WordPress is one of the best CMS platforms out there. With a WordPress site, you are sitting on a gold mine – the possibilities are simply endless.
In order to make your website a powerful promotional tool, you need to put things in order. This article will tell you the 7 most important things you should do after creating a new WordPress website. If the list looks overwhelming to you, you could just start from the top and work your way down.
1. Do you want a static homepage or a blog posts page?
You’ll have to take a call on that. If it’s static a homepage, your visitors are going to just type in your domain name and the page they land up on is going to show them some basic information about your website, your products or services and maybe and opt-in or subsection form.
Static pages are a great way to welcoming visitors if you don’t plan to update your website frequently with fresh content or just want a particular product/service or content to always be in the limelight.
When using a static page as your site’s homepage you could host your blog on a subdomain and place its link in the navigation. However, if your blog is supposed to be the star of the show, you might want to welcome your visitors with fresh blog posts when they reach your website.
In WordPress both these options are easy to set up. On your WordPress dashboard, you need to click on the settings menu and then select the “reading” submenu. You can either choose “a static page” or “your latest posts” by clicking on the relevant radio buttons.
2. Install Google Analytics
You need to understand how your website is performing and for that you need and an accurate tool to present you with the correct stats. Google analytics is free and easy to install. Once installed, you are going to be able to look under the hood of your website and see for yourself what pages or posts are getting the maximum traffic, the source of traffic (search engines, social media or from paid advertising etc.) and also how the traffic behaves on your website.
This information is going to help you create more of what’s already popular on your website and even advertise products or offers on pages that are more frequently visited.
3. Content creation and SEO
They say, content is king. And, the King does deserve special attention! Take time to create content (that includes the written content, pictures and videos etc.) specific to your niche or products and when you do that, keep your users’ requirements in mind. Don’t make the mistake of trying to sell information the way you want – sell it the way your users want it!
After you have finalized a couple of pages of content, it is time to put the power of SEO to work for you. You could start by downloading the “All In One SEO plug-in” for free and installing it by going to the “plugins” menu on your WordPress dashboard. After installation, you will have the ability to optimize your content with appropriate meta-tags. Meta-tags help search engines find and index content faster. You could also consider hiring an SEO professional to help you with on-site optimization.
4. Turn your website into a brand
If you want to make your website memorable to your users, you need to create a brand experience. Google for instance, uses that unmistakable blue-red-orange-green logo and about.com uses a dark red ball. You could start your own brand by choosing a theme that goes well with your business or niche. Several free WordPress themes are available on your WordPress dashboard, but you are going to need some PHP and HTML knowledge to be able to customize them to your needs. An easier option would be to get a premium theme that offers easy one click customization. You need to download the theme in zip format and upload it onto your website using the “appearance” menu on your dashboard. After installation, you can customize the layout and colors to create a unique brand for your users.
5. Fight Spam with the Askimet plugin
Spammers are always on the lookout for new WordPress websites for comment spamming. The Askimet plugin is free and will keep spammers at bay.
6. Install available updates
WordPress and also plugins are updated frequently to eliminate security vulnerabilities. If an update is available, you would see a message on your dashboard asking you to install the updates. Some web hosting providers offer auto updates, but if you are not sure, you could just click on “install updates” and stay safe.
7. Some more SEO
On page optimization is going to help the search engines find your WordPress website easily, but if you want real traffic, you need to promote your website. You could install RSS feeds (it’s free) and every time you update your content, your visitors are going to receive an alert. You should also start promoting your content on Facebook, twitter, Linkedin and other social media to attract real human visitors to your website.
A little time and effort to build back links is going to go a long way in bringing you some organic traffic. If you are not sure how to build back links, it is a good idea to hire a, SEO professional for the job.