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A BLogger's Dictionary

A glossary of blogging terms for Beginner Bloggers

The Blogging World has it's own vocabulary

Blogging is like calculus or physics or law – you need a dictionary full of blogging terms before you can even begin to understand it.

That is exactly what you are going to get from me today – a list of 100+ (and growing) blogging vocabulary words you need to know in order to understand all the “blogging tips” articles out there.  I’ve got your back!

Remember 6th Grade?

Millions of emotions a minute. Making friends with zits and body odor. Girls towering over boys. 

It all feeds your self-consciousness just as math starts to get hard. It’s like an entirely new language! You are 100% certain that it makes sense to everyone else, so raising your hand and exposing that you aren’t as smart as everyone thinks is out of the question.

Being a new blogger can feel a lot like being a 6th grader. Millions of emotions a minute. Making friends with your imperfections and limitations. Bloggers who started after you seeing “success” much sooner. 

It all feeds your self-consciousness just as you realize that blogging is HARD – it’s like learning an entirely new language. You are 100% certain that all the other bloggers know exactly what all these new blogging terms mean, so asking them for help and exposing that you really don’t belong as a blogger makes you sweat.  

But here’s the thing:

You Belong Here - as a blogger

First, I know that sometimes you feel like you don’t belong as a blogger – but that is a lie.  If you want to share goodness online, then you belong.  Period.  

Second, all those kid’s in 6th grade that you thought knew everything – they didn’t.  You get that now.  And I’ll tell you, all those blogger’s that you think know everything, they don’t.  I’ve been blogging since 2010 and I still learn new blogging terms all the time.  In fact, I learned new blogging terms as I was researching and writing this post for you.  

Last, successful people ask when they don’t understand.  They aren’t afraid of what others think of them.  So if you need help understanding a term that is not on this list, leave me a comment and I’ll respond – and gratefully add your term to the list.

I need your help with this list of blogging terms

I’m hoping that the list below is 4 things:

  1. The easiest to navigate blogging dictionary you’ll find anywhere
  2. The most regularly updated list of blogging terms you’ll find anywhere
  3. The most thorough dictionary of blogging terms you’ll find anywhere with the most complete definitions

In order to do that, I need your feedback! 

  • Heard a term somewhere that isn’t on this list?  Leave me a comment and I’ll add it!
  • Confused by the definition I wrote for one of the term?  Let me know by leaving a comment and I”ll clarify!
  • Find a broken link? (this post has a TON – it was a beast to organize)  Leave me a comment and tell me about it and I’ll fix it!

You Should Know

I am an affiliate for some of the resources I link to below.  This means that if you choose to purchase something marked as an affiliate link, I will earn a small commission.  This does not result in any increased cost to you.  In fact, it sometimes results in a decreased cost. I choose to be an affiliate only for products I love – products I can answer questions about because I use them regularly.

All affiliate links are clearly marked as such.  If it is not marked as an affiliate link, I am not an affiliate for that company – but I’m recommending them anyway just because I think they will be of value to you.  You can see my full affiliate disclosure here.

The ultimate dictionary of blogging terms:

A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X Y Z

Click on a letter to find the term you are looking for.

You can also click on words that are highlighted in orange to be taken to the definition for that word.

Be sure to bookmark this page so you can find it and reference it anytime you come across a blogging term you don’t understand.

A

Affiliate

A person who earns commission by recommending products that are not their own.  

This is done by placing a special link to such a product on their website.  The url used for the link has special code written into it and is provided to the affiliate by the company whose product they are recommending.  When one of the affiliate’s website visitors purchases the product after clicking on that special link, the affiliate earns a commission.

Affiliates must disclose the use of affiliate links by having a dedicated page on their website that explains their affiliate connections.  There must be a link to this page on every page of your website (most bloggers will put it in the footer) and you must put something like “affiliate” next to each affiliate link on your website.

Affiliate marketing is a great way to start earning money as a blogger for a few reasons:

1. You don’t have to wait for lots of traffic (though the more traffic, the more people will purchase through your links) like you do in order to earn from ads on your site.  You may only have 10 followers, but if one trusts you enough to purchase something you recommend, you can earn income.  

2. You don’t have to research and create your own product. While really smart, this can be time consuming.  Affiliate marketing can help you earn income to help pay for the supplies or tools you need to create your own product (digital or otherwise)

The key is to only become an affiliate for products that (1) relate to what you blog about, (2) you use regularly and (3) you LOVE.  Google something like “{Your favorite product here} affiliate program” and see what you find!

Analytics

Information and data about your business – for example, where your website visitors come from, percentage of visitors who sign up for your email list, the percentage of people who open your emails, which keywords you rank for etc.  Analytics are important because studying past data about your business can help you make better business decisions in the future and not waste time on tasks that don’t bring results.

Archive Page

A filtered list of your blog posts.  In WordPress, you have many Archive pages: one that lists all your blog posts as well as an archive page for each category and tag.  The search results page is also considered an archive page as it is simply a filtered list of all your blog posts.

Autoresponder

Aka Email Service ProviderYou cannot send emails to hundreds or thousands of people using just gmail or yahoo etc.  They won’t allow it and even if you tried to send just below their limits, your email would be blocked or sent to spam.

For this reason, you need an Email Service Provider which some call an Autoresponder.  This allows you to not only send emails to thousands – or even millions – it allows you to do so in an automatic way.  For example, when someone signs up on your website to be on your email list, your Autoresponder can automatically send them a welcome email you wrote. 

The degree of automation available to you will vary based on your Email Service Provider, but can be extremely robust and is a huge part of what will allow for passive income.  I recommend new bloggers start with MailerLite. (affiliate link)

Avatar

An image or graphic that represents you online.  A profile image.  It shows up next to your name when you interact online. WordPress (and many other online tools) pulls it’s avatars from Gravatar. In WordPress, your gravatar will show up when you comment or as the author of a post etc.  

B

Backend

The portion of a website that can only be seen by those who build / create the website.  In WordPress, only admins can see everything in the backend.  Other user roles (such as an editor or author or subscriber) can see parts of the backend, but not all of it.

Sometimes you will also here the backend referred to as the dashboard.

Backlink

Incoming links to the pages on your website.  If another website links to a page on your website, this is a backlink.  

Backlinks are very important for SEO.  They are not the only factor, but the more links you have to a page on your site, the more likely that page will be to show up in search results.

Blackhat

Typically refers to shady techniques designed to increase your chance of having a page on your website turn up in search results. They are different than “whitehat” techniques (which have the same goal) in that they attempt to get around the rules and don’t put your site visitors experience as first priority. 

Blog

An online list of articles (aka “posts“) with the most recent article appearing at the top of the list. 

Oftentimes bloggers use the terms blog and website interchangeably, but in reality a blog is only one part of a website. 

