WordPress ranks among the most prominent blogging and publishing platforms obtainable and makes it easy for you to create a website that is not only professional but easy to maintain also. It’s no wonder you are considering availing yourself of its powerful, flexible tools now that you are ready to take your online presence to another level.
Creating a WordPress site isn’t expensive; it only requires a bit of research and planning, a little creativity, and your time. Best of all, you don’t need to be conversant with computer codes to build yours.
Here are the simple steps to follow while setting up your new WordPress website:
- Decide on a domain name
Choosing a domain name for your website seems easy, but it can be challenging, especially because most of the good names and phrases have been taken. A simple way to go, depending on what you need the website for, is to use your name (ideal for author websites), your company name, or a word or short phrase that represents your content.
Also, remember to go for domain names that are easy to pronounce and spell, and avoid numbers and hyphens. There is nothing better than a domain name that is easy to remember.
- Register your domain name
With thousands of domain registrars out there, choosing a reliable one, for beginners or people not well-informed, can be confusing. But don’t panic. A little research can go a long way in narrowing down the list.
While choosing a registrar, also remember to go for one whose domain registration solution includes protecting your private data. You can also decide to register not only yourdomain.com, but [dot]net, [dot]org, and other versions of your domain name. That way, whichever version visitors input, it will lead them to your website.
- Find a host
Most domain registrars also offer website hosting service (See Openhost’s VPS options). It’s up to you to decide whether you want to go with your registrar or use a different host. The good thing about going with the registrar of your domain name is that some of them offer to register your domain name for free if you purchase their hosting service.
Whichever hosting service you decide on, make sure it is compatible with WordPress. Here are the requirements WordPress expects your host to meet.
- Link your domain name with your web host
If you use the host that registered your domain name, then linking your domain name with your web host is done automatically. This option is ideal if you are not conversant with the technical aspects of setting up a WordPress site.
But if your registrar is different from your host, you will have to do the linking manually.
Simply ask your host to provide you with the name servers or DNS for your site. Then put the DNS data in your domain name registrar account. Here is how to do it.
- Download and install WordPress
Most hosts offer a one-click option for installing WordPress. But if your host doesn’t offer that, consider educating yourself first on how to download and run WordPress by going through WordPress’ very own famous 5-minute install guide.
Here are the usual steps for Installing WordPress
- Download and unzip the latest version of WordPress.
- Create a WordPress database on your web server
- Set up a MySQL database and create a user for WordPress. Some hosts do this for you.
- Upload your WordPress files to your web server.
- Connect WordPress to the database.
- Select a theme
A theme gives your website a style. It is like the packaging of a product, in this case your content. That’s why you have to be careful when choosing one. Make sure it suites what your website represents.
Settling on a befitting WordPress theme can be difficult because of the massive pool of choices available online today. It goes beyond choosing a theme simply because it reflects your brand or the message you intend to pass via blogging.
There are many other things to consider before you make your choice. Things like how responsive the theme is, the position of the navigation, social media integration, how easy it is to customize, the loading time, the layout, whether it is mobile friendly, et cetera.
- Set up your pages
This is where you select the pages you want included on your site. The popular ones, which are present on most sites are the ‘Home’, ‘About’, ‘Contact’, and ‘Blog’ pages. You have to decide whether you want your blog page to also be your home page. What this does is simply present your blog updates to your visitors first.
Then you have to also consider whether you want your pages aligned vertically on the sidebar or horizontally just below the title of your website. The latter is more common and ideal.
- Fill your website with content
Now that you are done building your site, it is time to fill its pages with your content and attract visitors, which is the reason you created the site. Educate yourself on how to post quality content as well as how to use search engine optimization tools to ensure your content pulls traffic to your website.
Follow these steps correctly and your WordPress site is done and ready to go.