March 28, 2023
WordPress is the world’s largest content material administration system (CMS)—round 810 million web sites are constructed on it.

It’s free to make use of and contains all of the options any web site proprietor may need. And if it doesn’t have a function you need or want, you’ll be able to have a developer create it for you as a result of it’s constructed on open-source software program.

However with all of those options come some issues. WordPress has a reasonably steep studying curve in comparison with different CMSes like Wix or Squarespace.

I’ve constructed dozens of internet sites utilizing (not, which is a very totally different beast) and have narrowed down the method to 9 easy steps that anybody can comply with.

Let’s begin with…

Step 1. Get a website title and internet hosting

Each web site constructed on wants a website title ( and a internet hosting service that shops and shows your web site on the web.

You should purchase a website title for a small payment from a website title registrar like NameCheap or GoDaddy. Nevertheless, in the event you purchase your area title and your internet hosting from separate firms, you will want to change your website’s Domain Nameservers (DNS) to level your area title out of your registrar to your internet hosting firm.

They appear like this:

SiteGround DNS settings example

It’s a little bit cheaper to do it this manner however not definitely worth the problem for my part. As a substitute, most internet hosting suppliers (corresponding to SiteGround or Bluehost) may promote you a website title and join it together with your web site mechanically, permitting you to skip messing with DNS settings.

You’ll be able to try this guide to choosing a domain name in the event you’re undecided what to decide.

Step 2. Set up WordPress

As soon as you buy internet hosting, most internet hosting suppliers have a one-click set up to arrange WordPress in your web site. Listed here are some hyperlinks to guides on how to do that with frequent internet hosting providers:

You may as well go for a quicker (however dearer) devoted internet hosting supplier like Kinsta or WP Engine. These firms will arrange WordPress for you if you purchase their internet hosting.

Step 3. Familiarize your self with the UI

Now that you’ve a web site with WordPress put in, let’s get into learn how to use WordPress. You’ll be able to log in to your WordPress dashboard by going to

When you log in, your dashboard will appear like this (with fewer plugins because you’re on a recent set up):

WordPress user interface

Let me clarify the choices right here:

  • Posts: That is the place you’ll create weblog posts.
  • Media: You’ll be able to go right here to see all of the media in your website, corresponding to pictures and movies. I usually add media on to my posts and pages and don’t go to media typically.
  • Pages: That is the place you’ll create static pages in your website, corresponding to your homepage, about web page, and phone web page.
  • Feedback: Right here is the place you’ll average any weblog feedback.
  • Look: That is the place you’ll customise the looks of your web site, corresponding to your web site’s theme, font kind, colours, and extra.
  • Plugins: A plugin is an add-on to your web site that provides performance, corresponding to customized contact varieties or pop-ups in your web site. I’ll talk about these in additional element later.
  • Customers: Right here is the place you’ll be able to add customers to your web site, corresponding to writers, editors, and directors.
  • Settings: Fairly simple; right here is the place your common web site settings are positioned.

Now that you realize what every choice does, let’s get your web site settings dialed in.

Step 4. Optimize your settings

Your WordPress web site comes with some generic settings that should be modified, in addition to some issues I like to recommend altering to optimize your web site for serps.

Particularly, it’s best to:

  • Change your title, tagline, time zone, and favicon.
  • Change your permalink construction.
  • Configure your studying settings.
  • Delete any unused themes.
  • Change your area from HTTP to HTTPS.

Let’s stroll by way of every of those steps.

Change your title, tagline, time zone, and favicon

Head to Settings > Basic to search out these settings. Change the title of your web site and the tagline, which might seem beneath the title in the event you select to show it.

Subsequent, test that the time zone is appropriate (based on your native time zone) and add your favicon. A favicon is the little icon that reveals up in browser tabs subsequent to the title of the web page, like this:

Examples of favicons

You can also make a favicon at no cost with Canva. Simply make a 50×50 design with no matter you need your favicon to appear like. Try this guide to be taught extra. 

Change your permalink construction

Head to Settings > Permalinks. A permalink is the URL construction your weblog posts take if you publish them. By default, WordPress shows the date in your URLs, which isn’t nice for search engine marketing or readability.

WordPress permalink structure settings

I all the time change this to the “Publish title” choice (/sample-post/) so as to add the title of the put up by default. You wish to optimize your whole URLs individually when potential, however this setting will make the method simpler.

