So, you have a blog with titles and stuff, but are you capitalizing the correct words within those titles? Since titles are usually the first thing people read, before diving into your content, you want to make them good (both content and grammar-wise). Not to mention, if you’re jumping into the blogging world, you should at least try to improve your grammar, right?
Here are 3 simple rules to follow when writing your title for each blog post:
- The first word in your title should always be capitalized. That’s just proper. Ignore this rule if your writing-style consists of all lowercase – that’s your style.
- Be sure to capitalize all verbs (words that convey action), nouns (person, place or thing), proper nouns (i.e. America, Robert, Anthropologie), pronouns (you, she, it), adjectives (describing words), and adverbs (i.e. not, quickly, loudly, sweetly). You can also capitalize subordinating conjunctions (i.e. although, until, wherever, if).
- Don’t capitalize words like: a, an, in, the, as, and, or, of, with, by, for. Note: The only time you would capitalize the word ‘the’ is if it was part of a book name, company name, newspaper, etc. (i.e. The Hunger Games, The Roblin Shop, The Wall Street Journal).
Pretty easy, huh? So, now that you’re armed with the basics of capitalizing in your blog post titles, get back to blogging!
Thank you! I need this.
Hey Starla, I’m so glad that you found this useful. I hope to see you around here again soon! RL
Just what I need. Thanks!
Such a simple fairly hard to answer question, and such a great answer..We all thank you
Thanks! A great and clear answer, I will try to keep it in mind going forward with my blog.
What about if it’s a hyphenated word. For instance would the title be “The Swim-test Save” or “The Swim-Test Save?”
Great question Joshua and thanks for stopping by! There are options with this one. It depends on what you prefer. I like to stick to what The Gregg Reference Manual (10th edition) says:
“In a heading or title, capitalize all the elements except articles (a, an, and the), short prepositions (at, by, for, in, of, off, on, out, to, and up), and short conjunctions (and, as, but, if, or, and nor).”
I think that this is most professional and lines up with the other rules. It’s also the easiest to remember. So, using your example above, “The Swim-Test Save” would be most appropriate.
Some will argue to simply capitalize the first letter only, but to me, this seems lazy. Does that help? If you have any other questions or comments, feel free to share!
Thanks for this tip! I’ve always struggled with that myself. Now I have a clear path forward.
thank you 🙂
Well laid out and true. But this may only imply to formal titles… i.e. titles that considered more professional in nature. I’ve noticed a number of blog posts that are informal in nature. For instance, something about what someone wants to do on their next birthday. For these I’ve been thinking such informal posts should have reflective titles: “Things that I’d like to do on my next birthday;” while more formal titles: “Dos and Don’ts of Successful Birthday Parties” use traditional title rules.
Great point, Todd! And thanks for stopping by to share. I want to start by apologizing for my delayed reply; I was out of the country on a trip. But, back to your comment – I don’t see anything wrong with people mixing things up and straying from the “rules.” That can keep things simple, informal and fresh. I like to see people do as they please in their blog titles, but it’s also nice to have structure sometimes, as well. So, yeah, whatever works best for the moment. I really appreciate you bringing this up and sharing! Stop by anytime.