WordPress, WordPress, WordPress … A love story that can quickly turn into a nightmare! And that would be a shame! That’s the reason I’ve put together a short guide listing common mistakes that can be easily avoided.
1) Do not install child theme
After installing your item, you will inevitably realize that there are things that are not what you want, and that’s normal! But do not mistakes to commit on WordPress go straight into the code of your theme! If you do, each time you update your idea, your changes may be overwritten.
To address this problem, WordPress incorporates a child theme system. It is based on the parent theme and inherits all its features. You can modify it according to your wishes without risk!
To create a child theme, there is nothing wizard, follow the official tutorial of the WordPress codex. There are also plugins like Child Theme Configurator that do the work alone, magic no?
2) Install a ton of plugins
As soon as a feature is missing, the first reflex of a WordPress user is to go to see if there is not a plugin that may be suitable. However, the bulk addition of plugins is hazardous, because every update of WordPress, you will have to control that it is compatible with all your plugins, the more you will have more risk you will not be not the case.
Also, each plugin can have security vulnerabilities. So if you have a lot, you will logically be more exposed to potential hacking. Well, do not be paranoid either … Most are regularly updated to avoid mistakes to commit to WordPress kind of problem, but all the same, it can happen. By cons, it is common that these plugins are not necessarily well optimized. Installing a lot can slow down your site significantly. If you’re not convinced, I can only invite you, using PageSpeed, to do a little test between a WordPress packed with plugins and another one that does not.
A clean WordPress is a WordPress with just what you need!
4) Tackle content while the structure is not complete
After the installation of the theme, we have only one desire; the one to throw with open arms in the materials, but be careful not to add it too quickly! Because the first thing to do is to finalize the structure of your pages. If you enter the content too fast, you may have to erase it later. Indeed, this one could not integrate into the final structure. Take your patience, do not burn the steps, be methodical, and you will be rewarded.
5) Edit an existing plugin on the fly
You have downloaded a plugin, but this one does not do precisely what you want? It’s healthy, and it will happen to you often! You may want to modify it so that it meets your needs as best as possible, but be careful! If you do, each time you update the plugin, you risk losing your changes (as with themes, or even point 1). Do not panic, so you have several solutions left.
The first, the riskiest, is not to mistakes to commit on WordPress update the plugin in question. You will be more vulnerable to attack. Therefore, before choosing this solution, you must analyze the risks that could generate such a plugin.
You can also duplicate the plugin in question, rename it, and disable the updates. But again, the security level, you will not be at the top. However, nothing prevents you from updating it manually by taking inspiration from the work done on the necessary plugin.
Otherwise, cleaner but also more involved, you can also have fun grafting on the hooks and change the functions.
6) Install demo data on the final site
Premium themes often offer demo data. In two or three clicks, you can turn your empty site into a nearly finished product! Great no? Well, no! Although at first glance it may seem like a great idea, you’ll find that, and it’s a big mistake that can take a lot of time. Indeed, sort pages, images, plugins, your data demos are very time-consuming. And if you do not do this sorting work properly, you will end up with a slow site that loads too many things and in which you will not find yourself.
If you can not recreate a page as you’ve seen on the theme page, nothing is stopping you from installing the theme and demo data on a test site so you can learn from it later. But do not do it on your final site!
7) Only use one account (admin)
You’ll make mistakes to commit on WordPress, but you can still avoid some of them by not using the admin account systematically. Indeed, the role of this account is to set up the main elements of your site. For your weekly publications, I can only advise you to use an editor account. With this one, you will be able to modify the contents without “breaking everything.” Make it a habit to create a second account, and you will find that in the end, you will feel safer :).
If the default roles do not suit you, you can always install a plugin to customize them as it sings. There are several, but I tested only one, namely User Role Editor. This one immediately agreed, so why look for another?
8) Believe that we can create the site of our dreams without coding
Without code, you can very well manage to create a drinking site. But if you want to customize and optimize it, you’ll have to change the system. If you have no programming skills, the slightest bug you will be blocked, and you will have no choice but to remove the feature that annoys (if you manage to identify where the virus comes from).
After all, it depends on the kind of site you want to get. If it is an excellent personal blog, you can escape without code (as long as you have chosen a non-buggy theme). But if you want a more complex site, you will quickly face pitfalls.
On the other hand, as soon as your site will be created, you will be able to modify its contents without having special skills! That’s the strength of WordPress?