As a new blogger, you’re probably getting used to this whole new world known as blogging. And there are some pretty confusing terms that people can throw out there and expect you to know. It took me over a year to learn what everything meant and I still come across new words every day. This list of over 90 blogging terms and tools, I have defined in an easy to understand way for even the newest newbie.

The Ultimate Blogging Cheat Sheet – Over 90 Blogging Terms and Tools Defined

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Here comes the best part – if you don’t time to sit here and memorize each one now, I created a handy 11 page PDF document with the same information that you can keep and refer to whenever you want.

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The Ultimate Blogger Cheat Sheet

WordPress.org

A blogging platform software that you use on a self-hosted site.

WordPress.com

A free blogging platform. There are limitations such as not owning your content and less ability to customize and monetize.

Blogger

A free blogging platform from Google. Also has limitations such as not owning your content and less ability to customize and monetize.

SquareSpace

Another blogging platform.

Host

The company that manages your website data on their servers. Popular hosts are Bluehost and SiteGround.

Logo

Usually a unique image including your blog name.

Tagline

A short statement, usually in your blog header, which lets your readers know what your blog is about.

Theme

A theme is a basic website design that allows you to customize the look of your blog.

Child Theme

A child theme is another customization of a general theme.

Genesis

A popular theme that designers use to create child themes for additional personalization. You usually need Genesis AND a child theme when using this set up.

Plugin

Something you can add to a self-hosted WordPress blog to give you additional functionality that is not available in your theme/child theme.

Static Page

When the home page does not change if a new blog post is published.

Read More

A blog page can choose to either show full blog posts one after another, or show a summary with a “Read More” link that will direct you to the actual post.

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Widget

An area where a plugin, image, or ad can be placed. Most blogs have widgets available in the sidebar, header and footer. For example, a Search widget can be added to your sidebar.

Sidebar

The left or right side area of your website where you can add images, ads, email subscription boxes, etc. Sidebars are optional.

PV

Short for Page Views. A common count of how many people are visiting your site. It includes each page someone looks at, which means your page views should be higher than your actual Unique Visitors if a visitor is viewing more than one page at a time.

Unique Visitors

This is the actual number of individual people coming to your site.

Reader

Another way to say Visitor.

Bounce Rate

This is the rate at which your visitors leave your site. The higher the bounce rate means that people are leaving quickly and not reading your content. Your goal should be to have a low bounce rate.

Email List

You can collect the email addresses of your readers to an email list. You can use an email provider such as Madmimi or Mailchimp to set up automatic emails when blog posts are published or manually whenever you want to send a direct message to your readers.

Subscriber

Usually used in relation to the email list, as in “email subscriber.” It is also possible to subscribe to a blog through WordPress.com or Blogger.
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Another way to say an email to your email subscribers. Timing can vary, as well as content. Some are simply a list of posts, others are distinct emails to your readers.

RSS

An automatic feed of your blog posts. Someone can subscribe to your RSS feed and view your posts through an RSS reader. RSS can also be used to set up automatic emails to your email list.

SEO

Search Engine Optimization. A way to format your posts and website so it is more likely to come up in search results for Google, Yahoo, Bing, etc.

Lead magnet

Something that you give away for free to entice people to sign up for your email list.

Opt-in Freebie (or just Opt-In)

Another way to say lead magnet.

Content upgrade

This is similar to a lead magnet, however it is specific to a piece of content (a post) and elevates that one particular post as a way to entice readers to subscribe to your email list.

Share button

Buttons on each post which allow a reader to share it via social media or email.

Follow button

Similar to a share button, but these buttons are on the main areas of your site, such as the header, the sidebar or the footer, and they allow visitors to follow your social media profiles.

Guest blogging

When you post a blog post to another blog as a way to reach a larger audience and get valuable backlinks to your blog. Some can be paid, most are not.

Blog contributor

This is more of a steady gig, where you may write for another blog on a consistent basis. This is more likely to be a paid position.

