WordPress Management Best Practices Part 1 – Setting Up A New WordPress Site

By 13th March 2014 WordPress Guides

WordPressSo you want a WordPress site, or you’ve just installed one and don’t know what to do next.

Where do you start?  Which plugins, which themes, which settings?

In this series I’m going to walk you through the basics of setting up and managing a WordPress site regardless of what type of site it is destined to be.

Let’s get into it!

First Up: Basic Settings (3 minutes)

Rather than be a little long winded about it, I’ll just run you though a checklist of things to do and if you follow it, you’ll have covered all your bases.

I’ll offer suggestions, but at the end of the day, set the settings according to how this site is going to be used.

Go to menu: Settings > General

  • Give your website a name.
  • Give your website a tag line (this will be displayed publicly depending on your theme)
  • Set the webmaster email address for the site
  • Unless you have reason to do otherwise, make sure that “Membership: Anyone can register” is not checked.
  • Set your time zone

Go to menu: Settings > Discussion

  • By default, people may comment on your posts – turn this off if desired
  • Typically you wouldn’t want visitors to be registered with the site before being allowed to comment
  • To prevent spam on the site, set that all comments must be moderated before going public (unless the poster with that email address has commented before)

Go to menu: Settings > Permalinks

You ideally should ensure your web page links are “pretty” so you should set the structure of your “permalinks” – this specifies the way your website page addresses will look in their browser address bar.

A quick Google search will outline the whys and wherefores of doing permalinks – if you can’t think of any reason why or why not, then just enable it.

One good selection is:

  • Month and name: http://www.yourwebsiteaddress.com/2014/03/sample-post-name/

Go to menu: Settings > Privacy

Make sure to allow your site to be crawled by search engines, if you want it to.

I like to set it to be blocked for search engines until I’m finished with setting up a new site. This means that new pages posted don’t alert the search engines and I don’t get crawled/indexed while the site is under construction.

Second: Change your Administrator username (5 minutes)

A basic, yet huge, step towards securing your WordPress site is to change your administrator username if you’ve installed WordPress with the default admin user.

It’s simple:

  1. Login as admin.
  2. Go to menu: Users > Add New
  3. Complete the new user setup, ensuring that their role is set as Administrator
  4. Log out off the admin account, and re-login as the new user you just created.
  5. Go to menu: Users > All Users
  6. Mark the checkbox beside the old user admin, and from dropdown menu select Delete and click Apply
  7. Be sure to attribute all posts/pages to either your new user or another user (if you have any and want to retain them)


Go to part 2 of this series to continue with your site setup when it’s ready.  I’ll update this link when it’s there 🙂

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