It’s free to make use of and contains all of the options any web site proprietor may need. And if it doesn’t have a characteristic you need or want, you may have a developer create it for you as a result of it’s constructed on open-source software program.
However with all of those options come some problems. WordPress has a reasonably steep studying curve in comparison with different CMSes like Wix or Squarespace.
I’ve constructed dozens of internet sites utilizing WordPress.org (not WordPress.com, which is a very totally different beast) and have narrowed down the method to 9 easy steps that anybody can comply with.
Let’s begin with…
Each web site constructed on WordPress.org wants a site title (
www.thisisyourdomainname.com) and a internet hosting service that shops and shows your web site on the web.
You should buy a site title for a small charge from a site title registrar like NameCheap or GoDaddy. Nonetheless, if you happen to purchase your area title and your internet hosting from separate corporations, you’ll need to change your website’s Domain Nameservers (DNS) to level your area title out of your registrar to your internet hosting firm.
They appear to be this:
It’s a bit of cheaper to do it this fashion however not well worth the problem for my part. As an alternative, most internet hosting suppliers (resembling SiteGround or Bluehost) also can promote you a site title and join it along with your web site routinely, permitting you to skip messing with DNS settings.
You possibly can take a look at this guide to choosing a domain name if you happen to’re unsure what to choose.
As soon as you buy internet hosting, most internet hosting suppliers have a one-click set up to arrange WordPress in your web site. Listed below are some hyperlinks to guides on how to do that with widespread internet hosting companies:
You may also go for a quicker (however dearer) devoted internet hosting supplier like Kinsta or WP Engine. These corporations will arrange WordPress for you whenever you purchase their internet hosting.
Now that you’ve an internet site with WordPress put in, let’s get into tips on how to use WordPress. You possibly can log in to your WordPress dashboard by going to
When you log in, your dashboard will appear to be this (with fewer plugins because you’re on a contemporary set up):
Let me clarify the choices right here:
- Posts: That is the place you’ll create weblog posts.
- Media: You possibly can go right here to see all of the media in your web site, resembling photographs and movies. I sometimes add media on to my posts and pages and don’t go to media typically.
- Pages: That is the place you’ll create static pages in your web site, resembling your homepage, about web page, and get in touch with web page.
- Feedback: Right here is the place you’ll reasonable any weblog feedback.
- Look: That is the place you’ll customise the looks of your web site, resembling your web site’s theme, font kind, colours, and extra.
- Plugins: A plugin is an add-on to your web site that provides performance, resembling customized contact kinds or pop-ups in your web site. I’ll focus on these in additional element later.
- Customers: Right here is the place you may add customers to your web site, resembling writers, editors, and directors.
- Settings: Fairly simple; right here is the place your common web site settings are situated.
Now that you realize what every possibility does, let’s get your web site settings dialed in.
Your WordPress web site comes with some generic settings that have to be modified, in addition to some issues I like to recommend altering to optimize your web site for serps.
Particularly, you must:
- Change your title, tagline, time zone, and favicon.
- Change your permalink construction.
- Configure your studying settings.
- Delete any unused themes.
- Change your area from HTTP to HTTPS.
Let’s stroll by every of those steps.
Change your title, tagline, time zone, and favicon
Head to Settings > Common to seek out these settings. Change the title of your web site and the tagline, which might seem beneath the title if you happen to select to show it.
Subsequent, examine that the time zone is right (based on your native time zone) and add your favicon. A favicon is the little icon that exhibits up in browser tabs subsequent to the title of the web page, like this:
You may make a favicon totally free with Canva. Simply make a 50×50 design with no matter you need your favicon to appear to be. Try this guide to be taught extra.
Change your permalink construction
Head to Settings > Permalinks. A permalink is the URL construction your weblog posts take whenever you publish them. By default, WordPress shows the date in your URLs, which isn’t nice for SEO or readability.
