Success in blogging depends a lot on having the right tools and using them wisely. While most people would agree that WordPress is an awesome blogging platform, not many know how to make it work more efficiently for them. That’s a pity because the better you know WordPress and its capabilities, the easier it is to use and the more work you can get done. Here are some things you can do to become a more productive blogger with it.
Customize the post editor layout.
Did you know that you can modify the default WordPress post editor layout? You can hide, show and rearrange modules; change the number of columns displayed; and switch to full-screen mode while typing a post.
To choose modules to display in the post editor, click New > Post on the dashboard. Click Screen Options. Under Show on screen, you will see options to display author, categories, tags, comments, trackbacks, etc. Check the modules you want to show and uncheck the ones you want to hide. (For example, you may want to hide the author module if you are the only contributor to your blog.) Under Screen Layout, set the number of columns to either 1 or 2. Click Screen Options again to close it when you are done.
You can click and drag modules to move them around in the post editor area. First, click the arrow at the top right of each module to roll it up. (It’s easier to move the modules when they are “tucked away.”) Next, click the module and drag it to where you want it. Tip: Put your most frequently used modules closest to the text editor.
Need more typing space? Switch to distraction-free mode. Click the icon with four arrows and a rectangle on the editor toolbar, or click
Alt + Shift + W . WordPress will switch to full-screen mode. To go back to normal mode, click Exit fullscreen.
Customize the posts display.
Does the list of posts in your WordPress dashboard show information you never use? Hide them. Go to Posts > All Posts. Click Screen Options in the upper right of the page. Like in the post editor, you will see check boxes for author, tags, categories, date, comments and more. Check off the columns you want to display, and uncheck those you prefer to hide. By default, WordPress displays 20 posts per page here. Enter a different number next to Posts to change this. Click Screen Options when you are done.
Use filters to find posts.
WordPress post filters can save you time when you need to find a particular post or type of post. To view a specific post status only, click one of the links above the post list. You should have some or all of these options: All, Published, Draft, Private, Sticky and Trash. Clicking one of these will show only posts with status and hide all others.
You can also show a range of posts by archive date and/or category. To view by date, click the Show all dates dropdown menu and select a date (say, April 2013) to show only posts from that period. To view by category, click the View all categories menu and choose a category to display its posts. Click Filter.
If you need to locate a post by keyword, type the word or phrase in the search box above the list and click Search Posts. Posts with that keyword/phrase in the title will appear at the top of the results.
Note: You may have additional options in the All Posts page depending on which plugins are installed and active. Some plugins add features here such as SEO keywords, word count, etc.
Install an SEO plugin.
An SEO plugin helps apply search engine optimization to a WordPress blog. The plugin may help you optimize post titles, meta descriptions, URL’s and excerpts; it may also analyze keyword density, noindex certain pages, generate XML sitemaps and more. Try WordPress SEO Plugin by Yoast or All In One SEO, both of which are free of this writing.
To install a new plugin, go to Plugins > Add New. Type the name of the plugin you want in the search box and click Search Plugins.
Keep in mind that if your WordPress theme already has its own SEO features, you should use either that or an SEO plugin. Do not use both or you may experience conflict issues. Whichever plugin you install, make sure it is compatible with your theme and the WordPress version you are running.
Edit posts simultaneously.
Some WordPress tasks – like changing categories or removing tags – are tedious and repetitive. Save time with bulk editing. Go to Posts > All Posts and select the posts you want to edit. Click Edit from the Bulk Actions dropdown menu, and click Apply. This brings up the bulk editing options. You can change categories, tags, author, post format and status; you can also allow or disallow comments and pings. If you added a post by mistake, click the X next to it under Bulk Edit. Click Update when you are finished.
Schedule post publication.
When you publish a blog post, WordPress lets you do so either immediately or at a later date. It makes sense to schedule posts in advance if you want to stagger your updates. For instance, if you have time to write posts on weekends only, you can schedule them for publication during weekdays when you are busy with other things.
To schedule a post, open it in the WordPress post editor. Look for the Publish module and click Edit next to Publish immediately. Select the date and time you want, click OK and then click Schedule.
Use keyboard shortcuts to write posts and edit comments.
WordPress uses the open-source TinyMCE WYSIWYG editor as its post editor. It allows you to use standard word processing shortcuts such as:
Ctrl+Ato select all
Ctrl+Bto make bold text
Ctrl+Cto copy text
Ctrl+Ito make italic text
Ctrl+Zto undo the last action
Ctrl+Yto redo the last action
If you moderate a lot of comments, keyboard shortcuts can save you time. First, enable shortcuts in your user profile. Go to Users > Your Profile. Check Enable keyboard shortcuts for comment moderation and click Update Profile.
Go to Comments. Press
k to navigate the comments and use the following actions to moderate comments:
ato approve a comment
sto mark a comment as spam
dto delete a comment
zto restore a deleted comment from the trash
rto launch Reply to Comment feature
uto unapprove a comment
eto launch Edit Comment feature
Learn more at the official WordPress site at https://codex.wordpress.org/Keyboard_Shortcuts