Blogger

A free blogging platform provided by Google.  Sometimes called Blogspot although that is not accurate.  If you choose blogger as your blogging platform all your content is hosted with Google meaning they can shut you down at anytime.  For this reason, I highly recommend WordPress instead.

“Blogger” can also refer to a person who regularly publishes new articles / written content to their website.

Blogging Platform

If we compare building a website to building a house, a blogging platform = the framing, roof and door. A host (the “land” you build your site on and the domain (your “street address) aren’t enough.  Your blogging platform is the basic framework of your site. It is what allows your blog to exist.  

Most blogging platforms allow for more than JUST a blog (which technically makes them a Content Management System – you’ll see the two terms used interchangeably) – you can add additional static pages on your site such as a homepage or an about page.  The extent of additional features depends on the platform.  Some website builders do not support blogs.

The most popular blogging platforms are WordPress and Blogger.  I highly recommend WordPress.

Blogspot

A free domain service provider.  If you choose to build your blog with Blogger, you will be provided with a free domain (yourdomain.blogspot.com).  If you do not want the free blogspot domain, you can choose to purchase your own domain instead (yourdomain.com).

If you do not use Blogger as your Blogging Platform, you cannot use blogspot for your domain. 

Breadcrumb

An online trail of sorts that shows a user their location on a website.  Often used on large websites. For example, you might see something like this at the top of a site as you navigate through it:

Baby > Apparel > Shoes > Boys

Each step of the trail is one “breadcrumb”.  A WordPress site must be using categories for breadcrumbs to work

C

Captcha

An online challenge test used to filter a human entry from a robot entry into a form.  It can come in many forms: typing the letters you see, or doing a math problem or choosing images from a grid that fit a written description etc.

Category

A Taxonomy inside WordPress and other blogging platforms.  You can assign blog posts to different categories in order to make it easier for users to find what they are looking for.  Using categories also allows for the creation of category archive pages.

Categories are different than tags in that they can have subcategories assigned and be used as breadcrumbs.

Child Theme

If we compare building a website to building a house, then a theme would include the color of your walls, the light fixtures you choose, or the faucet you picked out.

A Child Theme (used on WordPress) inherits most of it’s functionality and looks from the main theme (aka parent theme) it is connected to. The child theme essentially sits on top of your main theme and allows you to make edits to the look of your website without ruining your main theme.  You can use a parent theme without a child theme, but you cannot use a child theme without a parent theme.

Remember those books you used to get as a child with tracing paper?  There was a drawing under that tracing paper.  You’d trace the picture – so it is mostly  like the image under it, but you could also add color or extra drawings of your own – all without ruining the picture underneath.

The reason child themes are used is because parent themes must be updated regularly in order for your website to be secure.  But if you make changes directly to your parent theme, you will lose them each time you update the parent theme. This is why child theme were created.  The parent theme can be updated without affecting the edits you’ve added to your child theme.

I suggest using a drag and drop child theme builder like Elementor Pro (affiliate link) as it allows you to build your child theme without knowing any code.

Code

Code or coding is a set of languages that computers use to function – to know what to do.  There are many different coding languages.  Those used most frequently by WordPress, the blogging platform I recommend, are PHP, HTML, CSS and a little Javascript

Content Management System

Aka CMS

This term is used interchangeably with the term Blogging Platform.  And as blogging platforms have become more robust, they are basically the same thing.

A Content Management system allows multiple users to manage content (images, copy etc.) and have control over the layout of a website. But a CMS doesn’t ALWAYS include a blog.

A Blogging Platform is a type of CMS that makes it easy to create multiple articles and allow visitors to comment on those articles.

Commission

The percentage of the total cost of product that an affiliate earns when a customer purchases that product through their affiliate link.  Affiliate commission for physical products is typically between 3% and 15%.  For digital products (e-books, ecourses, memberships etc) affiliates can earn up to 50% commission.

Cookies

The cookies you hear about online are not edible.  (-:

Cookies are a tiny bit of text data that a website stores in your browser when you visit that website.

They are useful for website owners (bloggers) because they allow your website to “remember” certain things about your visitors.  You can do things like show a “thank you for your loyalty” coupon on a person’s 5th visit to your website.  Or, maybe you want to track if someone has visited your email list signup page before but not signed up, you could offer them a different Freemium the next time they visit.

Legally, you must disclose the use of cookies on you website.  I suggest doing this through a simple popup the first time someone visits your website.  This can easily be done using Elementor Pro (affiliate) 

Copyright

Not the same as Copywriting

A law that gives the owner of a creative work (book, article, songs, image, website etc) the right to say how it can be used.  Ideas cannot be copyrighted, but they way they’re expressed can be.

This means you cannot copy images or articles you find on other websites.  You can’t google “picture of happy family” and use the images that pull up without permission.  You can’t take someone else’s product, change the colors and call it your own.

You can use an idea someone had for an article or product and create a similar competing product or article from scratch.

Also see Fair Use and DMCA.

Copywriting

Not the same as Copyright.

Copywriting is what you are doing when you write the words on the pages of your website or a Facebook ad or Pinterest pin description.  It is writing words that are meant to get someone to take some sort of action.

The words you write are called “copy”.

Cornerstone Content

Cornerstone content is a collection of the best, most important articles on your website.  It is the handful of articles (can be a post or a page) that have the most internal links pointing to them.  Those articles are also typically linked to directly from your homepage.  Cornerstone content is an important piece of your SEO.

If we think of your site as a state / province, your cornerstone content articles are the big cities while your other blog posts are the smaller towns.  The streets / highways are your links.  The big cities have more streets linking them to other cities and towns.

A piece of cornerstone content typically covers a topic in a very broad manner (from every angle).  The many blog posts that link to it typically cover a more narrow topic in a deeper manner.  If you write a lot of different blog posts on very similar topics, cornerstone content allows you to tell your visitors (and search engines) which article is the most important.

Cpanel

The Cpanel is control panel that many web hosts provide to website owners (bloggers) that helps them to manage their websites.  While very robust, I personally found cpanels extremely complicated and overwhelming as a new blogger (I still do oftentimes).  It’s tech overwhelm at its finest.

There are hosts – called managed WordPress hosts – that do not offer a cpanel – they promise to do everything for you.  In most cases, this is wonderful.  The support is amazing and can do 90% of what you might ever need. But as your site grows and gets more complicated this can be risky if they don’t give you access to your database.  Sometimes you (or your developer) will need to make direct changes to your database to get the job done.

The 2 hosts I recommend (WPMUDev and Flywheel – both affiliate links) do not offer a cpanel, but they do offer access to your database.   90% of what you need from a web host is done for you.  But for the 10% of stuff you may need as your site gets more complicated, they still allow you (or your developer) access to your database.

 

Css

CSS stands for Cascading Style Sheets – it is the programming language (aka code) that tells a browser how to display the html code of your website.  Whew!  Even more confused now?

