New To WordPress? 7 Serious Mistakes WordPress Beginners Make And How To Prevent Them
Any new site can be daunting, particularly if you’re not familiar with the essence of blogging or writing an article. Many have installed WordPress as their first taste in the website arena and many have made a lot of basic mistakes. We’ll walk you through some of the best mistakes users make when they first launch WordPress and will have you thinking outside the square once you’re done.
1. Installing WordPress in a Subfolder called WordPress
When you unzip a WordPress file, all the core files will be located in a folder called WordPress but many users tend to upload this folder to their website using FTP instead of uploading the files contained in the folder. The result is a website located at www.website.com/wordpress rather than www.website.com. WordPress will let you install in a different directory rather than the one in which it is installed by default.
2. Not Using Permalinks
The default permalink for WordPress is /?p=<postid>. Instead of displaying www.yourwebsite.com/big-news you’re going to see www.yourwebsite.com/?p=57. Perhaps many people don’t change the default permalink to something more user-friendly and use keywords because they don’t know how.
Clean URL’s bring a neat appearance to your URL. Using a post name (/%postname%/) on websites keeps links short which allows key words to be included in the URL. To do this, change the post slug in the post editor. You might notice blogs that publish numerous articles during the day use day and post name, (/%year%/%month%/%day%/%postname%/) which helps to avoid duplicate post slugs.
Category and post name (/%category%/postname%/) is another option often used as well. Although /%postname%/ sometimes had an adverse affect on website performance, the problem was taken care of and resolved in WordPress 3.3. Now there doesn’t seem to be a preference as to which user-friendly permalink structure you choose to use. But to change permalinks through the WordPress administration area, your .htaccess file must be writable. WordPress recommends you change the file permissions of .htaccess to 644.
If you don’t have permission to update .htaccess through the admin area, WordPress will give you the code for your chosen permalink structure and you’ll be able to update the .htaccess file manually.
3. When You Publish Incomplete Pages
A tell-tale sign of a beginner in WordPress is the incomplete page. It’s exciting to be able to launch a website, but often it is done so before it’s actually ready. There’s nothing more frustrating than being faced with a page that announces it’s “Coming Soon” or “Under maintenance” while the page is being updated. It’s common sense; an incomplete page may be enough to give the impression that you’re not taking yourself, your business, or your website seriously. Whilst you’re building it and before you launch your website, there is a maintenance mode you can use, the plugin such as Anticipate and this should keep your prospective clients interested enough to return when the site is up and running.
4. You Don’t Need All Those Plugins
Disused plugins should be uninstalled when you don’t plan on using them again.
A cluttered website is something many beginner WordPress users don’t tidy up. Their website is in chaos with plugins that aren’t being used. They should be deactivated. Your website is being unnecessarily slowed down whilst increasing resources to run it.
5. Why Aren’t You Keeping WP up to date?
All themes and plugins need to be kept up to date otherwise, you’ll increase your chances of having your site hacked by unscrupulous people that will render your site difficult to introduce any new WordPress products. WordPress are aware of problems associated with using an older version and the release of WordPress 4.7.3 which includes its own auto-update feature allows maintenance and security updates to be applied, uninterrupted while you sleep. By default, updates to the WordPress core are applied automatically for WordPress 3.7 or higher but plugin and theme updates are not automatic. You’ll need to add the following code to your wp-config.php file:
add_filter( ‘auto_update_plugin’, ‘__return_true’ ); then to activate automatic theme updates, add the code below to your wp-config.php file:
add_filter( ‘auto_update_theme’, ‘__return_true’ ); but if you’re using an older version, it is recommended you download the latest version from WordPress.org so that core updates are applied automatically in the future and you won’t miss out on important updates.
6. Is Your Password Strong Enough?
A guess is as good as it can get when a username and password is the first priority of a hacker to access websites. When WordPress quit asking their users to use their admin user name for their master account, things go a little easier and website security improved. Nevertheless, hackers will try and try and try again to guess your password and if it’s an easy one, they’re in like Flynn.
Simple easy to remember passwords are not going to cut it any longer. And there’s no excuse when online, there are services, all free, to help you generate a powerful password. One successful one is PasswordsGenerator.net which allows you to select password length and complexity. If you’re no good at remembering passwords, choose one, make it super strong and powerful; an impenetrable password is your security to a worry-free website.
There is also Passpack and LastPass where you can store your strong, powerful passwords in an impenetrable secure location.