Data in WordPress profiles can be used by themes and plugins. In this tutorial you discover how this can be useful and where you can edit your profile.
Your profile is where WordPress saves private information like your username and email address. When creating an ECO13.me website the email address in your profile gets registered as the admin email address. Administrative info and important news about your site will be sent there. This is the main reason for taking a peek at your user profile before creating a site. But there is more to it.
your profileand where to find it
While you are at it, you may want to complete the other profile fields too, or to add dummy content if you prefer. The reason is simple:
- Themes sometimes make use of profile data to add functionality to your website, f.ex. an ‘about the author’ section below blog posts.
- Themes are not always well documented, and people do not always read the documentation.
- So, when choosing a theme, a completed profile may help to discover user profile related theme features.
find your ECO13.me profile
Once you are logged into the ECO13.me backyard, your profile is hard to miss. On every screen in the backyard, you can find directions in the left sidebar and in the upper right corner. And as if that were not enough, you also find a link in the welcome panel: the first in row, because it is the first thing to do.
profile fieldsedit your profile
There are many ways to enhance the default WordPress profile. At ECO13.me we only switched a color scheme and we added a feature to upload and crop avatars. The rest can be found in any WordPress installation.
Personal options have an impact solely on your own experience. You can switch colors in the backend and remove the toolbar in the frontend.
1. admin color scheme
Select a different set of colors for the ECO13.me backyard. In contrary to what the first color scheme predicts, ‘Default” is the WordPress default, but the last is the default at ECO13.me.
The toolbar is the upper menu in the WordPress admin. For logged users it is also visible in the frontend. This toolbar contains some useful quick links to the admin area, f.ex. to create and edit a post or page. Below the ECO13.me logo, you find links to the portal dashboard, to ECO13.me docs, to the Q&A corner and to the section for affiliates.
No matter how useful it may be, the toolbar can be an annoyance to the eye. That is why our theme turns it into a hardly visible hoover menu. It is also why you can uncheck the toolbar checkbox in your profile to make the toolbar disappear on all ECO13.me websites.
The username gets created upon registration and cannot be changed. You only need it in case you wish to login with a password rather than through one of the available networks.
2. first & last name
This data gets imported from the network you first logged in with. We expect this to be your real name, but it is not required.
A nickname, in contrary, is required. This we use in our emails and you can select it as your screen name. This happens in the last name setting:
4. display name publicly as…
You decide how you are known on your site and on the network. When you change it, you change:
- the name shown next to your avatar in the toolbar,
- the ‘author’ name, usually shown below the title in blog posts
- and the author name in forums and question corners at ECO13.me.
Your email address is the most important part of your profile, at least if you want to stay tuned about what is going on, on and around your website.
We will not use it to send you our latest news, not even to inform you about awesome platform upgrades. We however will use your email address for administrative reasons and to send you updates about your site.
You can turn off most notifications in your site’s settings and, naturally, you will be able to subscribe to our news as soon as we start blogging.
Where it says “website” you can paste the URL to your website. This can be the one you have at ECO13.me, or a different one. The one where you hope to welcome the most visitors is often the best choice.
A link to this site can be shown on your site, if your theme supports it. It can also be used as a link back to your site when you leave a comment.
BUG ALERT: When you registered via Facebook, an apps URL gets added to the website field. You can safely delete it. Facebook will not replace any existing content.
The Google+ field lets you add your Google+ ID to your profile. Whether you should paste the full profile URL, f.ex.
https://plus.google.com/105388323589048286549/, or just the ID, f.ex.
105388323589048286549, depends on how your theme and/or active plugins use it, or not.
Themes and plugins may use the Google+ profile field to add to your author information, as a link to your Google+ URL on your site (icon with link), or in the header (as a meta tag). A little while ago this was said to be recommended for SEO reasons. Google used it in search results. Since the end of August 2014, however, Google stopped showing authorship. You may still want to add it though… if your theme supports it.
“We treat it like any other markup on your pages. Leaving it is fine, it won’t cause problems (and perhaps your users appreciate being able to find out more about you through your profile too).”
– John Mueller (Google)
Twitter username & Facebook profile URL
A Twitter username and Facebook URL can be used in the same way as a Google+ ID. How useful it may be to you, also depends on the theme and plugins that you use.
You will more often be asked to add information in the theme or plugin settings, than to your profile.
The text area can be used to introduce yourself. This typically gets published in an “about the author” section below blog posts and may also be used to refer to your other or your most important publications.
The social login functionality was added to make your life easier and your ECO13.me website more secure. Unfortunately WordPress generates a password when you create a site. It is important that you replace it with an ultra strong one. This can also be done in your profile.
It seems a bit misplaced (in the ‘about yourself’ section), but passwords do tell us something about people: there are the ones with strong random passwords, different on every account and there are the ones without.
If you are one with – We recommend that you replace the auto generated password, because it is not strong enough to protect you against brute force attacks. In 2013 hackers already cracked 16-character passwords in less than an hour.
If you are one without – do not replace the auto generated password with your “default” one. This is only easy until you are sorry. Now would be a great time to change your strategy. A password manager can help.
It’s OK to exaggerate
If you continue to use the social login, you do not need a password and it would be better if WordPress did not generate one, unless you need it to retrieve access to your site. Having a password means someone can try to crack it. Changing this is on the to do list.
Meanwhile the best remedy is a super strong password. Especially since you can set and forget it, it is completely okay to exaggerate: use all kind of characters: lowercase, uppercase, letters, numbers and symbols and make it so long that even the brightest brain could not possibly remember it.
Log out all other sessions
Below the password reset option you can logout on all open accounts. This could one day come in handy when you logged in from a public computer and forgot to logout,
1. Q&A settings
Near the end of the profile screen, you can indicate that you wish to receive email notifications about new questions in the Q&A section of the current site. The setting is only visible on sites with a question corner. Unless you are the site admin, or closely involved, you most likely want this turned off.
2. SAVE all changes
If you made changes to your profile, it is recommended to hit the “Update Profile” before “Change Avatar”, because this happens in a different screen and your changes could go lost.
3. AVATAR settings
Finally we get to the avatar screen. Avatars are typically published next to comments and in “about the author” sections on websites. To change your avatar:
- Click the “browse” button.
- Select a new avatar on your computer.
- And hit “upload”.
Sometimes it can be useful to only use a part of the uploaded image as an avatar, or to select the visible part, since avatars always have a rectangle shape. That is what you can do in the next screen.
- Click the lower right corner of the rectangle selection and drag it to make it as large as desired. You can also click in the selection to drag it to a different position in the image. Select the entire image if you want to display it as is.
- Next click on the “crop image” button. By doing so, everything outside of the selection gets cut off and the rest gets saved as your new avatar.