Simply put, CSS is what makes your site pretty! 

It tells your site what font your text copy should be displayed in and the color that font should be.  It determines the layout of your pages etc.  It is also what allows your site to look different on desktop than it does on mobile.

The tough thing for most new bloggers is that they don’t “speak” css (or html for that matter).  This can make it impossible to create a truly unique site without hiring an expensive developer / designer.  This is why I recommend Elementor Pro (affiliate) for new bloggers as it allows you to build your entire site without knowing code – it is all done through a drag and drop interface!

D

Dashboard

The page you are taken to after you log into your WordPress backend.  It is a page with a collection of sections that each give you information about parts of your website.  For example, you may have section that shows your traffic, one that shows your SEO stats, another that shows WordPress news etc.  You can customize which sections show up.  The sections you have to choose from will depend on the plugins you have installed.

Sometimes you will here “Dashboard” used to reference the entire WordPress backend.

DMCA

DMCA stands for Digital Millennium Copyright Act which is a law that came to be in order to help musicians stop illegal sharing of their music.  But it also applies to all type of digital copyrights.

Oftentimes when people say “send a DMCA” they actually mean a “DMCA take down notice”.

This is a notice that a blogger (or any other creative) can send to the web host that the person who actually stole their content is using.  The host is then responsible for taking down the stolen content.

If you believe someone has stolen your content, it is best practice to reach out to them directly with an email and ask them to take it down before you send a DMCA take down notice to their hosting company.

You can find more information about DMCA and takedown notices (including a notice generator) HERE.

DNS

DNS stands for Domain Name System.

Browsers access websites using numbers (IP addresses) not words (domains).  DNS translates a domain (such as DesignedForGoodness.com) into numbers that the internet understands.

If we compare a website to building a house, your address may be 2578 Some Street, Sometown, UT.  You could also get exact  longitude and latitude coordinates for that address. 

  • Written address = Domain
  • GPS coordinates = IP Address

DNS allows you to type thewebsiteyouwanttogoto.com into your browser instead of a random long number.

Another way to think of it is like the contacts list in your phone – you choose a name, but the phone calls a NUMBER.  You don’t have to know the number, just the name.  But you DO have to first tell the phone which name corresponds to which number.  This is where your DNS settings come in.

You have to tell the internet that your domain corresponds to the number (IP address) your host assigned you when you set up your website. You can access your DNS settings through your Domain Service Provider.  They should have tutorials showing you how to edit this.

DOFolow

External links can be set as “DoFollow” or “NoFollow“.

A DoFollow link is one that tells search engines to “count” that link for SEO purposes.  It means that you are linking to it without being asked to or paid to, but simply because it provides value to your readers.

The more DoFollow links that point to your website, the more Google (or other search engines) will see your site as trustworthy.  Links are DoFollow by default unless you choose to mark them as NoFollow.

You can read more about how Google would like you to mark your links HERE.

Domain

If we compare building a website to building a house, then your domain is your street address.  A domain is similar to, but different from a url.

My domain is DesignedForGoodness.com

I suggesting buying your domain from Namecheap (affiliate).  I like them because they include privacy for each domain for free.  Without privacy on your domain, people can use it to look up your contact info (phone, email, address).  Most domain service providers ask you to pay extra for privacy.

Domain Service Provider

A domain service provider is the company you purchase your domain from. 

If we compare building a house to building a website, a domain service provider would be Home Depot – or some other store – where I went to purchase the actual numbers that are on my house.

My favorite Domain Service Provider is Namecheap (affiliate).  I like them because they include privacy for each domain for free.  Without privacy on your domain, people can use it to look up your contact info (phone, email, address).  Most Domain Service Providers ask you to pay extra for privacy.

Dynamic content

Dynamic content is content that changes within a template depending on which page / post is being viewed on a website.

For example, I may build a blog post template for my website.  Say I put the title at the top and the featured image under that.  Then, I have some social media share buttons.  After that I have the actual article.

While the format will stay the same for each blog post, the title, image and actual copy of the article will change.  This is dynamic content.

Elementor Pro (affiliate) allows you to create templates for dynamic content (like a blog post or an archive page or a product page) without code using their Theme Builder (which is untrue of most other page builders)

E

EBook

E stands for electronic in eBook.  An eBook is a digital book.  The simplest way to create an eBook is by creating a pdf document. You can do this in Microsoft Word, Google Docs, Canva (affiliate) etc.  Simply write the book, add images and a table of contents and then save it as a pdf.  You can then make this pdf available for download on your website as an “eBook”

If you want an eBook you can sell on Amazon, you can upload your pdf to Kindle Direct Publishing.  It will then be available on Kindle readers. (you can also publish it as a paperback book that way too).

ECourse

E stand for electronic in eCourse.  An eCourse is a course – like one you’d take at college or the local events center – that is accessed online.  It unusually includes modules or chapters or something similar and is delivered via video(s) and downloadable worksheets and other handouts.

I use AccessAlly (affiliate) for my courses and membership programs because it allows for me to own my content and have it on my own website.  It also allows for a lot of customization and personalization such as quizzes, private notes etc. Third, it is a flat yearly or monthly fee that stays the same no matter how many people enroll in my courses (it isn’t a percentage of total sales).  Last, they hands down have the best support I’ve ever had from any tool I’ve ever used.

However, Accessally also has quite a learning curve.  They have great tutorials and great support, but it will take you time a significant amount of time to learn.  

Other popular platforms for building a online course include Kajabi, Memberpress, Teachable, Wishlist Member, LearnDash and Thinkific.  You can see comparisons HERE.

Email List

An email list is a list of all the people who have signed up to receive emails from you.  Each person on your email list is a subscriber.

Your email list is your biggest asset in your business.  When done right return on investment for email marketing is better than any other marketing channel.

Email Service Provider

You can not send thousands or even hundreds of emails from your gmail (or yahoo or whatever you use).

To build an email list wisely, and legally, you need an Email Service Provider.  This is a company that – at the most basic level – is set up so that you can send an email to hundreds, thousands, even hundreds of thousands of people at one time.

The better email service providers also allow for what is called automation.  Automation is what allows for emails to be sent automatically. You know how when you sign up for an email list on a website you typically get a welcome email from them immediately?  This isn’t because they are always sitting at the computer, ready to send a welcome email anytime someone subscribes.  This is because they use an Email Service Provider that does it for them.

Email automation can be far more complicated (and helpful) than what I’ve just described.  It is essential to earning passive income online.

I recommend that beginners start with MailerLite (affiliate) for their Email Service Provider.  It is free up to your first 1000 subscribers and provides many options for automation.  It isn’t too overwhelming to learn how to use.

If you already have a decent sized list or are ready to jump right into all that automation has to offer, I recommend ConvertKit or Drip.

