So you have your site online. But still there are many things you need to go over before publishing your site to the world, here are the 18 most important things to do in a WordPress website immediately after setting up your blog.
1. Make sure your site is visible to search engines
You need your site to get indexed by google to ensure that to happen make sure you have your site is allowed to be searched by google, Although WordPress will have this setup correctly its a good practice to have it confirmed.
just logon to your WordPress dashboard, then settings and click reading. Now you will see a page like the one below if the search engine visibility is checked just un-check it.
2. Change your Email address.
Its a best practice to update your site’s basic information and a custom email address, most user sign up with their personal email address and the WordPress profile email address will be different,
That doesn’t sound good,
It is recommended to updated a domain email address for your WordPress website. If you’re not sure how to create a custom email address for your business check out the blog here.
On your WordPress dashboard, go to settings and click on General and update your email address as shown below.
3. Be sure to change your WordPress Credentials
It may sound weird, there are bots and scripts which can do a wild guess on your credentials and hack your site, its recommended to change your credentials as soon as you login to your dashboard.
Also create a user profile with editorial access or administrator right with a strong password-Don’t let bots guess your password and spoil your work.
Here’s how you create a new user.
- Go to dashboard then user and create a new user – fill out the details and change the role to editor or administrator.
- You can you a plugin or password data software like lastpass.
4. Change permalink
Honestly you don’t want to see an ugly URL and make it hard for your reader to remember, changing permalink will help easy memorable and readable for search engines.
Once changes you URL should look like – www.url.com/post name
On your dashboard go to settings then permalink and select post name as show above.
5. Update site tag, tile and other basic information.
Its a recommended best practice to update your sites basic information like your site tag, title on what is the site is about and other basic information. Google loves to search your site fast and it is good to have an identity.
Head over to dashboard then to setting / General and update the information as shown below.
6. Get Your Site a Premium Theme
By Default your WordPress site comes up with a lot of Great theme, Its’s advisable to get your site with a paid theme, with paid theme there are lot of additional functionality and customizable.
You like to hover your own boat. don’t you.
I recommend you to get one from themeforest or mythemeshop their support level is great.
Once you have your theme file go to your WordPress dashboard hover over to Appearance then themes then select add new, Now choose the theme file and select Install Now.
Your New theme is up and running. don’t forget to delete the unused theme
go click on Appearance you will see a list of themes installed select the theme and on the right corner you see a delete button….Just that simple.
7. Get premium hosting
Do you know that using a junkie hosting can slow your site. anything you do on a WordPress site will consume a bandwidth and a junkie hosting will let you down. Google appreciate website with good page speed which is a part of an SEO factor.
Having tried and migrated to few hosting providers, I recommend Siteground as they have a dedicated WordPress hosting for blogger’s like us.
Siteground has got the best customer service, all your support and queries always answered promptly. you also get a free SSL for one site and one free Migration if you are on a startup plan and the price is as low as $3.95/month.
with their Growbig plan you can host unlimited sites with a lots of Unlimited features. Go ahead and give it a try with Siteground here.
8. Keep Your Site Security at Priority
It’s most important to keep you site secure from intruders, while this is already a major issue and most of the companies are a victim, its highly important to take this at high priority.
here are some tips that could help you keep your site safe and secure from hackers.
- Enable SSL on your domain
In recent days SSL has becoming mandatory for bloggers to implement.
So what is an SSL
SSL means Secure Socket Layer that encrypts data to and fro from the website to the server where the website is hosted. SSL will look something like the one below when you type the website on the browser.
Also it helps to Secure the data and other information collected through forms, login information through the website. In short SSL helps to secure your website from hackers who wants to make your site vulnerable and steal your work.
It’s a best practice and in recent days google has started asking to implement SSL for websites.
- Keep Backups of Your Site
Data loss is intolerable, each year companies are spending millions of dollars to secure data, Although WordPress is highly secure there will be day where your site might be a victim of data loss or your site may crash.
It’s a best practice to backup your data frequently, While most of the hosting companies do keep a backup of your data, it is highly advisable to backup your website.
