So you've successfully learned how to install drupal (or someone has done it for you) Now you actually have to lay out your website and start creating content. (leave modifying & customizing the theme for the future...)
Settings that you might want to ensure are correct:
Clean Url's (means that category and page names are drupal-layout-and-site-creation instead of domain\drupal\content?q=123)
Note that the Site_Admin module that gives you dropdowns makes life much easier.
Administer -> Site configuration -> Site Information
Name of the website Could modify the slogan, Misison Statement, and Footer... but I don't care to clutter up my site with repetitive drivel...
Administer -> User Management -> User Settings
Disable the ability for random people to create accounts on your site... We can the skip all of the welcome email text stuff...
If you are delegating control of site administration (e.g. some content uploaders, maybe somebody (technician/friend) to cover a 2 week vacation...
Administer -> User Management -> Users (And maybe Roles & Permissions as well)
WHAT'S ON THE MENU?
Drupal's menu/navigation creation system is pretty easy... The default system is Navigation Menu on the left Primary Links on the top Secondary Links below it
Administer -> Site building -> Menus -> Settings
Any webpage that is a url can be set as a Menu item! (a tag category, a view, etc.)
SEO with PATHAUTO
Once you've defined your desired site hierarchy in Taxonomy Story Paths should then
The settings [vocab]/[catpath]/00[nid]-[title] will create news URLs that look like http://example.com/news/local/weather/0025-page-title and were chosen for the following reasons: [vocab] This will be replaced with the name of your vocabulary- in this case news. [catpath] This will be replaced with the category and all of the parent categories. For example, a post in Local->Weather will have a catpath of local/weather. 00[nid]-[title] This might be a little bit controversial, but there is a reason for doing it. If you would like to someday be included in Google News you need a unique three-digit number in your news URLs. [nid] is the node ID which is unique for each node. Padding it with two leading zeros guarantees that the number will always be at least three digits. The [title] is the title of your post and it optional for people who want to include keywords in their URL.
Apparently for BLOGS you might want to have it structured differently (though I suppose you could create a hiearchy for each blog user?)
create a second vocabulary called Tags and choose the freetagging option. Also choose Disable Hierarchy. Make the vocabulary required by checking the relevant checkbox on the Add Vocabulary page. Associate the Tags vocabulary only with the blog post content type. Choose a URL structure in Pathauto-perhaps something like blogs/[user]/[cat]/[title] or blogs/[cat]/[title].
Page Titles, PATHauto and PATH Administer -> Content Mangement -> Page Title
CONTENT: IS IT A PAGE OR A STORY (or a BOOK)?
Apparently in 2003 someone thought these would be different... by 2009 they can all functionally do the same thing... but it might be easier to try to use them at face value as "roles" of different types of webpages in your site:
A Page is static (ie the landing page that only the administrator modifies) can have custom php code Often connected via that Navigation Menus
A Story is content that might expire. It can have comments.
A Book is a weird concept about somehow linking together many Stories (isn't that what a website does? link many pages?)
CREATE CONTENT "Create content" is pretty straightforward (but sticky will make it "first" at the top of the page even when other new content is created)
You should have enabled the "Change URL" module in "Modules" so that you can add a custom url like "home"
Create another page called "login" that eventually we'll put the "login" block on (so that it's not on every page, just that one)
After you've created a page, maybe you'd like to make it your HOME PAGE, Administer -> Site Configuration -> Site Information
Default front page = home
(e.g. converts the "alias" of home to return the content from /content/node3)