Evergreen content

Evergreen content is content (aka pages, blog posts) that will be always be relevant.  It is not dependent on a holiday or season or a limited time offer or sale.

Evergreen Content may need to be updated occasionally, but the overall topic is something that is always relevant.

This Blogging Dictionary is an example of Evergreen Content.  I will update it occasionally – add terms, delete those that no longer apply or clarify definitions, but the idea of a Blogging Dictionary will always be useful to bloggers.

Excerpt

An excerpt is a summary of a blog post.  With most Blogging Platforms, it will default to the first few sentences of a blog post unless you specify it as something else.

The excerpt is typically used on archive pages so that readers get a taste of what a blog post is about before they read it.

For this reason, writing your excerpts manually – instead of letting them default to the first few sentences – is smart marketing. It gives you an opportunity (in addition to the title and the post’s featured image) to entice the reader to actually read the post.

External Link

An external link is a link on a website that sends readers to a different website.  In other words, if another website links to you, that is an external link.  Or, if you link to another website, that is an external links.

External links are important to SEO.

See also Hyperlink and Internal Link

F

Fair Use

A legal concept that allows you to use copyrighted material without permission or fees.  Typically applies to reviews, news, reporting, teaching or research.

This means  you can quote someone in a blog post as long as you are using the quote to teach or review etc.  It is still best practice to link back to the original source of the quote in your article.

Favicon

A favicon (short for favorite icon) is a small icon that represents your brand in browsers.  The best way to describe it is to show you:

Featured Image

In WordPress, the blogging platform I recommend, you have the ability the set a featured image for each blog post you write.

The featured image will then show up on archive pages.  It will also be the image that social media platforms use if you don’t have a plugin like Social Warfare (affiliate) that allows you to more finely control that.

Feed

A feed is a regularly updated list of content.  On Facebook, you have a “feed” of all your friend’s posts.  On a blog, the “feed” is your posts and it is sometimes referred to as an RSS Feed.

People can subscribe to your blog’s feed through a feed reader.  

You can also use many Email Service Providers to automatically send your blog’s feed to your email subscribers.

Feed Reader

A feed reader may also be called a RSS reader, feed aggregator or news reader.  It is an online tool that collects the feeds from various sources in one place for convenience.  Feedly is a popular feed reader.

Follower

A follower is someone who follows you on social media.

Sometimes blogger will also refer to those who read their blog as followers.

See also: subscriber

Font

A font is a all the elements that make text look a certain way: the typeface, size, weight, style, spacing, etc.

Most people mean typeface when they say font.  So when you hear / read font online, it probably means “typeface” (if we want to get technical)

These words are all the same typeface, but would be considered different fonts:

Designed For Goodness

Designed For Goodness

Designed For Goodness

People will also occasionally use the terms text and font interchangeably, but that is not fully accurate either.  Text can be in any font or any typeface and still be the same letters.  

Google fonts is my favorite place to get free typefaces and fonts for free.  Creative Market is my favorite place to get more unique paid fonts

Footer

A website footer is a section that appears at the bottom of every page on your website.  It typically contains information such as:

G

Google Docs

Google Docs is a suite of tools similar to Microsoft Word, but all your documents are stored online.  I highly recommend using Google Docs for your business documents, spreadsheets, slideshows, and more as it allows for real time collaboration with team members (which you will eventually need if your goal is passive income)

Google Drive

Google Drive is an online cloud storage system.  You can store all types of documents there, including those not created with Google Docs, but anything you do create with Google Docs is automatically saved in your Google Drive for you.

Google Drive can also provide you with links that will allow your site visitors to download documents such as images or pdfs you create (paid or free).  This allows for less load on your host than uploading documents directly to your website.  Over time, storing downloads in Google Drive will cost you less and keep your website fast.

I also love Google Docs for the search feature – you can search all your documents at once (including images) with Google’s powerful search engine.

But the #1 reason I recommend Google Drive is because when you are ready to hire a team member (which you will need to do if you are to earn passive income), sharing your documents securely will be easy. 

I suggest signing up for Google Drive with a G Suite Basic account.

Gravatar

A Gravatar is a globally recognized Avatar.

Basically, you upload your avatar to the Gravatar website.  Then anytime you visit a WordPress website (or any other Gravatar enabled site), and enter your email to leave a comment or interact in a forum, your avatar will automatically be used.

G suite

G suite (affiliate) is a set of online tools provided by Google for your business.  The goals is to increase productivity and simplify collaboration. 

With a G suite account, you can create multiple professional email addresses (something like yourname@yourdomain.com instead of yourname@gmail.com), that are actually gmail accounts – so if you love gmail, you can keep it, but look professional!

It also includes a minimum of 30 GB of extremely secure cloud storage, video conferencing and secure messaging.  Last, it integrates with Google’s other products such as Google Docs and Google Drive, Google Calendar and Google images.

H

HasHtag

A hashtag is a word (or phrase) that begins with a #.  Hashtags are heavily used on Twitter and Instagram to allow users to find all tweets or posts that relate to a certain topic.

For example, if you were to search #DesignedForGoodness on Instagram, you’d find all my posts and other people’s post that they have added the #DesignedForGoodness hashtag to.

Hashtags can also be used on Facebook and Pinterest though they aren’t as prevalent – or necessary –  there yet.

Header

A website header is a section that appears at the top of every page on your website.  It typically contains navigation menus and the website logo.

It also often includes social media icons, a search bar, a shopping cart link, and occasionally a call to action button.

Host

If we compare building a website to building a house, your website host would be like the plot of land you build your house on.  If you don’t buy land, you don’t have anywhere to put your house.

Your website needs a plot of “online land” to be built on.  A web host provides this.  Your host has an actual server – a real computer where all the files that your website needs are stored.

Just like the land you build your house on can vary in quality (The wise man built his house upon a rock), hosts can also vary in quality.

In my opinion, one of the biggest mistakes new bloggers make is to choose a poor quality host.  I made this mistake as a new blogger.  Back in 2011, I chose Bluehost as my first host. That choice resulted in a slow site that was often down (multiple times a year), and hard to use.  But even with all of that, I was proud of my decision b/c I was “saving money.  Sadly, I was eventually hacked – with pictures I hope my kids never see all over my site.  

Going with the “affordable” host cost me thousands in lost revenue because no one could access my hacked site for days and thousands more to get it “un-hacked.”  Plus, there are ways it cost me that I can’t calculate –  I’m sure I lost visitors because it was so slow (or down completely).

Looking back, what I thought was the frugal ($5 or less per month) option actually cost me far more than a higher quality host would have over time.

The quality hosts I recommend are WPMU Dev, Flywheel, or Siteground (all three are affiliate links)  You can read more about why in my Blogger Tools post.

HTML

HTML stands for Hypertext Markup Language – it is the programming language (aka code) that tells a browser how what to display your website.  

