How to setup a WordPress blog on your web host

It was quite simple.  It took me a few hours.  I still need to do some tweeking though and to figure things out.  While I am setting up this blog, I might as well mention how I did it.  You don’t need to know HTML.

When you install WordPress to your host, make sure you use a strong password.  Pick a user name besides admin and besides your domain name; something not obvious.  The idea is to conceal your username from hackers.

I followed the instructions in this website http://websitesetupguide.com/basic/start.htm#head.  I didn’t use FatCow; I used GoDaddy.  I had free hosting credits on GoDaddy, so I used them.

The instructions suggests to use the askimet plugin.  The instructions says its free.  It is free.  It’s just when you register for the plugin, askimet will prompt you for credit card information.  If you don’t want to pay a donation for the plugin, move the slider to the left to zero.  This will make the credit card fields disappear.  Otherwise, you going to pay I think $36 every year.

You might get some registered users with strange usernames and email addresses.  I received email notifications of these registered users.  I built the blog on a Saturday night and I received the registered users the morning after.  To disable registration (you don’t need to register to leave a comment), go to Settings->General and in the Membership field uncheck Anyone can register.  If you have registered users, don’t forget to delete them.  I am not sure of the motive behind the registered users.  Maybe they are trying to hack the  blog hoping to get administrative access to the blog.

If you want remove the link to user registration, go to Appearance->Widgets.  In the Main Widget Area on the right side of the screen, drag the Meta box to left side the screen.  This should remove the Meta column, which contains the registration link, from the bottom of your blog.

If you want to know the difference between pages and posts, check out this link http://www.wpbeginner.com/beginners-guide/what-is-the-difference-between-posts-vs-pages-in-wordpress/.

If you want your blog to be searchable in the search engines, install the Google XML Sitemaps plugin.  This will create a sitemap and submit it to Bing and Google.  I think when you submit to Bing, the submission also goes to Yahoo.
An alternative is the WordPress SEO plugin.  Off the bat, it recommended me to switch the permalink setting to post name.  This plugin seems more geared for SEO than the Google XML Sitemaps.  The SEO plugin is more advanced while the Google XML is more simpler.  If you do install this plugin, go to SEO->XML Sitemaps and check Disable author/user sitemap.  This prevent hackers from guessing your username.

If you want to use Google Analytics for your blog, install the Google Analytics for WordPress plugin.  Make sure you install Google Analytics for WordPress, not Google Analytics.  Google Analytics is a different plugin.  If you already have a tracking ID, Google Analytics for WordPress gives you an option to enter the tracking ID.

If you don’t have comments enabled for your posts and you want to enable them for a particular post, go to Posts->All Posts and hover over your post that you want to enable.  You should see Quick Edit underneath the post.  Click on it and check Allow Comments.  Then press the Update button.

If you want to delete a category, go to Dashboard.  In the Dashboard page, go to the Right Now window and click on word Categories.  Hover over the category that you want to delete, click on delete.  Note you cannot delete Uncategorized.

To install Captcha (to keep bots from entering forms), go to Plugins->Add New and enter Captcha in the search box.  Click on Search Plugins.  You should see Captcha in the search list.  Install it.

Backup your blog.  You going to need an FTP client.  I use FileZilla.  It’s free.  FileZilla comes with a client and a server.  Install the client, not the server.  Installing the server might open a security risk on your computer.  Connect to your website via FTP.  If you can, connect using a secure connection because regular FTP is unencrypted.  Because of this, you shouldn’t use regular FTP in public wifi’s such as a coffee shop.  I use use FTP with TLS/SSL.  If you don’t know your FTP username and password, contact your hosting provider.

There is really two things you need to backup.  You need to backup wp-config.php and your database.   Downloading wp-config.php is simple; just download it to your computer using your FTP client.  The database is a bit tricky.  On GoDaddy, from your account page, go to Web Hosting and expand it.  Select your web site.  In the Hosting Details page, select Databases on the upper right side of the page.  Click on the Actions button associated with your database and then select Back Up.  This will create a backup database in the _db_backups directory in your web site.  Using your FTP client, download the _db_backups directory to your computer.  That’s it.

For security, install Better WP Security plugin.  If the plugin warns you to enable your permalinks, change your permalinks to anything other than default.  If you installed WordPress SEO, the SEO plugin would have suggested you to switch to the post name permalink setting.  To change the permalink setting, go to Settings->Permalink.  Follow the instructions by clicking on Security on the left side panel.  One of the things this plugin can do is change your table prefix after installation.  Changing the prefix is a security measure to make the blog more secure.

Another plugin to install for security is Wordfence Security.  Watch the video and follow the guides.  The morning after I installed the plugin, I got an email warning me that somebody tried to log in using the admin username.  After 20 attempts, Wordfence locked the user out.  Pretty neat plugin.

Even though you submit sitemaps to search engines in order to promote your blog, it is sort of ironic that the first people who might notice your blog are hackers.

One advantage of hosting your WordPress page is that you can run ads on it.  I don’t think you can do that on wordpress.com.  If you have an account to run ads, such as Google adSense, get an ad unit from your account and copy the HTML code.  Then go to this link to see how it is done:  http://www.siteground.com/tutorials/wordpress/wordpress_adsense.htm.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

For security, use of Google's reCAPTCHA service is required which is subject to the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

I agree to these terms.