WordPress for dummies (Step by Step guide)
Welcome to WordPress beginner’s guide. In this guide I will make sure to give you step by step guidelines, if you follow the steps in an order you will end up with your website the way you like.
You may want to share your story/experiences WordPress is the right platform weather you may be in your 20s or 60’s. Most people confuse choosing a blogging platform which one to use.
I recommend WordPress because it’s free to use, 3900+ WordPress themes and 57,000+ plugins are available, easily customizable, and nearly 35% of sites on the internet are using WordPress.
There are other alternative ways to start a blog, you may use Medium, Instagram, Tumblr, Blogger, Wix, etc, but the issue was without prior information they may change rules, may restrict your content and sometimes they may shut down your site.
WordPress is a powerful and free software that helps you do your work in front end and it does all the magic in back end by sitting in servers.
WordPress is a WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) interface which gives you the flexibility to work without any technical or coding knowledge.
Some top players using WordPress to name CNN, The New York Times, About.com, People Magazine, NFL, US Post Office, and Ford Motors. 14.7% of the top 100 websites in the world are using WordPress.
If you are confused between WordPress.com vs WordPress.org please read our post to clear all your queries..
“I get little commissions for purchases made through links in this post with no additional cost for you.”
Easy Step-by-Step Guide
- Decide a topic:
You can write your blog on any topic you love or share your knowledge/expertise. If you are not sure where to start here are a few top ideas.
List of topics to think about cooking, education, DIY workshops, finance, family, travel, experiences, technology, gaming, yoga, news, sports, hobbies, and business ideas.
If you are interested in something different please check the below image for a list of ideas.
- Choose a domain name:
A domain name is a unique web address that directs visitors to your site when they type in their browsers.
So it is very important to choose a good name which is easy to remember and spell. For example, www.yourownsite.com.
Choose your domain name from a domain registrar. Famous domain name registrar companies are Bluehost, Domain, Name cheap, Dreamhost.
Bluehost and Dreamhost provide free domain name when you buy hosting from them.
Before buying your domain name make sure that was related to the category of your choice.
Check below if your desired domain name is available or not.
Domain names normally cost from $10 to $25 per year depending on name popularity.
Finally, .com extension is widely recognized format but if you don’t get your choice of domain name you can check for alternatives like .in, .net, .co, .biz, etc, or country specific extensions (Ex. .in, .us, .uk)
- Choose a hosting provider:
Domain name and hosting are two key elements to see your blog online.
Your site will have storage with hosting provider and complete information of your site will be on their servers.
Official WordPress recommendations are Bluehost, DreamHost, Siteground.
The hosting costs around $3 to $15 per month depending on the plan of your choice. If you are a beginner I suggest you spend less on hosting.
For example, with Bluehost available plans basic, plus, choice plus, and pro. You may choose basic/plus if you are a starter.
Similarly, the below image shows the hosting plans provided by Siteground.
If you are looking at a low budget or if you want to just start as trail and error basis ipage is an option to check.
- Pointing domain name to hosting (Changing name servers):
What if your domain name is registered with some other service provider than your hosting company?
Simply, all you’ve got to do is just change two fields on your domain registrars website.
Normally when you signup with hosting you will receive a welcome email in which you can find your name servers information.
Now you just enter those two name servers info into your domain registrar website under the label “Manage DNS” and save.
Now you are all set it normally takes 24-48 hours sometimes it may take less time.
Preferably, buying both domain name and hosting from the same company will eliminate changing name servers.
- Install WordPress:
Now it’s time to install WordPress software on your domain and hosting account. The benefit of this is it is a one time process.
Almost every hosting provider nowadays has an interface where you can install WordPress with just a few clicks.
Once you finished installation you will receive a confirmation email.
Check your email for successful confirmation of your WordPress installation with the username and password you choose at the time of installation.
Login to your WordPress using “http://yoursite.com/wp-admin” and you will see a famous WordPress login screen, just enter login credentials and become familiar with your dashboard I will explain in detail as we go.
- Design your WordPress Blog:
WordPress has made designing simple and straight which uses themes. The default theme provided by WordPress is ‘Twenty Twenty’.
In order to customize the default WordPress theme go to appearance ⇾ customize on your dashboard and make the necessary changes.
You can change the site title, tagline, colors, add a background image, and logo.
Try Canva for designing your logo.
For detailed information on how to configure your WordPress after installing please check our detailed post.
You can change the theme and select a completely new one.
Designing and writing your first blog will be easier if you follow our steps.
- Posts and Pages:
Newbies often confuse difference between a post and a page.
Pages are static elements of the website contains content that a visitor always see (which will not change frequently) such as ‘Welcome’, ‘About Us’, and ‘Contact Us’.
Posts are designed to be dynamic and displays the content in chronological order to your visitors.
It’s always a good idea to save draft, check for spellings, grammatical errors and checking the preview before you publish.
- Customize WordPress:
To start delete all the junk from your WordPress. Delete unwanted pages and plugins.
Now, in your WordPress dashboard click on ‘Settings‘, ‘Permalinks‘ select option ‘Post name‘, and click on save.
Become familiar with your WordPress dashboard explore the available options and customize them as per your preferences.
For example, if you don’t want to allow comments you can select “Allow people to post comments on new articles” which is under settings ⇾ discussion and save(by default checkbox is selected now you are deselecting).
- Install Plugins:
Plugins are pieces of software that add extra functionality to your WordPress site.
Here is the list of top free plugins that will help you to optimize your WordPress blog.
To install a new plugin just click on plugins ⇾ add new and search for required plugin click on ‘install now’ once the installation is done you have to activate.
Few parameters have to be changed for functionality as per our requirement most of them can be done by using wizards.
As I promised by now you would have your blog ready.
Welcome to the blogging world.
WordPress is a big ocean that just can not be finished with a blog post.
I did my best in giving you essential steps to starting your blog now it’s you to take the action.
Feel free to comment on your questions I will try to answer as quickly as possible. Good luck with starting your blog.
You can make money from your blog.