Today we are going to see how to create a WordPress site. This tutorial will teach you how to choose your domain name, your hosting, install the CMS, customize WordPress, manage your pages, create your content and install the widgets essential for the proper management of your site.
What is a website?
A website is a set of linked web pages that are hosted on a server (a big computer, if you want to keep it simple) connected to the internet. A website can therefore be consulted via the internet.
A web page is a file formatted via a computer language (HTML) which is interpreted and displayed by your internet browser.
A website can be accessed directly via its Uniform Resource Locator (URL) which is the exact address where one can visit the site. The URL, which is also often called a web address, is generally composed of the communication protocol (http: // or https: //), a possible prefix (the www.) Of a domain name ( ex: computer-tricks.com), an extension (.fr, .com, .org etc…) and the name of the resource you wish to consult (here: /create-wordpress-website) . So the full URL of this web page is:
Today, due to the massive use of the Internet by a very large part of the population (55% of the world population has access to the Web), having a website is strategic for most companies, associations, institutions, public figures etc…
WordPress is the most popular website publishing platform on the market today and generates over 60 million websites worldwide. WordPress is not just a tool for blogging. It is also a very flexible content management system or CMS that allows you to administer, create and manage your highly functional website using just your internet browser.
WordPress offers many native functionalities (management of pages, articles, users, comments, media etc …) and additional functionalities which can be installed via a modular system of extensions. Similarly, the graphical rendering of a WordPress site is now far from a simple blog since it is possible to choose from thousands of customizable graphic themes according to your choice.
Why create a site or a blog with WordPress?
Here are three good reasons to use WordPress to make your website or blog:
- WordPress is free! It is therefore a considerable asset to create a free website! You won’t have to pay anything else to use WordPress. Unless you want to use premium paid themes or paid plugins (which, by the way, are not necessarily better than the free ones).
- There is a very large and extremely active WordPress community. There are thousands of WordPress extensions and free WordPress templates! If you have a problem with your WordPress site, you can easily find help thanks to the many forums, WordPress tutorials and free resources for WordPress.
Buy a domain name and a server
An Internet address or domain name is the equivalent of your Internet mailing address. This is how your contacts and customers will find your website on the web. A domain name is therefore essential when creating your website!
When you choose a domain name, you will need to verify that the selected domain name is indeed available. To do this, you will need to do a search on Whois. This search service will allow you to have access to the Internet registry of all domain names registered on the web.
Finally you have to contact a web hosting company such as bluehost or hostgator to purchase the domain name.
At the same time as purchasing a domain name, buy hosting for your website.
What is web hosting?
A web hosting is a remote storage space where you will put all the files of your site: WordPress files but also your images, pdf, podcasts, videos etc… It is via this storage space that visitors will be able to consult the web pages of your site. Web hosting can be purchased from a specialized company, the host, which generally offers other services (domain name purchase, supply and hosting of email addresses, etc.).
Configure you database
WordPress, like most CMS, saves most of the information on your site (texts, site settings, etc.) in an database.
You will therefore need to have a MySQL database ready to host your WordPress. Do not worry, the database is generally provided with your hosting if you have opted for shared hosting. It is usually created and initialized at the same time as your hosting. If it is not the case, you will have to create it from the administration interface of your web host.
In the case of a dedicated server or a VPS, it will be up to you to create and configure your MySQL database.
You will need the following information (provided by your host) regarding your database when installing WordPress:
database name, username, password, database address.
Download and Install WordPress files
These files are the basis of WordPress, they allow you to launch the installation of WordPress and its initial configuration. They also contain the WordPress core functions to manage your website from the admin interface of your website.
For the WordPress installation files, you simply go to the official website of WordPress in the Download section.
Download the latest version of WordPress. The downloaded files will be stored on your computer as well, ready to be sent to your web hosting.
To send the WordPress installation files to your server, you will need to use FTP software. FTP software is a software that allows you to transfer files from your computer to your web hosting using the FTP or SFTP protocol (more secure version of FTP).
I recommend using FileZilla client which is very good FTP software and which is also free!
You will therefore have to transfer the WordPress installation files to your web hosting via FileZilla.
Now, go to the home page of your website and follow the instructions for installing your WordPress CMS.
from the administrator interface you can manage your settings for example: install plugins, create pages, change the theme …
Choose a theme
If you want to use a theme found in the WordPress repository, the easiest way to do it is to use the administration of your site.
To get started, log into your WordPress site and go to Appearance> Themes in the WordPress dashboard and click Add Theme.
You can search for a specific WordPress theme if you know the name by entering the theme name in the search bar.
Once you’ve found a theme you want to use, you can click Details and Preview to see a preview of the theme in action, or Install to install the theme on your WordPress site.
Once the installation is done, click Activate to finish adding it to your site.
Install the necessary plugins for a WordPress site
Once you have installed your WordPress you immediately have a ready-to-use site with basic functions. You will therefore install additional plugins to fully customize your CMS, for example a contact form , an image gallery, Widgets, administrator functions, etc.
This is a list of most important plugins WordPress that you have to install :
- Yoast SEO: For the WordPress referencing of your site
- Google XML Sitemap: For the creation of a sitemap to facilitate indexing
- Shareaholic: To share your articles via social networks
- Contact Form 7: To customize your forms
- WordPress super cache: To avoid saturating your server
Create the structure and pages of your site
Now that everything is set in WordPress, you have an important step with the creation of the structure of your website: the creation of the different web pages that will compose your website (presentation of your business or activity, contact page …) , organizing menus and writing content for your website.
If you want to create a WordPress blog, you will have to go through Posts rather than using pages that are more intended for static websites.
This work is often difficult to perform because it requires writing skills. And web writing is even more specific if you want to be successful in SEO. You are certainly the best person to talk about your website activity. But perhaps not the most competent to produce the contents of your site.
If you have difficulty writing the content of your site, do not hesitate to call on a web editor who can write beautiful, clear and comprehensive texts, which will also be optimized for SEO.
website creation with WordPress is easy and not necessarily expensive. But it still requires work and some skills. It will take you many hours of work to build your website, whether it be via WordPress or another website creation tool!