Course: Configuring Sitewide Settings

In this course we’ll show you how to change the settings and create the content that will affect your site globally. Once you have completed this course, you’ll understand:

  1. General and Reading Settings
  2. Discussion and Permalinks Settings
  3. Creating a Client Logo and Favicon

General and Reading Settings

In this lesson, we’re going to show you how to change the basic WordPress settings for your website. We’ll cover the following topics:

  • How to configure General Settings
  • How to configure Reading Settings

Let’s get started!


How to configure General Settings

While there are many settings in WordPress that will only affect a single page or post, there are some basic settings that will affect your entire site. We’re going to go through these settings for you in this lesson, and explain the changes you’ll need to make to set your site up properly.

All of these basic settings can be found in the ‘Settings’ panel of the WordPress Dashboard:

WordPress Dashboard Settings panel

The Settings panel in the WordPress Dashboard

Clicking on the ‘Settings’ panel will open up a sub-menu with several additional panels:

WordPress Dashboard Settings sub-menu

The Settings sub-menu in the WordPress Dashboard

By default, the ‘General’ panel is selected. There are a couple of settings we need to change in this panel. The ‘Site Title’ field should already show the correct title of your website. (This comes from the advanced fields we edited when installing WordPress.) The ‘Tagline’ field, however, still shows the default ‘Just another WordPress site’. For Stover Tree Service, we’re going to replace this with the client’s phone number:

Tagline changed client phone number

Changing the Tagline to the client’s phone number

The last change we want to make in this panel is the ‘Timezone’ field. For Stover Tree Service, we’ll change this to ‘UTC-6’, which is the time zone for Fort Worth, TX:

Timezone field UTC-6

Changing the Timezone field to ‘UTC-6’

Once we’ve completed all of the changes on this page, we’ll need to click on the blue ‘Save Changes’ button to save our changes:

General Settings save changes

Saving the changes in the General Settings panel

How to configure Reading Settings

The next step is to change the Reading Settings. Start by clicking on ‘Reading’ in the Settings sub-menu:

Settings sub-menu Reading panel

The Reading panel in the Settings sub-menu

This opens up the Reading Settings page. The first option we’ll look at is the ‘Front page displays’ fields:

Reading Settings page Front page displays

Front page displays on the Reading Settings page

This is currently set so that the blog posts are shown on the Home page. This is standard blog functionality. We’ll want to change this so that our website displays a static Home page, along with a Blog page that displays the blog posts.

In order to make this change, however, we’ll need to create a Home and Blog page in the Pages panel. We’ll return to this setting once we’ve created these pages in a future lesson.

There is one other setting on this page which we can make now, and that’s the ‘Search Engine Visibility’ field. If your website is a redesign of an existing, live site, you’ll want to check this checkbox while you’re building the site. If you do, you’ll need to remember to uncheck it once the site is completed and live, or it won’t be indexed by the search engines.

Since Stover Tree Service is a redesign of an existing, live site, we’ll check this checkbox, and then click on the ‘Save Changes’ button:

Search Engine Visibility save changes

Setting Search Engine Visibility and saving changes

We’ll cover all of these steps in video, along with configuring Discussion and Permalinks settings, in the next lesson.

Note: Changing Global Settings

As you can see from these screenshots, there are a lot of additional settings on these pages, as well as in the other pages in the Settings panel. We’ve covered the settings you’ll want to make for all of your websites. But you may want to make changes to the other settings, as well, on a site-by-site basis.


Congratulations on completing Lesson 1! You should now know:

  1. How to configure General Settings
  2. How to configure Reading Settings

Discussion and Permalinks Settings

In this lesson, we’re going to show you how to change additional WordPress settings for your website. We’ll cover the following topics:

  • How to configure Discussion Settings
  • How to configure Permalinks Settings

We’ll cover these topics in two ways:

  • With text and screenshots
  • With video

Let’s get started!


How to configure Discussion and Permalinks settings: Text and screenshots

Discussion Settings

Picking up where we left off in Lesson 1, the next sub-menu item we want to look at is Discussion Settings:

Settings panel Discussion Settings

The Discussion Settings page under the Settings panel

The first option we want to look is related to allowing comments:

Discussion page allow/disallow comments

Allowing or disallowing comments on the Discussion page

You would want to uncheck this checkbox if you want to disallow comments globally. If you leave it checked, you can always disallow comments on a post-by-post basis.

