7 Common Mistakes Bloggers Make on WordPress
When I migrated from Blogger to WordPress, I did it fully prepared. My background in SEO, blog design and my preparedness made the transition very easy for me.
I later on discovered that I was supposed to fix many things in the long run but these were very little changes. The majority of the work had been done to get my WordPress site all set and ready.
I have in the course of my blogging worked on different WordPress sites, built some others and stumbled on WordPress sites of other Bloggers and the mistakes WordPress Bloggers make are not entirely new. Many of them are so common they have become very easy for me to spot.
Why I have decided to compile this article is because I want to help Bloggers who have never thought of some of their WordPress blog settings as wrong to get on to work and solve them. It is also going to be a good link to forward to Bloggers who would like to go through a checklist to be sure everything is fine with their Blogs.
Bad URL Structure
The default URL stricture of WordPress sites is not usually the ideal one for Bloggers who would like to optimize their sites and build a clean Blog URL hierarchy.
The default is of the structure https://xyz.com/2019/02/sample-post/
The ideal should be https://xyz.com/sample-post/
Here’s why a clean URL structure is important
1. It makes it very easy for users to understand what an article is all about even without reading. This makes it easy for sharing with their friends too.
Imagine a URL structure like www.xyz.com/h10083 . Not nice.
2. Search engines can easily tell what a page is about with the URL structure. It will therefore make it easy to rank higher in search engines.
Looking at the default URL structure, you will realize that it is what Blogger has as its permanent URL structure. Blogger is not flexible with its URL structure. You can only edit what comes after the date.
Now that you are on WordPress, you should not limit yourself when the platform isn’t limiting you.
The closer your keywords are to the left of your URL structure, the better. Having dates and numbers come in between that will defeat your search engine optimization.
How to correct this
Log in to your WordPress dashboard
Click on “settings”
Click on “permalinks”
Then tick the ‘post name’ option
Not migrating to https
This is in fact, one of the first things I look out for when I am about to work on a WordPress blog. Not migrating to https is such a big WordPress mistake given the fact that Google has been transparent and vocal about its preference for https.
Not only that, if you happen to have a store on your blog with a direct gateway payment system, you might discourage people from even putting in their card details if they see that it is not https enabled.
In short, for no tangible reason should you run a WordPress blog that isn’t https powered.If your WordPress blog is still using http, please take a pause here, go migrate to https. Oh, and the earlier, the better too.
Many times, this comes free. Many of the hosting companies give this out for free. For some others, you might have to pay a small fee yearly. You can however try Cloudflare, it’s free. There are some disadvantages to Cloudflare as I have used it in the past, you might want to research and be fully aware before going for it.
Installing too many plugins
WordPress is a great Content Management System. It comes with loads and loads of plugins that can make your Blogging experience very easy.
That you can install as plugins as possible isn’t however a licence to go rogue on it. When Bloggers are trying to solve problems, they install plugins after plugins only to have a truckload of them.
This can unfortunately cause a lot of problems for your WordPress site. Your blog can break, plugins may begin to conflict with each other and in fact, your WordPress site can become incredibly slow.
If you ask me, I would say you limit your WordPress plugins to 20 or less. Yes, 20 or less! So you see? Only the necessary ones.
Poor WordPress theme/design/layout
WordPress comes with so many themes, you have no idea. With the many WordPress themes and even third-party themes, you can do and undo.
I am however really surprised when I see a very poorly functional or ugly-looking WordPress blog. Upon all the WordPress resources, you still come up with something as whack as this? How come?
I understand that design does not come naturally to some Bloggers but if you have to contract a blog designer, please do. You can’t have a CMS with these many plugins, themes and customization option and end up with a poor WordPress site. It’s so not allowed.
Watch out for extremely cluttered side bar and lack of clear navigation. Your WordPress blog should be neat and functional. People are not supposed to get lost in there. Oh please, go create a contact page if you don’t have one. An about page is also in order.
What about pop ups? Manage these things effectively. You are on WordPress, congratulations, don’t go installing 50 pop us of different kinds because plugins have made it easy for you.
Not buying a domain name
The least, most basic investment you can make on your WordPress site is to buy a domain name. I am not sure of how you intend to do it – buy from WordPress itself or from another hosting company.
Any which way, get a domain name. It’s a different thing if you are just trying to sort your finances and save for this. If you however have the means, not buying a domain name is such a mistake.
I see a lot of Bloggers trying to do SEO on their blogs, investing in churning out quality content and doing all they can to be the best Blogger they can be. Alas, they have no domain name.
All these SEO efforts are just a waste, trust me. I would even advice that you hold on on going all out in SEO until you buy your domain name.
Not Installing/using SEO plugins
If you don’t have an SEO plugin on your WordPress blog, you are making a mistake. In fact, part of the reasons people migrate from Blogger to WordPress is because of the availability of SEO plugins.
Truth be told though, you don’t need SEO plugins to optimize your site. I mean, if you follow the necessary on-site and off-site SEO strategies, you are going to have a great optimized blog.
On Blogger, you don’t have the opportunity to optimize using plugins so you better be very grounded in your SEO. On WordPress however, there’s the luxury of installing great SEO plugins many of which are for free. The most common of them all is Yoast.
I mean, if you don’t have Yoast on your WordPress site what are you doing exactly? If you have not gone self hosted, of course, you might not be able to install plugins like these. But if you have, it’s of no use not installing your SEO plugins.
No regular backup schedule
WordPress has made it so easy that you can download plugins that will automatically schedule backups. If you are not tapping into this awesomeness, you should at least back up your blog on a regular basis by yourself. If you don’t know how to, check out this article on how to back up your blog.
Not backing up your blog is a mistake, I can’t stress this enough. Try out plugins that will take the stress off you or set out for a manual WordPress backup routine. You can also check out on your hosting end. There’s a probability that they offer backup services too.
What mistakes are you currently making with your WordPress blog? Would you be kind to share with us?
Featured image : Thebusinesswomanmedia