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Easy WP Guide

A simple, easy to read WordPress Manual

You won’t find any talk of HTML, PHP or creating WP Themes here. What you will find is a simple, easy to read WordPress manual that will guide you through the process of editing your site content.

You can read the Easy WP Guide WordPress manual online, download the free PDF, or purchase the eBook or brandable Word document. If you’re a WordPress consultant, use it to help your clients get the most out of their brand new site.

Grab a copy today and start learning!

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WP tips

help from other WP fans.

There are many tutorials out there – and this post will merely introduce you to a few to start with. It would be brilliant if you could share your findings with me so I can add them here for everyone to enjoy and learn from :)

Please note this is a post in flux, i.e. it will be updated, changed and added to as fitting.

Links to websites you may find useful

Learning WordPress & WordPress TV

The organisation behind WordPress have a lot of materials for people publishing on WordPress websites and also those working with WordPress as web designers and web developers.

Learning WordPress is a website including training courses and videos for people that would like to learn more about WordPress. A lot of this information is aimed at experienced users and developer.

WordPress TV contains presentations from WordCamps, which are conferences for people using WordPress.

How to Create a Post or Page with the WordPress Block Editor

This is a video demonstrating how to create post and pages on WordPress.

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WP tips

cookie info via inspect

It’s important to know/understand where the details for our cookies ‘live’ within our browser, on our computers. Here are a few notes and screenshots to explain.

Inspect element

In order to get to the information of the cookies being set on a certain page, we can use the developer tools, built into most modern browsers.

Right-clicking on the page, or a specific element on the page, will call up the ‘Inspect’ function which will allow us to view the underlying code and various addtional specifics.

Depending on the browser or prior use, the inspector will call up an extra window pane (or window) to present the details.

Of course, this is a tool for developers primarily, but useful for us to find the cookie info ~ via the ‘Storage’ tab:

This now lists stored information and can give us insights into the specifics of the cookies set by the page we are viewing. For your projects, you will likely use a plugin which will retrieve the related details automatically, phew ;)

useful reading:

WebToffee to the rescue

Luckily, the CookiesYes plugin will make your life easier by offering a cookie scanning option. This is the final step and should be done once you are finished with the site. Once your content is all published, you’ve configured your theme as required and you’ve activated the plugins you’re using (deleting the ones you don’t) — run the cookie scanner and complete the settings for this. You should check on the categories, only keep those you need and remove the ones you don’t.

As an example ~ check out the cookie settings (link in popup) on this new website promoting the book ‘understanding well-being data’ by UoS’s own Susan Oman:
well-beingdata.com

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WP tips

working in the editor

The latest updates to WP [1] have brought new themes and more changes to the interface. The views in the editor are aiming to make writing a more focused and calm experience. The usual left-side panel offering an overview of admin function is hidden by default now.

If you are very new to working with WordPress, you might like this as a distraction-free way to write your text. However, if you have worked with WP before, then this might catch you out and be quite confusing.

This is when plugins are useful ~ restoring a previous default. To stop the automatic full screen mode, install and active the following plugin:

Disable Block Editor FullScreen mode
By Ankit Panchal

Once installed, you’ll see the admin interface remain consistent throughout. You will still be able to manually set your preferences if you wish.

  1. WordPress[]
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WP tips

Good Habits For WordPress Site Owners

WordPress is wonderful and offers so much flexibility. It uses themes and plugins to offer site owners easy access to unlimited design choices and useful features.

Themes

There are thousands of free WordPress themes available and it is very common for new site owners to test lots of them before deciding on their final choice. A website can only use one theme at a time and there is so much choice, that it can be hard to decide. It is perfectly fine to test out 25 different themes before making your final choice, or to update an existing website with a new theme after launching. The problem is that lots of people have beautiful WordPress sites, which have 20 unnecessary, unused, out of date themes sitting in the background.

