New To WordPress? Here are some tips to help you get started!

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When your a beginner to WordPress it can feel like so much more than you expected. A few tips can really make the difference between losing all hope and actually publishing your work. WordPress is a platform, and you can make a beautiful website using it. One question though, Are you using WordPress.org or WordPress.com?

There’s a WordPress difference?!… Yes there is.

This is really simple to figure out. Do you want your Blog to look professional? Do you want to have the option to make money with your blog? If you have answered yes to these, than you need WordPress.org. You will need self hosting. I got my self hosting with siteground, at less than $4 a month. Check My Post Out If you want to learn more about the self hosted service siteground.

Okay! Its time to start making some simple changes to your WordPress.

As a beginner to blogging, it started feeling like I took on too much. I thought I was losing it! How was this so complicated?

Simple WordPress tips….

The WordPress dashboard…. this is where all the magic is

1) go to users>your profile

  • you can change your admin color scheme if you want (choose one that represent you more, for the time being.)
  • Fill in names- Your first, last and nickname. Than choose your display name (This is public).
  • make sure your site email is correct
  • is your website URL correct
  • Add social media URLs (if you have them)
  • Add a nice little description about yourself
  • Add Profile picture-go create a gravatar. You will be asked to create a WordPress.com acct. This is just to use the email.

2)go to settings > general option.

  • Change Site Title (the name of your website)
  • Change your tagline (this is a short description of what your site is about)
  • Check to see if your website URL and email address are correct.
  • Have an Admin email address
  • Make sure you choose your site language
  • Change your Time Zone
  • choose the date format
  • choose your time format
  • *Always make sure you save your changes!

3)go to settings>reading

  • Are you making a blog? Than your probably going to want your homepage to display your posts. First page your viewers will see.
  • There is a discourage search engines from indexing this site option...No one will be able to find your site if you hit this option. My opinion is, don’t turn this on. If your new chances of being searched for are slim.
  • save changes!

4)go to settings>discussion

The default settings here are you usually good. Just make sure these options are checked off to receive comments.

  • allow link notifications from other blogs
  • allow people to submit new comments on posts
  • comment author must fill out name and email. This will help block spammers.

5)go to settings>permalinks

This is probably one of the best tips, I cant stress this one enough! Your permalink structure is important. Changing this will help search engines get on your site.

  • Click the post name option.
  • make sure you save this change

6)go to appearance>Customize

I listed go to customize, because I assumed you have already chosen your theme. If you have not please go to appearance >themes and make sure to find one that suits you. Make sure its cellphone friendly! most of your viewers will be checking your site from their phones!)

  • Customize- your site title
  • Your tagline
  • ADD a logo if you want I created mine on canva.com there is a free version and a pro version. You definitely can create you logo with the free version. check it out.
  • Add a site icon (favicon) you can create this at canva.com. This will help you look more professional and more memorable. If your wondering, the favicon is the small image that you see next to the website name in the browser tab. Favicon Example below
favicon example

Widgets– this will help customize your blog/website example would be adding a search box

  • you can add images
  • the posts you’ve written
  • social media icons
  • there are many more widgets and you have the option to place them in different locations depending on your theme.

Go and check out the widgets! Find what you like.

Menus, this is an important part of how your website looks.

Your menus help your visitors find their way around your website.

Go to menus in the appearance section. Create a new menu…. enter a menu name (this can only be seen by you, Its just your reference). Add the pages, posts etc. Now, can you see the option at the top of the page? It should say manage in live view. This is how I learned.

  • EXAMPLE 1: You can make HOME, ABOUT ME, CONTACT and PRIVACY be your primary menu (in any order you want).
  • EXAMPLE 2: Another menu can be at the top of your page containing your legal pages. (MAKE SURE YOU HAVE LEGAL PAGES!! KEEP YOURSELF OUT OF TROUBLE, BE PROTECTED!)

make it happen, start today

Messed up already, can I just start over???

Just starting out, I played around ALOT on the WordPress dashboard. Really thought it would be easy. Well it wasn’t, especially since I didn’t research any of this. So Starting over was what I had to do.

Does this sound like you? Check out my post on resetting your default here. Started from the beginning! Did research! Now I share some tips. Hoping, that no one has to go through all the obstacles I had to. Definitely will be adding more info to this site, so keep checking back. Please let me know in a comment if this information has helped anyone. I’d Love to know! * Liz

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