords blueberry and recipes. Website owners assign their own keywords using meta tags, which are then crawled by search engines.
Latency describes the amount of time a single data packet (made up of bytes) takes to get from one Internet node to another. It is measured in milliseconds. It is usually associated with the delay between you requesting something from a server and actually seeing the server deliver your request.
A link is another term for hyperlink. Basically, it is a text or image which is clickable. When clicked, it will take the clicker to another location, usually on the Internet.
LinkedIn is a social networking site. Unlike Facebook and Twitter, its purpose is to bring job seekers together with employers, as well as job seekers with other job seekers. Their goal is to be the place where people store and share their employment related data.
Linux is an open source operating system. There are many distributions (iterations) of Linux available, but the most popular consumer version is Ubuntu. The most popular enterprise version is Red Hat. Linux is also the underlying operating system used by Android.
LISTSERV is a software application which sends emails to a list of subscribers. It was invented in 1984, allowing for mass mailing lists. Owners of lists can automate the system using LISTSERV so that they can send out monthly newsletters and promotional emails to the people on their lists.
MailChimp is a commercial email LISTSERV style application. It allows website owners to collect, curate and manage email marketing lists. It also allows website owners to send out newsletters and promotional emails, and automated emails to subscribers on their email lists.
Malware is a new term that stands for malicious software. It is any software program that is meant to steal or bring harm to a computer or its data. There are many sub-categories of malware: viruses, worms, trojans, adware, and spyware, just to name a few. The use of these has caused a huge market for anti-malware products like those from Microsoft and McAfee.
Mashable is an online destination for news and media. It is one of the most popular “blogs” in the world.
Matt Cutts is a Google employee. He has become the public face of Google’s SEO and search quality team by publishing blog posts on the do’s and don’ts of search engine optimization. Click to visit Matt Cutts.
A meme is a photo, saying, or a concept that goes viral on the Internet. Examples include Angry Cat and Justin Bieber.
Meta tags or Meta data is a term that describes the use of small micro-data that is associated with a website. Search engines use this meta data to help it rank and display relevant searches when users search for specific terms. Examples of meta tags include website description, keywords, and author information.
Microblogging is similar to blogging (posting articles or information in a chronological order) but on a smaller scale. Usually microblogs are limited in scope and content. Examples of microblogging platforms are Twitter and Tumblr, both are used because of their ability to share small bits of information easily without the need to write a lot of words.
Microsoft is one of the largest technology companies in the world. It is famous for owning the most popular operating system in the world, Windows. It also created and owns the most popular office productivity software, Office (which includes Word, Excel and PowerPoint). It is based in Redmond, Washington.
A mirror is literally a copy of something, in this case usually a web server. Mirrors are used to backup and store data outside of their original locations. Mirrors are also useful for personal and business use when looking to backup data onto external drives and servers.
MX Records are a DNS Record type which control and direct email traffic between email addresses, hosts, and servers. The MX stands for mail exchanger. It assigns the domain that is responsible for directing and accepting emails and specifies the server which will direct that traffic.
A name server is a web server that creates a network service that translates a human recognizable text object (like a domain name) into a numeric address or identifier that can be recognized by the Internet systems and servers.
NAV is short for navigation. Usually this denotes the menu area on a website. Most websites use a NAV area at the top of the webpage below the header and logo. Some use a NAV area in the sidebar. On mobile responsive sites, NAV areas are often replaced by a button, which, when pressed, reveals the NAV area.
Online storage, or storing files online instead of locally on your computer, is becoming popular, and is one of the main things you do with cloud computing. Examples of online storage include Dropbox, Box.net, and Google Drive. People typically use online storage for backup and syncing between computers.
P2P technology stands for person to person, or peer to peer. It is also known as a P2P network, or a distributed network. It is used to transfer data between two clients (peers) without any interaction from a web server. It is popular in file sharing circles and has become (falsely) synonymous with piracy and illegal activity.
PaaS or Platform as a Service is a cloud computing category that provides the whole range of cloud services to clients: Software (SaaS) and Infrastructure (IaaS).This is for businesses who want to host their entire operation off-site.
A packet is literally a small group of bytes. Packets are the objects that are sent between the client and the server which eventually get compiled into a website or file. The act of swapping packets both between clients/servers and within a network is called packet switching.
PageRank (or PR) is the method that Google uses to rank websites on their search engine. The PageRank score is a number between 0 and 10. The higher the number, the higher the site will rank on Google for selected keywords and terms. It is the goal of SEO to increase PageRank.
PCV is a sales term that stands for Product Category Volume. It is used to measure sales within a product category, like shoes. The data is then used to answer questions like, how well did pink shoes sell compared to blue shoes?
