10+ WordPress Tricks for Every New Blogger

You’ve started a blog, written a few posts, and are ready to jump in with two feet. The only problem?

WordPress can seem intimidating.

Uploading plugins, creating posts that look the way you’d like, and keeping everything organized in the process is enough to make a new blogger’s head spin.

As a new blogger, you may have questions about the ins and outs of WordPress. It can be a bit overwhelming to say the least. Check out this list of 10+ WordPress Tricks for the New Blogger! You'll find answers to questions about creating a post, using plugins, adding text links, optimizing for SEO, and much more!

I remember, because for many months I was hesitant to move from Wix to WordPress. Several wiser bloggers gave me the thumbs up, suggested I make the switch, and I did jump in with two feet.

And I was overwhelmed.

I’ve learned a few tricks along the way that I’d like to share with you – tips that have made using WordPress simple.

So, let’s get started with…

10+ WordPress Tricks Every New Blogger Should Know

1. Toolbar Toggle

Open the ‘Toolbar Toggle’ when writing a new post to gain access to some important tools for customizing the look of your post.

Toolbar Toggle

 

You’ll be able to add headers, colored text, indentation, and more. And yes, everyone needs headers & colored text in their blog posts. Please add colors and headers in your blog posts.

2. Quick Edit

If you need to make changes to your blog post organization without opening each individual post, click ‘Quick Edit’ under the post title. This brings up a menu with the option to add/delete categories, change the title, add tags, and more.

Quick Edit

 

This is helpful because you will most likely change your blog categories at least once (if not more) in the future. It would take forever to open each individual post & update the categories and tags. Just scroll through and quick edit all of the posts you need to update. It will take half of the time.

Quick note of caution: the slug is the URL of your post – like alisontiemeyer.com/slug. If you change the slug after you publish a post, the old link will go to a 404 Error page. Not good. So, don’t change the slug unless the post is still in draft mode.

3. Let’s chat media.

You’ll upload all photos and downloadable freebies to the media library. So, say you’ve created a free printable and you want your reader to be able to download the freebie at the click of a button.

Upload your free printable (preferably as a PDF), then copy the image URL.

Image URL

 

Now, link the button to the image URL you just copied, and save.

4. Linking Buttons & Text

Highlight the text you’d like to link. Then click the paperclip looking icon in the post-editing menu. It will open up a small window where you can click the pencil icon, paste your link, and tell it to either open in a new window or not.

Text Link 1

Text Link

Easy peasy.

5. Widgets

Under the ‘Appearance’ tab, click ‘Widgets’. Widgets allow you to customize your sidebar & footer. They are simple to use, and you can change out widgets quickly. Just drag an available widget into a space on the menu.

6. Menus

Menus are important, because they are like a roadmap for your blog for new visitors. Click ‘Menus’ under the Appearance tab. You can add posts, pages, categories, custom links, and more to your menu.

Simply check the pages, posts, or categories you’d like to add, click ‘Add to Menu’ and they will appear at the bottom of your menu to the right. You can arrange your menu by dragging the categories and posts into the proper place.

Drop-down menus are created with sub-items, like my Let’s Talk Relationships series under Bold Relationships.

Menu

 

7. Yoast SEO

Grab the Yoast SEO plugin to start optimizing your pages & posts for Google search engines.

Upload the plugin. Then at the bottom of all posts & pages, add a keyword. You can also click on the title of the post to open a few more options for customization & adding your keyword.

keyword

SEO Title

 

Bonus: always add your keyword to the SEO title. This will help those red/orange lights to turn green. Whoop whoop!

8. WP Clean Up

Also grab the WP Clean Up plugin. You want your blog to remain as fast as possible, and piled-up revisions and orphan comment data can slow down your site.

Download the plugin, then under ‘Settings’ click ‘WP Clean Up’. Delete everything except drafts and auto drafts.

WP Cleanup 2

WP Cleanup

 

After deleting, you should also scroll down & click the ‘Optimize’ button.

I recommend doing this 1-2 times a month. If you are a beginner blogger, it may not make much of a difference until your blog grows and you have more content. But get in the habit of cleaning up your site frequently so that your blog stays clean & quick.

9. Featured Images

Add a featured image to all blog posts. You can find this in the right-hand sidebar on the page where you create/edit a post.

Featured Image

The featured image is the picture that will be shared on social media (unless you specify otherwise in the Yoast SEO plugin), but it will also be the image your blog uses on your home page & blog post page.

Homepage View

 

I strongly suggest keeping this image text-free & always using the same size image. For example, I always use an image that is 900×720. You could use a square, a Facebook image size (1200×628) or something else entirely. Just be consistent. A clean & organized homepage really makes a difference when someone visits your blog.

10. Front Page Display

If you’d like your homepage to be separate from your blog posts page, click ‘Reading’ under the ‘Settings’ tab. Change your front page display settings to look like mine.

Reading Settings

11. Bonus Tip: HTML

Oftentimes bloggers will ask for guest post submissions in HTML. You can find your HTML code by clicking the ‘Text’ tab within your post editor. HTML carries over headings, text links, images, and more for sharing posts and content.

HTML

 

12. Bonus Tip #2: PW Protected Pages

You can create password-protected or private posts & pages by clicking ‘Edit’ next to ‘Visibility’ on the right hand side of your post editor. This is good for subscriber-only content that you’d like to have protected in case someone stumbles over the page.

PW pages

*****

WordPress is hands-down the best tool to use to build a blog or online business. Upon first glance, it can be intimidating, but I trust that before long you’ll be zipping around WordPress with no problems.

Have a question related to WordPress? Ask it in the comments below! Or email me at alison (at) alisontiemeyer (dot) com.


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4 thoughts on “10+ WordPress Tricks for Every New Blogger

  1. This was great, Alison! If I would’ve known half of this when I first started blogging I would’ve saved so much time and frustration! I even learned a few new things today.

  2. I signed up for you 3 tips, Alison. I wanted to do the boot camp offered by Arabahjoy but the timing wasn’t quite right before the deal ended. I do have a question I’ve wanted to ask someone for a long time. So you think I should change from wordpress.com to .org so I can utilize many of the plugins that aren’t available with .com? If so, is it very difficult or costly? Any advice regarding that is appreciated! Thanks for taking time to share this!

    1. Hi Meghan! I’m so glad you signed up. 🙂 Yes, I would recommend switching to wordpress.org so that you can customize your theme, have control of your content on the host site, and take advantage of the many AWESOME plugins available. It doesn’t cost anything to switch except for the cost of hosting, which is about $4/month with HostGator. It also isn’t terribly difficult to make the switch. You would be able to do it, I’m sure! Let me know if you have other questions.

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