If we compare building a website to building a house, HTML is the blueprint.  A blueprint is used by contractors to tell them what goes in your house and where it goes.

It doesn’t make your site pretty – that is what CSS is for.  It just tells you site what needs to be there and where it needs to be.

The tough thing for most new bloggers is that they don’t “speak” html (or CSS for that matter).  This can make it impossible to create a truly unique site without hiring an expensive developer / designer.  This is why I recommend Elementor Pro (affiliate) for new bloggers as it allows you to build your entire site without knowing code – it is all done through a drag and drop interface!

Hyperlink

A hyperlink is more often just called a link.  An image or text is said to be “linked” when you can click (or tap on mobile) on it and it takes you to another page (or to somewhere else on that same page).

Most Blogging Platforms and Email Service Providers provide an easy way to turn text or images into hyperlinks.  You simply click on the image or highlight the word(s) and then click on the link button provided.  It will look like a chain link: 

That will open a spot for you to add the url you want the image or word(s) too link to.  That’s it!

I

Internal Link

An internal link is a link on a website that sends readers to a different page on the same website.  In other words, if you link from one page on your website to another, that is an internal link.  

Internal links are important to SEO.

See also hyperlink and external link.

IP Address

Browsers access websites using numbers (IP addresses) not words (domains). 

If we compare a website to building a house, your address may be 2578 Some Street, Sometown, UT.  You could also get exact  longitude and latitude coordinates for that address. 

  • Written address = Domain
  • GPS coordinates = IP Address

DNS translates a domain (such as DesignedForGoodness.com) into numbers that the internet understands.

K

Keyword

A keyword is a word or phrase that people search for online (most commonly using Google).  Yes, even though “keyword” is not plural, a keyword can be a phrase.

For example, some might search “Blogging Dictionary” or “Blogging Terms” when looking for a post like this one.  “Blogging Dictionary” and “Blogging Terms” are both be keywords because they are a phrase people are typing into Google (or another search engine)

Keywords are important to SEO

L

Landing Page

The term “landing page” can have two different meanings depending on the context in which it is used.

#1 – A page that someone lands on when they first visit your website.  This can also be called an “entrance page”.  In this sense a “landing page” could be any page on your website, but your analytics will tell you which pages on your site are most often a landing / entrance page for your visitors.  This can be useful because it will help you know which pages to focus on in order to make a good first impression on your visitors.

#2 – A page on your website with no header or footer created specifically for one goal only.  Some examples may be

  •  A page where the only thing a visitor can do is sign up for your email list
  • A page that is dedicated to getting people to purchase that one product
  • A page dedicated to getting people to register for a (free or paid) event

These types of landing pages can be great for marketing – they can improve conversions because a visitor is left with only two choices – #1 – Do what you are hoping they will do or #2 – Leave

M

Media Library

The media library is the spot inside the backend of your WordPress website where all of your media files are stored. 

The most common type of media stored here are images.  But the media library can also store things like pdfs, audio files and videos.

Each item in the media library is stored on your host’s server and has it’s own url.  This means that that you can host your videos with your host instead of going through a 3rd party service such as Youtube or Vimeo.  You could also allow users to download files (like audio or pdfs) by providing them with the url for that file.  At first glance, this can seem smart – no need to pay extra for something like Vimeo or Wistia or Google Drive.

However, storing these types of items in your media library will put a large load on your host as downloads and especially videos can use a lot of bandwidth.  This can get expensive quite quickly as you will be required to upgrade your hosting plan to handle the demand.  For this reason, it is best practice to only host images – and maybe a few pdf downloads – in your media library.

For videos, I use Screencastomatic (affiliate) and Loom.  I host all my pdf downloads and audio files on Google Drive.

Membership Program

Membership programs are very popular right now.  If we compare building a website to building a house, having a membership program is like having locks on some of doors to rooms inside your house. Everyone can come into your house, but only certain people can go into the locked rooms.

Your house is your website and your membership program is the locked inside your website.

You create that locked room by using a plugin that requires people to do something (sign up for your email list, create an account, purchase access etc) in order to “open” the locked door (aka gain access to what is in your membership).

You can put anything you want inside your membership.  Some things more common things you’ll see:

  • e-Courses
  • Resources libraries 
  • Monthly resources where the fee for the membership is a monthly one and there is new content (printables, images, audio…anything!) released monthly

Having a membership program is a great way to create a revenue stream for your business.  My favorite Membership Program plugin is AccessAlly (affiliate), but you can find comparisons of the most popular plugins HERE.

Menu

Online, a menu is a list of options of other places you can go within a website.  

The most common place you will see a menu is in in a horizontal bar across the top of a website (in the header).  It typically includes links to places like the homepage, the blog, the about page, the contact page etc.

Aka menu bar or navbar or navigation bar.

Merge Tag

Merge tags allow you to personalize pieces of text you write automatically.  You might (or might not) be familiar with them inside tools like Microsoft Word where they are called merge fields.

Online, merge tags are most often used in emails.  For example, you may write an email and you want to address those you send it to by their first name.  But when you have thousands of people on your email list, that is a task that would take an enormous amount of time. So instead, you use a merge tag!  It might look something like this:

Hey there {subscriber.first.name}!

The “{subcriber.first.name}” portion will automatically be replaced with the subscriber’s first name for each and every person that email is sent to.

Merge tags can include things like birthdays, email addresses, phone number, and more.  In fact, if you have a quality Email Marketing Software, you can create a merge tag for almost anything.  You can even write an email with two entirely different paragraphs and depending on who the email is sent to, only one or the other paragraph will show.

And while online merge tags are most often used in emails, they can also be used on your website with the appropriate software (like a membership program).  I use AccessAlly (affiliate) – or I soon will, depending on when you are reading this – to personalize pages on my website so my visitors can have a more custom experience.

*The actual merge tag (the {subcriber.first.name} portion) will be different for each Email Marketing Software or membership program you use, so make sure to look those up or contact their support for a list.

Mobile Friendly

So many people are now viewing websites on their mobile devices.  Most stats say that around 50%-60% of all page views worldwide are on a mobile device.  This means your website MUST work on mobile devices!

A site that is mobile friendly is the ideal.  Most website themes are built to be mobile responsive, but not all are mobile friendly b/c making a site mobile friendly typically requires code.  A mobile friendly site is one that might look completely different on mobile than on desktop if that is what is best for the user.  

For example, maybe on desktop I have 3 images of myself on my about page.  The page still loads fast – as it is using wifi – and the images don’t take up too much space as they are all in the same row like this:

On a mobile responsive website, those three images would be stacked on top of each other, one right after the other.  This makes the mobile version of the page load much slower – as mobile views are often using data – AND it can be annoying to the reader as they have to scroll past all three images.  (fyi, if you are reading this on mobile right now, those images won’t stack b/c I WANT you to see what they would look like on desktop in order to show you the difference…if you want a real example of how this works, visit my about page)

On a mobile friendly website, I could just show three images on desktop and only 1 on mobile.  Being able to design your website in a mobile friendly way is super important.  You don’t want people leaving your site just because it is frustrating to use on their phone.  My favorite tool for building mobile friendly websites is Elementor Pro (affiliate).  It allows you to build an entirely different experience on mobile very easily.

