When onboarding clients to their websites, a common question is what permissions the different user roles have inside of their WordPress CMS. Here is a good reference chart and the specific definitions from WordPress.
Chart via BobWP
via WordPress Roles and Capabilities « WordPress Codex
WordPress has six pre-defined roles: Super Admin, Administrator, Editor, Author,Contributor and Subscriber. Each role is allowed to perform a set of tasks called Capabilities.
The Super Admin role allows a user to perform all possible capabilities. Each of the other roles has a decreasing number of allowed capabilities.
- Super Admin – somebody with access to the site network administration features and all other features. See the Create a Network article.
- Administrator – somebody who has access to all the administration features within a single site.
- Editor – somebody who can publish and manage posts including the posts of other users.
- Author – somebody who can publish and manage their own posts.
- Contributor – somebody who can write and manage their own posts but cannot publish them.
- Subscriber – somebody who can only manage their profile.
Upon installing WordPress, an Administrator account is automatically created.