I at all times change this to the “Submit title” possibility (
/sample-post/) so as to add the title of the submit by default. You need to optimize all your URLs individually when potential, however this setting will make the method simpler.
Configure your studying settings
Head over to Settings > Studying to decide on whether or not you need your homepage to be a static web page or in order for you it to be a feed of your newest weblog posts.
Personally, I at all times create a singular static web page to make use of as my homepage as a result of it offers me extra management over the homepage. I wish to add internal links to specific pages to assist them rank larger on Google, in addition to add an electronic mail opt-in type on the homepage.
Try this guide to homepage SEO to be taught extra.
Delete any unused themes
By default, you’ve gotten a couple of themes put in. When you select a theme in step #5 beneath, you must delete any unused themes to take away vulnerabilities out of your web site (hackers can assault WordPress web sites with outdated themes).
To do this, go to Look > Themes, click on on the unused theme, then click on the crimson Delete button within the backside proper.
Change your area from HTTP to HTTPS
The “S” in HTTPS stands for safe. Including that is performed with an SSL certificates, and it’s an essential step. It means your web site is encrypted and safer for viewers.
Having HTTPS as a substitute of HTTP offers you the “lock” icon subsequent to your URL—Google (and most web customers) needs to see a safe web site.
Most internet hosting suppliers routinely activate the safe model of your web site. However generally, it must be manually activated by you. Listed below are guides on how to do that with widespread internet hosting suppliers:
In case your host isn’t proven right here, simply do a Google seek for “[your host] SSL encryption.”
When you’ve optimized your settings, it’s time to start out truly constructing your web site utilizing a WordPress theme. A theme is a customizable template that determines what your web site appears like.
You possibly can browse for themes by going to Look > Themes, then clicking the Add new button on the prime of the web page.
The generic Twenty Twenty-Three theme is definitely fairly good. Most WordPress themes as of late are optimized to point out up in serps and for necessities of the fashionable consumer, resembling being mobile-friendly.
Nonetheless, some themes have a number of added bloat that may sluggish an internet site down, so select a theme that solely has the options you want with out extras you gained’t use.
Alternatively, if you happen to don’t like all themes or need one thing that’s extra drag-and-drop, you should use an internet site builder like Elementor or Thrive Architect. These instruments make constructing an internet site extraordinarily simple, however they do add bloat that may sluggish an internet site down.
I exploit Elementor to construct my web sites however solely use it to construct static pages that I need to convert effectively. Then I exploit the built-in Guttenberg editor for my weblog posts.
In the event you determine to go along with a daily theme quite than a theme builder, you may edit the theme by going to Look > Customise. You’ll be taken to the next editor:
Relying on the theme you put in, you might have extra or fewer choices than the screenshot above. Slightly than attempting to cowl each possibility it’s possible you’ll encounter, I’ll simply advocate that you just undergo every choice to see what it does.
For probably the most half, the choices are self-explanatory. In the event you hit a snag, you may at all times do a Google seek for that possibility in your theme to see discussion board posts from different customers and even the theme’s FAQ or guide.
After you’ve chosen a theme, you can begin constructing your web site’s pages. Each web site sometimes wants a minimum of the next pages:
- A homepage
- A contact web page
- An about web page
- A privateness coverage web page
- A phrases of service web page
Slightly than going by how you must create every of those pages, I’ll refer you to the next guides:
Understand that your privateness coverage and phrases of service (ToS) pages will differ relying on the nation you reside in. In the event you’re within the U.S., you may comply with this guide for privacy policies and this guide for ToS pages.
That mentioned, there are some common suggestions you must comply with when constructing any web page in your web site. On the whole, guarantee that your font is straightforward to learn and a great seen dimension (18–20px is typical), your colours match, and also you keep away from an excessive amount of muddle.
Right here’s a great instance of a webpage that’s clear, legible, and thought out:
Right here’s an instance of a webpage that has an excessive amount of muddle and shows an advert over half the web page, inflicting confusion:
On the whole, much less is extra and legibility is healthier than fancy fonts.