Mobile Responsive

A mobile responsive website is one that will automatically rearrange elements on a  page to look better on mobile.  For example it may take three images that are side-by-side on desktop and stack them one on top of the other on mobile.

While better than nothing, mobile responsive sites aren’t the best you can get.  Mobile friendly sites are better.

N

Navbar

The Navbar or Navigation bar is the section inside your website header that includes your menu.

navigation

Navigation is the process of navigating around a website.  Sometimes you will hear the word “Navigation” used like Navbar, but truly navigation is everything on your website that makes it possible for site visitors to find what they are looking for.  It includes all menus, submenus, buttons and calls to action.

Clear site navigation is important as reduces your bounce rate and helps people quickly find what they are looking for.

Nofollow

External links can be set as “DoFollow” or “NoFollow”.

A NoFollow link is one that tells search engines that you are linking to that content because you were paid to or because someone requested that you do so (like a guest poster would).  

The more DoFollow links that point to your website, the more Google (or other search engines) will see your site as trustworthy.  Links are DoFollow by default unless you choose to mark them as NoFollow.

Marking a link as NoFollow doesn’t automatically force search engines not to “count” it.  Instead, it is one of many ways in which Google (or other search engines) determine how valuable a link is.  If a site only has Nofollow links pointing to it, that probably means it isn’t as high quality of a site that has a lot of DoFollow links pointing to it.

Search engines have other ways of determining value of links as well.  So, even if you mark a paid link or a guest post link as DoFollow, the search engine may deduce through other elements on the page that it really isn’t a DoFollow link.

You can read more about how Google would like you to mark your links HERE.

Newsletter

Sometimes people use the term newsletter when they mean email list.

But a newsletter is actually something you send to those on your email list.  Most commonly it is something that is sent out at a regular interval (like weekly or monthly) and catches people up on what you have been doing online.

This is the most basic form of email marketing – and also the least effective.  Personalized email marketing through automation brings a much better return on investment and allows for passive income.

O

Open Source

Open source refers to open source software.

This means that the developer of a program or software or plugin etc. has made the code for that product public.  This allows other developers to add onto and improve it.

WordPress is open source.  This is how so many developers are able to create plugins to increase its functionality.  But this is also why you have to be careful about which plugins you choose to install on your WordPress website.  Since they are all written by different developers, they can sometime conflict with each other.  Also, some plugins are kept up to date while others aren’t and as WordPress grows and changes those plugins can stop working and / or make it easier for hackers to get into your website.

P

Page

A website page is static – meaning it is not a blog post –  it is not part of the feed.  Pages typically include a homepage, about page, contact page, legal pages etc.

Page Builder

A page builder is a WordPress plugin that allows you to build pages and posts with a drag and drop interface.  This allows you to customize any page on your website without knowing code.  Page builders do not allow you to customize your headers, footers, sidebar, or archive pages – only theme builders do that.

Some popular page builders are Thrive Architect, Beaver Builder,  SiteOrigin, WPBakery, and my favorite Elementor (affiliate). 

Currently (Dec 2019) Elementor is the only one that is also a full Theme Builder.  Thrive Architect is trying to create a Theme Builder, but they have been at it since July 2018 without success (so far).

Divi is a drag and drop Theme, but I strongly dislike it as it slows down your site and if you ever decide to change themes, it leaves a HUGE mess.

Page Rank

Page rank (PR) is a number assigned to a webpage between 0-100 that represents it’s popularity or importance according to a search engine. 

While it is impossible to know what your actual Google (or another search engine) page rank is, there are tools that have created algorithms to get very close.  My favorite tool for this purpose is Moz.  When you install their toolbar, you can see the estimated page rank of every page in the search results for any term you search for.  This is very valuable for SEO.

Parent Theme

If we compare building a website to building a house, then a theme would include the color of your walls, the light fixtures you choose, or the faucet you picked out.  Essentially, a theme is what shows off your style!

A Parent Theme (used on WordPress) is your websites main theme.  It is called a parent theme, because you can apply a child theme in addition to your parent theme. The child theme essentially sits on top of your main theme and allows you to make edits to the look of your website without ruining your main theme.  You can use a parent theme without a child theme, but you cannot use a child theme without a parent theme.

Remember those books you used to get as a child with tracing paper?  There was a drawing under that tracing paper.  You’d trace the picture – so it is mostly  like the image under it, but you could also add color or extra drawings of your own – all without ruining the picture underneath.

The reason child themes are used is because parent themes must be updated regularly in order for your website to be secure.  But if you make changes directly to your parent theme, you will lose them each time you update the parent theme. This is why child theme were created.  The parent theme can be updated without affecting the edits you’ve added to your child theme.

WordPress, the blogging platform I recommend, will not function without a theme.  There are default themes that come with each WordPress install, but you can find many beautiful free and premium themes.

The problem with themes is that they are very difficult to edit or change without knowing code.  You can usually change the colors and add your logo.  Some allow for more customization, but until recently to truly get a custom WordPress website, you’d have to know code or hire a developer.

Page builders help with that, but even better are Theme builders like Elementor Pro (affiliate) that let you customize every inch of your site with a drag and drop interface.

Passive Income

Online Passive income has become somewhat of a buzz-word and can sometimes be used to mean “income without any work”

But this isn’t how passive income actually works.  Passive income requires work – usually lots of it – upfront.  But overtime,  your income grows while your workload does not.  In fact, if you are smart about the systems you set up, your workload decreases.  note I said decreases, not disappears.

Passive income is also somewhat automatic.  You don’t have to be involved in each and every transaction as the systems you have in place can “run themselves” for a period of time.  This does not mean you stop working altogether, but it does mean you can have more wiggle room in your life for things like family time and self-care without hurting your business.

PDF

PDF stands for “portable document format” and is a file format that takes all the images and text from a document and coverts it into an electronic image that is easy to share online or print. Pdfs cannot be edited without the use of a pdf reader (such as Adobe reader), and even then they aren’t easy to edit.

Most programs such as Microsoft Word, Photoshop, Google docs etc will allow you to save a document as a pdf.

Pdfs are useful for bloggers as they allow us to share documents with our followers in a format that is easy for them to print and view, but not easy for them to edit / change and claim as their own.  I like making “fillable” pdfs (worksheets that my followers can fill out online by typing instead of having to print and fill them out by hand).  This allows me to choose which portions of the document are editable.  I use pdf escape for this purpose. 