The next setting is related to approving comments:

Discussion page manually approve comments

Manually approving comments on the Discussion page

We recommend that you check this box with your new websites. If your client finds that the volume of comments requiring approval becomes too large, you can uncheck this box and use Akismet for spam management.

The last field we want to look at on this page is the ‘Comment Blacklist’ field:

Discussion Settings Comment Blacklist field

The Comment Blacklist field in Discussion settings

You can enter any data you have for “known offenders”, or any content commonly found in spam comments, in this field. This will automatically mark comments with matching information as spam.

Once you’ve completed your changes, make sure to click on the ‘Save Changes’ button at the bottom of the page.

Permalinks Settings

The next step is to review and configure the Permalinks Settings:

Settings panel Permalinks Settings

Permalinks Settings in the Settings panel

Under ‘Common Settings’, you’ll want to choose either ‘Post name’ or ‘Custom Structure’:

Permalinks page change post settings

Changing post settings on the Permalinks page

The first will include only the post name at the end of your URLs, and the second will include both the date and the post name.

Tip: Post Names in Permalinks Settings

You will always want to include your post names in your Permalinks Settings. This will allow the search engines to determine what your post is about, and index the post accordingly.


How to configure basic settings: Video

Watch this video to see how to configure General, Reading, Discussion, and Permalinks setting on your website:


Congratulations on completing Lesson 2! You should now know:

  1. How to configure Discussion Settings
  2. How to configure Permalinks Settings

Creating a Client Logo and Favicon

In this lesson, we’re going to show you how to create a client logo and favicon. We’ll cover the following topics:

  • Creating a client logo
  • Creating a favicon

We’ll cover these topics in two ways:

  • With text and screenshots
  • With video

Let’s get started!


Creating a client logo and favicon: Text and screenshots

Creating a client logo

Our example company, Stover Tree Service, does not yet have a logo. We will cover uploading a client logo in a future lesson, but for now, we need to create a basic text logo for our client’s site.

We can do this in the ‘Theme Options’ tab under the ‘Mystile’ panel in the WordPress Dashboard:

Mystile panel Theme Options

The Theme Options tab in the Mystile panel

This takes us to the Theme Options page. You can see that the second field on this page is for uploading our client’s logo:

Theme Options Custom Logo field

The Custom Logo field in Theme Options

But since we don’t yet have a logo, we’re going to want to check the checkbox under ‘Text Title’:

Theme Options Text Title field

The Text Title field in Theme Options

This will display the site title and tagline we created in the General Settings tab. We then need to click on the ‘Save Changes’ button to save our changes:

Theme Options Save Changes button

The Save Changes button in Theme Options

Creating a favicon

The next step is to create a favicon. This is the small image that appears in your browser tabs, and identifies your website.

To begin, you’ll need to find an image to use for your favicon. Here’s the image we’ve selected for Stover Tree Service:

Favicon image

The next step is to convert it into an .ico file, which is the format required for favicons. Our favorite site for creating favicons is Dynamic Drive. We can start by clicking on the ‘Browse’ button:

Create favicon Dynamic Drive

Using Dynamic Drive to create a favicon

And then selecting the image we want to use for our favicon:

Favicon selecting image

Selecting the image for our favicon

The final steps on this site are to click on the ‘Create Icon’ button, and then the ‘Download FavIcon’ button:

Favicon create and download

Creating and downloading the favicon

The next step is to return to Theme Options under the Mystile panel in the Dashboard, scroll to the ‘Custom Favicon’ field, and click on the ‘Upload’ button:

Custom Favicon Upload button

The Upload button for the Custom Favicon field

We can then upload the .ico file we created on the Dynamic Drive site:

Upload favicon image computer

Uploading the favicon image from computer

Favicon select .ico file

Selecting the .ico file for our favicon

Then scroll down on the next screen and click the ‘Use this image’ button:

Use this image button

The ‘Use this image’ button

Finally, make sure to click on the ‘Save Changes’ button. When we now look at the website, we can see that the title, tagline, and favicon all appear on our pages:

Title Tagline Favicon on site

The Title, Tagline, and Favicon displayed on the website


Creating a client logo and favicon: Video

Watch this video to see the steps we outlined above:


Congratulations on completing Lesson 3! You should now understand how to create a client logo and favicon for your website.

This concludes the Configuring Sitewide Settings course. In our next course, we’ll show you how to customize the display.

Go to next Course: Customizing the Display