You just installed WordPress on your blog? Not sure, what to do for wordpress settings? What to do exactly after installing wordpress?
Are you going to start your blogging journey from today?
If yes, then you must be excited. I can see you. 🙂
Before you start, you should do some essential things to do after installing WordPress on your blog also before you publish your first post on the blog.
Note: If you don’t know how to install WordPress and just getting started then I would recommend you to check this guide written by Arfa.
Why you need to do these configurations on your wordpress blog?
If you want to make your website user-friendly and well optimized for search engines from the beginning and that it requires some essential wordpress settings and installation of certain plugins.
That means these are must-follow steps to make sure your WordPress website is secure, is ready, user-friendly and perfectly optimized for search engines. This is a complete handy guide with several steps shown with examples, and screenshots.
Therefore, if you’ve just started a WordPress blog and you’re unsure what to do next. This post is for you!
Just follow the steps one by one and your site will be ready.
20 Most important things to do after Installing WordPress
So, without taking more time. Let’s jump into the list of essential things to do after installing WordPress.
This is a guest post by Aakash.
1- Change site title, tagline, and timezone
Your site title is your brand name while tagline shows its purpose.
By default, it comes with dummy title and tagline that you will have to change.
How to do?
Go to WordPress dashboard > Settings > General
Here are your site’s general settings like timezone, date format, email, website URL and new user’s role.
Title: Business name
Tagline: Tagline of your blog/business, try to choose the tagline that shows the purpose…
WordPress/ Site Address: Both will have the same value, don’t change them unless you have to.
Email: Enter the primary email
Membership: Unchecked because I don’t want to allow any user to sign up as a user on my blog.
New user default role: Subscriber
Site language: Your preferable language
Timezone: Your country’s timezone, It is going to help you while you publish posts.
Date/Time format: As per your choice
2- Remove default content
When you install WordPress, It comes with default post “Hello World” and page “Sample Page”.
We don’t need either page or post.
Go to Posts > “Hello World”
Check it and click on above “Bulk Actions > Move to Trash” then click on Apply.
Now, Go to Pages > “Sample Page”
Do the same process above given.
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3- Setup default category
By default, the “Uncategorized” category will be assigned if you don’t assign while publishing content.
Here, we are going to set a niche-specific category or a general.
For example, Arfa has selected “Blogging” as a default category because she talks about blogging as the main topic here.
Go to Posts > Categories, Give it a name and slug.
Click on “Add new category”.
Once you are done with this process, now, go to Settings > Writing and choose default post category as “Blogging”
You are done 🙂
4- Setup permalink structure for better URLs
Google prefers to have clean and short URLs for your articles. If you follow what google says, then your chances are getting higher ranking would be more.
For that, you need to set up a permalink.
Go to Settings > Permalinks.
Choose Post name as a URL structure. That’s it.
5- Enable caching and make your site faster
Caching is the mechanism of storing data in cache memory. The cache memory is the temporary memory solution. By implementing this technique your site’s data fetching and latency would decrease and the site will load faster.
Would I have to do technical work, Aakash?
No. W3 Total Cache or WP Super Cache does for you. Don’t worry.
You are using WordPress and that’s why you should be getting some advantages over custom made sites. Both plugins are the best in implementing caching and FREE to use as well. 😉
Note: There are several other affecting factors for your blog speed. If you want to look at what they are and want to load your site under 3 seconds then you can check detailed guide.
6- Complete Your User Profile
If you want to get connected with your users then you should be using a clean and awesome avatar with a great story about yourself.
Your profile and about me/us page are the sections from where people will know about you and your business.
So, you should have a proper bio ready in which you can write about what you do, your hobbies, purpose and future goals for the blogs and success stories.
Look at the Arfa’s profile
Go to Users > choose the user’s account.
Fill all the details like first name, last name, email, biographical info, social media account’s URLs and image.
Note: You can’t change the username once it’s selected. Also, I would not recommend you do directly from the database or using a 3rd party plugin. 🙂
7- Add WordPress ping list for faster indexing of articles
Now, let’s look at how to improve site SEO and indexing.
By default, WordPress doesn’t come up with any ping list. If you don’t know what’s pinging then let me tell you.
Pinging is the service in which your content would be shared on multiple platforms like directories, social media, and many more places.
The bottom line: It helps you to index your content faster in search engines and drives traffic as well.
