After WordPress Is Installed

March 22nd, 2008

Jason Blanton of BloggingTips has put together a nice little article which covers five things you should do after you install your self hosted WordPress blog. These five things include:

  1. Changing the permalink structure
  2. Change the default theme
  3. Update your ping services
  4. Activate the akismet plugin
  5. Burn your feed with FeedBurner

One item that I would add to this list is to figure out which stats program or service to use. You can use Stats which is a detailed stats plugin or you can use something like Google Analytics or MINT. One thing that I wish I could do if I could start over would be to integrate one of these nice statistical packages as they really come in handy down the road.

Jason mentions that this is only the first in a series of articles which will cover various things that you might want to tweak as you go along with using WordPress.

Although this short and quick guide is great for newcomers to WordPress, what about those who have established blogs? If you could go back in time and change the way or ways in which you began to use WordPress, what would those changes be?




  1. Nathan (1 comments.) says:

    I use a plugin called Open Web Analytics ( which I think is comparable to Google Analytics.

    Just thought I’d give it a mention.

  2. infmom (8 comments.) says:

    I wish I’d known about changing the permalinks right away. My WordPress blogs are nearly two years old now, and I can’t decide whether I’ll do more harm than good by changing the permalink structure now that I know about it.

    I’m just using Ping-O-Matic–should I change that?

  3. Collin (6 comments.) says:

    I would only change one thing about that install list. Change “Activate Akismet” to “Acitvate Anti-Spam Plugin”.

    The original version suggests that there’s only one anti-spam service which just isn’t true. Certainly, the newbie installing WordPress will only know about Akismet – mainly because it’s installed with WP these days – but that’s almost exactly like Microsoft and their Internet Explorer installations.

    Oranges are not the only fruit.

    What would I do different? Not much actually. Pretty pleased with the ease of installation/setup when I first installed it.

  4. Edrei (3 comments.) says:

    I second Colin. Every WordPress installation I work on would have Bad Behavior as a primary anti-spam plugin and Akismet as a backup. You’d be surprised how many people out there don’t know about other ways of handling spam and instead rely on captcha/math based spam filters which are horribly annoying to the user.

  5. Skippern (4 comments.) says:

    Browse through plugin archiev to find nifty things for your blogg was really missing. Have done a serious redesign of my blog lately where the main part of the work have been to find and activate different plugins.

  6. Neil (5 comments.) says:

    I stand behind akismet, spamfree plugin blocks normal comments sometimes. As for Bad Behaviour, well i never tried it. Im such a sucker for lists and top 5’s. Ive implemented them all though :( i need new stuff…

  7. Mosey says:

    I use Akismet and really like it. However, I don’t trust Feedburner to manage my Feeds.

  8. Frederick (4 comments.) says:

    I’d have changed how my files like pictures are uploaded under “Miscellaneous Options” to “Organize my uploads into month- and year-based folders.”

  9. redwall_hp (40 comments.) says:

    I agree with 4/5 (I subscribe to Blogging Tips, but thanks for pointing me to it again). Ping-o-Matic gets the job done pretty well, and I don’t think the ping settings are something you need to change immediately. The other points, though, I strongly agree with (especially the theme and permalink structure).

    On the subject of Permalink structure, I wrote a nice introduction to the topic.

  10. Jason Hansen (15 comments.) says:

    WassUp is another nice stats plugin that I use myself.

  11. Ken (1 comments.) says:

    Thanks! I just got to know that I need to update my ping services

  12. shadaik (2 comments.) says:

    I’d opt for a counter that doesnot rely on external services. chCounter would be an option. You may still back it up by a web-based counter, however, I just don’t want to be so dependant on Google or any other web service. That includes components of WordPress that ask other servers, thus I never activated akismet. Most spam messages are filtered into “Please moderate” anyways, even without a spam plugin.

  13. Viper007Bond (91 comments.) says:

    infmom: change them. WordPress will redirect index.php?p=5 to the pretty permalink which means you won’t have any duplicated content. I also believe WordPress sends the right HTTP header code so that you won’t lose your page ranks.

