Do your blogging companions confuse you with talk of backlinks or embarrass you by comparing CMSs? Then this blogging terms glossary is for you.
From advanced technical terms to the basics of navigating WordPress, you’ll certainly find a few blogging terms you might not have known – even if you’re a seasoned writer!
Anchor Link: This is the collective blogging term used to describe a link to part of the page on your website. This is different to an HTML hyperlink (see below). An anchor might link to the site footer, or a call to action section of your page.
Adaptive design: A mobile compatible website that checks what device a user is visiting a website on and responds to deliver the website in an appropriate size/layout for that device. Responsive Design (see below) has superseded adaptive design on most modern websites.
Admin: The term often used to describe the ‘back end’ section of a content management platform (see below). The admin will often where you write blog posts that will be created on your site.
Algorithm: A piece of code that performs a function. Algorithms can be simple or insanely complex! You’ll mostly hear this term talked about when discussing search engines, because Google’s algorithms that decide search rankings are hugely complex.
Analytics: Metrics that are trackable on your website. Analytics software can monitor and report this for you. Bounce rate (see below), page views (see below) or unique visitors can all be reported. The most popular free tracking solution is Google Analytics.
Avatar: A small picture often used to represent a person on a website or system. My picture to the right of your screen could be described as an avatar! Often served by Gravatar, this is an avatar tied to your email address and should appear for services that run Gravatar.
Backlink: A link from someone else’s website to your own. Backlinks are extremely beneficial for SEO, acting a little bit like a vote for your website in Google’s eyes. You should be focusing on acquiring backlinks from respected sites, as these will be most beneficial.
Blog: The inclusive term used to describe a website where content is the foremost focus. It can also be used to describe a certain section of a website where blog posts are found.
Blog post: A single post or content entry on a website with an independent title and copy than that found on the rest of the site.
Blogroll: The page listing a series of blog posts.
Boardbooster: Pinterest pin scheduling tool.
Bounce Rate: The percentage of people that land on your website, and immediately exit without visiting a different page on your site.
Cache: A file that is stored on your computer temporarily, that ‘copies’ a website or data. This then speeds up the website when you visit it again, due to the website not requiring a full load each time.
Call to action: A button or link on a website that has the objective to get users to click on it or perform an action.
Category: A classification used on blogging platforms to describe a blog post. Categories represent the highest level of categorisation, and categories should cover broad topics like “Blogging”, “Gardening” or “Healthy Meals”.
Child Theme: Mainly a term used for the WordPress platform, child themes are reliant on another theme installed on your website. They inherit styles and structure from a parent theme. Customisations are normally made to the child theme, which protects the parent theme.
Class: Used in relation to CSS. A class is an identifier that you can use to style an element on your website. You can often set custom classes to a blog post or page, meaning you can set custom styles for that page which won’t affect the rest of your site.
CMS: Short for Content Management System. This represents a web system, like WordPress or Squarespace, that deals with all of the complex tech behind the scenes to make your website run, so you can focus on creating content.
Comments: Comments are a thread of discussion that visitors can leave on your blog posts or pages.
Contact Form: A contact form is normally placed on the contact page for your website. It contains fields like First name, Last Name, Email Address and Message. When submitted it will send an email with the contents directly to you.
CPM: An advertising metric, the amount you will be paid for 1000 views of an advert on your website.
Crawler: A search engine bot that tells Google what the contents of your website are!
CSS: Short for Cascading Style Sheets, these are the type of file that controls the way your website looks to a user.
CSV: Spreadsheet format. This is the type of data that you would recieve your subsribers if you were to export
Dashboard: Screen within a CMS, web system or platform that displays a summary of important information. For example,
Directory: A website or blog that’s main focus is to list other blogs or sites. This post is a little bit like a directory of blogging terms 🙂
Discussion: Used in the WordPress backend to describe the collection of comments on your website!
Div: An HTML element used to contain other elements. A div will contain your blog post.