Backlink

A link to your blog from somewhere else on the internet.

Follow (link)

In regards to SEO, a “follow” link tells Google that the website is valuable and vetted by you.

No Follow (link)

In regards to SEO, use No Follow links for any paid link placement. A No Follow link does not help or hurt the website being linked to.

Click-through rate

This refers to ads, emails or search engines in which you want to know how many people click to your website.

Editorial calendar

This is a set schedule or list of what you plan to post in the future. It can be as simple as knowing you publish Recipes every Wednesday, to a more detailed list of exactly which recipes you will post on which dates. There are plugins available, downloadable calendars, or you can use a simple calendar planner.

Keyword

In regards to SEO, this would be the word or phrase you are targeting to show up in search.

Long-tail keyword

This is usually a longer keyword phrase instead of one word.

Header

This can refer to two things – this may be the Blog Header with your Blog Name image, with logo and tagline. It also refers to the code area in the head section of your blog where you can place code for example Google Analytics.

Footer

The footer is the bottom area of your blog. It can refer to the widgets and Copyright location that show up on your blog, or it can also be used to place code that needs to run on the page.

Categories

This is an easy way to separate the things you write about on your blog. For example, the main categories on this blog are: Parenting, Motherhood, Recipes, and Money.

Tags

Tags can be considered more detailed keywords you might use to search for posts on your blog. For example, a Chocolate Chip Cookie post may be in the Category – Dessert, but the tags would be: Chocolate chip and cookie.

Yoast

The most highly suggested plugin for SEO Optimization. It allows you to easily see how to optimize a post with a keyword and also set up specific social media images and text. Free plugin that offers a paid upgrade.

Google Analytics

The gold standard for measuring page views and reader demographics.

Jetpack

A WordPress that comes standard with new wordpress installations. It offers multiple options to add functionality to your site.

Google Webmaster tools

A Google tool that helps you optimize you sitemap and links for search.

Above the fold

The area that is showing when a webpage is first loaded before scrolling.

Alt Tag

The field next to the title of a picture that should also be filled with the title of the picture for SEO purposes and Pinterest optimization.

Self-hosting

Term for purchasing hosting service from a company such as SiteGround, instead of using a “hosted” site such as Blogger for your blog.

JPEG

A type of image file.

PNG

A type of image file that is larger than a jpeg version. Needed to create transparent backgrounds.

Hero Image

A large banner image, usually the first image on a page or website.

Slider

Some blog themes have a sliding picture area on the main page.

Linky (link) party

Something that is hosted by one or more blogs, where you can link your own post. Some have a particular theme. Most are set up to recur weekly. The links are automatically No Follow. For an example, go to the Happy Home Life Linky Party here.

Round Up Post

A round up post is when you collect links from other bloggers on a general theme. A example here – 20 DIY Coffee Based Beauty Recipes. You need to have permission from each blogger if you intend to use an image in the collage for the post. You cannot use an image directly in your post. Permission is not needed if you’re just using a link with no image.

Related Posts

At the end of each post, it’s helpful to include other posts a reader might like, generally from your own site. You can use a plugin, or include links and images manually.

Printable

Something that is offered to readers that can be downloaded and printed (like this document!).

Stock Photos

There are many companies to choose from when it comes to stock photos. These are images that you pay for that you can edit and include on your blog and in your posts. Most companies have different guidelines on how to give the photographer attribution.

Free stock photos

There are also companies online that offer free stock images, which different attribution guidelines.

Promotion

Letting people know about your blog and your blog posts. This is generally done through social media.

Mastermind

A group of like-minded people/bloggers who get together on a regular basis to discuss their goals.

Tribe

Similar to a mastermind group. Can also sometimes refer to your readers.

Webinar

An online class to teach something or give information to someone. Usually video and audio. Can be live or recorded; free or paid.

