Are you new to WordPress? Are you struggling to make sense of this great CMS? Are you looking for actionable tips to help you get started? Well, we’ve got you covered.
One of the best aspects of WordPress community is that there is plenty of advice. Not just advice, but invaluable tips and tricks that help everyone grow their sites. Today I bring one such list of tips and tricks for WordPress bloggers. Many of seasoned WP users already know a handful of these, but most of you don’t. With the help of these, you should be able to improve your sites dramatically. Now.. before you move on to the tips, make yourself a promise to take actions! These are practically actionable tips. I have been using WordPress for over 5 years now and believe me when I say these tips are worth every minute. Some of these tips take longer than others, but ultimately they are worth the effort.
1- Use Disqus Comment System
WordPress’ default commenting system is too simple; there are four fields namely name, email address, website and the comment. They make for a dull user experience. What if you could let users use their Facebook, Twitter, Google account to comment through? What if people could upvote or downvote comments, eventually filtering the great value conveyed through comments? What if you struggled to find spammy comments, but could not?
Yes, everything above and many more features are provided by use of Disqus. It is a highly interactive and advanced comment system.
Take This Action:
- Go to Disqus, sign up
- Install & activate Disqus Comment System
- Once activated, click “configure” link located beside Disqus Comment System plugin on Installed plugins page
- Use your newly-created Disqus credentials to configure the plugin
- Have fun!
2- Add a Discussion Forum/Board
bbPress is an open-software WordPress plugin as well as a standalone script that adds a discussion forum to your site. This is especially useful for sites with interactive users, or people who want support or help other than guides/tutorials. Like I could install bbPress and offer WordPress technical help in that forum, but that’s just an idea which I may put to use someday.
Take this action!
- Install & activate bbPress
- You should notice three new menus added to left panel called “Replies”, “Topics” and “Forums”
- Go to Dashboard > Forums, click “Add New” to add a new forum
- Fill in the required details and there you go!
- If you want users to be able to register, login and then have access to the forum, then you need to enable registration
3- Be SEO Ninja!
This is my best ever tip! It literally turns you to do things an SEO professional would do. Yoast SEO is that ultimate package of useful SEO tools, it is a plugin. Most often WordPress users only install, activate this plugin and forget it exists. When in fact, this is a really handy plugin and needs to be used over each and every post you make. Don’t stop there, you also need to submit the XML Sitemaps that this plugin generates.
Take This Action!
- Install & activate Yoast SEO
- Read this tutorial & put it to use
- MOST IMPORTANT: Go to Google Search Console, submit your site there and submit XML sitemaps
4- Make your site effin’ fast!
Does your site take 5+ seconds to load? Or ages? Do you find it to load slow, but have no idea what to do? Or have you been switching from theme to theme in search for one that loads within a blink of eye? Then.. there is good news for you. You can instantly speed up your site with W3 Total Cache plugin. It is one of the most powerful WordPress plugins and millions of people have downloaded it. Sites as big as This is Mairaj preach and practice it :P.
Take This Action
- Install & Activate W3 Total Cache
- Go to Performance > General Settings
- Enable following modules
- Page Cache
- Database Cache
- Browser Cache
- Minify (this may break your site, so if anything gets broken, disable this!)
- Now go to Performance > Browser Cache, check following
- Set expire headers
- Set Last-modified header
- Set cache control header
- Enable HTTP (gzip) compression
- Clear the caches. Go to GTmetrix, test your site’s speed & be surprised.
- Do not use Google PageSpeed Insights. It’s sole purpose is to let down people
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