9+ Essential Settings After Installing WordPress
You are in rush to publish a blog post and before publishing a blog post you have to do some important changes.
And here are the most important things you must do after installing WordPress.
First login to your website admin section
9+ essential WordPress settings after installation
Change default theme
Under ‘Appearance -> Themes’ menu, select a suitable theme and click ‘Activate’ to activate the new theme to your blog. If you don’t like the listed themes, click ‘Add New’ button at the top.
Then select a theme from the list of available themes or if you have any downloaded theme, you can click ‘Upload Theme’ to upload your theme.
If you’re a beginner and don’t want to spend money, use free WordPress themes, and later you can switch to premium themes.
Change General Settings (Title, Tagline, Timezone and User registration)
Go to ‘Settings->General’ and set your ‘Site Title’ and ‘Tagline’.
And also it is easy to change the site address under ‘Site Address’ textbox.
Confirm that ‘Membership’ checkbox is un-ticked, if you are going to be the sole author of your blog. If it is ticked, it will allow anyone to register with your blog. If your blog is multi-author blog or forum then this feature could be used.
To set the timezone, you can choose a city that is in the same time zone as you live in or set by UTC. If you don’t know the right UTC, you can find here.
Then choose the correct date format and the save the changes.
Set up your profile
Every blog post shows the author name and visitors are always interested to know about the author. So you should update the profile details.
Go to ‘Users->Your Profile’ and enter your first and last name.
Your username is shown as the blog post author name by default. If you want to show any other name as your author name, enter a ‘Nickname’. Then select that nickname under ‘Display name publicly as’ dropdown box.
Update your Email, Facebook profile URL, Twitter username and Google+ profile data under Contact Info section.
And another most important thing is you have to set a small ‘Biographical Info’ about you and this will be the small intro that helps you to inspire your visitors.
Your profile picture plays an important role in bringing trust to your readers. Set up your smart profile picture in Gravatar.
If you have finished the above said changes, click ‘Update Profile’ button to update your profile details.
Disable Directory Browsing to improve security
As a newbie, you have no knowledge about this. WordPress is an open-source CMS, so everyone knows the directory structure. Anyone can look into your files and find out your directory structure, copy images, files and other information with the directory browsing. To avoid this, you have to turn off directory browsing and indexing.
How to Disable Directory Browsing
You need to add a single line to your blog’s ‘.htaccess’ file. To find the ‘.htaccess’ file, simply connect to your blog using an FTP client.
You can find the .htaccess file in the root directory of your blog or website. Download it to your computer and open it in any text editor like Notepad.
.htaccess file already contains some WordPress generated code. Don’t make any changes to the existing code and simply add the below line at the bottom.
Once you have done the changes, save your .htaccess file and upload it to your server through the FTP client.
And now you have successfully disabled directory browsing in your blog or website. If any user tried to access your directories they will be redirected to WordPress 404 page.
Protect your wp-config file
wp-config.php file contains your blog’s database configuration and connection details.
It is located in your blog’s root directory and you have to protect it from unauthorized access. To protect it, add the following code to your .htaccess file below the existing code (don’t alter any existing code in .htaccess file).
deny from all
Important Note : .htaccess is the server configuration file and it contains the most important rules to control your website. Therefore before editing it, you must download a copy of the current .htaccess file to your computer as backup. In case of any problem in your website due to .htaccess file editing, you can upload the backup file to your server.
Edit Comment settings
Some people post unnecessary comments and links through the comments. To avoid this, check “Comment must be manually approved” checkbox in “Settings->Discussion” menu.
Also always check the “Anyone posts a comment” and “A comment is held for moderation” checkboxes under “Email me whenever” section. This allows you to send email to your email id if anyone posts a new comment. If there are any unwanted comments, you can delete it because spam linking and comments can also affect your blog’s search engine ranking.
It is possible to set the ‘Default Avatar’ image for visitors and you can also modify the other discussion related settings here. After finishing your changes, click ‘Save changes’ button to save your changes.
Delete the default blog post and sample page
Under ‘Pages’ section of your dashboard, delete ‘sample page’ and simply create an ‘About Us’ page to describe yourself because visitors want to know about you.
Before publishing any blog post, delete the default ‘Hello World’ blog post. To delete the post, simply click 'Trash'. Also delete the default comment
Change the URL structure using Permalinks
Have you noticed the URL structure of other blogs? What structure do they follow?
You can also structure your URL using Permalinks in your WordPress site. Permalinks are permanent URLs and each blog post URL should be permanent that won’t change.
URL helps to increase your search engine ranking and it is recommended to change your URL structure to make it SEO friendly. Always try to include your keyword in URL.
Go to ‘Settings->Permalinks’ to change your URL structure. Default WordPress URL is http://yoursite.com/?p=123 and this is not SEO friendly.
You can select the ‘Post name’ option to set a simple URL and this is used by many bloggers.
URL structure of ‘Post name’ is http://yoursite.com/your-blog-post
How to add Category and Sub Category in WordPress URLs
If you want to include category and sub category in your URLs, select 'custom structure' option. Next, you need to add /%category%/%postname%/ in the textbox, next to custom structure. This will add category and subcategory in your URLs.
Then click ‘Save Changes’ to update it.
Add new category and tags
While entering your blog post, under ‘Categories’ section (right hand side), tick the category for your current blog post. If you don’t have any category, click ‘Add New Category’ to create a new category.
Don’t leave the category as ‘Uncategorized’ and it will annoy the user.
You can also add tags for your blog post. To enter more than one tag, enter the tags by comma separated.
Update Ping List
WordPress pings only one service by default. You can update your ping services with more service URLs, so that whenever you update your blog, these websites can be notifed.
Go to ‘Settings->Writing’ and under Update Services section, you can update more service URLs.
Here is the complete WordPress Ping List to index faster your blog content
Whenever you install WordPress, don't forget to configure these essential settings. Before publishing your first blog post, make sure you have finished updating these settings.
Other important things to do after installing WordPress
With the above listed settings, you have to install some important plugins like Akismet, Yoast SEO, W3 total cache etc. to your WordPress blog.
To show recent posts, comments in your blog, you have to add Widgets.
To add widgets, go to ‘Appearance -> Widgets’ menu, select the widget name and click ‘Add Widget’ to display the widget in your blog.
If you know any other WordPress settings do let me know through comments.
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