Taking the big step and planning to launch a new website with WordPress?
Who wouldn’t? WordPress is the king of the hill and runs 30% of websites in the world. It’s got a large library of themes and plugins, ensuring you can make a website exactly the way you desire.
However, it can seem overwhelming and confusing for a first-time user. Don’t fret though, we’re here to lay the groundwork for you. Read our list of WordPress tips below to get the most out of the platform, right out of the gate:
1. Choose the Right Hosting
This list of WordPress tips starts with getting the right hosting. Hosting is the service that holds your site. You can’t launch your site and go live without a hosting service unless you plan to run a server and keep it on indefinitely.
Be careful when picking. You’ll want a hosting service with little downtime, unlimited bandwidth, and more features. Your website’s speed also depends on the hosting server.
2. Use an SEO Plugin
We’ll tackle plugins more in-depth below but the one plugin you shouldn’t skip is the one for Search Engine Optimization.
An SEO plugin, like Yoast, runs checks on your pages to make sure they’re always optimized. They’ll check for keyword usage, page speed, optimization with your title and meta descriptions too. Some may also check how well you’ve optimized your images and their descriptions too.
Remember: SEO isn’t simply about visibility and bringing traffic to your site. The real goal is to optimize your site not only for Google but for visitors too. Doing so can improve lead generation and conversion rates and revenue.
3. Compress Images
Everyone wants high-quality images on their websites. However, you shouldn’t forget to compress them too. If you don’t, your pages can slow down significantly.
That said, don’t compress your images without the right tools. Doing so might lead to lower quality images with poor resolution. Instead, use a decent tool like Smush since it can compress images quickly and still maintain their quality.
4. Edit Your Gravatar Photo
Never heard of Gravatar? It stands for Globally Recognized Avatar. It’s the profile image that appears every time you post or leave a comment, whether on one WordPress site or another.
Why is this important?
It helps build your brand. People will quickly recognize you and will know that the comments come from the genuine account. This helps fight against false accounts pretending to be you.
Also, it ensures people instantly see when you engage with your audience. People want to see bloggers and content creators reply and comment because it shows you’re not an emotionless robot. It shows that you care and want to interact.
5. Using Plugins
There are a ton of plugins for WordPress. However, don’t use too many. If you do, you risk slowing the site down significantly.
You’ll have to limit which ones you use so prioritize according to function. Get a plugin for SEO, get another one for A/B testing, and another one for security. Get one for forms, to fight spam, another for commerce, and one for analytics.
These should all work together to keep your site easy to navigate, optimized for search engines, speed, and aesthetics.
6. UX and UI Go Together
WordPress can look like an utter mess, especially in the beginning. If you’re using a free theme, low-budget hosting, and no plugins then you’ll have little control over the user interface (UI). This kind of cluttered interface, as a consequence, also brings down the user experience (UX).
UX and UI go hand-in-hand.
You can provide a good UX by making sure the interface is easy to navigate and with a clean, decluttered web design. It shouldn’t take more than a few seconds for a user to go back to the home page, find your blogs, or locate the contact page. Visit page details here to learn more about UX and other WordPress courses.
7. Edit Permalinks
Don’t forget to edit your permalinks. Not sure what those are? Permalinks are the full URL at the top of the browser.
Each page has a permalink. It’s their address on the Internet. Like a real address, you don’t want people struggling to memorize it.
By default, the permalink for each new post and page is a random string of characters. Make sure you edit this so that it includes a relevant title and keyword phrase. Doing this boosts your SEO efforts since crawlers now see the keywords in the permalink, but it also helps visitors remember the address.
8. Responsive Design
Did you know that by the year 2025, about three-quarters of the world rely solely on their smartphones to access the Internet? This significantly changes how people should approach their WordPress website’s design. You can’t simply design for desktop users anymore.
Workaround this by shifting to a responsive design. Fortunately, WordPress already does this for you. However, you still have some homework to do.
You need to structure your blog posts to make sure they don’t look like long walls of text on a phone. Optimize images and remove things like Flash animation or elements a touchscreen can’t access.
9. Test Your Landing Pages
One of the most important WordPress hacks is to test your landing pages. Remember: people reaching these pages should perform some sort of action before they leave. You want them to subscribe or purchase.
Use an A/B split test. Present two or three different kinds of landing pages and see which ones perform better. Run a poll and ask visitors to rate the landing page and ask why they engaged with it more than the others. This can help you improve your design further.
Take Advantage of These WordPress Tips!
Getting started with WordPress isn’t as hard as some put it. You simply need to know a few WordPress tricks to keep your site accessible, SEO-ready and engaging for visitors. Follow these WordPress tips and it’ll be smooth sailing from here on.
Mastering WordPress doesn’t end here. Follow us and check out more of our guides here for more WordPress tips and tricks for beginners!