Among the finest elements of utilizing WordPress is entry to its massive library of plugins.
A plugin is a customized piece of code written by a developer that anybody can set up on their WordPress web site so as to add particular performance to the location, resembling a contact type, further customization choices, or search engine optimisation options.
You possibly can set up a brand new plugin considered one of two methods. Head over to Plugins > Add New. From right here, you may both:
- Browse the plugins straight on this web page, then set up and activate them straight.
- Obtain a plugin .zip file from the plugin’s web site, then click on the Add plugin button on the prime of the display screen and add the .zip file.
Whereas many plugins are free, some are paid or have a premium paid model. It relies on what you want. Nonetheless, I at all times set up the next free plugins on my web sites:
Rank Math: This plugin makes fundamental on-page SEO simpler. It tells you if you happen to’re lacking staple items like metadata, picture alt textual content, and extra. It additionally means that you can create a robots.txt file and a sitemap, that are essential for serps to crawl your web site the best way you need.
Wordfence: This can be a safety plugin to assist stop your web site from being hacked. I at all times set up some form of safety plugin on my websites.
Insert Headers and Footers: One of many stuff you’ll typically end up needing to do is insert code into the header or footer of your pages. You’ll want to do that for all the things from establishing Google Analytics and Google Search Console to including the Fb Remarketing pixel and extra. Having this plugin makes it a lot simpler so as to add this code.
Understand that putting in a number of plugins in your web site may cause code bloat and decelerate your loading speeds, so solely set up plugins that you really want.
Now you realize all of the fundamentals of tips on how to use WordPress. However one other essential factor I need to speak about, which might be why you needed to start out a WordPress web site within the first place—tips on how to create content material in your weblog.
Writing weblog posts is an important a part of showing up on search engines like Google, having one thing to share on social media, and attracting extra guests to your web site.
What you write about relies on your objectives. I at all times begin with some basic keyword research to determine what individuals are looking for on Google that pertains to my web site.
A fast and simple approach to do that is by plugging a broad key phrase into Ahrefs’ free keyword generator tool to get some key phrase concepts.
For instance, if I’m beginning an internet site about farming, I could kind “farming” into the software. I can see key phrase concepts like “farming insurance coverage” and “vertical farming,” that are two potential weblog subjects I can write about.
If I need to get a bit of extra particular, I can strive a key phrase like “tips on how to begin a farm.” This provides me concepts like “tips on how to begin a farm with no cash” and “tips on how to begin a farm in texas.”
Strive totally different seed key phrases—each broad key phrases and extra particular ones—to give you some weblog subjects. Upon getting a couple of concepts, go forward and outline the article after which write it and publish it.
Try our guide to writing a blog post to be taught extra.
An everyday a part of sustaining your WordPress web site is protecting plugins and themes updated, in addition to monitoring your web site’s technical well being.
WordPress routinely notifies you of updates to your plugins or themes with a crimson circle subsequent to Dashboard > Updates. Log in to your dashboard a minimum of as soon as per week to replace all the things.
Past weekly updates, use the free Ahrefs Webmaster Tools to run a technical audit in your web site and see any points your web site might have, resembling damaged hyperlinks, lacking metadata, or sluggish loading speeds.
In the event you click on the All points tab, you may see each difficulty your web site has—with an outline of what the difficulty is and tips on how to repair it if you happen to click on on the ? icon.
You’ll additionally get electronic mail alerts when something in your web site adjustments, resembling a hyperlink breaking or a web page returning a 404 code. It’s a useful software to routinely monitor your WordPress web site.
Congratulations, you now know the fundamentals of utilizing WordPress. It might have a big studying curve, however studying tips on how to use this CMS is among the most beneficial expertise you may have in at the moment’s digital age.
You should utilize your WordPress web site to make money blogging, promote your companies as a freelancer, and even promote merchandise on-line. Figuring out tips on how to construct an internet site is sort of necessary as of late for anybody who needs to start out a enterprise.
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