Here’s the list of sites;
8- Setup Front and Blog Pages (Optional)
In today’s modern era of digital marketing, many people use the blog and front pages separately.
By default, the home page displays your latest posts only. But If you want to set custom pages for front and blog then you need to do manually.
First of all, create both pages.
Go to Pages > Add New > Give it a title.
Create one for the blog and another for front.
Once you are done with it. Go to settings > Reading and choose pages. Done 🙂
9- Have essential pages ready (Contact, Privacy)
These pages help your blog to look authentic and trustworthy. Getting legal pages on your website is the most important step. You can get legal pages written by a lawyer and get stress-free.
Arfa recommends this legal bundle by Amira which covers all 3 legal pages and other bonuses. So many bloggers and businesses have purchased this bundle and are so happy with that.
Once you are ready with all pages content, you can publish them by going to Pages > Add New.
Related : As you start a blog, or online business, make sure to follow the legal laws. Check out this ultimate legal guide for bloggers [tips from a lawyer]
10- Reset installation password:
One of the easiest ways people hack your blog by attacking using a different username and password credentials.
The hacker would try different username and password combinations to logged in. You might be thinking that this method would take too much time.
I agree with you. But, remember, they have software and apps to perform a wide range of attacks.
Hence, you should secure your admin login credentials at the maximum protection level.
How you can do?
First of all, you should change your existing password to a new one which is much more secure than the existing one. You can use at least one capital character, one small and one special character. This would give you the most secure level of a password.
Then you should go with installing and activating the WPS Hide Login plugin. It lets you create a custom login URL.
This method is optional. If you find that you are being attacked at homepage/wp-admin or homepage/wp-login URL by every single day then you must change to custom URL.
11- Setup Theme according to your choice and needs.
There are millions of free themes are available on the WordPress theme directory. I would say they are good but not that much you can use for your business or blog.
If you are caring about site speed and structure then I would highly recommend you to invest in premium themes.
What are the benefits you would get with the premium theme?
- It’s optimized for SEO and robots.
- Awesome site structure to index your blog faster.
- Ease of customization
- Premium support.
- Built for speed and faster mobile indexing.
These are just a few benefits I have listed here. You can go with the Genesis framework + child theme.
You should also check out these fantastic premium themes for WordPress.
Once you decide the theme, now, it’s time to install and setup it.
Go to Appearance > Themes > Add New and either upload theme file or choose from WordPress theme repository.
Then you will have to go to the theme’s official site to follow the documentation and from there you would be able to set up the theme as well.
Now, let’s talk about essential plugins
Related post: 17 Free WordPress Plugins you can use on your blog
12- Add Spam Protection Mechanism
If you ask me what is the most essential thing I should do after installing WordPress on the blog, I must say please add spam protection mechanism.
You know, in today’s competitive world, more websites come up every single day on the internet that means more spamming as well.
The comment box is one of the best places for spamming. I’m not giving you an idea to do so. Because I know Arfa has already added spam protection plugin here.
But, spamming on the web is increasing day by day and we need to protect our blog from it. Akismet Anti-spam is the ultimate solution to protect your blog from being spammed.
Go to Plugins > Add New > Akismet Anti-spam then install and activate it.
Now, go to settings > Akismet Anti-spam and first you need to enter your email to get an API for your site. Then, further, change the settings.
13- Add SEO Plugin and Make Your Blog Indexable
Google is by far the best way to get traffic on your blog.
Hence, to list your blog on google you will have to enable search engine indexing then install Yoast SEO or Rank Math plugin to optimize for SEO.
I’m going to show you the settings of Yoast SEO because it’s the most popular and widely used by many people.
First, install and activate Yoast SEO. Then add your site to google search console. Here’s the step by step guide:
Go to Webmaster Tools > Add Unique verification code of google to Google verification code field and for bing if you want to add.
We have given access to the google and we can check the analytics of keywords, impressions, links, and sitemap over there.
Go to search Appearance and add home page title and meta description. Here’s the detailed guide on best-optimized Yoast SEO settings.
14- Add Security Plugin to make your site secure from hackers:
As I told you earlier, your site is not secure. You need to secure it with enabling the firewall and other protections.
Wordfence, Sucuri, and Ithemes security are the most popular plugins out there which have a free plan that you can use on your site.
