Glossary of WordPress Terms

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This is a list of commonly used terms in WordPress.  If you discover a term that we should add, let us know.  Thanks.

.com

The most common suffix for a domain name

.net

A common suffix for a domain name

Activate

To enable a plugin

Addon Domains

Additional domains that can be added once a main domain is established by a hosting company.

Admin

The Admin area is the back end of the WordPress site where changes to the website are made.

Administrator

Administrator is the second highest role in the WordPress back end.  The Administrator role can make all changes except site network administration.  Practically, there is no restriction to the changes an Administrator can make.

Affiliate

A sales person for a particular product or service.  An affiliate receives a commission when the desired customer behavior occurs.

Aksimet

Askimet is a WordPress Plugin that checks the comments and contact form submissions against a global spam database to prevent malicious content from being published.

Appearance

Appearance is a menu selection in the WordPress back end that permits changes to the appearance of the website, including themes and customization.

Author

An Author is a role in WordPress who can publish and manage their own posts.

Autoresponder

An automatic email response to a sign up.  The common autoresponder is becoming obsolete

Avatar

An Avatar is an image adjacent to your blog posts that represents you.  In WordPress, your Avatar is uploaded through Gravatar.

Back End

The part of your website where you make changes that affect the Front End

Backlink

A Backlink is when a webpage links to any other page. 

Backup

A means to store a website so it can be retrieved in the event of a catastrophic loss

Brute Force Attack

A hacking attack where a malicious agent attempts to break into a site by using username and password combinations

Bulk Actions

Bulk Actions in the Admin area permits making the same change to multiple items.  For example, it is possible to update several plugins at once using the “Update” bulk action.

Cache

A Cache is a section of a website that is stored closer to the requesting computer to speed up subsequent requests

Category

A Category permits grouping of content to make it easier to look up a post.

CDN

Content Delivery network.  A strategy to speed up website loading by storing large files, such as image and videos at the servers around the world rather than storing the data in one place.

CDN

Content Delivery Network speeds your website by placing your site at nodes around the world so retrieval is quicker

Child Theme

A Child Theme permits modification of a theme and the changes to not get lost if the parent theme is updated.

Chron job

A chronological task (a task to be done at a certain time or times)

CMS

Content Management System, such as WordPress

Comments

Responses to blog posts

Content Management System

A system to create and manage content on the Internet.  WordPress is a CMS.

Contributor

A Contributor role permits writing and managing their own posts but cannot publish the posts.

cPanel

A control panel offered by leading hosting companies

CSS

Cascading Style Sheets is a programming language describing how a website is displayed

CSV

A generic spreadsheet file.

Customizer

A menu item in the WordPress back end that permits preview and modification of the website appearance

Dashboard

The list of menu items on the left side of the WordPress backend’

Database

A database is organized data

Database

A grouping of data that is defined and accessible

Deactivate

Used to temporarily disable a plugin

Dedicated Hosting

A server that is dedicated to one website or other internet-related purpose

Dedicated IP

A unique Internet Protocol address for a single hosting account

Dedicated Server

A server that is dedicated to one customer

Delete a plugin

Used to remove a plugin.  The plugin must be deactivated first. 

Discussion

Discussion is part of the settings section in the WordPress backend and permits control of what visitors can do at your site.

DNS

A Domain Name Server connects the Internet Protocol addresses for web sites to easier to remember domain names

Domain Authority

A measurement of the search engine ranking of a website.  A high Domain Authority the higher the rank in the search engines.

Domain Name

A unique name used to identify a website.  Often ends in .com

Dynamic Page

A web page that changes with new posts

Edit a plugin

A means to change a plugin.  This is not recommended.

Edit page

A WordPress backend command that permits editing of the content in a page.

Editor

An Editor is a role where posts can be managed and published including the posts of others.

Email

Most hosting providers provide emails for the URL you are using.  These emails can be redirected to your personal email without divulging this to the writer

Favicon

A small image on the left of the URL tab, providing a little more recognition.

Footer

The bottom of a web page.  Usually h the footer goes on each page of the website.

Forwarder

An email strategy where you forward all emails to another email address

Front End

The part of your website that the public sees

FTP

File Transfer Protocol.  A means to upload large databases.

General

General is a subpart of the settings section in the WordPress backend and controls basic configuration settings of your site.

GPL

General Public License for software, which permits general use of the software at no charge.

Gravatar

Gravatar is a Globally Recognized Avatar.  It is an image that follows you from site to site and appears next to your name when you make comments or posts on a blog.  You can sign up for a Gravatar at en.gravatar.com

GZIP

GZIP is a file format that permits compression at the hosting site and decompression at the requesting site, resulting in faster loading

Hacking

A malicious attempt to compromise a website

Header

The top of a website, usually containing the top menu and a logo, perhaps a phone number and email address

Hello Dolly

A plugin that is included for sentimental reasons.  It is OK to remove it.

Home Page

The first page of a website that usually has introductory information

Hosting

Providing a place on the Internet, for rent where you can store your website.

HTTP/2

The second-generation Internet protocol

http:

A non-secure protocol used on the World Wide Web

https

A secure protocol used on the World Wide Web.  It means the browser-website link is encrypted.

Icon

A small drawing used to illustrate or emphasize a point in a website.