Permalink

A permalink is url of any given webpage. It is your domain PLUS anything that comes after your domain (the slug).  It is what allows you to link to a specific page or post inside of your website instead of only being able to link to your homepage. 

In WordPress, the blogging platform I recommend, you can set your permalink structure of all your blog posts at once.  For example, you could chose to the have permalinks of your blog posts be yourdomain.com/postname or you could choose yourdomain.com/date/postname.  

If you are a new blogger, feel free to choose whichever permalink structure you want.  The “post name” is best for SEO.

If you already have many posts, do not change your permalink structure as this will change the url for each and every post on your site.  Any posts you have previously linked to (inside other posts, on social media, in emails etc) will no longer work.  If you must change them, hire a developer.

Pin

A pin is the basic unit of Pinterest.  It is the equivalent of a tweet on twitter or a post on Facebook.

A pin includes a image or video as well as a description. 

Most pins also include a url that links to the source of the image and typically an article with more details about what was pinned.

Users pin webpages or ideas they like to boards within Pinterest as a way to group similar items together. 

The overall structure is this:  Pinterest > User > Boards > Pins 

Pinterest

A visual search engine that most people think of as a social media platform.

Pinterest is a visual platform where users can add, save and search for helpful ideas and content.

When logged into Pinterest, your feed will show a bunch of pins for topics you may be interested in (based on things you have previously saved (aka pinned).  You can then save ( aka pin) those pins to boards inside your own profile to make them easier to find later.

PingBack

In you enable pingbacks on your WordPress website (under the “discussion” settings), you will get a notification when someone links to your articles.  These will be found in the comments area of your website.

You can also choose to “attempt to notify any blogs linked to” from your own articles.  In other words, your blog will send them a pingback – and they will be notified if they have pingbacks enabled on their site.

How pingbacks actually show on the user end of your website is determined by your theme, not your WordPress settings.

Plugin

A plugin is a piece of software that you can add to a WordPress website in order to extend the functionality of your website.  

Because WordPress is open source, anyone who wants to can create a plugin to increase its functionality.  But this is also why you have to be careful about which plugins you choose to install on your WordPress website.  Since they are all written by different developers, they can sometime conflict with each other.  Also, some plugins are kept up to date while others aren’t and as WordPress grows and changes those plugins can stop working and / or make it easier for hackers to get into your website.

Too many plugins on your site can also make it run more slowly.

Podcast

A podcast is an audio recording that you access through an app such as Apple Podcasts or Stitcher.

Typically those who create a podcast create more than one – they create a series of podcasts that you can subscribe to and be notified each time a new “episode” is released.

Post

aka blog post. 

A post is a piece of content (a post type) that shows up in a website’s feed.

Post Type

Post type is a term that refers to the different types of content in WordPress.  If I had my way, it would be called “Content type” as that makes more sense as one of the types of content is a post.

By default, WordPress comes with the following post types:

  • Post
  • Page
  • Attachment (images, pdf files etc)
  • Revisions
  • Navigation Menus

There are plugins that will allow you to add your own post types as well (or you can hire a developer to do so for you)

Privacy Policy

A legal statement on your website that tells your visitors all the ways you gather and use any data about them. This includes things like their name, email address, phone number, credit card info, and cookies.

If you allow comments on your website or track analytics in anyway, you need a privacy policy.

There are many privacy policy generators you can use to create one, but if you truly want it to be legally binding you might consider using a attorney.

Programming Language

In English, we have the alphabet (which you are likely making use of as you read this blogging dictionary).

But computers don’t speak English – they have their own set of symbols, numbers and letters that developers use to tell them what to do.  There a multiple programming languages and each has a different purpose.

See also code.

R

Registrar

Typically refers to a domain registrar.  A Domain Registrar is a company that handles the reservation of domain names as well as the assignment of IP addresses for those names.

Resource Library

Resources libraries have become popular in the blogging world in recent years.

The idea is to have one page on your website that holds all of your freemiums. Then, your incentive for people to opt-in to your email list is the resource library.

RSS

“Really Simple Syndication”.  See feed

S

Sans Serif

A category of typefaces (often thought of as fonts) that does NOT have any serifs.  The text you are reading now is a sans serif font.

Search Engine

A program that searches a database full of content from the internet.  The most widely used search engine is Google, but there are others such as Bing or Yahoo.

Pinterest is a visual search engine.

SEO

Stands for Search Engine Optimization.

SEO is the process of optimizing your content so that it will show up in search results for certain keywords.

See also:

Serif

A category of typefaces (often thought of as fonts) that have serifs (a line or stroke at the end of a letter).  The title above this text is a Serif font.

server

A server is the place where all of the files needed for your website to work are stored.  But a server isn’t just storage space.  It also includes software programs that allow your website’s files to be shared with other computers via the internet.  Your host provides a server for your website.

shortcode

Essentially a short-code is like short-hand for programming languages.

Just like someone who knows shorthand could take a large amount of text and present it in a way that uses less text but means the same things, a shortcode takes a large of amount of code and presents it in a shortened manner.

Shortcodes allow us non-code geniuses to do complicated things on WordPress websites without knowing how to write our own code.

Many plugins will have their own shortcodes that you may need in order to make them work.  These are typically explained in the documentation for the plugin.

Sitemap

A sitemap is a file you give to search engines that tells them about the content on your website so that it is easier for them to understand your website.

Sitemaps are very important for SEO and an easy way to create one is using an SEO Plugin like Yoast or Smart Crawl Pro (affiliate).

Slug

A slug is the part of a url that follows the domain.  It is what creates a permalink for each page or post on your website.

For example, the slug for this page is: /blogger-dictionary-terms

But the full url is www.designedforgoodness.com/blogger-dictionary-terms

Social Media Platform

An online platform that allows those who use it to engage with each other in social networking.  Examples would be Facebook, Instagram, Twitter etc.

SSL

SSL stands for secure socket layer.  It is a certificate that you can install on your server that allows your website visitor’s browser to communicate securely with your server.

An ssl certificate is a must for accepting payments on your website, but can be smart to have simply to increase trust with your visitors.  Some also say (though it is debated) that it can be helpful for SEO.

Subdomain

A subdomain is the part of a url that appears before the domain.  In the following example: store.domain.com, “store” is the subdomain.  A subdomain cannot exist without a domain.  You can use any word you want for your subdomain(s).

Subdomains are typically used to separate out and categorize parts of your website that could almost exist as a site on their own – content that is distinct from the rest of the site.  They are often used for something like a store or shop or membership platform etc.

A subdomain creates an entirely new site, but since it also uses your domain, it ties that new site to you so that users know you created it.

Google is a good example of subdomain use.  They have sites like docs.google.com and mail.google.com and photos.google.com.  All of these are separate sites based on the same domain so it is easy for users to know that Google is in charge of each one.

If you want or need a subdomain, contact your host – a good host will be able to set one up for you.