Draft: A blog post that you’re still working on. Because it has not been published, you’re the only one that can see it.
Domain Authority: A colloquial term used to describe the search authority of a website. I.e, the credit that it has with Google and the likelihood it will appear high up in Google’s search results.
Download: Copying a file from the web as a local copy on your computer.
Embed: Putting content that exists somewhere else on the web into your own website. The most common way to do this is with a video, as you embed it onto your blog from a service like YouTube.
Evergreen content: Content that will exist on the web and continue to drive traffic for a long time. Pinterest posts and blog posts are known as evergreen content. There is a high likelihood that you will receive traffic from a blog post two years down the line.
Excerpt: A short section of text that is pulled from a blog post – often the first few lines – that is shown in the blogroll.
Facebook: The world’s largest social network.
Facebook page: a blog, business or persona’s Facebook “fan page”. This is the type of page that allows individuals to ‘like’ and follow the page.
Favicon: The small little icon shown at the top of your tab, or the left of the URL!
Feedburner: The most popular RSS (see below) service.
Footer: The lowest section of your website which often reoccurs on every page. This often will contain things like links to privacy policies (see below) or contact pages.
Front end: Common term used to describe the user-facing areas of your website.
Gallery: A collection of images.
Genesis: In my opinion, the best WordPress Framework (see below) available.
GIF: Animated file format. Try to only use this when necessary that you need moving imagery, because file sizes can be large.
H1: Heading HTML element. This tells users and search engines what the most important thing on the page to describe it is. Titles of a blog post will often be used as the H1 for that page.
H2: Heading HTML element, but with less importance than H1. This is usually used for sub headings.
H3: Same deal! Less important than H2.
H4, H5, H6: Same as the above! Just with decreasing levels of importance.
Hashtag: A popular topic tag used on social media. It’s sort of like a tag on your website. You can search for hashtags and they can trend nationally and internationally.
Htaccess: A website configuration file that dictates how your website behaves, handles redirects and some other super techy complicated things! My tip here is unless you’re comfortable editing your .htaccess file, leave it well and truly alone! And always back it up before changing it!
HTML: The website language which renders the layout and structure of your website. Headers, footers, sidebars are all HTML elements.
Indexed: Normally used when discussing search engines. Once your web pages are “indexed” by Google or other search engines, they can begin to appear for relevant searches. Indexing normally takes a couple of days, whilst it can be quicker for established websites.
JPG/JPEG: Image file format that is uneditable. You can downscale the quality and size of this image easily, which means it’s good for across the board online use.
Keyword: Word or phrase that you are focusing to rank in search engines for, consequently ‘Blogging Glossary’ might be my keyword for this post.
Lazy Load: A technique used to speed up page load times. Only images that appear on your users screen will load initially, and images will appear as the user scrolls.
Lightbox: Full screen image preview that brings focus to an image when it is clicked on.
Long tail search term: a keyword that relates to a popular topic, but has extra identifiers to help you rank for lower competition searches. For example, a keyword could be “garden products” and a long tail search term for this keyword could be “new garden products 2016”
Load time: The amount of time it takes your website to load from start to finish for your user. Try and keep this as low as possible.
Media: images, videos and files that can be displayed on your website.
Meta title: The title that search engines will display as their main listing in search results. Yoast (see below) let’s you edit this for WordPress.
Meta description: 155 characters that can be used to describe your post. This description will appear in search engines below the title. It should contain relevant keywords that you’d like to rank for.
Navigation: a navigation bar or menu is a collection of links that your users can use to navigate around your website.
Organic traffic: Traffic that comes over time from unpaid search results. Traffic that paid search delivers isn’t considered organic traffic.
Page View: One single page load on your website. A visitor can have many page views, or only one.
Permalink: The url that a blog post, page or website lives under. It is important to create a good permalink structure from the beginning, and it should contain keywords in order to rank in search engines.
