If you have followed my How to Install a WordPress Blog guide and learned the 11 Reasons why you need a blog, then let’s move to the third part of the series. In this article, we’re going to learn the 14 Essential Settings for your WordPress Blog!
1. Set your Blog Name, title, domain email address and time zone.
This is going to be the most important thing you need to do after Installing your WordPress blog, For setting the blog name, title, domain e-mail address, Login to the Admin Area of your site, Typically Yourdomain.com/wp-admin and in the Admin area Go to Settings > General.
Here you can set your blog title, tag line, WordPress URL and Site URL in addition to setting up your time zone, email address (which is very very important) and other things as necessary, these settings usually define a nature or theme of your blog so you need to take care while writing everything there.
Typically known as permalinks, you need to change your domain url structure because having a good url structure is good for SEO purposes, but it also helps user in making your website easy to remember.
So From Admin area goto Settings and then click on Permalinks, I usually recommend Day and Name (or) Month and Name option.
3. Create Categories for Your Blog
In order to structure your blog easily and have a well organized layout, create categories for your blogposts. In other words, categories categorize your blog. It provides easiness for users to navigate through a specific category. The easiest method for you is to :
- Step 1 : Open WP Admin Area
- Step 2 : Select Posts
- Step 3 : In Posts Section, Click on Categories.
You can take help from the snap:
4. Delete default posts & pages and create your own!
Once you have created categories, you’ve to delete the default posts and pages which WordPress have created just for your reference. Usually there is a trash option with each category, just remove the default posts and pages.
For pages (Settings > Pages >All Pages) , have a look below
For Posts (Settings > Posts > All Posts), have a look below
You can click on the trash icon, I’ve given you an example here using my own WP Admin area. However, you need to delete the following data from your blog :
- ‘Hello World’ post
- ‘Sample Page’ page
- ‘Mr WordPress’ comment
- ‘Hello Dolly’ plugin
Secondly it gives more trust to your website, looks more professional, specially if you are selling any service on your blog or taking anything from your visitor (like email) and how you will use that information.
The third reason is, the search engine also give’s more authority and trust to those websites which have these pages listed and you will get good traffic too for your blog. (Isn’t it cool? ).
- Termsfeed – TOS (Terms of Service)
- Privacypolicies – TOS
- Shopify – Tos
However, before finalizing one, make sure to double read it.
6. Wordpress Discussions/Comments
These policies will define
- How visitors will interact with your blog?
- How they can comment ? (like do they need to be registered on your blog etc.)
- Articles older than xx days should be automatically closed?
- Breaking comments into multiple pages
- How comments are approved on your blog? (How they go into moderation, who approves them).
- Other things such as Nested comments, comments blacklist, avator and other things as necessary.
These settings can be modified by going to Admin Area -> Settings -> Discussion
7. Select a good theme
WordPress is a very big platform and there are literally thousand of theme‘s to choose, depending upon the type of your blog you are going to run, it is very important to select your theme accordingly.
Note : WordPress have so many features that even if you select any theme, there are so many customizing features that can even totally change the outlook of your page with the same theme however some people even go with a custom theme too.
However for themes, you can check the following places for theme.
- WordPress theme’s Directory – (Free)
- Colorlib WordPress theme – (Free)
- Wpbeginner WordPress theme collection – (Free)
- Themeforest – (Paid)
- ElegantThemes – (Paid)
The above listed companies has so many themes with so many categories, like they have a different themes in Business blogs which have a totally business style designs, also do you know that you can build a website even on WordPress using the above themes?
8. Adjusting your theme
The next step is to modify and adjust your theme according to the layout you want, Just keep in mind that while adjusting or modifying any design, your priority should be to have a top notch user experience for your users (user-experience is a factor of Google’s Ranking factors), where without much hassle they can find everything and the design should please to them also make sure to check out the 10 ways to Improve your website conversion rate!.
Depending upon your skills & knowledge, I will recommend you to start with Widgets where you can adjust your sidebar settings, installing conversion tracking code, adding banners, email subscription box and other things as necessary in your sidebar.
Some themes do have header adjustment settings too available in Widgets section, Now after messing with widgets section, you will have to move towards Customize section and edit your site accordingly. Here you can modify your font size, tagline, header and other settings such as if you want to see Front page display with your latest posts or the front page of your blog should be a static page.
If you have are familiar with php and HTML, you can consider going to Editor section and edit different pages of the website, however if you are a beginner I won’t recommend it.
9. Setup your User Profile
It’s always a good idea to fill your user profile along with biographical information and your avatar, so user’s can get to know more about you.
What you need to do is, goto Wp Admin > Users > Your Profile.
Here you can put:
- Your Business Name
- Your Bio: Describe your bio like a BOSS. Whenever a reader completes reading a blog post, he/she will get interested to the author who wrote the blog post. Bio is not about who I am, it is about describing yourself like a BOSS.
- Your Social Profiles: Put all your social profile links so that the blog readers may get connected to you via Social Media, giving you and your blog exposure.
10. Start Scheduling Regular Backups
So there was a virus, attack on your site or your host company went down or you got any other issue and accidentally all your data is vanished? so you are standing nowhere!? It’s always a best way to keep regular backups of your word press blog. I will be recommending few plugins for that in my next post, so make sure not to miss it.
11. Enable 2-factor Authentication
It’s always nice to have some sort of extra verification for your site, again I will recommend a best plugin for it too in my next post as I want to review the plugins in detail.
What Enable 2 Factor Authentication do is that even if a user tries to access the WP Admin Panel, he still needs to check the email and click on the link to approve the access which makes the procedure of hacking, a little difficult.
12. Add a Favicon and a Cool logo
Did you ever thought how much important your logo is? Your logo is going to represent your brand, your site, your blog, in fact it’s going to represent You! Make sure to invest some bucks in having a good logo and favicon.
However, here are some tools to get free logo and favicon quickly:
- www.favicon.co.uk – For generating Favicon
- Cooltext.com – For designing free logos within a couple of seconds. Interesting thing, no limit!! Isn’t it cool?
- Fiverr.com – You can also consider using Fiverr for this, it’s a great source for awesome logo’s at cheap price!
13. Install a Conversion Tracking System to analyze your traffic.
It is very important to monitor the progress of your blog to find where you are standing and how you can improve further and the best way to monitor, analyze and observe your traffic is via a good conversion tracking system. Google Analytics is going to be my first preference for everyone, Yes i do recommend other tracking softwares too such as Prosper 202, Voluum, Crazzy egg (Heat map) etc. but they have different functions and if you are a newbie, just go with Google Analytics.
14. Add an about us and contact us page.
Well well, you might have little heard about this, but it’s always STRONGLY recommended to have an about us page where you write a little about yourself, your blog and a contact us page through which people can reach you, not only it brings a nice image to your website (brings more authority), but Google also improves your trust, specially in Adwords, sites with About us/Contact us page not only get’s approved easily but to some extent it also helps in quality score too.
According to the latest research, about 66% of the total visitors visit the ‘About us’ page. Why? because they want to know who’s the man behind the scene. Simply, About us page can improve the page views average per visitor.
What do you think are essential settings which needs to be followed when you create a wordpress blog? what I have missed? what do you want to add? please do comment. 🙂
Keep following guys, We’ll be coming with 2 more helpful posts, one is Top 10 WordPress Plugins to use with your Blog and I’m going to share How to Make Money Online without Investing a Single Penny!! Stay Tuned. Any suggestions? Comment section is always open for you! Let’s discuss.