Changing the basic settings on your WordPress website is very easy and an effective way of managing your website to function how you want it to. The Settings menu is accessed through your Dashboard. First, log in to your website using mydomain.com/wp-admin. Once you are logged in, on the left-hand side, you will see a menu heading titled “Settings”. In that menu is a list to choose from. Your list may vary from the screenshot below depending on your particular website, but the first 7 settings will be the same.
First item, “General” settings.In this section, you will be able to modify your website’s Title and Tagline. You will notice when you have your website open (try this now in another window or tab) that the title and tag are shown in the title bar at the top of your screen. If you would like to add more keywords to your tagline, this is where you can change it. If you have a separate SEO plugin on your site, you would change your tagline in that plugin.
You also have the option to change the admin email address for the website as a whole. This is not to be confused with any of the administrator’s email addresses. If you need to change an admin email address, please see this tutorial on managing users.
Once you have gone through the General Settings and changed everything you want, click the blue “Save Changes” button at the bottom.
In the “Discussion” settings, you can choose whether or not to allow comments on posts and/or pages, as well as what types of notification you will receive about those comments. If you do not want to allow comments as a default on any blog posts, uncheck the 3rd box from the top, in the “Default Article Settings” section.
In “Other Comment Settings” go through the list and change anything, if you want. These are personal preferences on the look of the comments and whether or not you want users to be registered or not in order to comment. It is not recommended to require users to register, as this will discourage commenting, thereby reducing interactivity, site popularity and negatively affecting your SEO.
In the next section, “Email Me Whenever…”, you have the option to be notified when a comment is made, as well as when it is held for approval/denial. Below that section, you can specify is you want to have the ability to approve a comment first.
Once you have made all the necessary changes, click the blue “Save Changes” button at the bottom.
Next up is the “Media” settings. You may have noticed that when you upload an image into a post or page, that the image is automatically duplicated in multiple sizes, allowing you to choose the appropriate size for your post. If those sizes don’t suit your needs, this is where you can changes those sizes. Just make sure to “Save Changes” once you are done.
Last on the list is the “Permalink” settings. If Spark Logix Studios created your site, it has already been set to show the “pretty” permalinks. However, if you want to change how those pretty permalinks are displayed, you’ve come to the right place. The common settings that WordPress has supplied in the menu include:
- Default: These are also known as “ugly” permalinks and are very SEO-unfriendly. It is highly recommended you not use this option, as there are no keywords or indications as to where the link is actually taking the site visitor.
- Day & Name: This option shows the year/month/day/post-name. An excellent SEO option as it is loaded with information, as well as possible keywords from your post title.
- Month & Name: The same as Day & Name, minus the /day/ in the link.
- Numeric: This option is also not considered very SEO-friendly, as it assigns a number to the post title, rather than showing the wording.
- Custom: This is where you have the option to choose a custom permalink, displayed in any order you want. If you choose to go this route, here are the tags you would need:
- %year%: The year of the post, four digits, for example 2004
- %monthnum%: Month of the year, for example 05
- %day%: Day of the month, for example 28
- %hour%: Hour of the day, for example 15
- %minute%: Minute of the hour, for example 43
- %second%: Second of the minute, for example 33
- %postname%: A sanitized version of the title of the post. “This Is A Great Post!” becomes this-is-a-great-post in the URL. Starting Permalinks with %postname% is strongly not recommended for performance reasons.
- %post_id%: The unique ID # of the post, for example 423
- %category%: A sanitized version of the category name. Nested sub-categories appear as nested directories in the URL. Starting Permalinks with %category% is strongly not recommended for performance reasons.
- %author%: A sanitized version of the author name. Starting Permalinks with %author% is strongly not recommended for performance reasons.
Once you have decided on a permalink setting and made the appropriate changes, make sure to click the blue “Save Changes” button.