PHP: Programming language that allows data to pass through into your HTML. E.g, populating your blog posts. WordPress development primarily uses PHP.
Plugin: An external piece of software, usually from in independant developer or company to your CMS, that extends the functionality of your website or blog. For example, a contact form plugin or social sharing links.
PNG: An image file that is uneditable, and has no quality degradation. Great for online use where you need a high quality image.
Preview: The practice for viewing a draft blog post in the front end of your website without it being public to visitors.
Pop up: An overlay pop up that appears over the website content and needs to be dismissed before the user can carry on viewing the website.
Responsive design: A website that responds to your user’s screen size and changes the layout and sizing accordingly. Most modern websites now use this technique.
Robots.txt: A file that specifies to search engines what pages of your website you would like to be indexed, and which ones you would not.
RSS: Short for ‘Really Simply Syndication’ this is like a copy of your website that users can read using a different tool or reading application.
SEO: Search engine optimisation. The complete term which encapsulates everything from onsite SEO, backlinks, domain authority and much more.
Sitemap: List of pages on your website. You can have user sitemaps as well as search sitemaps. These are extremely useful for SEO and can be submitted to Google in order to tell them which pages exist on your site along with the structure.
Spam: Automated comments, emails or social media posts that present little to no value. These can even sometimes impact negatively, so be careful!
Social Media: Online community based websites. These include Pinterest, Facebook, Google+, Twitter, Tumblr and many more.
Squarespace: Blogging and website creation platform. Squarespace is also an example of a CMS.
Table: A container with rows and columns that can be used on some CMS’s in blog posts and pages.
Tag: Similar to category, a tag is another type of post or page classification. Normally used for more specific information like “Glossary” or “Grass”.
Tailwind App: Another Pinterest pin scheduling tool. In my opinion, this is the best of the best.
Text editor: Application used to edit any text. More notably when talking about websites, text editors are used to edit your website files like HTML, CSS or PHP.
Title: What appears at the top of your blog post! The main message that should cue curiosity for anyone reading it so that they want to continue onto the whole blog post.
Twitter: micro blogging social network.
Twitter client: Application used to post to Twitter that isn’t twitter.com
Upload: Copying a file from your computer to your website, blog or other online service.
URL: You don’t need to know the acronym! All you need to know is that this means any web address. Pixelwhizz.com, google.com, wordpress.com/login – these are all examples of URLs.
Viral: A piece of content that spreads quickly over the internet getting shared by thousands of people within quick succession.
Visitor: a user on your website. One of the most important metrics for website success is how many unique visitors you are getting per month.
Webinar: an online presentation, normally done with a screenshare to educate. Smaller sessions are often paid for and open sessions are normally free.
Web log: Did you know this is what Blog was short for?
Welcome Mat: A full screen banner call-to-action that is shown to a user when they visit a web page. This can often quickly be dismissed, similar to a pop up.
Widget: Most commonly used as a WordPress term. A widget is placed into a widget area and then will output some kind of function onto the front end of your website. For example a widget could be a email list subscription box, put into the sidebar widget area.
Widget area: An area on your website that widgets will be displayed. Often found as the footers and sidebars.
WordPress: The most popular blogging platform and content management system. Look around you! WordPress is the engine that drives Pixel Whizz.
WordPress framework: A set of standards that can be used on WordPress to standardise how a website behaves. This can extend and improve WordPress’ basic functionality. You normally use a Child Theme in addition to a WordPress framework in order to customise the look and feel of your website or blog.
WYSIWYG: Literally say this how it sounds. Best. Word. Ever. This stands for ‘What You See Is What You Get’ and refers to an editor which represents an accurate view when you input content in, as what it will look like when it is published.
XML: Markup language (don’t worry too much about this!). Most commonly used as the format for search engine sitemaps.
Yoast (SEO): One of the most popular WordPress plugins for SEO and is famous for it’s SEO traffic light system.