The most important tools to WordPress is the Dashboard wherein you can easily and freely manage your site. I always refer to this as Dashboard, some non-technical people call it the “backend”, but the backend to me is the actual site folder and files that are installed on the actual server. In your WordPress Dashboard, you can do a lot of things (which I plan to tackle through our YouTube Channel), but today, I’m going to discuss with you the most basic – WordPress Settings in Dashboard. More often than not, people forget to check this, but there are some very easy customization you can do in this area.

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In your Dashboard, under SETTINGS, you should see the following by default: GENERAL, WRITING, READING, DISCUSSION, MEDIA, PERMALINKS, and SHARING (when Jetpack plugin already installed).

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post-dividerGENERAL: In this section, you can complete your site title, tagline, WordPress address (URL), Site Address (URL), email address, Membership, New User Default Role, timezone, date format, time format, week starts on and Site Language. Here, you can customize  your site details like title and tagline but not the WordPress Address URL. The WordPress codex provides details on how to format date and time. Membership option set if you are on a membership site then tick says anyone can register. Do not check this button unless you know specifically what you want membership for or else anyone can register and login on your WordPress site.

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WRITING: In this settings, you can define the defaults category and format for your posts via email or the post settings itself. I usually set my default post category to anything but “uncategorized” or to the most category i used on my blog. You can also set your default post format like gallery, audio, images, video, links, quotes and others . For most people, standard is the default. By customizing, to what you do most frequently, you will save yourself time when you write on selecting what format to use or category.

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READING: This section will allow you to customize your home page looks like for your visitors to read your site and its blog posts. If you want to have a home page (much like a website), you have to the static page wherein you can select a specific page for your front page, and a specific page for your blog posts. You can also set the number of blog posts per pages, and how many items will show up in blog page. You can also setup whether people read the full article or just a summary. My personal preference is for the summaries in the feed. It catch people’s attention what inside the article all about (click bait) that lead to click through as much as people would think, but I always encourage clients to follow their personal preference. 

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DISCUSSION: In this section, you can customize comment moderation, how you’ll be notify on ping backs and trackbacks of your post and avatar of people who will make a comment on your site. One of the good benefits of WordPress is that you can monitor you link to your site by using ping backs and trackbacks. This notifications is so useful. It lets me know what other people are reading on my blog and connect with us. This is the section where you can held a comment moderation, by blacklisting those spammers or automatically approve those clean comments. You can set the avatar or image of the people who comment on your site.

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MEDIA: This section allows you to set the default size your upload images. Typically, the defaults that have been set are standard, but you can definitely play around with this section if you feel the need.

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PERMALINKS: In this section, offers the custom URL structure for your individual posts, category and tag base. It’s a SEO best practice to use a permalink structure to easily identify your post title and mark by any search engines. You can select the plain or default WordPress permalink structure or using day and name, month and name, numeric, post name or you can do a custom structure depend on your blog post needed to crawl on any search engines. Same thing with category and tag base. Click on the link for more tips about Permalinks structure.

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SHARING: If you’ve installed and connected your site to Jetpack, you can connect your social media accounts, then when you hit the publish button of every post, it will automatically publish a post detail with the blog post URL link on those respective social media channels. Once activated, reader can share and like as well your blog post but settings the button style and where those buttons to appear on every pages or even on every posts you make.

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