The Get Started Guide to using WordPress can be summed up in about 4 easy steps (assuming you already have a web hosting account).
- Install WordPress to your site
- Add your Theme
- Add an SEO Plug-In
- Add Your Content
Each step has some best practices. Without getting into deep level WordPress customization, here is what we recommend.
Install WordPress to your site
Most of the world uses the cPanel webhosting platform. Within the cPanel is a simple button to click to install WordPress. It will look like this:
There are a few simple questions to answer on the form that follows. Whenever possible, use the defaults that are suggested.
Add Your Theme
Near the bottom of the install form/screen, you can choose the initial Theme to install with WordPress. A Theme is a set of website design files and functions that work together to add style and feel to your website. You can scroll through and choose a home page that catches your attention. Select the Theme, then be sure to add your email address to the box below the INSTALL button (yes, poorly placed), then click the INSTALL button.
Add an SEO Plug-In
Assuming you want to attract visitors to your site, we strongly recommend adding the Yoast SEO Plug-In for WordPress. It’s simply the best SEO tool available. Reasonably easy to use and very powerful.
Adding plug-ins is generally a step I would recommend for non-newbies, but follow these steps to add Yoast. It’s well worth the effort. More about using Yoast in a later post.
- From Your Dashboard, down the left had side, click Plugins – Add New
- In the search box, enter Yoast SEO
- Click on Yoast SEO and Then Install
- After the install, click to activate Yoast using default settings.
We will spend more time on Yoast SEO for WordPress in the future, plus much more time on some of the best Plugins for WordPress.
Add Your Content
Begin adding content to your website by writing a couple of Posts and a couple of Pages. These are different content types that you will become familiar with. A Post is what my also be called a blog article or a news post. This page you are reading now is a Post. Posts can contain text, images, links videos and are generally used for topical or timely information. Pages are similar. WordPress can contain the same types of content but are usually available in the website’s main navigation menu. The Post articles are usually found in a listing of topics or by dates within a sidebar on the website. There will be more about how to organize your content at a later date in a later post. For now, when you add your pages, they will automatically be included in your website navigation menu in the default menu position for your WordPress Theme.
This is a beginners guide to getting a WordPress site up and running. We will be posting some more advanced WordPress advice in the near future. Some future articles include Beginners Guide to WordPress SEO, WordPress Content Organization, WordPress Post Categories and Tags, WordPress Plug-Ins You Must Have plus many more.