WordPress can sometimes seem like the big bad wolf ready to screw you up at every twist and turn, but there is hacks that can make it a much more enjoyable experience. Depending on your skill level, some you may know and others you may not.
- This first one came to my attention after helping a friend create a new website. She was going through her web hosting company every time she signed on to her website. When you want to log in to your website you can type in your URL and then add /wp-admin/ to the end of it and you will be taken to your login page. For instance, to sign on to this site you would go to https://theblogging911.com/wp-admin/
- A page is a static piece of content. It’s like a web page. It isn’t dated, nor does it show up in any sort of RSS feed. Great uses for pages are your ABOUT page, RESOURCES page, CONTACT page. A post is a dated piece of content that gets pushed out to your RSS feed. It’ll show up in readers. It also is categorized and tagged in your database differently than a page.
- If you look at the top of your posting page you will see a tab that says “SCREEN OPTIONS” (See image below 1.). There you can decide what you want to see on your posting page. You can change it whenever you like and it includes things like plugins that you may want to use. Such as: SEO by Yoast or CoSchedule. You can also choose whether you show and excerpt, you can turn your comments off and on, use the distraction-free writing functionality, turn off sharing buttons, even whether or not you use the featured image.
- The next tab which is the “HELP” tab while give you instructions for writing posts, inserting media, etc. (Image 2)
- On your posts page if you have “LAYOUT” checked you can decide what kind of page you want to create. On mine, I can use the “Default page” which will be whatever I have checked for your general layout (sidebar, no sidebar, right sidebar, left sidebar). My other choices are: Archive, Blog page, Category Index, or a Landing Page. You can make any or all completely different from each other. (image 3)
- You can also choose to make a post or page public or private. You can even make a post or page password protected. Like the resource library for this site. When you sign up for my email list you get a password which allows you access to the resource library. (image 4).
- You can also schedule posts in the future in case you are away. (image 5).
- Write an excerpt (activate it in the post screen option) to customize how your post appears around the web. If you are using an SEO plugin, it’s called the meta description. One difference between the two: The excerpt box will display if you have your blog posts set to an excerpt format, whereas the SEO meta description usually only shows up in Google search results or in places where you share the link (like on social). The excerpt will show up in RSS feeders (if your website is set to only show excerpts).
- Under the “SETTINGS” tab on the left under “READING” set your how your article looks in a feed to summary and only send out excerpts in your newsletters. If you send the whole thing out no one will have a reason to come to your site. (image 6).
- You can always change the permalink (URL) of your post by clicking on the edit button right beside the permalink (URL) (image 7).
- If you want to decide exactly how much text is shown of a post on the front page. Then use the jump break (image 7). It will stop the text and add a read more tag. (#16)
- Trying to get rid of preformatted text by highlighting and using the eraser button. (image7). (#7)
- The toolbar can do a lot of things quickly as you can see on image 7. I’ve already mentioned two the rest are as follows:
- Bold text
- Format text (H1, H2 etc. If you are not using these you should be.)
- Underline text
- Is to justify text
- Change the color of the text just highlight the text you want to change and enter the HEX number).
- Change the color around the text.
- I mentioned above
- Insert icons of different things like hearts, diamonds, etc.
- Decrease the indention
- Increase the indention.
- A list of keyboard shortcuts.
- Show/hide the bottom part of the toolbar
- Proofreads your writing
- Mentioned above
- Break a link
- Add a link
- Insert text/image to the right
- Center the text/image
- Left-justify the text/image.
- Insert a horizontal line across the page
- Quote button to accent parts of your text.
- Numbered list
- Bulleted list.
- Strike through text, example: She
- When creating menus you can use not only pages and post but categories & external links as well. Example: On your menu, you could have “STORE” and it could take you to another site altogether. Or you could have a tab marked “RECIPES” and have it take you to all of the recipes on your site.
- Under the “SCREEN OPTIONS” that I mentioned earlier you can set it to show your bio at the end of a post or page. You can change the wording by going to “USERS” & “EDIT”.