Podcast

An audio show that usually features a few topics and can be delivered to listeners to teach something or grown an audience. You can find podcasts on iTunes or other apps.

Branding

A consistent look and feel for your blog. It would include a few specific colors, fonts, logos, and images for example.

Style guide

A single place where you keep your branding elements, such as color codes and fonts.

Picmonkey

A free graphic design program online that you can use to make images for your blog. Has a few paid upgrade options.

Canva

A free graphic design program online that you can use to make images for your blog. Has a few paid upgrade options.

Photoshop

A program you can use to make images for your blog. It is a paid software.

Social Media

Places online where people get together to chat and discuss topics, such as Facebook and Twitter.

Facebook

A social media platform. You can have a personal account, a business page, and a group for your followers.

Facebook Share Days

When a Facebook business page allows other bloggers to post about their blog on the page on certain days.

Facebook share groups

Groups on Facebook that help promote other blog posts through social media.

Twitter

A social media platform that features short posts (140 characters) called tweets.

Twitter Chat

When a group gets together on Twitter to discuss a specific topic at a specific time, using the same hashtag.

Hashtag

A word or phrase with a pound sign immediately in front (#) used to search topics on social media. For example, #parenting or #momlife.

Pinterest

A social media platform and search engine that features images that link back to the full article. Images for Pinterest need to be long and skinny so they can easily be seen when people are scrolling through Pinterest. A good traffic source for beginning bloggers.

Group board (Pinterest)

In regards to Pinterest, it is a pin board that multiple people can pin to. Most group boards have rules of how often you can pin to it.

Instagram

Social media platform that features square images.

Loop Giveaway (Instagram)

When a group of bloggers set up a giveaway that loops through multiple profiles for entries.

Periscope

A live streaming video social media platform and app.

YouTube

Social media platform and search engine dedicated to video.

StumbleUpon

A social media bookmarking platform that features quickly scrolling through posts and giving them thumbs up or thumbs down. Posts that many users like will be shown to other users more often.

Yummly

Search engine devoted to recipes. You can add your recipe posts to Yummly by “yumming” them and saving them to Yummly.

Disclosure

A message to the readers that you may be compensated for a blog post or social media post, and it must appear before any links.

Email Blast

Usually a single email about a product or brand to your email list that someone may pay for.

Social Media Shout Out

A single social media post, or a series of posts, promoting a brand or product for compensation.

Media Kit

A one or two page document that you can give to brands to detail: who you are, what your blog is about, your blog statistics (such as pageviews and demographics) and what you charge for promotions such as sponsored posts, contests and social media shout outs.

Sponsored Post

A post that is written specifically for a brand to help promote their product. All sponsored posts must be disclosed at the beginning of the post, so readers know that you were paid or benefited from a brand in exchange for the post.

Affiliate links

A link to a product or brand that you will receive commission on if someone takes an action, such as a purchase. Must have disclosure before the link or immediately after.

Campaign

Refers to an overall brand goal. For example, a diaper company may start a campaign with 100 bloggers to post about a contest. A campaign usually has a fixed start and end date, goals and budget.

Google Adsense

An ad company that most bloggers use to make money on their blog. You can set up an account and usually be approved quickly once you start your blog.

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4 Comments on The Ultimate Blogging Cheat Sheet – Over 90 Blogging Terms and Tools Defined

  1. Brittany Brown
    April 9, 2017 at 9:38 am (3 months ago)

    I had to bookmark this it has so much good information. thank you!

    Reply
    • Kristen Miller
      April 9, 2017 at 3:04 pm (3 months ago)

      Thanks so much for stopping by 🙂

      Reply
  2. Gracie
    November 5, 2016 at 4:23 pm (8 months ago)

    I am a new blogger and this is very helpful! Thank you so much! x

    Reply
    • Kristen Miller
      November 5, 2016 at 4:39 pm (8 months ago)

      Great! I am so glad you found it useful 🙂

      Reply

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