I’ve installed WordPress, what’s next? If you find yourself asking this question, keep on reading as we have listed out the next steps that we usually perform after WordPress installation.
1. Change the default Admin nickname and password
By default you’re using “Admin” as a nickname which is displayed each time you post an article or make a comment. Change “Admin” to your own nickname or something similar so people can easily refer to it. If you hired someone to do the WordPress installation, it’s best to change the initial password to your own one. This can be edit by going to Users -> Your Profile.
Related post: Understanding The WordPress Admin Dashboard: A Beginner’s Guide
2. Check Privacy Settings
We often overlook this part and freak out when out of a sudden we can’t find our site at search engine listing. Before you press the panic button and claim that Google has punished your site, please ensure that you’ve selected the first option “Allow search engines to index this site”, by going to Settings -> Privacy
3. Edit the Default Permalinks to SEO Friendly Type
By default your site permalink will look something like this http://www.bluchic.com/?p=123, where 123 is the unique ID of your post. The default url structure is poor in terms of usability and Search Engine Optimization.
It needs to be something that your readers and search engine will be able to read and understand, having postname or keywords in the url like: http://www.bluchic.com/showcase-of-8-beautiful-cupcake-website-designs
To change it, go to Settings -> Permalinks, choose Custom Structure and insert /%postname%/ or /%postname%.html in the field.
4. Change Your Site Tagline
By default it will display “Just another WordPress Site” as tagline. So mediocre it doesn’t tell anything about your site, change it to something that portray your business site, for example “homemade cupcakes in Maryland”. You can change it by going to Settings -> General and edit the tagline field.
5. Add Categories and Set A New Default Category
WordPress has a Default Post Category which named “Uncategorized”. So when you forget to select a category after posting an article, it will label the article under “Uncategorized” automatically. Your readers might get confused with this “Uncategorized” label. Change it by going to Posts -> Categories, click on “Uncategorized” to edit it to “Updates” or something more general.
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6. Activate Akismet
There is a saying, it’s better to prevent than to cure. If you’re thinking that your site is still new and no spam will attack your comment section, you’re so wrong. Sooner or later you’ll receive comment spam. Before it happens, activate Akismet from Plugins section. It’s free for personal blog.
Related post: The Top 10 WordPress Plugins You Need On Your Website
7. Install Google XML Sitemaps
Being the new kid on the block, you surely want your site to be found and indexed by search engine. Be sure to have a sitemap ready, which can be created by installing Google XML Sitemaps plugin.
8. Activate Google Analytics
After getting your site up, you’ll surely want to monitor the traffic to understand how many visitors per day, where do they come from (direct, referral, search engine, etc), how does each page perform, etc. We recommend using Google Analytics for a better tracking result.
9. Upload and Activate the New Theme
After all the settings, here comes the exciting part – upload and activating the new WordPress Theme that you’ve just purchased. Go to Appearance -> Themes. Click on the top tab Install Themes and upload your theme zip file.
10. Install a Back-Up Plugin
So, the new theme is up and you can’t stop admiring your new site. All is well, but wait, here’s one last important step: install a back-up plugin. This could be your life-saver when your site is hacked or some content magically disappears cause we never know. We recommend BackWPup, which can be set to email the backup on daily basis or weekly basis.