If you are a beginner trying to set up and launch a website, it is likely that WordPress is the first script you have ever installed online. It is not uncommon then for you to make a few mistakes while you are still learning the ropes of this new process. However, wisdom lies in taking lessons from others’ mistakes if you can. Here is a list on some of the most common WordPress mistakes that every beginner should steer clear of:
Starting with the Wrong Platform
The first and most common mistake repeatedly committed by a lot of users is choosing a platform inconsistent with their needs and requirements. Usually, a majority of beginners fail to identify the difference between Free WordPress.com and self-hosted WordPress. Unable to differentiate between the two, a user looking to set up a personal blog may sign up for self-hosted WordPress and may be haggard by the recurring cost of managing the self-hosted site. On the other hand, a user may sign up for Free WordPress.com for creating a site they need total control over in order to make money of it. It is, therefore, important to read up on the difference between the two and learn all about their pros and cons before making a choice.
Another recurrent mistake made by a majority of new users is choosing a faulty installation process. A large number of users tend to upload the main folder containing all WordPress file directly to the server, instead of uploading the individual files within the folder. This error in the installation process will eventually reflect in your domain name. Uploading files the wrong way will give you the domain name www.website.com/wordpress, while you would ideally like to have the domain name www.website.com. The trick here is to install WordPress in the root directory of your domain instead of the “wordpress” sub-directory.
Signing Up for More than You Need
As a beginner, all your will need are basic services such as a domain name and web hosting, if you are signing up for self-hosted WordPress. However, beginners tend to sign up for futile services such as SSL, branded emails, private registration and upfront payments for a five-year registration. These extensive services can further complicate matters for small business owners and new entrepreneurs instead of simplifying them. For instance, transferring the domain name can be a complex process if you sign up for private registration. Similarly, it makes no sense to make upfront payments for five years of registration, as you will lose a lot of money if you decide to quit and move on to some other service provider.
Not Using the Appropriate Permalink
A lot of beginners tend to continue using WordPress in the default permalink structure instead of customizing it to a more user-friendly setting such as using keywords for permalinks. In order to clean up your URL, you can simply go to permalink settings on your WordPress site and choose an appropriate tag such as post name under the common settings option. It allows you to keep the links crisp and brief and use keywords in the URL.
Not Creating Backup
Not creating backup is yet another mistake to avoid. New users are most inclined to undermine the importance of backing up their website on a regular basis until they lose data upon their site being hacked. You can get a hang of the backup process through “how to restore WordPress backup” tutorials. Besides free backup solutions such as WordPress Backup to Dropbox plug-in, there are professional restore and backup services available for at minimalistic price of up to $5 a month, such as VaultPress.
Ignoring Updates and SEO Settings
New users are generally apprehensive of updates, as they fear it will lead to loss of data or make the site unmanageable. However, delaying updates can not only slow down your site but also make it more vulnerable to security threats. Similarly, ignoring SEO settings for your WordPress website can put you at the risk of losing the option of thwarting search engine bots by indexing the website. However, installing WordPress SEO plug-in alone is not enough, It is important to stay proactive in updating your website’s Meta settings in order to keep your site duly indexed.