There are several plugin’s that can do the job for you.
9. Get Your Site a CDN
Get your site routed through a CDN(Content Delivery Network),
So what is a CDN?
A CDN is a Content Delivery Network or Servers around the world that takes your site content and stores them onto their servers available around the world. when a visitor visits your page from a different location apart from the website hosted location they can view your website fast from the nearest CDN server available at their location.
10. Update favicon, Site icon and Default Category.
Favicon are the tiny icon you see on the browser near to your URL, the main purpose of favicon is to identify your website and reorganize your brand,
First create a image of 512 x 512 px and save it a png, jpeg or any GIF format then go to appearance then customize /site icon and upload the media file you just created and click publish.
11. Failing to block spam
The biggest problem that most of them fail is spam commenting which might contact malicious links and malware if not taken care it would reduce the search ranking and site reputation.
You can manually moderate comments and approve only the comment you trust, But that should be okay to do when you are brand new and you have few comments, What if you have more comments and you find it hard to manage.
just go to dashboard then setting / discussion.
You can use Akismet a plugin helps you moderate comments and block spammy comments.
12. Resize image before posting
WordPress have an option by default to resize images. however, sometimes it might not show up the images if not resized and optimized Always have a standard size that fits your post and optimize it before uploading.
Two good source for optimizing images are tinypng.com and resizeimage.net
You can also try WP Smush to compress the image and optimize to your site requirement.
13. Avoid Too many Plugins
Plugins are additional features that enhance the functionality of a website, while this seems to be good having too many can acquire a lot of bandwidth and space which make the site load slow.
One way to fix this is search and install a single plugin that does a few functionality rather than having plugins with individual functions.
14. Failing to test the social media buttons
Most common mistake bloggers does is they install a social media plugin but fail to test it, doing so will create a broken link in your site which means the visitor is either not showed a 404 error page or a redirect page onto what the visitor has to do.
It’s always a best practice to test your media buttons before you launch.
15. Install and Activate Caching
What is a Caching?
It is a process of temporarily storage of data and fetching the dynamic output of your site, while the setup is complicated it stores data and serving it to your visitor rather than asking WordPress to create a new one.
The primary purpose of caching is to increase the page speed as this is one of the most important factor for SEO, it’s recommended that a page should load within 3 sec if not people will leave your site.
16. Install Yoast SEO
SEO is widely used by website owners to increase traffic organically, while WordPress is SEO friendly however, there are time where you need to optimize the site to get more traffic.
Although there are several plugins available from WordPress one comprehensive plugin is Yoast SEO.
Yoast SEO is user friendly and easy to setup, you can setup YoastSEO in just a few clicks once installed run through the steps and you are good to go.
If you are struck their documentation and video tutorial will help you keep moving.
17. Install Google Analytics to Your Site
So you get a lot of visitors to your site but not sure where it comes from, that’s where we use a Analytics tool, Most widely used tools by marketers is Google Analytics which is free and give you an accurate data of where the traffic source is from.
Google Analytics can be easily integrated with any WordPress website and easy to use alternatively you can install a plugin or copy and paste the tracking code on the header of the theme which is allowed in most premium and free theme.
18. Set up Google Search Console
If you are not much familiar with SEO, then installing and activating Google Search Console would be a great idea and its a must have tool for your website.
Google Search Console helps you to point out errors on your website and helps you fix the issues and optimize for better conversion. If you are using Yoast SEO google search console is in build all you need is to follow the process and paste the authentication code on the blank box.
just go to your dashboard then select SEO, Once you are there click on webmaster tools and click on Get the google verification code.
Once clicked it will take you to your gmail account and will ask you to allow access once allowed it will provide you with a code. Copy that and paste than on the Yoast SEO and save.
To sum up these are my top 18 recommendation and most important things to keep your WordPress website up and running smoothly. Not all plugins and tools mentioned here should limit your ability to explore, You could actually do a lot more than things.
Stick to things that your really need it and that really make the WordPress website to run smoothly on a longer run.
If you like the article share it and if you have any suggestion do comment below, I am more than happy to answer them.