WordPress is the industry standard for efficiently, and quickly building websites. This WordPress tutorial aims to bring you into the WordPress world, and show you the simple steps of building a website with WordPress. We will have three main objectives, and several smaller objectives throughout the tutorial the objectives include;
WordPress Tutorial – Setting Up WordPress
- Finding a hosting company.
- Picking a domain name.
- Installing WordPress.
Setting up WordPress is very easy and it takes only three steps. Basically all you are doing through the setup stage of WordPress is building the basic foundations that any website is built on; hosting, a domain name and a website builder.
WordPress Tutorial – Getting to Know WordPress
- Becoming familiar with the WordPress dashboard.
- Picking a theme.
- Customizing a theme.
- Adding pages.
- Creating content.
- Building a menu.
- Installing a plugin.
- Adding widgets.
- Styling your websites themes and pages.
Getting to know WordPress takes more time for some than others, but this is easily remedied through the simple instructions in this WordPress tutorial. The easy to follow videos and text in this tutorial will build a good foundation of basics, so you will be able to use WordPress like a pro in no time.
Optimizing for Search Engine Optimization
- Adding SEO plugins.
- Adding social sharing tools.
- Adding Analytics plugins.
Optimizing search engine optimization, or (SEO) is a breeze with WordPress due to the addition of easy to use SEO plugins. These simple tools walk you through the basics of what a search engine is looking for and make sure you are using these basic tactics.
As you can see there seem to be a lot of steps to truly learning WordPress, but most are the basic steps for creating any website. WordPress gives you the option of more features and in the end, better performance from your website.
This WordPress tutorial is going to use a mix of video lessons, and text to help you get the most from this learning experience. Being repetitive is a step of learning, so stick with me, I am trying to cover the right information that is needed for this tutorial in a short format. Lets get started.
WordPress Tutorial – Setting Up WordPress
Setting up WordPress is very easy and like I said it takes only three main steps (we do it for free, if you order our website hosting). These steps are to pick a hosting company, pick a domain name and install WordPress. The hardest parts about this process is deciding what your passwords and usernames are going to be. So lets go through this step by step and be sure to watch the videos, so you get a visual for what I am talking about as well.
Step 1- Choosing a hosting provider
This is a tricky step for some, but I have reasearched the best hosting companies available for both small and big business. To choose your the right hosting provider read our articles best web hosting for big business, or best web hosting for small business. Or to work with a company that provides expert wordpress knowledge visit, our website hosting page and make your pick. We recommend Veerotech, or our hosting because of the exceptional service and reliability. Once you have made your pick, you will be prompted for your next step to choose a domain name.
Step 2- Choosing a domain name
Choosing a domain name is pretty straight forward, except for the fact that many domain names have already been bought by someone else. There are some ways around your domain name being taken and we will talk about that in a second. First you can get started finding a domain name by clicking on domains, or register a domain within your client area of your hosting provider. This will typically be the first step when setting up WordPress.
When finding the perfect domain name, you should try to pick something with your business name, or main keyword for what your website is about. Try variations if you don’t get your perfect fit right away and try to get the .com domain because it is the most recognizable. If your domain has been taken, use a tool like domiansbot to search for simalar, or better names.
Step 3 – Installing WordPress
This can be a confusing step because it is not necessarily completed within the client area of your hosting provider, but within a separate portal that your hosting provider uses to interface with their services. This portal is called cPanel and is a very user friendly way to manage many aspects of your website.
For this step you can use the script installer in cPanel to install your website builder, in this case we want to install WordPress. Once you have clicked on the WordPress script icon you can type in the parameters to start installing your website and click install. Once the installation is complete you will be given a link to your website. Use this link and the parameters you set during installation to log in.
Getting to Know WordPress
WordPress can seem a little confusing at first, but the dashboard is really laid out in an efficient manner and will help you be more productive. After about 15 minutes you will start to get a feel for the way WordPress works. There are about 8 separate tabs in the dashboard that you want to focus on. Lets go through the tabs/steps of getting to know WordPress.
Step 1- Become familiar with the WordPress dashboard
The standard WordPress dashboard consists of 10 tabs, these tabs are
These are the main tabs you see after you initially install WordPress, you will start to get more tabs after you install plugins and additional features into the WordPress website builder. Lets do a quick rundown on what each of these tabs do and then you can watch the video to see them all in action.
- Dashboard– the dashboard is the home tab and contains two sub tabs; home and updates, basically you can update your website, or return to the main portion of the dashboard. The home portion of the dashboard shows lots of important information and analytics.
- Posts- the post tab is where you can write and manage the content for your blog. The post tab contains 4 sub tabs; all posts, add new, categories and tags. The all posts tab is where you can quickly and efficiently manage all of your posts. The Add new tab allows you to create a new post. The categories tab will allow you to create a set of categories that will allow people to better navigate and understand your content. Tags will help you again better organize and identify your content.
- Media- the media tab consists of two sub tabs; library and add new. The library tab shows you all of the images, videos and other media you have already uploaded to your website. The add new tab allows you to directly upload media to use within your website.
- Pages– the pages tab is a very important tab because it helps you build the foundation of your website. Pages can either be made to be a standard website page with various media and content within . Or you can make them show just standard content like articles and so on. There are different ways to design your pages, using the visual, or the text editor within each page.
- Comments– the comments tab allows you to interact with your websites visitors after they post a comment on a piece of your content.
- Appearance– the appearance tab is a very important tab and contains 8 sub tabs and is again one of the most important parts of your website. In the appearance tab you can manage themes, widgets(sidebar content), menus, theme settings and you can use the editor to rewrite the code in your CSS, or cascading style sheets(theme code).