I usually recommend keeping an additional core WordPress theme such as Twenty Twenty or Twenty Twenty One, as this gives you a high quality theme to fall back on, if your site ever develops a problem. The core themes that are automatically provided with new installations are guaranteed to be compatible with WordPress, if they are up to date. Having an additional core theme available is a good idea. It is definitely a bad idea to leave a large number of different themes, from a variety of different sources, sitting on your WordPress site. They clutter up your theme area, take up server space and provide targets for hackers.

Plugins

Plugins add functionality to WordPress sites. They provide extra features to the software that runs your website and can be used for lots of different purposes, from tiny things like adding a cookie pop up, to huge changes such as adding an online shop.

Like themes, plugins add additional code to your website. If you decide to stop using a particular plugin, then you should delete it from your website.

Bad Habits

WordPress makes it is very easy to test new themes and plugins by adding them to your site and trying them out. It gives you the opportunity to test new features and make sure that things work the way you want them to. You can even test exactly how your existing website will look, by quickly adding a new theme and doing a live preview. This flexibility is one of the best things about WordPress, unfortunately it can lead to some bad habits.

The first bad habit is that lots of people don’t keep their websites up to date. WordPress sites have to be updated on a regular basis, this includes the core files that make up your website, it’s themes and any plugins that you decide to use. In my experience, when people have large numbers of unused themes and plugins, they are less likely to bother updating them, because they often feel that they’re not important. Unfortunately this makes them an ideal target for hackers, who exploit weaknesses to gain access to other people’s websites.

The second bad habit is that people don’t delete themes and plugins that they are not using. Unused themes and plugins take up space on your website because they add unnecessary files. Your website will take up more space on the server and also means that your site will probably take longer to load for your visitors.

If you have a plugin that you don’t need, it is possible to deactivate it so that your website no longer uses it. Deactivating a plugin doesn’t remove it from your website. It is still there. If you have any plugins that you don’t intend to use, delete them.

Good Habits

When you log into your WordPress site, as an administrator, you will see a notification if you have any updates to perform. Updates will often include code that deals with potential security issues. Keeping your WordPress site up to date will make sure that everything runs smoothly and also makes it much harder for anybody to hack your website.

There are no benefits to leaving unused themes and plugins sitting on your website. They add unnecessary files, make updating take longer and greatly increase the risk of security issues, so please make sure that you always delete any that you are not using. If you change your mind you can always reinstall them in the future.

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Fancy Themes & Design Plugins

Every WordPress site uses a theme to control the design of the website. It manages the style including the colours, fonts and layout. Some WordPress themes are free, but it is also possible to pay 3rd parties for WordPress themes. Paid themes may offer styles that you prefer or include options which make it easier for you to customise the design to create a layout or overall style that you prefer.

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WordPress After This Course

For most of you this course was the first time that you have used WordPress to build a website, but I hope that it won’t be the last.

Although for this unit we have used WordPress to create a very specific type of site, the skills that you have learnt to do that can be used to create and manage websites for any purpose, without having to write any code. Over a third of all websites currently on the internet were built using WordPress, including many belonging to businesses, charities and other organisations.

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cookies & GDPR

Websites should always present good original content which respects copyright of authors and creators as well as site visitors and their privacy. By law, every website is required to be transparent about data handling (via a privacy policy) and state clearly which settings are in place as well as asking for explicit consent to set cookies.

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referencing with footnotes

When writing your content, always keep your readers in mind ~ these are the people you write for, your target group and it is up to you to make your text clear and easy to understand. Your subject might involve a certain terminology, or subject-specific jargon [1] or abbreviations, for example. Consider whether certain phrases would benefit from explanations, and offer additional information as fitting context.

  1. specialized terminology associated with a particular field or area of activity[]
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WP tips

adding ALT text

Images of any kind, be that illustrations, graphics or photographs, are effective additions to your content. To follow good practices for both accessibility and SEO – each image has to include the alt/alternative text.