It is by far wiser to learn from the errors of others. This is a pretty good maxim to live, and more importantly, work by. So, for that reason, I’ve researched some of the most common mistakes that WordPress users and developers make. Save yourself the time and hassle of committing them yourself.
Instead, I entreat you to learn from them so you can focus on building a better site.
Navigating the myriad offerings of WordPress Plugins will take some time. While that’s part of the fun, allow me to give you more free time by suggesting the following.
I’ve found them to be quite indispensable:
– Google XML Site-maps
– Contact Form 7 or even better Gravity Forms
– Akismet (the first plug in I install every single time…)
– All in One SEO Pack (I now days prefer Yoast SEO plug in)
Back it Up
Losing all of your data is a very expensive lesson to learn. So why not skip it and avoid the I told you so. Back up your site manually or use an automatic backup plugin like WP-DB-Backup.
If you’re not using Google Analytics, you should be. Without it, it’s akin to to fumbling about in the dark. Google’s tools will cast light on the keywords lead to your site so you can implement them accordingly.
A Globally Recognized Avatar, or Gravatar, is an image that represents you and appears beside a blog comment or in a discussion forum. It lends authority and credibility to your posts, as well as making you more relatable to your audience. Go and get one.
In order to get your site’s pages indexed, make sure to submit an XML Site map to Google. That way, the search engines can crawl all over your site, which later feeds you valuable statistics.
The icon displayed in the your browser’s address bar is known as the favicon. WordPress assigns you a default one, but you can customize it to suit your website.
A significant portion of the traffic generated by your site will come from mobile users. You have to respond accordingly. WordPress provides you with themes that are responsive to smartphone and tablet users. You can also customize your site using a plugin.
Avoid overloading your audience’s senses with too many ads, widgets or links. Build with their point of view in mind. If you make your visitor’s digital experience an enjoyable one, you will be rewarded with quality leads and higher rankings.
This one is quite simple: do not ignore WordPress updates. If you do, you just leave yourself open to all types of security issues.
This is where your website lives and breathes. It’s definitely not a good idea to bargain on this. You want a hosting company that will respond to your needs and offers the support you need. So do your due diligence on this one.
The Errors of Others
I hope this gives you some examples of what not to do. I’ve had clients come to me with so many of these issues that I just had to write this post.
If there’s a valuable lesson you’d like to share, please sound off in the comments below!