Configure your studying settings

Head over to Settings > Studying to decide on whether or not you need your homepage to be a static web page or if you need it to be a feed of your newest weblog posts. 

WordPress homepage display settings

Personally, I all the time create a singular static web page to make use of as my homepage as a result of it offers me extra management over the homepage. I like so as to add inside hyperlinks to particular pages to assist them rank greater on Google, in addition to add an electronic mail opt-in kind on the homepage.

Try this information to homepage search engine marketing to be taught extra.

Delete any unused themes 

By default, you’ve a number of themes put in. When you select a theme in step #5 beneath, it’s best to delete any unused themes to take away vulnerabilities out of your website (hackers can assault WordPress web sites with outdated themes).

To do this, go to Look > Themes, click on on the unused theme, then click on the pink Delete button within the backside proper.

How to delete unused themes on WordPress

Change your area from HTTP to HTTPS

The “S” in HTTPS stands for safe. Including that is performed with an SSL certificates, and it’s an necessary step. It means your web site is encrypted and safer for viewers.

Having HTTPS as an alternative of HTTP offers you the “lock” icon subsequent to your URL—Google (and most web customers) desires to see a safe web site.

HTTPS secure "lock" icon

Most internet hosting suppliers mechanically activate the safe model of your web site. However typically, it must be manually activated by you. Listed here are guides on how to do that with frequent internet hosting suppliers:

In case your host isn’t proven right here, simply do a Google seek for “[your host] SSL encryption.”

Step 5. Choose and customise your theme

When you’ve optimized your settings, it’s time to begin really constructing your web site utilizing a WordPress theme. A theme is a customizable template that determines what your web site seems to be like. 

You’ll be able to browse for themes by going to Look > Themes, then clicking the Add new button on the high of the web page. 

WordPress theme page

The generic Twenty Twenty-Three theme is definitely fairly good. Most WordPress themes as of late are optimized to point out up in serps and for necessities of the trendy person, corresponding to being mobile-friendly. 

Nevertheless, some themes have loads of added bloat that may sluggish a web site down, so select a theme that solely has the options you want with out extras you received’t use.

Alternatively, in the event you don’t like all themes or need one thing that’s extra drag-and-drop, you should use a web site builder like Elementor or Thrive Architect. These instruments make constructing a web site extraordinarily simple, however they do add bloat that may sluggish a web site down.

I take advantage of Elementor to construct my web sites however solely use it to construct static pages that I wish to convert effectively. Then I take advantage of the built-in Guttenberg editor for my weblog posts.

If you happen to determine to go together with a daily theme somewhat than a theme builder, you’ll be able to edit the theme by going to Look > Customise. You’ll be taken to the next editor:

WordPress theme customization options

Relying on the theme you put in, you could have extra or fewer choices than the screenshot above. Moderately than making an attempt to cowl each choice chances are you’ll encounter, I’ll simply suggest that you just undergo every choice to see what it does. 

For essentially the most half, the choices are self-explanatory. If you happen to hit a snag, you’ll be able to all the time do a Google seek for that choice in your theme to see discussion board posts from different customers and even the theme’s FAQ or handbook.

Step 6. Construct your fundamental pages

After you’ve chosen a theme, you can begin constructing your web site’s pages. Each web site usually wants a minimum of the next pages:

  • A homepage
  • A contact web page
  • An about web page
  • A privateness coverage web page
  • A phrases of service web page

Moderately than going by way of how it’s best to create every of those pages, I’ll refer you to the next guides:

Remember that your privateness coverage and phrases of service (ToS) pages will differ relying on the nation you reside in. If you happen to’re within the U.S., you’ll be able to comply with this guide for privacy policies and this guide for ToS pages.

That stated, there are some common ideas it’s best to comply with when constructing any web page in your web site. Generally, guarantee that your font is simple to learn and seen measurement (18–20px is typical), your colours match, and also you keep away from an excessive amount of muddle.

Right here’s instance of a webpage that’s clear, legible, and thought out:

Ahrefs about page example

Right here’s an instance of a webpage that has an excessive amount of muddle and shows an advert over half the web page, inflicting confusion:

CNN poor website design

Generally, much less is extra and legibility is healthier than fancy fonts.

