15 WordPress Mistakes That Can Be Avoided
We have been blogging for quite some time now. We use both WordPress and Blogger.com to publish our articles, and we like what WordPress offers. We do not intend on getting into a debate on which is a better platform, but instead we will be focusing on some of the worst WordPress mistakes that can be avoided if you are a WordPress blogger.
1. Starting on the Wrong Platform
Are you confused between wordpress.com and wordpress.org? If you are a beginner, it’s easy to get confused. However, it’s really important to know which one is suitable for you. Each one has its own pros and cons, so you have to decide which one works for you.
If you want to have total control of your website and are prepared to constantly self-update your site, then WordPress.Org is apt for you. If not, then WordPress.com will work just fine.
2. Keeping the Default “Admin” User Name
How many of you have actually changed the default username while installing WordPress? If we go by numbers, there might be only a few who have done it. Keeping ‘admin’ as your username makes it even easier for hackers to crack your site.
Also, you need to secure it with a strong password. It’s best if you have a combination of letters, numbers and symbols as your password.
3. Not deleting the Sample Page
By default, WordPress adds a sample page. We have seen many newcomers make this common mistake. What happens is it is indexed in the Google page, which might hurt your page ranking. So, don’t forget to delete the sample page.
4. Having More Categories and Less Tags
It’s easy to add categories in WordPress, but make sure you’re not adding too many categories and way too less tags. Readers get confused when they see too many categories. What’s more dangerous is that it’s not at all good for SEO and site architecture.
Don’t forget to add tags to your posts, as it’s very useful to group-related posts. Tags make it easier for people to search for a particular topic.
5. Using Defective Themes
Selecting the right theme is important because it plays a vital role in search engine ranking. If you download WordPress themes for free, always be cautious. A defective theme or a theme with malicious codes or links can harm your site. You can instead purchase a commercial theme from trusted providers like Elegant Themes, StudioPress, Headway Themes, Themify or ithemes.
6. Not Updating the Latest Versions
WordPress adds new security features every time there is a new update and if you ignore these updates then you will probably miss out on these security features. Remember that outdated features can lead to security vulnerability, which can lead to a potential threat to your site.
7. Not changing the Default Permalink Settings
Have you noticed the default permalink that WordPress uses? It’s something like “http://blog.medialabs.in/?p=123.” Doesn’t it look suspicious? It’s also not good from an SEO perspective. A user-friendly permalink will help you to rank higher in search engines and also looks professional.
After installing WordPress, always change the default permalink. Choose a permalink that suits your objective the most.
8. Keeping the Default Tagline
Have you changed your default tagline “just another blog?” Google indexes the default tagline too that might harm your page ranking. You need to change the default tagline to something that describes your site. For instance, we at MediaLabs, have a tagline as ‘The Digital Native.’ To change yours, go to Settings, click General and then change the Tagline.
9. Forgetting to Keep a Backup of Your Files
Not keeping a backup of your files is the biggest mistake. What if you lose all your files and can’t restore them? It’s best if you keep a backup in hard drives, CDs, DVDs or pen drives. Also, keep a backup in the cloud like Dropbox, so that you can have access to all your files from anywhere.
10. Installing Numerous Plug-ins
It’s okay to install plug-ins; however, installing too many of them can be risky. Once you installed a plug-in, you have to activate it manually. Moreover, anyone, be it an amateur or an experienced coder, can contribute to create plug-ins in WordPress. What if you downloaded plug-ins that doesn’t have quality codes? So, it’s always better to test plug-ins in an experimental set-up. You can also use reputed and popular plug-ins for safety.
11. Not Changing the Default Favicon
What is a Favicon? It’s the icon that is displayed on the left side of the browser address bar. If you haven’t changed it, then you need to do so to look more professional. You can upload your brand’s favicon by selecting it from the image section of your theme.
12. Not Installing the Caching Plug-in
Newcomers ignore the caching plug-in, as they think website speed doesn’t have any role in getting higher page ranks. You need to use a caching plug-in, otherwise it can crash completely when the traffic increases.
Caching helps by improving the website efficiency, preventing downtime and reducing the load time of the site. You can install a caching plug-in or sign up with content Delivery Network (CDN). You can try out W3 Total Cache or CloudFare CDN.
13. Forgetting About Mobile Users
You optimized your web page for desktop users, but what about mobile users? Nowadays, we access the Internet through multiple channels apart from desktops. Smartphones and tablets are popularly used to surf the net.
It’s absolutely necessary to have a responsive website that gets optimized both on desktops and mobile phones. You can also make your site mobile compatible by using plug-ins like WPTouch and WPTap.
14. Uploading Too Many HD Images
High definition images definitely look good, but they can slow down your website. People lose interest if the images take ages to download. So, focus on image optimization to load your site faster.
15. Ignoring Google Analytics
What’s the point in driving around directionless? It won’t take you to your desired destination and WordPress without Google Analytics is just that – driving directionless. You can’t get enough data from the WordPress dashboard.
Start using Google Analytics to get insights on your traffic. You can track your site’s performance, monitor visitor behavior and know which keywords work best and where to get the most traffic.
How Are You Using WordPress?
We would like to know your story and experience in using WordPress. You can share your experience in this post here.
If you need help in content strategy, social media optimization strategy (SMO) or search engine optimization strategy (SEO), then write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit our website www.medialabs.in to know more about us. In the meantime, follow and like our social media pages LinkedIn, Google+, Twitter and Facebook to get regular updates.
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