You may have heard of WordPress as an option for website creation, but what is it really and how does it work?
Well, for starters, WordPress is an open-source and FREE content management system.
What’s a content management system (CMS), you ask? Technically speaking, it is a system that is designed in order to create and modify online content. Through this, multiple users are able to work together in a collaborative environment.
The definition may sound stuffy thanks to all the jargon, but you can simply think of CMS as an option that enables you to create a website easily; and by easily, we mean even without any knowledge or experience when it comes to coding. Pretty neat, right?
Who uses WordPress?
On a side note, you’d be surprised to know that it’s not just technical professionals like us who have their hands on WordPress. In fact, there are a lot of big companies that utilize WordPress as their website’s base platform too. Among the popular big names include:
- Samsung USA
- Fox News
- The Walt Disney Company
WordPress was originally implemented as a blogging tool, but as the years went by, it had become into an ideal stage for both small and big business websites alike.
Why should you use it?
Of course, there are a lot of other content management systems available online. You can look it up through the internet easily and find at least ten other selections pop up within the minute. However, you shouldn’t pass up the chance to consider using WordPress because:
- It is FREE.
- It is customizable.
- It is SEO ready.
- It is easily managed.
- It is secure and safe to use.
- It is capable of handling different media.
Best of all, WordPress has a lot of various applications. You can use it to either start a blog, create a business website, launch an online store, form a membership website, or even offer educational courses online!
How do you use it?
Now that you somewhat have a background on what WordPress is and what it is for, let’s move on to discussing how exactly you can make it work.
To begin, you must:
Decide between WordPress.com and WordPress.org
Aren’t they the same thing? Not really, and because of that, we’ve made a short comparison for you.
If you choose WordPress.org, you will have to host your own website, download your own software, purchase your own domain, and manage your own server. It’s a very hands-on experience, but it will yield you with a website URL that appears as “www.yourwebsitenamehere.com.” By going with this option, you will have full control over your website and its features.
On the other hand, if you choose WordPress.com, you don’t have to do all of those things mentioned above. Initially, your website URL would look like “www.yourwebsitenamehere.wordpress.com.” However, you can change that when you purchase a custom domain. While this option may come with limitations, you have the choice to select a premium version for added functions.
Select a plan
Initially, if you have selected WordPress.org, you will only have a solo option for a FREE plan (but, you will need to buy everything else related to your side such as the domain, plugins, themes, etc.).
In case you opted for WordPress.com instead, you will be given the choice to select between four plans:
All of which differ in terms of the monthly fee, the number of features, and the ability to create a custom domain name.
Create the domain name and select a hosting provider
Think of it this way: your domain name acts as your home address while your hosting provider acts as your house.
Now, there are numerous hosting providers you can choose from. However, in order for it to work in sync with WordPress, it should meet these criteria:
- PHP version 7.2 or higher
- MySQL version 5.6 or higher
- HTTPS support
Now, assuming you have yet to have a domain, you can start by connecting with a hosting provider, such as Bluehost or GoDaddy. From their website, you will then be made to choose a monthly plan and to key in your domain name of choice.
Once you have that completed, you will be given access to your own hosting dashboard where you can install WordPress.
To start, you will need to log on to your web hosting account. From there (no matter which hosting provider you have selected), you can follow this iteration in order to install WordPress:
- Click “Web Hosting.”
- Click “Manage.”
- Scroll down under “Options and Settings.”
- Look for an area titled “Popular Apps.”
- Click on the respective WordPress icon to begin the installation.
Once that has been completed, you will be asked a series of questions pertaining to the domain you would like to use, along with other administrative details. Within the next 24 hours or so, you will then receive an email for a confirmation.
Next in line, you will need to set up your “Primary Domain” at WordPress so that your web visitors will be sent to your website. To accomplish that, you will need to perform this on the WordPress app:
- Click “My Site.”
- Click “Domains.”
- Set your custom domain then click “Make Primary.”
- Confirm changes by clicking on “Update Primary Domain.”
To check if your update was successful, there will be a green box containing a check mark which indicates “Primary Domain.”