Penetration, also known as a Penetration Test (pen test), tests a computer system or server system for vulnerabilities. In technical terms, it is an all out attack on the system (like a hacker) in order to find and patch vulnerabilities before a hacker can find them and steal data.
A permalink is a permanent link. The promise is that people can link back to that site without fear that the link will change. These are most often used on landing pages and blog posts. For example the permalink for this glossary item is: https://websitebuilders.com/glossary/permalink/
Pharming is an illegal practice that redirects Internet users from their preferred destination to a bogus site that looks exactly the same as their real destination. Criminals use this in order to steal passwords and banking information.
Phishing is the act of defrauding an Internet user of financial or security information by assuming the design and identity of a legitimate company. It is a form of Pharming.
PHP is an Internet scripting language used by websites. In many cases it is used to provide functionality outside of the realm of CSS and HTML. It is rendered by a browser using a PHP processor module, which generates the webpage.
A ping is a computer term that means to query a distant computer system (usually a server) to find out whether there is a connection available. When we talk about latency, it is measuring the amount of time it takes to ping a server at a distance. The shorter time between pings, the faster the data can load between the two systems.
A plugin is another term for add on. These are usually small web applications that can be used by fuller software systems to add functionality. For example, WordPress has a whole ecosystem of third party plugins which can be used to add functionality like better searches and statistic gathering.
POP3, stands for Post Office Protocol. It is a method of email communication which downloads messages directly to a computer from the ISP or server holding your email. The emails that it downloads is a copy of the email the remains on the server. The alternative to POP3 is IMAP.
A port is a computer networking term that simply means connection, for example, Ethernet ports. There are virtual ports as well, which are part of the TCP/IP network protocol. These allow applications and operating systems to share data between local and distant clients through specified software defined access points.
Pay Per Click or PPC is an advertising term. It is a method of payment between an ad network and an advertiser in which they pay for every time a person clicks on their banner advert.
The Point to Point Tunneling Protocol or PPTP is a Microsoft protocol that is used to create a Virtual Private Network (VPN). It is most often used in enterprise situations, allowing employees to connect to the company intranet remotely (outside of the company’s buildings).
A protocol is defined as the official procedure or way of doing things that determines the rules a specific technology must follow. Other words meaning about the same thing include standards and convention. Protocol is most usually used in technology terms when it comes to the inter-workings of network technology.
A proxy server is a tool used when constructing a firewall. A proxy server evaluates a request between a client and server, then continues the request if it is safeâ€•this entire time, the client and server think they are sharing information directly when they’re actually just working with the proxy. proxy refers to the act of spoofing itself as something elseâ€•for example, a computer that is acting as a client could be a proxy for a server, and vice versa.
RECAPTCHA is a system similar to CAPTCHA which allows computer servers and websites to determine if the submission of a form is coming from a user or a bot. Bots can’t read through the reCAPTCHA, so they will not be able to submit the form. It is a method of preventing spam on Internet forms.
Responsive design refers to a specific design paradigm which is becoming more and more popular on the Internet. Responsive design websites can look different depending on what size screen it is being viewed on (smartphone vs. computer screen, for example), but still have one code base. The alternative is a website that has two code bases and designs, one for the desktop, and one for mobile.
ROI stands for return on investment. It is mostly used in social media circles and in advertising/marketing. The idea is that you want to get as much out of the advertising as possible. The advertising being your investment, what you get out of it (sales or website views, for example), your return.
RSS stands for Rich Site Summary. It is a technology that strips everything but the content out of a website and then syndicates it in the form of a feed to clients and web browsers. It is the basis of most podcast systems (like those in iTunes) and was once the most popular way of getting news with an RSS feed.
SaaS (Software as a Service) refers to the running of software on a remote system. Examples include Amazon S3, Netflix, and Gmail.
A search engine is an online piece of software that searches for, indexes, and identifies websites and databases. Users search on a search engine for a term (known as a query), and the search engine then displays the results of the search (culled from previously indexed sites) in the most relevant way possible (using an algorithm to determine that relevance). The most popular example is Google.
Search Engine Optimization
Search Engine Optimization (or SEO) is the act of optimizing a website in order to rank higher in Search Engine Result Pages (SERPS) when a user searches for a related keyword or term. Good SEO techniques include building strong back links from other websites, and publishing unique well written content on a regular basis. SEO can be broadly categorized into white hat (Google approved) and black hat (Google non-approved) methods.
Search Engine Marketing
Search Engine Marketing is the paid version of SEO. Where SEO uses practices like integrating the keywords to appear in the search results, SEM instead pays search engine companies to be included in those search results with platforms like Google AdWords.
