WordPress is a fantastic tool – it’s free, easy-to-use, and incredibly adaptable. All these benefits mean that it is the website builder of choice for many beginners and expert designers alike.
However, if you count yourself amongst the former camp, there could be some severe mistakes you are making. Don’t feel sorry about it – they are incredibly common, and even those who have been using WordPress for some time will experience them.
Also Read: 42+ Most Common Blogging Mistakes
But ultimately, if you want your website to sour rather than stumble, it’s imperative you get them fixed. Here are some of the most common mistakes made by WordPress users of all kinds of experience.
Plugins, plugin, plugins…
WordPress is a hive of plugin activity. There are thousands, maybe millions, of valuable plugins that attract the eye and sound like they could really make a huge difference to your ability to improve your website. And many do.
However, just because some plugins are fantastic, doesn’t mean that you should install every single one that exists. The truth is that not all plugins are created equal, and there are many that hog resources, cause more issues than they solve, and ultimately damage your site in the speed stakes.
Be careful of every plugin you choose. Even some of the biggest plugin names are guilty of causing issues, so it’s essential that you research everything properly and stop installing everything just because it sounds good.
Updates, updates, updates…
We know – updates suck. They appear right in the middle of your most important work, and although you start off with good intentions, they always get forgotten about. However, don’t underestimate how important these updates actually are. In today’s climate, all of us need to be incredibly wary of security issues that crop up almost everywhere on the web.
At the end of the day, compromises occur on an hourly basis, let alone daily when you operate online. And you are reliant on the systems and software providers to keep your nose out of trouble. The reality is that those updates are incredibly important, and if you keep ignoring them, you will end up paying the price.
Bear in mind that if developers of huge, successful products like WordPress weren’t concerned about security issues, they would release far fewer updates. It’s up to you whether you follow their lead, but you should be prepared to pay a heavy price if you don’t.
WordPress is not the whole solution.
WordPress is a powerful tool, and as we have discussed, also features some powerful plugins. But a WordPress site alone is not enough to improve your business, other than to make your online presence look pretty. Ultimately, you need to get found if you want your online business to succeed.
Search is a vital key to getting found online. And while there is a lot that you can do yourself when it comes to SEO, there are times when it won’t be enough. Search is not a particularly hard concept to grasp, but it is time-consuming to learn. Search engine updates occur all the time, too, so you are constantly playing catch-up – a difficult position if you are only just getting started.
Even then, there is a big difference between DIY SEO and professional search engine optimization. Ultimately, if you want to surge up the rankings and make yourself more visible, it will take you a long time to learn the ins and outs of search. Handing over the reins to a qualified and experienced professional can save you a lot of time and effort.
No effort with passwords
Let’s head back to security again. When you set up a WordPress site, your entry points are protected by a password and admin name. The chances are that you will leave your admin name as something incredibly obvious – such as your website name or, even worse, the phrase ‘admin.’
Then there’s your password. Maybe you couldn’t be bothered to think of something special, so you just used something similar to your admin name. Now, ask yourself: if you were a hacker, how long do you think it would take you to crack that easy combination?
At the end of the day, if you use a weak admin and/or password, you are exposing your entire website to extreme danger. If a serious hacker takes an interest in your site, they will break into it if you give them enough time. The trick is to put them off for long enough that they give up. And the only way to do that ensures you have a strong password and a 100% secret admin name.
No focus on conversion
It doesn’t matter what you have your WordPress site for, it exists for a reason. It could be to make sales, or it could be to pick up as many subscribers as possible for your blog. But the reality for most WordPress sites is that they fail to meet any of these goals. In website terms, they fail to convert.
Conversion is the art of getting your audience to do what you want them to do. And while WordPress is a brilliant platform, it isn’t going to help you connect with your customers and viewers, and actually take action. The reason? It’s because converting humans requires human effort.
You’ll need to get fully involved in keyword research, to ensure that you are attracting the right people to your site. You will have to spend time – and possibly money – on creating wonderful content, displaying your passion and knowledge in any given subject. You will also need to make that content is clear, well-written, and fully understandable – as well as easy to find. And finally, the design of your site needs to be of high quality, and actually, help your customers find what they are looking for, and persuade them to take action.
Lots of people who run WordPress sites struggle to get results. The tips listed above could be part of their problem. Try and apply them to your site, and you might start seeing improvements.