If you have been wondering what WordPress tips and tricks are used by the most popular WordPress sites, in this article we will share some of them that you can use to customize your WordPress Blog.
Table of Contents
#1. Pick a new theme
The fastest way to give your site a new look is by changing WordPress themes. Changing themes will instantly change everything about your site’s design.
There are over 10,000 WordPress themes which can make it hard for you to decide.
#2. Switch to a static homepage
Every WordPress site should use a static homepage, especially bloggers’ sites. You can get more subscribers and even make more money with your website if you do more than list your latest posts.
For instance, your homepage can include an email opt-in form to build your subscribers and then promote a few of your best posts instead of simply displaying your latest posts.
#3. Display Excerpt (Post Summary) on Home and Archive Pages.
All popular blogs show article summaries instead of the full article on their home and archive pages. This makes their pages load faster, increases page views, and helps avoid duplicate content across your website.
Most premium and free WordPress themes already use excerpts on home and archive pages.
#4. Install Google Analytics in WordPress
Google Analytics is a must-have tool for WordPress site owners since it allows you to see where your users are coming from and what they are doing on your site.
You can install Google Analytics by using the MonsterInsights plugin. You can insert Google Analytics code into your theme files, although this code will disappear when you update or switch your theme.
#5. Password Protect WordPress Admin Directory
All administrative tasks on your website are performed in the WordPress admin directory. To access the admin area, a user will require to enter a username and password. However, you can make it difficult for hackers to gain access to your WordPress site by adding another layer of authentication.
#6. Allow users to Subscribe to comments.
Normally when users leave a comment on your site, they have to manually visit the same article again to check if you or other users replied to their comment.
However, it could be better if a user was able to get email notifications about new comments on your posts. You can add this feature to your website by installing and activating the subscribe to comments Reload plugin.
#7. Add custom CSS to a WordPress Theme
If you are a WordPress owner, at some point you might need to add custom CSS to your site. CSS allows you to change the appearance of things like colors, margins, font sizes, etc on your WordPress. It only takes a few minutes to add Custom CSS to any WordPress theme.
#8. Using Inspect Element Tool to Customize WordPress.
Learn more on how to use Inspect Element Tool to Customize WordPress here.
#9. Add a Facebook Thumbnail Image.
Facebook can automatically pick up a featured image from your articles when they are shared. However, sometimes it can pick a random image from the article that may not be suitable.
If you are using the All in One SEO plugin, you can just select a Facebook thumbnail image in the All in One SEO Settings box on the post edit screen, under the Social tab.
#10. Add Featured Image or Post Thumbnail to RSS Feed.
The WordPress RSS feeds show a list of the most recent articles in your website. If you show full articles in the feed, then all images inside will be displayed. However, RSS Feed does not include the featured image or post thumbnail in the article.
#11. Show Excerpts in RSS Feed.
Normally, WordPress shows your full article in the RSS feed. This allows content scrapers to automatically fetch and steal your full article and prevents your RSS feed subscribers from visiting your website.
You can fix this issue by going to Settings then the Reading page and scrolling down to the ‘For each article in a feed, show’ option. Click on summary and then click on the save changes button.
#12. Use ShortCodes Inside Text Widgets
With shortcodes, you can easily add small functions to WordPress posts and pages although they do not work in the widget. To run shortcodes in your sidebar text widgets, you have to add the code to your theme’s functions.php file or a site-specific plugin. Alternatively, you can use the Shortcode Widget plugin, which adds a shortcode-enabled text widget to your WordPress site.
#13. Add Image in WordPress Sidebar
WordPress does not come with an easy way to just upload and display images in your sidebar, though it is expected to change soon in an upcoming version. Currently, if you want to add an image, then you need to add the HTML code for it.
#14. Add Image Icons to Links Navigation Menu.
If you want to display image icons next to links in your navigation menu the easiest solution is to use the Menu Image plugin. Install the plugin and go to Appearance then Menu and you will see the option to add images with each item in your existing menu. You can also do it manually if you do not want to use a plugin.
#15. Add Full-Screen Search Overlay in WordPress.
When you click on the search icon at the top right corner of any page on WPBeginner, you will see a full-screen search overlay appear. This overlay improves the search experience and makes it more engaging.
You can also add this to your WordPress site by installing and activating the WordPress Full-Screen Search Overlay plugin.
The overlay plugin works out of the box and there are no settings for you to configure. After activation, it turns any default WordPress search form field into a full-screen search overlay.
#16. Add Multiple Authors to a WordPress Post.
Normally, WordPress posts are assigned to a single author although you can also credit multiple authors for an article on your site. All you need is to install and activate the Co-Authors Plus plugin.
After that, you can edit the post or page where you want to credit multiple authors. On the post edit screen, you will see the new ‘Authors’ box below the post editor where you can credit multiple authors.
#17. Add Categories to WordPress Pages
Normally, adding categories and tags to pages in WordPress is only available for posts, mainly because pages are supposed to be static standalone content.
However, you can add categories and tags by simply adding its code to your theme’s functions.php file or a site-specific plugin.
#18. Display the Total number of comments in WordPress
Comments make it easier for users to engage with content on your website. Displaying the total number of comments can be used as social proof and also encourage more users to participate in discussions.
You will have to install the Simple Blog Stats plugin and activate it.
#19. Create new image Sizes in WordPress
Once you upload an image to your blog, WordPress automatically creates several copies of the same. In addition to that,your WordPress theme and also plugins can add new image sizes.
To create new image sizes in WordPress, you will need to add a code to your theme’s functions.php file or a site-specific plugin.
#20. Add Category Icons in WordPress
Adding category icons or images next to category names in WordPress makes your category archive pages look more engaging and improves user experience.
You will need to install and activate the Taxonomy Images plugin in WordPress. After activation go to Posts then Categories and click on the add button next to the blank thumbnail icon for each category.
#21. Display the Last Updated Date of your Posts.
Normally, most WordPress themes will show the date once an article is published. However, if you regularly update your old content, then you might want your users to know when an article was last updated.
#22. Update WordPress URLs when Not Able to Access WP-Admin.
Sometimes when moving a WordPress site to a new domain or due to a misconfiguration you may need to update WordPress URLs. The URLs tell WordPress where to display your site and where WordPress core files are located. If the settings are done wrong, you can be locked out of the WordPress admin area or redirected to the old website.
#23. Deactivate All Plugins when not able to access WP-Admin
When troubleshooting WordPress errors, you will need to deactivate all WordPress plugins but this can be tricky when you are locked out of your WordPress site.
Therefore, to easily deactivate plugins, you need to connect to your WordPress site using an FTP client and go to the/wp-content/ folder. You will find the plugins folder there. Now all you need to do is rename the plugins folder to plugins.old and then WordPress will automatically deactivate all plugins on your website.
#24. Remove Default Image Links in WordPress
Normally, once you upload images using the media uploader, WordPress asks you to select how you would like to link to an image. However, if you don’t want to link to an image, then you can select none. You can also add the image link-setup code to your theme’s functions.php file or a site-specific plugin. The code automatically sets the default image linking option to none.
#25. Include Category in Post URLs.
You might have noticed that many WordPress sites use categories in their post URLs. This allows them to add more useful information to a URL which is good for user experience and SEO.
To add a category name to your WordPress Post URLs, then go to Settings then the Permalinks page.
Select the custom structure and add it to the field next to it and click on the save changes button.
This list might seem long but to be honest, this is just half of everything. There are soo many other tricks and tips you can use to customize your WordPress Blog.
One of the best tips to customize your WordPress blog is picking a customizable theme.
We hope the above tips and tricks will help you customize your WordPress blog to your liking.