WordPress for Non-Techies – The Finale

Part 6 – The Grand Finale

Hup, Two, Three, Four! Get your rears in gear, we’re off for our final lesson on how to conquer WordPress. Hip Hip Hooray!!

And finally we move to the last (hey, quit applauding!) button on the dashboard. After this, you’ll be a pro. Heck, you’ll probably be teaching ME!

  • Settings/General:
    • Site Title – You can change it here!
    • Tagline – Think of something brilliant – but remember, you can always update it later.
    • Email Address – If you’re changing email accounts, you’ll need to change this as well, and wait for a confirmation.
    • Time Zone – Choose a city that’s closest to your time zone.
    • Date Format – Whichever tickles your fancy!
    • Time Format – Your choice!
    • Week Starts on – This will affect your calendar widget.
    • Language –  =)
  • Writing:
    • Size of the post box – If you write short pithy posts, you can comfortably set this to 20-30 lines. If you write literary masterpieces, experiment with this. If you set it to be 100 lines, 100 lines will show on the front page, and then it will automatically create a link to another page. If your posts are long, use this wisely grasshopper, and people won’t have to scroll for miles to see your next post down!
    • Formatting – If you click the emoticons box then your =) will be converted into a smiley graphic. If you click the correct invalidly nested box, WP will fix various XHTML mistakes for you.
    • Press This and Post by Email were both covered above.
  • Reading:
    • Front page displays:
      • Latest posts – Most blogs are set up this way, latest post on top, older posts below
      • Static page – Here you can choose one of your pages to be on the front page of your blog all the time. More like a website.
      • Blog pages – choose how many posts you’d like
      • Syndication Feeds – The number of posts people will see when they download one of your feeds
      • For each article in a feed show – Choose full text or a summary
      • For each article in an enhanced feed show – Take your pick!
      • Encoding – best to leave it at UTF-8
      • Email Settings – when someone subscribes to your site, this is the email they’ll receive.

Remember to click Save Changes!

  • Discussion:
    • Default Article Settings
      • Attempt to notify any blogs linked to from the article. This will ‘ping’ (*see below for an explantion of pinging) any link you have in your post. If you post a lot of links, it will slow down your posting considerably, as each link must be pinged before you can post.
      • Allow link notifications from other blogs – When someone posts a link to YOUR blog, you’ll get a ‘ping.’ This is good!
      • Allow people to post comments on the article – Lets people comment on your post. If you want to post with no responses, uncheck this box!
    • Other comment settings – Take a moment to read through these. They are truly self-explanatory, but necessary if you’re accepting comments.
    • Email Me Whenever – if you want a quick email when someone posts a comment, or a comment is being held, check these.
    • Before a Comment Appears – I recommend you check both of these. You’ll receive a very brief email with a link to address any comments.
    • Comment Moderation – With a spam filter, moderation isn’t the nightmare it used to be. But in the large text box, you can enter various words you don’t wish to see posted in comments. Any comment that uses those words will be held until you manually approve or disapprove.
    • Comment Blacklist – same as above, except comments containing these words will be marked as spam. No moderation needed.
    • Comment Reply via email – =) just like it sounds
    • Subscribe to Comments – if you have a hot commentary on your blog, this will send the comments to your email box
    • Subscribe to Blog – This is your goal – to get people to subscribe to your blog, to see what brilliant words fall from your keyboard.
    • Avatar Display – Avatars are the little pictures displayed next to a comment. Mine is generally an adorable smartass, although other people use their photos or book covers. Choose if you’d like avatars displayed or not – Gravatar is currently the most common.
  • Media Settings:
    • Image Sizes – My thumbnail size is generally 150×150, but you can choose what size fits you best. And you can resize it in the post as we described in Lesson 4!
    • Auto Embed – makes it super easy to embed videos – just add the URL to your post as plain text on it’s own line and voila.
    • Video Player – If you post a video on your site, clicking this will play your video in the VideoPress format.
  • Privacy:
    • Site Visibility: If you’re going to be Queen of the Blog World, check number one. If you just want humans – not search engines looking for your blog, check number two. If you’re blogging out the secret resources on planet Cadmaxiumnium and require your posters to log in, click three.
  • Open ID:
    • This allows you to use your blog URL as a sign in to any Open ID sign in form. Less remember of passwords – yeah!
  • Domains:
    • Lets you redirect your blog to a URL you already own, or purchase a URL, such as www.iwriterealgood.com. Or just keep the freebie you have.
  • Webhooks – This is out of beginner range. Sorry guys, look for it in the next group of lessons for when you become – TaDa!!! Super Blogger!!
  • *Pinging – WordPress automatically notifies Ping-O-Matic each time you create or update a post. Then Ping-O-Matic notifies about 20 other services that you’ve updated your blog. This lets people who browse sites like Technorati or Sphere find your most recent posts! However, if you put a lot of links in your post, Ping-O-Matic has to test each one to make sure it works, and this slows everything down. Waaay down.

This concludes our walk through the WordPress.com blog park. Now take your gallons of knowledge, your pretty pictures and your brilliant writings and let’s get posting. Please feel free to post your URL here – we’d love to see what you’re up to!


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