In this tutorial, we’ll take a look at your WordPress dashboard and all the things you’ll need to know and do before you can start building your website with Elementor. It’s always great to start with a clean and fresh environment and learn where to find the basic settings of your WordPress website.
Your User Profile
Let’s start by taking a look at your profile.
On the left-hand side of your WordPress dashboard, you will see your WordPress menu.
Select the menu item “Users” and then select “profile”.
That will open your profile screen. You can set the colour scheme for your backend (how you see your dashboard), change your nickname (Not user-name), update your password and more.
Some hosting companies offer pre-installed WordPress sites. This usualy comes with a default user-name and password. In your profile settings you can change the “nickname” to your real name, alias or company name. This can come in handy if you would like to respond or post blogs with a different name than your user-name to access your WordPress website.
If your site was pre-installed, the default password created might be hard to remember and having to go and search in your mailbox for the confirmation e-mail can be a hassle you don’t need.
You can change your password to something easy to remember for you, but hard to guess for anyone else in your user profile. (I do not recommend “saving” your password in your browser for obvious security reasons).
You can setup a new Gravatar account or connect an existing one in your profile menu. Using your Gravatar account, you can set your avatar (user profile image). If you do not have or want to create a Gravatar account, you can use a small free plugin called Simple Local Avatars that will allow you to add an image as your avatar, storing it in your media library.
Your Website Settings
Now let’s have a look at the settings.
The first tab under settings shows you the “general” options.
Here you can change your website name and tagline, allow memberships, set default roles, and change the format for date and time.
The second tab, the writing options, allow you to set the default category for blog posts and select the default format for these posts.
You’ll also find the options for “post via email” here.
The third tab contains the reading settings.
In this tab, you can set your home page to a static page and asign the page for your blog archieve (leave blank for now, we’ll select your Home-page and blog page after we created some pages).
Set the “Blog pages show at most” and “Syndication feeds show the most recent” to 100. Set the “For each post in a feed”, include to “summary”.
You can choose to “discourage” search engines like Google to index your site, but we are not going to do this since we want our content to be visible on all the search engines.
The fourth tab contains the discussion settings.
Here you can choose who will be able to interact with your website by commenting on your posts or leaving a review on a product.
You can activate pingback and trackback and choose if you want to notify other blogs you linked to their content.
You can also set the requirements needed for your users to post a comment like adding a cookie opt-in checkbox and a name and email field that needs to be filled in before their comment can be posted.
Select the settings on how you will be notified whenever someone leaves a comment or reply and choose if you would like to manually approve the comments before they appear on your posts.
The fifth tab allows you to set the default maximum width and height for your images. ( i usualy don’t bother changing anything here )
The sixth tab contains your permalink settings.
Change this to “post name” (now your link will look like your-domain.com/post, product or page name)
You can also opt to set your permalinks to include “day + name”, “month + name” or set a custom structure by adding the available tags as you see fit.
You can then select the created page here in the settings privacy tab.
That completes the WordPress settings.
Now let’s clean up all the default posts, pages and plugins that came with your installation.
Cleaning Up WordPress
First, go to “posts” and delete the default “hello world” post. Under “pages”, you can delete the sample page.
Next up are the plugins.
WordPress comes with several pre-installed plugins that you do not need.
You might also find pre-installed caching and other plugins from your hosting provider.
You can choose to keep the caching plugin if you prefer or you can use WP-Rocket or LSCache instead (LSCache is my personal choice but if you are not using a Litespeed server, WP-Rocket will do great for your website).
Let’s start by installing some other plugins.
In your plugin screen, select “add new”.
Use the search bar to find the following plugins:
- Webp converter for media ( for basic optimization of your media )
- Flexible Elementor Panel ( let’s you drag the Elementor menu across the screen for better visibility)
- Code Snippets ( to safely add or change code to/in your theme)
- MouseWheel Smooth Scroll ( only if you want a smooth scroll effect )
- Elementor & Elementor Pro
- Insert headers footers ( for adding Google and/or social pixels and tracking snippets)
- Sticky Header Effects for Elementor (Only if you wish to create a sticky header and don’t want to use CSS or JS )
- Simple Local Avatar (Only if you do not wish to use “Gravatar”)
- Woocommerce (Only if you are working on an Ecommerce website)
- Defender Pro by WPMUDev ( for site security )
- Rankmath SEO ( The best SEO plugin for your website by far! )
Check out the details and functions of these plugins in the Reviews and Resources section of my blog. Depending on your needs, you might require other or more plugins but the ones listed above should be sufficient for a nice looking business site or blog.
Adding Your Theme
You can select another theme, but make sure your chosen theme is compatible with Elementor. Popular themes include OceanWP, Astra, and Kadence.
Once you have selected and activated your theme, you are ready to start building your website.
That’s all for this tutorial/overview of your WordPress settings and options. I hope you have enjoyed it. You can find other tutorials on in my blog.
For the next step, I would recommend “How to create a basic header template using Elementor”.
Thanks for reading this tutorial and see you next time!