Step 7. Set up these important plugins

Among the best components of utilizing WordPress is entry to its massive library of plugins

A plugin is a customized piece of code written by a developer that anybody can set up on their WordPress web site as a way to add particular performance to the location, corresponding to a contact kind, further customization choices, or search engine marketing options.

You’ll be able to set up a brand new plugin considered one of two methods. Head over to Plugins > Add New. From right here, you’ll be able to both:

  1. Browse the plugins instantly on this web page, then set up and activate them instantly.
  2. Obtain a plugin .zip file from the plugin’s web site, then click on the Add plugin button on the high of the display screen and add the .zip file.
How to upload a plugin to your WordPress website

Whereas many plugins are free, some are paid or have a premium paid model. It will depend on what you want. Nevertheless, I all the time set up the next free plugins on my web sites:

Rank Math: This plugin makes fundamental on-page search engine marketing simpler. It tells you in the event you’re lacking basic items like metadata, picture alt textual content, and extra. It additionally means that you can create a robots.txt file and a sitemap, that are necessary for serps to crawl your web site the way in which you need.

Wordfence: This can be a safety plugin to assist forestall your web site from being hacked. I all the time set up some kind of safety plugin on my websites.

Insert Headers and Footers: One of many belongings you’ll typically end up needing to do is insert code into the header or footer of your pages. You could do that for every part from establishing Google Analytics and Google Search Console to including the Fb Remarketing pixel and extra. Having this plugin makes it a lot simpler so as to add this code.

Remember that putting in loads of plugins in your web site could cause code bloat and decelerate your loading speeds, so solely set up plugins that you really want. 

Step 8. Begin creating content material

Now you realize all of the fundamentals of learn how to use WordPress. However one other necessary factor I wish to discuss, which might be why you wished to begin a WordPress web site within the first place—learn how to create content material to your weblog.

Writing weblog posts is a vital a part of displaying up on serps like Google, having one thing to share on social media, and attracting extra guests to your web site.

What you write about will depend on your objectives. I all the time begin with some fundamental key phrase analysis to determine what individuals are trying to find on Google that pertains to my web site.

A fast and straightforward manner to do that is by plugging a broad key phrase into Ahrefs’ free key phrase generator device to get some key phrase concepts. 

For instance, if I’m beginning a web site about farming, I’ll kind “farming” into the device. I can see key phrase concepts like “farming insurance coverage” and “vertical farming,” that are two potential weblog matters I can write about.

Keyword ideas for farming, via Ahrefs' free keyword generator tool

If I wish to get a little bit extra particular, I can strive a key phrase like “learn how to begin a farm.” This provides me concepts like “learn how to begin a farm with no cash” and “learn how to begin a farm in texas.”

Keyword ideas for "how to start a farm," via Ahrefs' free keyword generator tool

Strive totally different seed key phrases—each broad key phrases and extra particular ones—to provide you with some weblog matters. After you have a number of concepts, go forward and description the article after which write it and publish it.

Try our information to writing a weblog put up to be taught extra.

Step 9. Monitor your web site for technical points

A daily a part of sustaining your WordPress web site is holding plugins and themes updated, in addition to monitoring your web site’s technical well being.

WordPress mechanically notifies you of updates to your plugins or themes with a pink circle subsequent to Dashboard > Updates. Log in to your dashboard a minimum of as soon as every week to replace every part.

WordPress updates dashboard

Past weekly updates, use the free Ahrefs Webmaster Instruments to run a technical audit in your website and see any points your website could have, corresponding to damaged hyperlinks, lacking metadata, or sluggish loading speeds. 

Ahrefs website audit overview, via AWT

If you happen to click on the All points tab, you’ll be able to see each subject your website has—with an summary of what the problem is and learn how to repair it in the event you click on on the ? icon.

All issues report, via AWT

You’ll additionally get electronic mail alerts when something in your website adjustments, corresponding to a hyperlink breaking or a web page returning a 404 code. It’s a useful device to mechanically monitor your WordPress website.

Ultimate ideas

Congratulations, you now know the fundamentals of utilizing WordPress. It might have a big studying curve, however studying learn how to use this CMS is among the most beneficial expertise you’ll be able to have in as we speak’s digital age.

You should utilize your WordPress web site to earn cash running a blog, promote your providers as a freelancer, and even promote merchandise on-line. Figuring out learn how to construct a web site is nearly obligatory as of late for anybody who desires to begin a enterprise.