Overview of the WordPress Dashboard

Some information in this post comes from WordPress for Dummies, 2nd edition.

The WordPress Dashboard is the main control panel, and it is the first thing you see when you log in. From the Dashboard, you can manage all of your sites and create new ones. Furthermore, a left navigation menu allows quick access to other administrative tasks.

  • To save space, menus are collapsible. Click to expand any category name.
  • A search box and two drop-down menus appear at the top right of all screens.
    • To customize which items appear on the current screen, expand Screen Options.
    • To view context-sensitive help for the current screen, expand the Help menu.


Standard Dashboard Modules

  • Right Now: shows current statistics and settings for your sites
  • Recent Comments:lists the five most recent comments and provides the ability to manage comments in different ways
  • Incoming Links: lists other blogs that have linked to yours. As time goes on, you will see this listing of links fill up.
  • QuickPress: allows you to quickly write, save, and publish a blog post.
  • Recent Drafts: shows the last five drafts and some identifying information.
  • WordPress Development Blog: displays the two most recent updates from http://wordpress.org/development.
  • Other WordPress News: pulls in posts from WordPress Planet (http://planet.wordpress.org).

Left Navigation Menu

The navigation menu is on the left side of every page within the WordPress Administration panel. Click the title to expand any navigation category.

  • Dashboard: manage all of your sites and create new ones
  • Posts: add new posts and manage categories and tags
  • Media: upload media and view a library of uploaded files
  • Links: add links to be displayed on your site
  • Pages: manage permanent sections of your site
  • Comments: manage user comments on your site
  • Profile: manage personal information and WordPress preferences
  • Tools: offers site utilities, including the import/export function

Additional Information

Creating a Blog Page/Post

Configuring your WordPress User Profile

Changing the Appearance of Your Blog Site

Creating a Blog Post / Page

Post menu from Dashboard

Posts are the entries that display in reverse chronological order on your home page. In contrast to pages, posts usually have comments fields beneath them and are included in your site’s RSS feed.

New to blogging? See WordPress’s Best Practices for Posting in the WordPress Codex.

To create a new post or page:

1.  Log in to WordPress. If you are unsure of how to do this, view Logging in to WordPress.

Post menu from Dashboard2. Add New post. On the left side of your screen, click the Posts heading. If this list is not expanded, mouse over the heading and click the downward arrow that appears. Then click Add New.

To add a new page rather than a new post, click the Add New link under the Pages heading instead.

3. Add a title and content.  In the appropriate boxes, type the title and content for your post.

  • Note that both fields accept HTML tags; however, this may impact how your post appears in search engines.
  • If desired, click the Visual or HTML tabs to switch between the views.

Add new post













4. Insert pictures and/or other media. For more information, see Adding Images to a WordPress Post / Page.

5. (Posts only) Assign Categories and Post Tags.

  • Categories: Categories are used to establish a general hierarchy of the site. On the right side of the screen, under Categories,  select the checkbox(es) to file the post by category.

Although you can assign a post to multiple categories, it may hurt the organization of your site. We recommend choosing not more than two categories for each post.

  • Post tags: While categories establish site hierarchy, post tags are specific keywords that categorize your post. For example, a post on World War I might be categorized under “history” while the post tags might include “war,” “fighting,” “army,” etc.

As you type a tag, it will attempt to auto-complete using the list of previously-used tags from your site as a reference. Reusing post tags can be helpful when users are searching your site, such as using “army” for all posts rather than “army” and “armies.”

Separate all post tags with commas. When you are finished adding post tags in the text box, click the Add button.

Featured Image box6. Assign a featured image. Featured images appear next to your page or next to your post in an archived post. Often, the featured image helps make a post “stand-out” above the others. For more information, see Adding Images to a WordPress Post / Page.

7. Publish or schedule your post /page. Publish the post/page immediately or schedule it to publish in the future. You may also control who can see the post.

  • Click the Publish button to make your post publicly viewable right away.
  • Next to Publish immediately, click the Edit link to schedule the post to be made available at a time in the future. Choose a date and time, then click OK.
  • Next to Visibility, click the Edit link to control the visibility of the post.
    • Public (default): anyone can see the post.
    • Private: anyone who is logged in to your blog can see the post.
    • Password protected: allows the existence of the post to be made public, but only those with the proper password may view the content.

Note: Depending upon the permission level that you have on the blog site, you may need to receive approval before publishing your post or page. If approval is required, the Publish button mentioned above may be replaced with Submit.

Creating a post:

Creating a page: