Online & Website Term Glossary

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The Glossary is an educational tool to help people understand the different aspects of website development and internet marketing. 

The DPD was a set of regulations dictating how personal data was to be processed in the European Union (EU). The DPD was the precursor to the GDPR.

The GDPR defines a data subject as an individual whose online activity is being recorded and analyzed.

This is sometimes called a Discovery Phase and is the first phase of a website project. Action items for this phase include establishing goals, defining features, specifying functional requirements, prototyping, writing use cases, creating a sitemap and wireframes. At the end of this phase typically the sitemap, wireframes and Project Plan are signed off on.

Action items for this phase include final revisions, testing, QA, 301 redirects, analytics set up, training and deployment (making the site live).

The symmetry and repetition of key features on a site, allowing for fast and intuitive use of any web platform.


This covers all aspects of the user experience design. Action items include creating design concepts, designing templates, interior pages and common elements such as H1 tags (Header 1), hover, on states and mobile designs for phones and tablets. Note, the design process combines branding, user experience design, mobile design, and graphic design. Within these areas there are other aspects such as visual/narrative concepts, layout (composition, figure-ground), typography, color, and photography. A Successful design includes all of these areas in order to provide the most optimal user experience.

Action items for this phase include setting up the web server, installing the CMS, coding the design ‘theme’, mobile development, developing all features, content integration, SEO infrastructure set up, internal testing and quality assurance. The milestone for this phase is releasing the Alpha site for the client to review.

Here business listings are either submitted, pulled from data aggregators, or a combination of them both. Websites are often reviewed and placed in a category that fits their industry. 

They are used to aid local SEO and send relevant referral traffic to websites.

This is interchangeable with the Definition Phase, though as the name implies, there are always aspects to a project that need to be discovered and have not yet been defined. This is especially true for web applications and sites that include extensive functionality.

This refers to how much authority a website domain name has as determined by search engines. It takes time to build up Domain Authority and typically the longer a domain name has been in use the more Domain Authority it has. 

Domain Authority is a relative metric, you cannot expect to get a perfect score. Use Domain Authority to see how you compare with competitors in your industy.

Domain Name is the name location of a website. This is similar to a street address for websites.

When a user hovers over a menu link typically additional options that are structured under/within that section of the site drop down and give you the ability to click deeper into a website.

Drupal is a free, open source Content Management System (CMS), written in PHP and distributed under the GNU General Public License. Drupal is the 3rd most popular CMS behind WordPress and Joomla and is used by least 2.3% of all web sites worldwide (over 1,000,000 sites). Drupal is used by fewer sites than WordPress but more high traffic sites, such as The Economist,, Nasdaq, FastCompany, The Washington Post, Martha Stewart, Warner Brothers, United Nations, and MTV.

Founded in 2001 by Dries Buytaert, the name Drupal refers to the Dutch word for Village and Drupal is seen as one of the best CMSs for creating community websites.

According to Wikipedia: “As of April 2017, the Drupal community is composed of more than 1.3 million members, including 106,650 users actively contributing, resulting in more than 37,110 free modules that extend and customize Drupal functionality, over 2,445 free themes that change the look and feel of Drupal, and at least 1,116 free distributions that allow users to quickly and easily set up a complex, use-specific Drupal in fewer steps.

The standard release of Drupal, known as Drupal core, contains basic features common to content-management systems. These include user account registration and maintenance, menu management, RSS feeds, taxonomy, page layout customization, and system administration. The Drupal core installation can serve as a simple Web site, a single- or multi-user blog, an Internet forum, or a community Web site providing for user-generated content.

Drupal also describes itself as a Web application framework. When compared with notable frameworks Drupal meets most of the generally accepted feature requirements for such web frameworks. Although Drupal offers a sophisticated API for developers, basic Website installation and administration of the framework require no programming skills. Drupal runs on any computing platform that supports both a Web server capable of running PHP and a database to store content and configuration.”

These are like what they sound, small areas of content that populate a web page, usually displayed in a sidebar. One of the advantages of Drupal is how easily it is to turn blocks on and off per page, rearrange them and add them to other parts of the page, besides just a sidebar.


Blocks are often used for Calls to Action (CTAs) to convert site visitors into leads. Try using different CTAs to see which works best.

This refers to content which is stored and published from a database. Content is pulled from the database based on content types and fields and displayed on a page as opposed to the content being added via a WYSIWYG web page editor. Some of the advantages of dynamic content include: more flexible display on mobile devices, better integration with a Responsive Web Design and greater ability to display content in multiple places.

Is the ability to purchase products or services online. Many different aspects are involved with developing an e-commerce website. Shopping carts and collecting payment information, keeping payment information secure, and some may also include integration with product stock amounts, list of available service times, shipping cost integrated based on address and more. 

There is a lot to think about when it comes to developing an e-commerce website and every aspect is important.


The Facebook algorithm that ranks business & brand pages, groups, celebrities, or individual accounts to determine what posts are shown to users connected to those accounts. At the start, the major factor was engagement on the post but it has since been updated to include many other factors.


Creating an automated email workflow saves time in allowing an email service to send out an already developed email to users who meet certain requirements. There are many different rules/requirements that can be set up to trigger such emails. 

  • Form submissions
  • Purchase
  • Application Submission
  • Buyer Persona

Pro: Keeps customers engaged with your brand by sending targeted emails. Also, this saves time by automatically sending emails instead of having to custom craft a new one.

A rejection of an email to a user. A bounce code is generated upon the occurrence of an email bounce, providing information on why the email was rejected.

These allow organizations to schedule email campaigns that target specific users and buyer personas who have opted-in to receive their communications. These systems have many features including scheduling campaigns for specific days at specific times, segmented emailing lists by rules (buyer personas, purchase patterns, etc.), developing customized emails using brand colors, images, video, and more. 

Emailing can personally target specific users and deliver engaging content that is relevant and requested to them. It is a part of the customer relationship management process by keeping users involved in the brand. Email can lead to new sales or developing more qualified leads. 

Another service of email campaign systems is automation. See Email Automation for more.

Major Email Campaign Systems:

  • Hubspot
  • Constant Contact
  • Mailchimp
  • Pardot

The deliverability of an email describes the likelihood a sent email actually reaches the attention of a recipient.

The return on investment you receive from utilizing email marketing campaigns. 

A service through which you can send and receive emails. 

Interactions with individual users about your brand, and the products and services you provide.

Google Adwords feature that allows Adwords to adjust users bidding to increase conversions. 

Maximizing the amount of relevant data added to your contact record.

Data that is intentionally shared by a contact. 


A Facebook Contest, or sometimes called a sweepstake, is an easy way to increase Facebook Likes in order to increase visibility to a wider audience. The contest utilizes a ‘like gated’ promotion or offer that users need to complete in order to enter the contest.

A preview of information that Google displays on the sidebar of a Search Engine Results Page (SERP) when a user searches for a particular string of text. Such information can include summary text, featured images, links, hours of operation, and so on. This feature can also be referred to as a Rich Snippet

A feature is any significant aspect of a website from the large (e-commerce) to the small (print friendly pages). Since most every website feature can be designed/implemented in multiple ways as well as there can be a custom advanced version or a basic ‘out of the box’ one, it’s important to specify how a feature will be implemented.


Make sure the website features that comprise your website have been defined properly at the beginning of a project, so there are no surprises as to how it works and how much it costs.

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