Simply put, a session is a timeframe set aside where two systems (computers/servers) can be in communication. An example of a session is the time between the opening of a webpage and the closing of a webpage.
SFTP is similar to FTP (File Transfer Protocol). It is meant for transferring files easily between a local computer and a distant web server. The S in front of FTP in this case stands for secure. SFTP differs from FTP in that respect, since it requires authentication.
Shopify is one of the Internet’s largest e-commerce platforms. It specializes in providing the software needed to run an online store, design that storefront, and fulfill orders from the store. It is an example of SaaS.
The sidebar is the area on the website to the right or left of the main content, but under the header and above the footer. It is the place usually reserved for advertisements, social sign up forms, and other widgets.
The sitemap (or site map) is a small file that goes along with a website, usually in XML form. Search engines can use it to make indexing a website easier and more efficient, as the sitemap has each and every page easily mapped out on it in the form of hyperlinks.
A skyscraper is a big building, but in the context of technology and marketing, we’re talking about a banner advertisement that measures 160 pixels wide by 600 pixels tall.
SMTP stands for Simple Mail Transfer Protocol. It is one of the essential standards for transmitting email from a server to a local client. It manages the order of messages that are sent and received, as well as the timing of those actions.
Social media is the term given to websites and apps that allow users to create and share text, images, links and other content socially. The idea is that there is a network of people you know or want to know, and you friend or follow them. Terms related to this are social network, social media marketing, and social media network. Twitter and Facebook are both social media platforms.
social media marketing
Social media marketing is the act of using a social network for marketing purposes. Usually this entails distributing your content on the major social networks, building your web of influence, and getting your audience to click on links back to your landing pages and websites.
SoundCloud is an audio-focused social media site and online storage service. It focuses primarily on sound, as its name implies. People can listen to music and podcasts on the site, follow artists and each other, and share the content on their favorite social networks.
Spam is used to refer to email messages that are either malicious or solicitous in manner. Either way, they are unwanted and not asked for by the user.
A spider is an online automated program used by search engines to extract, read, and index sites on the Internet. It takes the information that it mines from the sites and sends it back to the search engine, which then ranks it by its relevancy to certain topics. It is the primary way Google gets information out of the Internet in order to display it when a user searches for something.
SSH stands for Secure Shell or Secure Socket Shell. It is a command interface that allows for easy access between secure systems. For example, it is similar to FTP, only instead of a GUI (graphical user interface), you are presented with a command line and have to transfer files between systems using that interface. It is mostly used for controlling and sending files to web servers.
SSL or secure sockets layer, is a protocol used on the Internet to secure Internet transactions via certificate authorizations. Each end of a SSL transaction needs to have the proper identification in order for the transaction to remain secure. SSL will also manage encryption of the data that is being sent between the client and the server.
TCP/IP or Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol, is a communication system that controls the Internet. It is used to manage the sending and receiving of packets between client and server or client and client, as well as handling where those packets are meant to go using the DNS system.
A theme is most commonly used in a content management system (CMS) or e-commerce software package. These are pre-made website designs that allow non-designers to have unique and beautiful websites without the need to learn code. Most CMS platforms have a large ecosystem of paid and free themes.
A trackback is a ping that a website receives when another website links to it. For example if website-a.com links to website-b.com, website-b.com will receive a trackback. These are read by search engines like Google to determine relevance and PageRank.
A trojan is a type of malicious program that sneaks past a computer’s defenses in the form of a harmless program, and then either steals information, takes control of the system, or does something equally malicious.
A troll, or Internet troll, is a person on the Internet who, under the cover of anonymity, tries to derail an online conversation. This is usually done through silly comments, or unnecessary (and rude) language. A common example of this are the people who shout “FIRST!” when they are the first person to comment.
TTL stands for time to live. It is a value controlled by the Internet Protocol package that tells a router (a network tool for controlling local access to the Internet), if a packet has been on the network too long, and when to discard that package. When a packet is discarded, this results in lost packets, which can cause the Internet connection to stutter.
Tumblr is an online microblogging platform that specializes in small text blog posts and images. It is one of the largest social networks on the Internet, and is currently owned by Yahoo! It has become a haven for pornography in addition to its uses for sharing and interacting with genuine content.
A tweet is a 140 character or less text transmission that is sent over the social network Twitter.Â Tweets get posted and seen by people who subscribe (or follow) that particular person. It has popularized the use of #hashtags and @replies, both of which are used to communicate issues (#hashtags) and the name of users (@replies).