- If you are using Genesis and many other themes you can create an archive page of all of your posts. I use a plugin called “CLEAN MY ARCHIVES” and I only have to place the shortcode [clean-my-archive] and it will post my archives. I also use a plugin called “GENESIS 404” which lets me create my own 404 PAGE (the page someone gets when they type in an error or there is a broken link). On my 404 page is a list of all of my posts so that readers can quickly find what they’re looking for. If you don’t have Genesis then you can go here for instructions on how to create your own Archive index page.
- If you go to “SETTINGS” “DISCUSSION” you can blacklist anyone you want my simply entering their email. This will prevent them from being allowed to comment. (Trolls & bullies). You can also filter out comments by “trigger” words.
- Go to “SETTINGS” “READ” to change the number of posts that show up on the front page.
- Change your media sizes to fit parameters that you choose by going to “SETTINGS” “MEDIA”
- If you have Genesis you can go to “GENESIS” “THEME SETTINGS” to enable breadcrumbs which are a small bit of text showing the reader where they are on the website. If you don’t have Genesis you can use this plugin.
- Not only can you upload images but also Powerpoint presentations, pdfs, word docs, and now Google docs on your website. Just upload them just like an image. Just insert them where you want them with a link.
- Trying to get images side by side? You can go to Picmonkey and Canva and make a collage or you can simply go to the “TEXT” view and insert this bit of code that will allow you to make columns. There are also plugins that will help you as well.
- What to create columns on your blog post? On your post or page edit screen and click the text view. Use the following instructions to create columns on your Genesis theme. Here is a great list of Columns plugins by Elegant Themes.
<div class="one-half first">This is the 1st column</div> <div class="one-half">This is the 2nd column</div>
<div class="one-third first">This is the first column</div> <div class="one-third">This is the 2nd column</div> <div class="one-third">This is the 3rd column</div>
<div class="one-half first">This is the 1st column</div> <div class="one-fourth">This is the 2nd column</div> <div class="one-fourth">This is the 3rd column</div> <div class="one-fourth">This is the 4th column</div>
- Use the WordPress APP to respond to comments, check stats, and even write posts.
- Use the find link content tool when creating links. When the link box pops up, just hit the arrow and choose “find existing content”. Then you can search or browse your posts for the link(image 8).
- Go to “SETTINGS” “GENERAL” and fill in the first two blanks for your website title and tagline. This is what will show up in Google Search.
- Fill out the “USERS” profile completely.
- Change the name of your “UNCATEGORIZED” category to something custom by going to “CATEGORIES” find “uncategorized” click “QUICK EDIT” and change the name to whatever you’d like it to be.
- Create a FAVICON (the small image at the very top. Mine is the pink square that you see at the very top. I use a plugin called Favicon by RealFaviconGenerator Plugin. Once you’ve installed the plugin go to APPEARANCEE” “FAVICON” Insert a picture of your choice 260 x260 (Use Picmonkey) and it will generate it for you. Save it and you will have to clear out your browser then go back to your site and your favicon should be there.
- Put a search bar where it is visible on every page. I suggest the top, but sidebar and footer are fine.
- Put an email sign up form in at least three places on every page. Because there are so many different size devices. Chances are some of them will not show up so it is imperative to have it at multiple points.
- Here is a link to 21 WordPress Shortcuts.
- Stop saying you wrote a blog. It’s annoying. You write a “BLOG POST” on your “BLOG”.
- Put up sharing buttons even if you’re not on that particular platform. Just because you aren’t utilizing it doesn’t mean that your reader isn’t. You may get new readers from the exposure.
- When creating a link the rule of thumb is. If it’s a link to somewhere else on your site you shouldn’t open in a new window. If it’s a link to another site then you should definitely check the box that says “OPEN IN NEW WINDOW”.
- Don’t use CAPTCHA it’s annoying and people will avoid it altogether. The WordPress plugin Akismet works great.
That’s actually 36, but who’s counting? Enjoy! Next Saturday, we’re talking about JetPak what works and what not to do.
#wordpress is my wine