First things first when you start the game it trys to get you to use your gems to make the first part go faster. Don't do this as the gems are handy for you to buy your builders and it's better to have more builders when upgrading you pumps, gold mines or your weapons and town hall. I would say to always upgrade everything before your town hall as when you upgrade your town hall you move up to harder battles. So always upgrade your town hall last when there is nothing else you can upgrade then take it to the next level and repeat this till you get the level 10 town hall.
Trophy's don't make your town strong so if you are saving gold and elixir put your town hall on the outside of your map and hope attackers take out just your town hall then you get a 12 hour shield. Then let your mines and pumps build up your gold and elixir this way when your 12 hours are up you go out and battle again till someone takes out your town hall and you get another shield.
If your doing the 12 hour shield I find the best battles are the revenge battles as you can look what they have and build an army to deal with the battle in front of you and not just hope to find one to suit
your army. If your looking for a battle that is not a revenge then just try to pick an army that you like and stick with it.
Always try to keep the upgrading of a troop working as your troops are the key to a good win or loss.