However, if you selected a web hosting service managed by WordPress (such as Kinsta or WP Engine), you won’t have to go through this process as it has already been completed for you.
Choose a theme
Now, here’s the fun part! You get will get to decorate what your website looks like. WordPress has a multitude of themes available to you for FREE!
You can just pick one that vibes with the nature of your business, click on it, and voila! It’s installed. However, if you would like to go the extra mile and use a theme that is unique to only you, you can also opt for custom web design from us!
Formulate a sitemap
Before anything else, let’s not get too hasty. Proper planning is important in order to secure the success of your website. By formulating a sitemap, you will be able to determine the flow, navigation, and user-friendliness of your site.
When it comes to creating a site map, you should keep in mind to:
- Include only the necessities.
- Create a site hierarchy.
- Append clear and catchy call to actions.
For a more expert eye on creating a sitemap and custom web design, you can reach out to us!
Once you have the backbone of your website established, you will be needing to put in good content. Content can either be displayed in terms of posts or pages.
Posts are preferred for blogs since they display the newest content up top. In comparison to that, pages are static and keep content in place, where they are intended to be.
To add either to your website:
- Go to “Admin Page.”
- Click “Posts” or “Pages.”
- Click “Add New.”
- Key in your content and then either click “Save” to keep the draft or “Publish” to get the post live.
Plugins serve as additions that allow your website to perform different functions. Some of the most popular plugins include:
- Yoast SEO
- WordPress Contact Form
- Pixel Caffeine
Each of these plugins has its own function which may include but are not limited to keyword research, e-commerce, etc. To add a plugin into your site:
- Go to “Admin Page.”
- Click “Plugins.”
- Click “Add New.”
- Select your desired plugin and click “Install Now.”
Not just your website itself, but your plugins as well. Having these updated regularly will decrease the circumstances of a problem occurring on your site. Does that mean you need to keep an eye out constantly for new patches? Not at all! WordPress will be the one to tell you when updates are released.
Aside from that, here are a couple of tips you should keep in mind when using WordPress:
Focus on making a good user experience
Think about how you would like to present your brand. Select themes and content that will complement the nature of your business in order to create a uniform and welcoming appeal.
Set up a custom homepage
WordPress may be providing you with a default homepage, but is that enough for presenting your brand to the general public? Remember, your custom homepage is the one responsible for creating the first impression with your clients! While you’re at it, why not give custom web design a try as well? We can have it arranged for you.
Add an “About Us” page
Believe it or not, your prospective clients will want to know about you, too. By putting up an “About Us” page, you are establishing transparency and building trust between you and your audience.
Know the basics of SEO
Search Engine Optimization is the key to high web traffic as it makes your business website more visible and accessible to end users. If you’d like assistance with SEO, Proweaver is always ready to take your request.
Check the site’s performance
Even the slightest hiccups on your website’s performance can lead to the loss of several business opportunities. However, if you regularly do site maintenance, precautions can be made and business opportunities will not be lost. Don’t forget to back up your site regularly too!
Consider how your site will look on mobile
Not everyone may have a laptop or a desktop, but you can almost safely say that everyone has access to a smartphone. If your website is fully optimized for mobile use, it will be preferred by web visitors. This leads to higher web traffic and revenue on your end.
Well then, that should wrap up everything you ought to know in order to get your WordPress website up and running.
Still, you shouldn’t hesitate to ask for help. After all, keeping tabs on a website by yourself is not a task that can be easily completed in one sitting. It can be a time-consuming task (especially if you’re not too tech-savvy when it comes to websites.)
Would you like professionals to take care of your WordPress website?
When you have Proweaver on the job, you won’t have anything to worry about. We have a whole team of highly experienced specialists that can manage and optimize your website for you. In fact, we can also even build you one from scratch! Just let us know what you need by getting in touch with our representative through a call. Or, if it is more convenient, you can also post your inquiry in the message box below. We’ll give you a reply as quickly as possible.
Hopefully, you found this article informational and helpful for your situation. If you did enjoy reading it, feel free to share this post with your friends!