There are lots of articles online about how to install WordPress. (There will even be a series of articles on this site about the various ways you can do it). But what happens after the installation? Here’s a list of the things you should do after installing WordPress but before writing all that great content you have inside of you.
1. Change the default admin account.
Log in, and add a new admin user. Make sure to give it administrator rights. Then log out and log back in as that new user. Delete the default admin user. Why? You are never going to want to publish your content as “admin,” so make sure you remove the admin user and set yourself up with a more user-friendly admin name
2. Edit the permalinks.
By default, WordPress sets your article urls to look something like www.wpteach.com/?p=53. This is really bad for your SEO (Search Engine Optimization) efforts and is just plain poor usbaility. You can change your url structure to look more like www.wpteach.com/10-things-to-do after-the-install, which will make much more sense to your readers.
To do this :
- Go to Settings >Permalinks
- Make sure the button beside Custom Structure is checked
- Type ”/%postname%/ ” (without the quotation marks) into the text box
- Then click Save Changes
3. Add your categories, and set a new default category.
One of the best features of WordPress is the ability to organize your content into categories. Out of the box, WordPress comes with a default category known as ‘Uncategorized.’ You will want to change that default to something relevant to your site as well as add additonal catergories and set a new default category.
You can do that by clicking on Posts, then Categories, in the drop down menu.
4. Activate Akismet.
If this is your first website or blog, then you aren’t familiar with the onslaught of spam that is going to come your way. But don’t let that deter you, because WordPress has a built-in spam system to help you combat the spam bots (useful unless you really are interested in buying fake Rolex watches for cheap). All you need to do is go to the installed plugins page on your dashboard, activate Akismet and follow the instructions to get an API key.
5. Install Google XML Sitemaps.
After you have installed WordPress, you are going to want to have everyone find your content, and the first step in world content domination is to be found by Google bots. If you have the GoogleXML Sitemaps plugin installed, you’re ahead of the game. This plugin creates an XML Sitemap (hence the name) of your site that is then submitted to Google, Bing and Ask.com, which means you’re covered on the search engine submission front for the big 3.
6.Activate Google Analytics
The Google sitemap is a great help to geting you indexed with the search engines, but you also need to make sure you are tracking your traffic and seeing how your individual posts are doing as far as numbers of people viewing them are concerned. This is where the Google Analytics plugin comes in. Once downloaded and installed, you’ll need to get an ID from Google Analytics (it’s free) and plug that in. After you’re done that, you’ll be able to see how each individual post and page has performed.
7. Upload and install your theme.
This will likely be a higher personal priority than some other items I’m suggesting, because most people want to make sure their site looks good as soon as they can. Whatever your reason, installing a theme is a good way to get your hands a little dirty in the WordPress dashboard. There are any number of places to get WordPress themes. When you have chosen a one, you need to upload it to your site and then install it. That is all done under the Appearance tab on the menu.
8.Change your blog tagline.
The default here is the almost iconic slogan, “Just another WordPress Site,” but your site is anything but just another site. Make sure you go to Settings> General and change the default to something more appropriate for your site.
9. Install a backup plugin.
You’ll never understand the importance of this piece of advice until you need to reinstall your WordPress site from a backup because you were hacked or clicked the wrong button and accidentally deleted something important. But trust me, speaking from experience, having a current backup of your site will come in handy and save you lot of time and frustration should the need arise. Personally, I use iTheme’s Backup Buddy. I like it because it is a 3-in-1 tool. Not only does it backup, but it also makes it easy to restore a site and even migrate a site from one provider to another.
10. Install Yoast SEO plugin.
Last, but certainly not least, in the things to do immediately after installing WordPress is installing the Yoast SEO Plugin. This is a great plugin that is not only free but incorporates a ton of features along with the SEO, to help you with your search engine efforts. In my books, this is a must-have plugin.
So there you have it: the 10 things to do after installing WordPress that will help get you off and running on the right foot! Let me know in the comments if you have any other must-do items to suggest to anyone heading off with the fresh install.