- Plugins– plugins are a great feature of WordPress, because they allow you to expand your websites features by installing programs that other people have wrote. For example, if you need to build an online store you can install the WooCommerce plugin and it will streamline building and managing your store. The possibilities are endless and you can find a plugin for pretty much anything.
- Users– the users tab allows you to manage the various users that have registered in some way with your website. This means if you want to have a contributing author on your blog you can create an account for them and manage it. You can also manage customer accounts for an online store built with WooCommerce for example.
- Tools– the tools tab consists of an import, export feature and a feature called press this. The import/export tools allow you to easily migrate your website from other services, or to a new host. This is a very important feature for having control over your property. Press this allows you to grab parts of other websites and easily link them into your website.
- Settings– the settings tab contains 6 sub tabs and with the installations of more plugins the settings tab will acquire more sub tabs. The basic settings you will be able to edit are your user name, password, site title, tagline and so on. You can use this tab to also control the way people interact with your content through the reading, writing and discussion sub tabs. You can also control basic media settings and use the permalinks setting to control the way your websites look in peoples browsers.
Step 2- Pick a theme
Within the appearance tab you can install and edit themes. To install a theme you can click the install themes tab in the themes area. Once there you can enter a list of credentials, search by keyword, or look at the newest, featured, or recently updated themes. You can find many different types of themes for any type of website you want to build. You can also install a premium theme in this tab that you bought from a theme creator. We recommend using a premium WordPress theme because of the increased styling and appearance options it will give you.
Step 3 – Customize theme
Customizing a theme can be a bit tricky if you don’t have at least a basic knowledge of how to code and tweak things in the html, or css. However most themes will have a customize option within the themes tab. Using the customize option and the theme settings option you will be able to make most of the changes needed to your theme.
Step 4- Adding pages
Pages are the backbone for your website, yes content can be used as a page, but if you want to have a standalone homepage, or a website that is not just a blog you will need to create some pages. You can do this through the pages tab.
Step 5- Creating content
Content is king and it is really what the internet is about today, problems and solutions. To create a piece of content you can either create a page, or a new post and add content to a blog. Writing content is important to building, maintaining and helping your website succeed.
Step 6- Building a menu
Menus are important and a menu that is easy to understand and navigate is key. You can create a menu by clicking the menu sub tab under the appearance tab. Once there you can create a menu that links to all of the most important parts of your website. You can make a menu from your pages, posts, categories and tags. You can also create different menus for different parts of your website.
Step 7- Installing a plugin
Plugins are awesome and they can really help to improve your website. To install a plugin find your plugins tab and click on the add new sub tab. Here you can type in keywords for the type of plugin you need. So if you need a social sharing plugin, social sharing is what you should type in. Once you have clicked search you will displayed with a list of results. Choose a plugin, click install, click activate and away you go. Most plugin settings will appear under the main settings tab. Some plugins will create their own tab.
Step 8- Adding Widgets
Widgets are a great tool to display different types of content in the sidebar, footer, or header area of your blog, or website. To add widgets find the appearance tab and click on the widgets sub tab. Once you are there you will be able to drag and drop the type of widget you need into the defined areas. Widgets are a quick way to add navigational menus, content snippets, advertising and more.
Step 9 – Styling Your Themes and Pages
One of the harder parts of using WordPress is figuring out how to style the different particular themes, and how to properly format your pages. This is where the “how to build an actual website with WordPress” comes in. My solution for our clients, is to help them make their website drag and drop like other easy to use website builders. I have written an article that will help you learn how to make WordPress a drag and drop website builder that gives you lots of great options that will help you style and format your WordPress pages.
One of the benefits of using one of the drag and drop solutions available for WordPress, is the themes that these companies also offer. These premium themes offer increased styling, both through the customize tab, and a theme settings tab. This gives you full control over your themes colors, texts, backgrounds, headers, footers and more. There is a lot that can be said about the benefits of using a premium WordPress theme, just because the ability they give you to customize your website.
Optimizing Search Engine Optimization
I’m trying to keep this tutorial as easy to understand as possible. A lot of using WordPress is just getting to know the basics, so I am trying to teach you that and some of the basics of owning a website. Search engine optimization, or (SEO) as everyone calls it, is a very important part of WordPress and website ownership. WordPress has a very natural ability to rank well in search engines because of the way it lays out content. That being said there are a few simple things you can do to ensure that you make the most of your SEO efforts.
Step 1- Adding SEO plugins
SEO plugins are a great way to ensure you are making all the necessary tweaks to rank naturally in organic search. A great plugin to get started with is called SEO by Yoast. You can find this plugin by searching for it in the add new plugins sub tab. There are many other options for plugins and you can try them as well, there is no harm in finding the right plugin for your needs.
Step 2- Adding social sharing tools
Social networks and the signals they give search engines about your websites worth are very important. Using the main three social networks and linking the to your website is a must. To add social sharing tools to your website simply search for them in the add new plugins sub tab. Some great social plugins are Jetpack by WordPress and Addthis buttons, or smart layers by Addthis. These two plugins will allow you to maximize your social reach.
Step 3- Adding analytics plugins
There are many different analytics plugins, but there are two you should focus on. The Jetpack plugin by WordPress will have a site stats feature that will give you great onsite analytics. Your other best free option is Google analytics itself and you can download a new plugin to integrate this with your website, or use the feature that most SEO plugins offer to do so as well.
I hope that this WordPress tutorial will help you get started with and build a successful website with WordPress. These are just some of the basics of WordPress, but are the foundation that will help you become the website designer/owner you want to be. For questions regarding WordPress you can hop over to our community, or contact us directly.
Thanks for reading