This is a world full of titles and complicated terms. To make it a bit more digestible, we have an overview of some of the most common words, used in this business. You will hear or read them everywhere, so it might be good to familiarize with them.
User experience buzzwords
This is typically a quick and dirty way of generating and communicating ideas and concepts. We use this to quickly gather feedback internally, from users and clients. This way we can find out if we are on the right track early in the process.
Like Mock-ups, prototypes are used to test design and concepts. We use prototyping to get more in depth knowledge of the concept. Often we use this to test out interactions and our proposed solution to the users problem. This can be done on a small scale with simple printouts of design, or on a bigger scale where we actually build an interactive prototype.
A sitemap is a list of pages contained in a website or mobile app accessible to users. It’s used as a planning tool to structure the outline of the concept, the relationship between the different pages and other components.
Usability is the act of making sure that a piece of software can be used by specified consumers to achieve quantified objectives with effectiveness, efficiency, and satisfaction in a qualified context of use.
User testing focuses on measuring a product's capacity to meet its intended purpose. Setting up a user test involves carefully creating a scenario, or realistic situation, wherein the user performs a list of tasks using the product, while observers watch and take notes.
Several other test instruments such as scripted instructions, paper prototypes, and pre- and post-test questionnaires are also used to gather feedback on the product being tested. The aim is to observe how people function in a realistic manner, so designers can get feedback on what works and what doesn’t. Techniques popularly used to gather data during a user test include think aloud protocol, hall-test, A/B testing etc.
User flows simply describe the user’s action from arriving on the website to completing their task or tasks. We map out all the possible objectives of the project and compare them to the business objectives. From this, it’s easy to create a flow that guides the users to their end goal.
Also known as ‘screen blueprints’, wireframes are a visual guide that represents the skeletal structure of a website or app. They are created for the purpose of arranging elements to best accomplish a particular purpose. The purpose is usually getting a user to interact with something or get information. The wireframe depicts the page layout or arrangement of the website’s or app’s content, including interface elements and navigational systems like a menu, and how they work together.
It usually lacks typographic style, color, photos or any form of graphic elements, since the main focus is functionality, behavior, hierarchy, and priority of content. In other words, it focuses on what a screen does, not what it looks like. Wireframes can be pencil drawings or sketches on a whiteboard, or they can be produced with the help of applications.
Digital Design Buzzwords
A grid is a two-dimensional format made up of a set of horizontal and vertical columns used to structure content. We often use this when designing to get structure and alignment and most important, to get everything responsive.
Keys views describe the core sites of the project. These pages are often where most elements are represented. We always start by designing the key views as they allow us to get a very accurate feedback on design, without designing the whole thing.
A landing page could be defined as “If the user can land there”. Most often the front page of a website, but in some cases there can be multiple landing pages on a website. Often, in marketing, it’s defined as a single web page that appears in response to clicking on a search engine optimized search result or an online advertisement.
Responsive Web Design
This is an approach to web design aimed at allowing web pages to be viewed in response to the size and format of the device the user is viewing it on. This means that, no matter what screen size (Mobile, tablet or desktop) you are viewing a website on the design will always adjust to that particular size.
After the design of Key Views, there is often a lot of other pages and elements to be designed. This is what we call roll out. Because the key views is already made and approved, the task here is to make sure that everything else follows the rules and design of the concept made in the steps earlier.
CMS (content management system)
A CMS is a digital solution that supports the creation and modification of digital content, usually supporting multiple users working in a collaborative environment. It’s a way for non-developers to manage their website or web- and mobile applications.
Domain names serve to identify Internet resources, such as computers, networks, and services, with a text-based label that is easier to memorize than the numerical addresses used in the Internet protocols. So in short terms it’s a webadress like www.companyname.com
An Internet hosting service is a service that runs Internet servers, allowing organizations and individuals to serve content to the Internet. There are various levels of service and various kinds of services offered. In other words, this is where all the code is.
iFrames allow a visual HTML browser to be split into segments, each of which can show different code. That way, a website can show content from a completely different hosting solution.
A hybrid application (hybrid app) is one that combines elements of both native and Web applications. It will often need to be installed through iTunes or Google play, but in reality most of it will act as a website wrapped in a shell.
Native applications are developed for a specific platform and installed on a computing device - most commonly a smartphone.
Web applications are generalized for multiple platforms and not installed locally but made available over the Internet through a browser. Just like a standard website.