Subscriber

A subscriber is someone who has subscribed to your email list or your rss feed.

T

Tag

A tag is a Taxonomy inside WordPress and other blogging platforms.  Tags are similar to categories in that you can assign various tags to a blog post in order to make it easier for users to find what they are looking for.  Using tags also allows for the creation of tag archivepages.

Tags are different than categories in that they cannot have subcategories assigned and or be used as breadcrumbs.

I suggest using tags as a way to filter categories.  A good example of this would be a clothing website.  Your categories are hierarchical.  For example:

Clothing |  Womens | Tops | T-shirts

Tags would allow you to then filter inside those categories.  Tags might include things like:

  • A color (tags would be pink, green, yellow etc)
  • A size (tags would be S, M, L etc)
  • A type (long sleeve or short sleeve)

You do not have to structure you categories and tags this way, but it has been the best way I have found.

Taxonomy

A taxonomy inside WordPress is a way of grouping posts / pages together.  The two default taxonomies are categories and tags.  But you can add more with the help of a developer or plugin.

Terms and Conditions

A terms and conditions page is a legal page on your website where you set out the rules that users must agree to in order to use your website.  They are often used with ecommerce sites, but can also be useful for blogs.  You can use a terms and conditions generator to create one, but if you truly want it to be legally binding you should probably use and attorney.

Theme

If we compare building a website to building a house, then a theme would include the color of your walls, the light fixtures you choose, or the faucet you picked out.  Essentially, a theme is what shows off your style!

WordPress, the blogging platform I recommend, will not function without a theme.  There are default themes that come with each WordPress install, but you can find many beautiful free and premium themes.

The problem with themes is that they are very difficult to edit or change without knowing code.  You can usually change the colors and add your logo.  Some allow for more customization, but until recently to truly get a custom WordPress website, you’d have to know code or hire a developer.

Page builders help with that, but even better are Theme builders like Elementor Pro (affiliate) that let you customize every inch of your site with a drag and drop interface.

Theme Builder

A theme builder is a WordPress plugin or theme that allows you to build your entire website with a drag and drop interface without any code

Theme builders are different than Page builders in that they allow you to customize your headers, footers, sidebar, archive pages, store, and blog post template in addition to your static pages and blog posts.

Currently (Dec 2019) Elementor Pro (affiliate) is the only Theme builder I recommend.  Thrive Architect is trying to create a Theme Builder (which will be an actual theme, not a plugin), but they have been at it since July 2018 without success (so far).

Divi is a drag and drop Theme, but I strongly dislike it as it slows down your site and if you ever decide to change themes, it leaves a HUGE mess.

U

URL

If we compare building a website to building a house, then the domain is the “street address” of your website.

The url can also be thought of as an address, but it has additional information – it is more specific.  

For example, let’s say I was out of town and my daughter called.  She had spilled chocolate milk on her pants and needed a dry pair. I could call a friend to help, but that friend would need more than just my street address.  They would need to know which room was my daughter’s and which drawer she kept her pants in.

A url includes the street address (aka domain) of your website, but it also includes different information that allows you to find exactly what it is you are looking for. That additional information can include a subdomain and / or the slug.

For example, my domain is: designedforgoodness.com

but the full url of this page is www.designedforgoodness.com/blogger-dictionary-terms

V

Viral

Online the term viral means that something (a blog post, an image, a video…anything) has become extremely popular and been shared on multiple social media platforms in a short amount of time.

vlog

A blog that posts videos instead of written articles.

W

Widget

A widget is a small block on a website that has one specific function.  In WordPress, your widget-ready areas are determined by your theme.  Typically, the footer and sidebar of your website are widget -ready.  Some themes add additional widget-ready areas.

If an area is widget-ready that means you can drag a block (aka widget) into those areas.  You can find your widgets and widget ready areas by going to Appearance – Widgets in your WordPress Dashboard. Common widgets are:

  • List of categories or tags
  • Calendar
  • Search bar
  • List of recent posts
  • Image

Some plugins you add to your site may also add additional widgets that you can use in widget-ready areas.

The Elementor Pro Theme Builder plugin (affiliate) adds hundreds of widgets to your site and makes every piece of your site widget ready.  This means you can build your entire website by dragging, dropping, styling and re-sizing widgets.

WordPress

WordPress is the blogging platform that I recommend.  There are 5 main reasons I recommend it:

  1. It is open source, meaning you can use plugins to create and do pretty much anything you want with your website – you can go far beyond just a blog and have a store, membership site, and more all on your own domain.
  2. It is SEO friendly.  This doesn’t mean that all SEO is done for you – rather it means that you have the ability to edit anything and everything you need to in order to have quality on page SEO.  Some other website builders don’t allow for this (looking at you Squarespace) so your chances of turning up in search results are limited.
  3. It is highly customizable.  You can change anything and everything about the look of your site.  And with Elementor Pro (affiliate), you can do this via dragging and dropping without knowing any code.  There are some website builders (looking at you Wix) that allow you to design via drag and drop, but don’t allow you to change your website once you’ve built it – a serious bummer!
  4. It’s not new.  It has been around “forever” – since 2003!  It isn’t going anywhere and it has had a long time to become one of the best platforms out there.
  5. You own your content.  Since WordPress is self-hosted (meaning you have to find and pay for your own host), you own everything on it.  Other platforms like Blogger or Wix or Squarespace host your content for you so you don’t really own it or have direct access to your files.

*Important note: I recommend WordPress.org, not WordPress.com.  While WordPress.com is similar as it is from the same company and free up to 3 GB storage space, it is not self-hosted, you cannot use custom themes, they will display ads on your site (that you don’t make money from),  you can’t add plugins on the free plan, and the analytics you have access to are very limited.

X
Y
Z

Yoast

Yoast is a very popular WordPress plugin that allows you to control your on-page SEO settings without knowing code.  Most bloggers use the free version though there is a paid version that allows you to target multiple keywords, allows you to create redirects if you need to change a url, and gives suggestions for internal linking.

I recommend it if you do not use WPMUDev as your host.  If you do use WPMUDev as your host, their SmartCrawl plugin (affiliate) is fantastic and does the same job.  It also includes automatic linking, site wide SEO scans, redirects, and my favorite – Moz integration.

Don't Forget this about learning blogging terms

As with any language, it will take time to get all this new blogging jargon down.  Don’t let yourself get overwhelmed.  Just reach out!

  • Heard a term somewhere that isn’t on this list?  Leave me a comment and I’ll add it!
  • Confused by the definition I wrote for one of the term?  Let me know by leaving a comment and I”ll clarify!
  • Find a broken link? (this post has a TON – it was a beast to organize)  Leave me a comment and tell me about it and I’ll fix it!

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A Blogger\'s Dictionary - A glossary of blogging terms for new bloggers.  An extensive list with easy to understand blogging definitions.

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