Image Optimization

Image Optimization is a means to reduce the size of images without significantly reducing the quality.  It is used to improve site loading speed. 

Index

A means of organizing the web done by search engines

Installation

The loading of a program onto a server, such as WordPress

IP

Internet Protocol

IP address

The unique number associated with a computer, such as your computer or a server used buy a hosting company

JavaScript

A website programming language

Jetpack

A security and traffic monitoring plugin for WordPress

Library

A collection of items that is accessible.

Link Juice

Link Juice is a characterization of the authority passed from one website to another using a backlink.  When a webpage links to a blog article or website, it passes link juice.  A link from a website with domain authority increases the domain authority of the receiving site.

Localhost

Normally it is the name for this computer.  Sometimes it is the term used for the top-level domain name

Media

An image, video, or pdf document.  All can be added to the WordPress Media library

Multisite

A means to control several WordPress sites from one dashboard

MySQL

The WordPress Database

Nameservers

The URL of the servers used by a hosting company.  The nameservers are used to connect a domain name to the hosting company.

Nofollow

An indication to the search engines not to follow a particular web page

Noindex

An indication to the search engines not to index a particular web page

Open Source

Describes software code that is freely available for use or modification

Pages

A page is an unchanging document on a website

Parent Theme

This is a theme that can receive updates from the developer of the theme.

Password

a sequence of characters used to verify that the user is legitimate

Permalinks

A permanent link for a web page.

PHP

A software language used in website development

Pingback

A comment that appears when a link to another post is established, when pingbacks are permitted.  It is easily misused.

Plugin

A specialized tool that can be included in a WordPress website

Post

A post is content that is added from time to time.  It can be categorized and tagged to make the posts easy to look up.

Primary Menu

The main menu in the backend of a WordPress site

Profile

A WordPress profile is the information shown with your name when you make a comment on a WordPress site.

Purge a Cache

Empty the cache so new content can be displayed.

Reading

A WordPress backend menu item that controls how your website is displayed, such as a static page or a dynamic page.

Redirects

redirecting a URL to another URL.

Responsive

A WordPress theme that is designed to work on computer screens, tablets and phones.  A responsive theme will reorganize the content so it can be read on different screen sizes.

Role

A role specifies what a user can and cannot do on a site.  Roles can be managed in Administration Panels > Settings > General

RSS

Rich Site Summary is a format to deliver WordPress posts

Security

A means to prevent malicious attacks on a website

SEO

Search engine Optimization describes techniques to improve your Search Engine Rankings to your site is more easily found by those searching for your topic.

Server

A computer at a hosting company used to store website data and it is served up to the Internet

Settings

Section in the WordPress backend that permits configuration changes

Setup

Configuring a website after installation of the Content Management System

Shared Hosting

A hosting service where a single server will handle many websites

Shortcodes

A code that can be placed in a WordPress site that permits a specialized function

Site title

See Title

Slider

A slideshow that is part of a web page

Slug

An easier-to-remember name for a page or a post in a WordPress site.  Slugs are enabled by using %postname% in Settings.

Softaculous

A specialized system used on many cPanels to make installing internet programs easier

Spam

Messages sent without a request.

SSD

Solid State Drives. Generally faster and more reliable than spinning disk drives

SSL

Single Socket Layer.  This refers to the

Static Front Page

A setting that permits a special page to be shown for a website rather than a blog page that changes with new blog entries

Subdomain

A prefix on a domain that can be used for any web purpose.  A subdomain is separated by a dot.  For example, in website.wordpressforge.com, website is a subdomain.

Subscriber

The subscriber role can only manage their profile

Super Administrator

A role that permits all access to the site and can make any changes, including site network administration

Tag

A keyword used to link a post

Tagline

A slogan or further description of a website, usually placed just below the site title

Template

A section of a page that is set up by the WordPress theme.

Theme

A WordPress design that can be used to customize a website

Thumbnail

A small version of a larger image used to draw the reader to the main page

Ticket

When you have a support question, the method used to keep track of your issue is a ticket.

timezone

The division of time around the world, usually identified at so many hours + or – from UTC.

Title

The name of your website, not necessarily the .com address

Toolbar

This is a horizontal bar at the top of the WordPress Window when logged in.  It has shortcuts to sections of the admin area

Tools

Tools is a menu tab in the WordPress backend that permits importing and exporting data to and from other Content Management Systems.

Updates

intermittent improvements to a theme or plugin

URL

Uniform Resource Locator.  This is the website name, usually prefixed with http:// or https://

URL

Uniform Resource Locator is the entire name of the website that includes the domain name.  For example, https://www.wordpressforge.com is the URL, and wordpressforge.com is the domain name.

Username

A name given to a client on a computer network.

Users

A list of users and roles for a WordPress website, found in the backend of the site.

UTC

Universal Time Coordinated, previously called GMT

Visual Editor

A website editor that permits editing on the web page itself.

WebCrawler

A means used by search engines to visit and catalogue websites

Widgets

A block in the website that does a certain function, such as a calendar or list of recent posts.

WordPress.com

A place to publish a website for free, using the wordpress.com server.  You do not get your own unique URL.

WordPress.org

The location for free WordPress software that you install on your own (or a hosting service) computer

WYSWYG

What You See is What You Get, and description of a web editor that shows the editing in real time.