WordPress is a free content management system that powers more than one-third of the websites live today.
As a beginner, you may find the whole process of building a WordPress website difficult and daunting. But we believe that all you need is the right guidance to get started and launch the first website of your dreams.
In this article, we have provided a comprehensive step-by-step guide on how to build a WordPress site. Keep reading to discover the authentic method of building a WordPress website.
1. Pick a Niche
The first thing you need to do to build a WordPress website is to pick a niche out of the thousands of niche options you have.
Finding your niche can be tricky at times, especially if you are a beginner. Therefore, don’t just keep thinking (that most of the beginners do), rather take action. Identify your interests and passions. Make a list of 5 to 10 areas of your interest. Then do a bit of research on each area and select the one that is less competitive yet more profitable.
Your selected niche will guide you about the kind of audience you need to target, the product you should focus on, and the kind of content you need to produce.
2. Find a Domain Name
Your domain name will create your identity on the internet. It is the address people will type while searching your website – for instance, Wikipedia.com is a domain that this company bought from a domain provider years ago.
As the internet is full of websites, pick a name that makes your website stand out from the rest. A good domain is short, catchy, easy to remember, easy to spell or type, and has niche-related words.
You are free to select your domain name as you like. To buy a domain name, go to a domain name registrar and search the name you are interested in buying. You can buy the name only if it has not been registered before and if its price falls within your budget.
3. Pick a Hosting Provider
After picking a good domain, it is time to find a space where you can host your website. Hosting is like a virtual plot located on the internet land where you will store your web content and everything else that your site has.
There are many companions that sell hosting that vary based on their space, cost, and other similar features. You should pick a company that is popular and offers valuable web hosting plans. Some companies will provide you with a free domain name, free SSL certificate, etc. when you buy their hosting service.
BlueHost, Hostinger, and WPX are three very popular and well-known WordPress hosting providers. You can visit their sites and evaluate each of their plans carefully. As a beginner, it is better to buy a plan that is cheap. Many web hosting providers allow you to upgrade your web hosting according to the needs of your site.
4. Installing WordPress
Now that you have bought your domain and hosting, it is time to install WordPress. Here, you will have two options – the first is to install WordPress manually and the second is to let your hosting provider do it for you. BlueHost offers this service for free to the people who use their web host service.
If you are using the BlueHost hosting service, open your BlueHost profile and select the My Site option from the menu. After that, click the Create Site button which will automatically initiate the WordPress installation process.
For manual installation, you will have to download WordPress to your PC and later re-upload it to your hosting service provider.
5. Pick a Theme
A theme is like a template that determines the web design and appearance of your website. Every WordPress site has a simple theme by default already selected. You can change it by installing and activating any other free WordPress themes available in the official directory at WordPress.org.
To install a WordPress theme, go to the dashboard of WordPress admin. A menu on the left side of the screen will appear. Now click on the Appearance option and then the themes option. After this, click on the Add New button.
Many new WordPress themes will appear on your screen. You can filter them by choosing the different options available. Select a theme that you like and click on the upload theme button that you will find under the new theme, then activate it.
Out of the hundreds of themes, GeneratePress, Astra, and Neve are free, super-fast, lightweight, and customizable themes. You should consider these popular options while selecting a theme.
A free WordPress theme can work but make sure the free theme is fast and mobile-friendly.
6. Log in to the Backend of WordPress
In order to build your own website, install WordPress plugins, and publish content, you need to log in to the backend of WordPress. It is the WordPress admin area that provides all the options you need to manage your WordPress site.
In order to log in, type the URL of your website with /login/ at the end (like YourWebsite.com/login/) on your browser’s address bar. It will take you straight to the login page. There you will have to enter your username or email address and password to get access to your dashboard or admin area.
7. Build out your Website with the Theme you Picked
WordPress themes are customizable and they offer you many options to change the appearance and design of your site. In order to customize your WordPress theme, click on the Appearance and then Customize.
You will find a long menu on the left-hand side. It will have options like content, menu, widget, color, typography, header image, background image, etc. that you can use to customize your site according to your needs. Click on each of these options to see what choices you have.
You will also have the Additional CSS option which will be helpful if you have programming and coding knowledge because you can add codes through this option to bring changes to your site. You need to be careful while using it.
You can tweak your site through other options available on the dashboard. You will find many useful options under the Settings option in the menu. You can change the comment setting, add a navigational menu, change the site title, and do much more.
You can use a website builder plugin like Elementor to help you build out pages and posts.
8. Add Pages
Page creation is a simple process. Go to your WordPress dashboard and then click on the Pages option written on the left side of the page and then click on the Add New button. A blank box will appear on your screen. You can add a headline, text, image, and video to the page according to your needs. After adding everything to that blank box, click on the Publish button. A new page will appear on your website.
You can make changes to these pages by clicking the Edit button found beside each page.
9. Add your First Post
You can post blogs just like you added pages. It is important to publish posts on your website to make them valuable and informative for your target audience.
To add your first post, go to the dashboard and click on the Posts option available in the menu. Then click on the Add New option. A blank box will appear on the screen. Give a title to that box and add text in the main body. You can add hyperlinks, tables, videos, and images to the content. You can also change font size, color, and style. according to your needs.
On the right side of the screen, you will find options like permalink, categories, tags, featured images, status, and visibility. Make changes to these options as you want. Then click on the Publish button. Your first post will be made live to the public right away.
10. Install Plugins
You will find many options under the theme customization but still, there will be some limitations. You can remove those limitations by installing plugins that help add functionality. WordPress offers thousands of free plugins for different functions. Below are the few popular plugins that help people improve their sites.
- All in One SEO: It is used to optimize web pages and posts to help them rank on the search engines.
- Karaken.io Image Optimizer: It helps in resizing and uploading images faster.
- Wordfence: You can use it to protect your site from hacking and similar attacks.
- WPForms: It is a drag and drop form builder that helps people create forms fast.
- W3 Total Cache: It is a performance optimization plugin that reduces a site’s load time and improves search engine optimization.
The Bottom Line
Building a WordPress website may seem daunting at first, but with the right guidance, knowledge, and patience, you can create a website that people will love using. Follow the simple step-by-step guide described above to create a functioning WordPress website.