Empower Yourself – Learn The Web Jargon

Teaching a Web Content Management class recently I included a “jargon” take home test that was handed to our attendees at the end of the class. I have always been very sensitive to computer jargon since my college days – where I studied computer science.

Peter Beare, BeareWare I actually have always been uncomfortable with using it – in particular when you know the jargon to be confusing to the person that is not an actual computer geek.

Isn’t Web Jargon just a continuation of Computer Jargon?

Definitely a byproduct started by the smartest guys in the room (the computer geek – not the former Enron Directors)… The computer industry is around 30-40 years in age and with technology changing rapidly jargon has always been a big part of its culture. But I must say with the web world (around 10 years old) appears to have taken jargon to a new dimension. And being in complete sync with the web – every new process that is established opens up the door for a new term of jargon. This new jargon will quite often appear in sales and marketing of online products which is really an issue from my point.

So Jargon is Used Deliberately in Online Selling?

I think it is – and it is definitely used to increase sales. Being the sales person responsible for selling web services for BeareWare I am very aware of the confusing aspects that the most computer literate folks have in some of the key areas of web design, web development, domain management, web hosting and web content management. But I have to admit this could not be exemplified more than buying a domain name which on some registrars is at the point of absurd in terms of what you are offered (or asked to buy) – as part of the domain registration process. Quite a lot of the jargon has simply been created to give validity to “questionable add-on” sales products and to cash in on the lack of knowledge of the person making the domain registeration.

Do you Want Fries With That?

I was recently buying domains for a client on a registrar (for this article lets call the registrar Stop Momma). My client maintains a domain account with Stop Mommy and I logged in ready to acquire the new domain names we needed. I was buying 2 groups of domains so I typed in the names of each domain I wanted. All were available except one – which came up with our first piece of jargon – It was a “Premium Domain” that was being sold thru the registrar. So first question – what is a “Premium Domain” name. Interestingly enough each domain was costing $8.90 each but this “Premium Domain” name was selling for $3,195.00. (that’s right – over three thousand dollars).

In this case the phrase “Premium Domain” name is used by all registrars and also domain brokers (companies that broker the sale of domain names). Premium “implies” some significant value in the domain which may OR may not actually be the case. So it was a BIG NO to the Premium Domain. (I had passed the first “JARGON TEST”).

I have to say the screens were so totally confusing (at the very bottom of the screen) is the actual “proceed” to checkout. The main screen is full of options and suggestions (all with cost attached to them). One option asks would you like to make your registration “private”. A private registration is where you get to “hide” the actual owner of the domain name from public view.  For the life of me I do not know why you want to do this – and to be frank I don’t know why ICAAN allows for this. The claim is that the spammers will be able to access your name and e-mail address and will bombard you consistently with spam. From BeareWare’s point of view it simply makes our job harder when a client calls needing help with their domain name (and of course they don’t know who the actual registrant is as their registering is a private registration).

Next at our Stop Momma Registrar we are offered the entire gamut of web services ranging from “Web Hosting” to “Custom Web Design”. Of course the whole purpose for my visit to Stop Momma was to register domain names (and only register domain names) – but you could imagine the small business person at this point in time – do we need private registration – do we need web hosting – (and of course there is reinforcing marketing behind every question – quite often laced with the some fear overtone if you don’t. select the choice).  Already you should be seeing the importance of arming yourself with Jargon knowledge – you will pay for it if you don’t…

So after I get thru the Web Services offers I finish up with a page listing every “similar” domain name on the market that may be available including other extensions such as .net., .org, biz, etc). The funny thing about this offer is the web page states “You have made a premium domain name purchase” – why you should now secure other domain name extensions. This is a classic – I was offered a “premium domain’ for over $3,000.00 in one of the initial sales screens – but now for just $8.90 I own a “premium domain” – and should registered every extension and any remotely similar domain to protect my investment.

I finally pay my account at Stop Momma and then end up on an another sales page (that has my payment receipt embedded in it). To honest I am thankful I am finished. Although this is just a small example of the jargon that is used in the web industry – I think the message is clear that may vendors on the web will sell with deliberate jargon to bolster sales – lets face it – isn’t their job as is any business to make money – so the best way to help empower yourself is to spend some time understanding the language…

Here are a few jargon items from BeareWare’s Online Webtips just to get you going:
Primary Website Statistic:
A websites primary statistical measurement is Unique Visitors (not Hits). The number of visitors dictates e-commerce and prospecting results.

Website Hits Terminology:
HITS are the number of graphics loading on any particular webpage. Hits have been used to inflate the perception of website activity. Website hits are irrelivent.

What is a Registrar?       
A Registrar is a company that provides domain registration to the general public. They are authorized and governed by ICAAN in performing this role.

Who Governs Registrars?       
Registrars are authorized and governed by ICAAN to register domains with the general public. Registrars making money on every domain they register.

What is Search Engine Optimization?       
Seach Engine Optimization (SEO) – Is the process of optimizing your position in a search engine based on key words and phrases.

Search Engine Positioning:
Search Engine positioning cannot be guaranteed by anyone. Positioning is based on a set of proprietory parameters set by the Search Engine.

What is Opensource?       
Opensource is software developed under a set of principles & practices with source code available to users. * BeareWare uses the opensource product – JOOMLA.

Technique on Website Research!       
A great way to research a new website is to look at competitors and industry sites that you find appealing. Be sure to spend some time on each site. 

What does URL mean?       
URL is the website address of a website – http://www.beareware.com – is BeareWare’s URL

What is a Keyword Domain?       
A keyword domain is a domain name that contains a keyword that describes your business, products or services.

What is a Title Tag?       
Your title Tag is your websites top line (at the top of your browser). It is beneficial for SEO to have your keywords included in your title tag.

What is a BLOG?       
A blog is a website, usually maintained by an individual, with regular entries of commentary, descriptions of events, or other media content.

Cheers Mate,

Peter Beare – Webmaster
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Peter Beare, BeareWarePeter Beare is CEO of BeareWare, a Website Design & Development Company located just outside of Nashville, Tennessee. Since building his first website for a local sports club in 1998 Peter has been a webmaster. Over the last 10 years Peter’s duties with BeareWare have included website planning, design and development, website marketing and sales, as well as database application programming & project management. But when all is said and done, Peter is still a webmaster and this is “Interview with a Webmaster“.

Peter Beare

Peter founded Bear Web Design in Nashville, Tennessee in May of 2000 and has been actively involved in web design & development, web content management & education, web hosting & management as well as internet marketing. His experience gained by working with clients from the sales cycle to launching a new website to overseeing a client’ s second generation redevelopment has given him a unique understanding and perspective of the internet. This allows him to serve our client base with expert leadership & service with a completely hands on approach.

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