Twitter is one of the Internet’s most popular social networks. It is similar to Facebook in that status posts (called tweets) get posted and seen by people who subscribe (follow) that particular person. It differs in that all tweets are limited to 140 characters and images can only be posted as links. It has popularized the use of hashtags and @replies, both of which are used to communicate issues (hashtags) and users (@replies).
Ubuntu is the most popular consumer distribution of Linux. Linux is an open source operating system. Ubuntu is popular due to its ease of install, unique user interface, and large collection of software. It is free to use and can be distributed under the GPL license. It is produced by Canonical.
An upload refers to the action of transferring a file (or set of packets) from the local client to a distant server. The term can also be used in terms of any packets sent to a server, even if it is just a form submission on a website. Upload speeds are one of the two metrics used to measure local Internet speeds (the other metric is download speeds).
A URL or Uniform Resource Locator, is the reference to a location on the Internet. This comes in the form of a top level domain like www.yahoo.com. It has three parts, the URL protocol identifier (which is usually http://), the prefix (www.) the domain name (yahoo), and the domain suffix (.com usually).
Vimeo is an online social network dedicated to sharing and distributing video files. It has become one of the most popular video sites on the Internet behind YouTube. It usually focuses on curated content instead of the free-range of content that YouTube specializes in.
A vlog stands for video log. It is the video equivalent to a blog (which itself stands for weblog). Vlogs are basically a person sitting in front of a web cam and talking for a period of time and then sharing it on a video sharing site like YouTube or Vimeo.
VMWare is a server and virtualization software service which specializes in creating and distributing server software that will create virtual machines. A virtual machine is an emulation of a real computer or server. It allows one hardware server to run several instances of an OS or other piece of software. VMware specializes in the production of software that makes this possible.
W3C or World Wide Web Consortium is a standards organization that is responsible for forwarding and maintaining the protocols that the Internet runs on. For example, it is responsible for creating the new standard HTML5, which will be the next version of the scripting language that the Internet uses for structure.
A web app is an online application. It has most of the abilities of a native application, only it runs in the browser, and is accessed through a URL like a normal website. Examples of web apps include Pandora radio, Facebook, and browser based games like Bejeweled.
A web server is a computer that hosts and distributes content to clients who request the data over the Internet. These servers are ran through web hosts like MediaTemple and Host Gator. Most users of the Internet donâ€™t give web servers much thought, but without them, there would be no Internet, at least not the way we know it.
WhoIs is an online utility that returns searched information on the owner of a domain name or IP address. A WhoIs search will return information such as the owner’s name, email address, phone number, postal address along with information on where the domain is hosted and the domain’s registrar.
A widget is a small HTML/CSS instance that is outside of the main content of a webpage. Most usually these are placed in the sidebar or footer of a website, and add functionality, like social share buttons and tag clouds.
WooCommerce is a popular e-commerce platform that is built upon the WordPress content management system. It is meant for small and medium sized web stores, and offers the ease of use of WordPress with added e-commerce functionality like that provided by Shopify and BigCommerce.
WordPress (or WP) is an open source blogging and content management system (CMS) platform. It is the most popular CMS in the world with close to 75 million sites currently running the software on the Internet. It comes in two forms, WordPress.com which is hosted and managed by Automatic (the creators of WordPress), and WordPress.org, which is the open source version that is hosted by the website owner. It is also the most common blogging software on the planet.
WWW stands for world wide web. It is the most common domain prefix in use today, though most websites don’t use it any more. It is also a synonym for the Internet, and is the source of the diminutive term web, which is also used to describe the Internet.
WYSIWYG stands for What You See is What You Get. It is an online website editor that is popular in most content management systems (CMS). Basically, what it does is allow you to type in text, add graphics and widgets, etc. and know what the webpage will look like as you work. It is an alternative to an HTML editor, which requires that the user knows HTML.
XML stands for Extensible Markup Language. It is an Internet language that can be decoded by browsers and search engines for encoding HTML documents. It is also used in association with HTML to create human-readable documents on the Internet, though its functionality is not front-facing, meaning that most users don’t even know that it is in use.
YouTube is the most popular video sharing site on the Internet. It is also one of the most popular websites in existence. People use it to share, talk about, and watch online video. The common joke is that it is used most often for watching cute cat videos, though that isn’t entirely true, as there are hundreds of thousands of videos on the service in a wide range of topics. It is owned by Google.
A website builder (or website creator) is online software anyone can use to create a website. They are an all-in-one package to get a website online; they are simple to use, cost a very small amount (usually a few dollars per month), include hosting and come with technical support. If you want to create a website without paying a programmer, you need a website builder.