Back to Basics: Update Your WordPress Password and Get to Know Your Dashboard

So you have a WordPress blog — what are your next steps? Learn to access your Dashboard and update passwords.

A blue graphic for "Tip of the Week"

In any project, it’s important to get the basics right — WordPress custom development is no exception. It’s important to know how to change your WordPress passwords in case your security needs change, and it’s essential to know how to navigate your Dashboard in order to edit and update your site.

When we create websites for our clients, we provide trainings before the site is launched to be sure they’re comfortable with WordPress, but sometimes life gets busy and the information is lost in the shuffle or forgotten after a few months. That’s why we decided to put together our Tip of the Week series: Each week, we’ll bring you a simple tip that will help you get back on track with site basics and learn more about how to make your website work for you.

To start with, we’ll cover a couple of basics. First, just what is the Dashboard? Second, how do you change a WordPress password?

What’s the Dashboard?

The Dashboard is the first screen you come to when you log in. You can think of it as the homepage for the back-end of your website (the back-end is what we commonly call the area you use to make edits to your website).

On the Dashboard, you’ll get a brief overview of the activity on your site. You can see recent comments, recent posts and pages and even recent submissions to any of your forms. We’ve also added our news feed so you don’t have to go looking for it.

If you want to move the boxes around to fit your needs, you can! Just drag the top bar anywhere you want.

Change Your Password

When we set up your username and password initially, we use a standard password that you can remember easily. But that’s really not safe at all in the long run. You should go back in and change your password to something that you will remember but no one else will be able to guess. The password to your account is hidden from even us at Infomedia — we don’t even save it on the database without encrypting it. There is literally no way for us to find it. Which is good. You can feel safe using that password.

To change your password to something more secure, you’re going to need to log in like you would normally (with your assigned password) first. Once you’re in, click on the users button on the sidebar. (If you don’t see users — it might just say profile for you —  skip to the next paragraph.) You should see a list of all the users on your site. You can click on your name (or someone else’s if you want to change their password), and that will take you to your profile page.

The profile page is a fun place where you can change all of your information and even the color scheme of the back-end. The part we’re concerned with is below all of that, close to the end. You’ll see the new Password and the Repeat New Password Fields. Put the password you want in there and then hit update user at the bottom. Easy as pie.

The create a new password page for WordPress

If you ever forget your password, from the login screen you can hit the link, “Lost your password?” That will take you to a form where you can put in your username or email and we’ll send you an email automatically giving you a new password to use and prompt you to reset it to something you’re more familiar with. This is all, of course, assuming that your email is correct on your profile. If it’s not, you can change your email the same way as your password. Just look for the field called “E-mail (required).” When we setup a user, we use the email that we’re given as your contact email.

A screenshot of someone logging into WordPress

A text box asking the user to enter in a username or email

If all else fails, you can just give us a call and we can reset your email or password, or any other information on your user profile for you.

About Andrew

Andrew is of two minds. Part designer, part code-junkie, Andrew brings a subtle eye for detail to every project. A dangerous business, admittedly, since it requires exploration of both the left and right brain and few people return from that perilous expedition. Speaking of exploring, after college Andrew worked for the Peace Corp teaching in the African nation of Benin. After Africa, Andrew moved to London where his wife finished a Master''s degree in History, before returning to Birmingham and Infomedia. Today they've embarked on another lifelong adventure—a beautiful daughter, Olivia. See more articles from Andrew Searles

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