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Editor’s note: The following is an excerpt from Chapter 4 of WordPress For Dummies, 8th Edition by eWebscapes founder and WordPress pioneer, Lisa Sabin-Wilson. This is the fourth in a series of excerpts called “Advice from a Pro” from this book. In this chapter, readers are given an understanding of the WordPress dashboard. Note that our references to WordPress are specifically for WordPress.org and not WordPress.com.

With WordPress.org successfully installed, you can explore your new website software. This chapter guides you through the preliminary setup of your new WordPress site using the Dashboard.

When you create a website with WordPress, you spend a lot of time in the Dashboard, which is where you make all the exciting, behind-the-scenes stuff happen. In this panel, you find all the settings and options that enable you to set up your site just the way you want it. (If you still need to install and configure WordPress, check out Chapter 3.)

Feeling comfortable with the Dashboard sets you up for a successful entrance into the WordPress world. Expect to tweak your WordPress settings several times throughout the life of your website. In this chapter, as I go through the various sections, settings, options, and configurations available to you, understand that nothing is set in stone. You can set options today and change them at any time.

Key takeaways:

  • The WordPress.org Dashboard panel opens a world of opportunity. This Dashboard is what will allow you to steer the ship that is your new website and customize it as you see fit.

  • Whatever decisions you make about your site, you can always change your mind about them later. The Dashboard lets you do that. However many times you want, you can make changes to the look and feel of your website just by taking advantage of the settings and options available.

Your WordPress Dashboard is your control panel, and you are in charge. Understanding the WordPress dashboard will allow you to master the skill of running your very own website. The more you familiarize yourself with its features, the easier you will find it to be.


Purchase WordPress for Dummies, 8th Edition at a bookstore near you or online at Amazon.

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