In most cases, you won’t have to do any settings from your site. Because all the above plugins come up with activation of essential required protections.
Still, you can verify once and if you find that firewall is not enabled then you should start because it’s the basic one and must have.
Here is the guide on securing your sites using wordfence and Ithemes.
Tip: Pin the image below so that you can come to this post later.
15- Add Backup plugin
Sometimes, we would have a bad time and our site might get deleted due to some unavoidable tasks.
Moreover, your hosting company would not have any backups of your site with them.
What would you do if you have don’t have any backup with you?
You can’t do practically than writing this bad incident on social media. 🙁
But, you are here to know must things you should do after installing WordPress.
You should install backup plugin today. 🙂
It’s always better to take a backup at your site and store those files on your local computer or cloud storage providers Google Drive, Dropbox, etc.
Thus, in bad situations, you won’t have to rely on web hosting company and you could recover your site in your way. 🙂
Updraft is a free plugin which lets you take backups on schedule and at a run time anytime. Here’s the link to know more.
16- Upload your gravatar for better visibility across the world
After WordPress 4th version, they are using Gravatar for displaying author images. If you don’t know about what gravatar then let me tell you.
Gravatar is an image hosting site which is being used by millions of platforms across the world for their image & user bio benefits.
If you upload your picture on gravatar with an email id then whenever you will use that email address anywhere it comes with the image which is linked to the email.
What’s more interesting? Upload it once and use at whatever places you want. 🙂
Go to Gravatar’s official site and create an account and add new email with an image and you are ready to use.
17- Optimize images to load site faster
Images are the 1st responsible for slow page speed. They take more time to load even if you have enabled lazy loading.
I know you don’t have an image right now. But you should be optimizing images for different sizes from the beginning.
For example, in ideal scenarios, thumbnail has 150 x 150 and featured image has 700 x 400 size.
So, without doing optimization, your blog will load uploaded image everywhere and that’s not good. It takes time to load if it’s large.
Add image optimization plugin Shortpixel, Smush.it, EWWW, or Tiny PNG. These are some free options to use. They come up with optimized settings but if you want to do custom then you can do.
But, always keep checking if any of these plugins are slowing your site.
I highly recommend to check out this post for image optimization tips to boost SEO.
If you are looking for a lightweight plugin then you should also check out Shortpixel. It won’t slow down your site and it’s so affordable. If you run short of 100 images, you can simply buy their one-time plan for just $20 for about 10,000 images, which are too many.
18- Disable Directory Browsing
Some hostings allow to browse the directory of your blog, which is not the right thing and you should disable it.
For that, you have to edit the .htaaccess file and add a line of code at the bottom of the file.
Options All -Indexes
That’s it. 🙂
19- Social media profile setup
As you know, social media presence can improve your business and branding.
You can start building a facebook page, twitter profile, and LinkedIn profile. You should add below things first:
- Name of blog/business
- Address and phone
Then share on different platforms.
Are you following shemeansblogging on Facebook? Click here to like the facebook page to get future updates, and new posts.
20- Stop core files being indexed by google
We want to index our blog but not an admin panel. Right?
To stop core files being indexed by google bots, you have to define one line in Robots.txt.
Note: If you are using Yoast SEO, you can directly access .htaccess and robots.txt files.
I’m sure this post answers what to do after Installing WordPress. Just do the wordpress settings so that your site is ready to go live, and publish great content.
#21: Final touches
Installing wordpress is a fun task but you also need to pay attention to important things to do after installing WordPress on your blog. This is not a specific task but you should perform some checks before making your blog live.
- Remove unused plugins like Hello Dolly.
- Have a proper sidebar
- Site menus for better site structure
- Adding google tag manager
- A custom commenting system like disqus
These tasks are not for everyone, whatever is necessary, do it. 🙂
Related post : How to do SEO for your blog posts? The Beginner SEO guide
It’s always better to optimize our blog from the beginning.
So, these were the list of essential settings you should do after installing WordPress for your blog. Once you implement the above tasks on your blog, you will find your blog faster and nice looking.
I hope you like this list, if so, please share it on social media and with your friends.
Aakash Patel: An engineer by education and a blogger by passion. I love to help people achieve their goals & dreams. If you want to learn actionable proven blogging & SEO strategies then follow me on twitter, facebook, and Instagram. Thanks!