    In the long run, it’s worth it as Google dislikes any URLs with question marks in them.

  14. Ronny says:

    Since you people here are not really starters anymore, you might also like to do it this way: take phpmyvisits, get the plugin wp-phpmyvisits. Inside phpmyvisits they have a new plugin, it is called clickheats, that one you activate, and… tweak the wp-phpmyvisits plugin to add also the clickheat code. It is easy to figure out. You now have your stats in a very nice visual way. It is more functional than the visual view you get in google analytics. And everything is on your own server. And since none of the plugs i have used up to now in WorldPress give spider stats, i look in my log for that

  15. John A says:

    I’ve installed two different stats packages on Climate Audit ( bit after a couple of months, the database got to humungous size and had to be radically edited because of the stats database. It just slowed everything down to a crawl as the DB got to be too much for the memory on the server.

    Never again. Unless its just your mom reading it, self-hosted stats packages are not worth it for the hassle they cause.

    Better use Google Analytics and/or Akismet.

  16. Mosey says:

    I’m using stats and Slimstat myself. :)

  17. infmom (8 comments.) says:

    A lot of good information here. I use Spam Karma 2, AntiLeech and Trackback Validator to deal with spam comments–the three of them together do a very good job. I also use (free) StatCounter, and the SlimStats plugin.

    Thanks for the suggestion on changing the permalinks. I’ll do that.

  18. Kevin Paquet (1 comments.) says:

    Well, I do always head over to set up akismet first before anything else, I really cannot stand spam.

  19. Nexeus Fatale (1 comments.) says:

    It’s weird, because I’ve made changes like this at least three times to my self hosted wordpress blog. First I moved it from a directory to another, then I changed it from the default permalink to a more directory based perma link system (which worked really well!) The only thing I would do over again, if I had to, would be to use WordPress MU with a proper host, so that I’m not always installing and not mapping properly websites.

    As for stats, I’m using both the wp-stats and Google analytic. I figured that the hit wouldn’t be too great as they are offloaded elsewhere; but it gives me a fall back if one were to fail.

  20. Carabus (5 comments.) says:

    Akismet really have saved me alot of time…

  21. Tadd (89 comments.) says:

    Just installed WordPress for a future project site I’m working on and the first plugs I install (RIGHT away) are:
    Google Sitemap Generator
    Magic Keywords
    WordPress Automatic Upgrade
    Tiger Admin Style
    Auto Tagger
    FeedBurner FeedSmith

    I get rid of ‘Hello Dolly’ and ‘Akismet’. I like Akismet, don’t get me wrong, I just don’t want to sign up a new account for every WP installation I have and if I follow correctly, that’s against the terms and conditions .. right? One license per user otherwise pay for a key? Maybe I’m thinking something else …

    I also like the plug called ‘Maintenance Mode’ for sites that are live domains but I want to edit WP first.

    I literally have a folder with my ‘tried and true’ plugs I just drag/drop into the plugins folder on a new install.

  22. Trisha (16 comments.) says:

    @Jeffro2pt0, I am using all three of the stats tools you mention (and loving Mint – wow!) but is there any downside to using so many at once? I plan to look at the ones mentioned by Jason and Ronny above, because I’m a total stats junkie, but don’t want to do anything that will slow down site performance…..what is your opinion on using multiple stats packages?

  23. Otto (1 comments.) says:

    Tadd: You’re definitely thinking something else, Akismet allows you to use one key on any number of sites. They only expect you to pay for commercial sites (which they define as making more than $500 per month).

  24. Lucas McDonnell (4 comments.) says:

    In reply to infmom’s comment way up above (comment #2) — you have be interested in a plugin called Permalink Redirect, which I used a long time to redirect my old URLs (those darn numbered URLs) to my fancier new title-based URLs. You can find the plugin at (note that I’m in no way affiliated with this plugin — it just worked for me so I thought I’d share it).


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