WordPress is one of the best blogging platforms out there and powers 35% of websites on the internet. So after installation, you’ll want to get started on WordPress set up correctly from the start, to prevent problems down the road.
You’ve installed WordPress (more details on hosting sites are available here) and you’re looking at a homepage. Where do you go from here?
Here are ten things that you should do immediately after you install WordPress to make sure your site’s WordPress setup is right, from the very beginning!
1. WordPress Login
First things first: you may be wondering how do I log in to the WordPress dashboard? With all WordPress sites to get to the admin login you simply go to the address bar, and after your site address, type in /wp-admin/. It would look like this:
2. General Settings
Once in the dashboard your first step is to head to Settings > General and make sure all the information on that page is set up correctly for what you are looking to do with your website. The main things to concern yourself with are your Tagline and Site Title. These are important because they describe your site to the world.
These tags will show in the top bar when anyone has you or your client’s website home page open, in any Google search results, and many more places, so it is imperative to make sure they say what you would like them to!
People don’t want to see the standard WordPress message – it tells viewers that you’re another average beginner (just goes to show how vital Site Title and Tagline are). While everything else should be automatically configured, make sure to review it anyways to make sure it’s exactly what you want to be displayed!
3. Reading Settings
Next, you’ll want to head right to Settings > Reading to set up the organizational system and layout of your site. This is where you get to decide whether you want your homepage to be a static page or a standard blog by choosing ‘Your Latest Posts.’
What you choose depends on the nature of the business: if your website is mainly a blog, then a blogroll on the homepage will be very effective, but if you are trying to sell a product or service, a static front page is important!
Here is also where you can decide how many posts you would like to show up on your blog page. You’ll typically want to choose a high enough number to show a variety of your posts, but not so many that it will slow down your site or make it look too busy. I usually choose to show 6 or 7; you can also change this based on the grid system you end up using.
You can also choose to show either a full post or a summary on your blog page. Selecting the summary option is a great idea, as it makes people click through to read the post, as it doesn’t reveal the whole thing. It also makes your blog page more organized and clean. I also like to be able to style the full blog post–just because it’s fun. One more page to design.
4. Also in Readings
Make sure that the ‘Search Engine Visibility’ box is unchecked, as that will keep search engines from seeing your site. I check this option when I’m working on a demo site, or if a site is unfinished and don’t want search engines to see it, but it’s crucial to uncheck the box once your site is published.
“Intuitive design is how we give the user superpowers.”
5. Posts Page
The post page is perhaps the most important page of your new website! It’s where you will end up spending most of your time actually writing your site’s content. This page has a multitude of options for your posts page, and you will want to configure it so that it works best for you! Head to Posts > Add New.
You will want to categorize every post you write, and so you should set up your categories from the start. ‘Uncategorized’ is the default category of WordPress, and it may give your readers/customers a sense of disorganization, and might lessen the user-friendliness of your site. So, the first thing you should do is go to Posts > Categories and create some categories for your site. Then go to Settings > Writing Settings. The first thing on the page is Default Post Category. Here you can change the name of the uncategorized posts. Simple!
… and that about covers it! The TKD Design team is here to help you through WordPress setup, and every other step to building a stellar web presence for your business. Contact us today to get started on WordPress setup – the next step for your business!