WordPress is the most popular platform on the web, used by nearly 25% of all websites today. It’s simple to use, and there are thousands of different themes and plugins you can use to customize your website to fit your business or organization’s needs. WordPress takes care of all the behind-the-scenes technical stuff so you can focus on building your content, connecting with your customers, and putting out great work that will attract even more traffic and new readers every day.
This WordPress tutorial will teach you to make a WordPress website, including choosing your domain name, finding and installing WordPress, creating your first page, and adding any plugins you might need.
What do I need to make a WordPress Website?
WordPress website needs two main components:
- A domain name- this is your website’s address on the internet. You will need to purchase a domain name from a registrar such as Interserver or Namecheap.
- Hosting- this is where your website’s files will be stored. You can purchase hosting from companies such as Bluehost, or Dreamhost.
Steps to Create a WordPress Website
Step 1: Choose a Domain Name
Once you’ve decided that you want to make a WordPress website, the first step is choosing a domain name and hosting provider. Your domain name is the address of your website on the Internet, A good domain name should be as close to the name of your website or business as possible. For example, if you provide computer services then your domain name should be like this “https://icncomputer.com/“.
Here are some guiding principles for picking a name that reflects and helps your brand:
- Length: When it comes to a domain name, less is more. Shorter names are easier to remember and to type, which means users are more likely to find you.
- Keywords: Keywords can include what you do or offer (like “coffee” or “cleaning”), or even your location. Including your location (like “California“) in your domain name might also help you target local customers and users.
- Unique: A unique domain name can help your website stand out and potentially help you avoid legal trouble. It can also contribute to your marketing efforts.
- Domain Extension: A Top-Level Domain (TLD) extension is the last part of your URL that comes directly after the name of your site. Some of the most popular TLDs are .com, .org, and .net.
Note: In terms of the best domain name extension (i.e. the bit at the end of your domain name), .com is the most popular.
Step 2: Register your domain name
You can typically register a domain with a domain registrar in just a few steps:
- Choose your domain registrar (we’ll take DreamHost as an example).
- Head to the Dreamhost homepage and Search for your domain name (example addawebsitehsoting.com) using the search function.
- If the name is available, click to add it to your cart. You may also want to purchase the .net and .org extensions associated with your domain name to prevent impersonators.
- Provide your billing and payment information once you are done with your selections.
- Verify your ownership of the domain. This typically just means confirming the email address you used during registration. Your domain registrar will send you an email with a button and/or link to do this.
Note: Re-check your domain spelling before hitting “Purchase Now”. DreamHost doesn’t let you change your domain name post-purchase if you misspelled it.
Step 3: Choose a Hosting Provider and Pick a Plan
To build your WordPress website you need to choose a hosting provider and choose a plan. You can choose either a free or paid hosting provider, but we recommend choosing cheap web hosting because they offer great features at an affordable price. Plus, their customer service is top-notch.
There are many different hosting providers available, but some popular ones include Bluehost, DreamHost, and Interserver. When you’re ready to sign up for a cheap web hosting account, make sure you use one of the hosting providers.
We’ll take Dreamhost as an example. Dreamhost hosting provider is reliable, beginner-friendly, cheap, AND gives you a domain name for free—take it from someone who has created many websites for his clients in his career.
- Head to the Dreamhost homepage and click on the “GET STARTED” button. This will bring you to a pricing page where you will need to choose a hosting plan for your website.
- In the next step, enter the domain name that you’ve decided to get for your site:
- Once you’ve chosen your Dreamhost plan, you’ll be prompted to connect your domain name
- Once you’ve linked your domain name, you’ll need to create an account and fill in your billing details.
- At this stage, you can click on “SUBMIT” and finalize your purchase.
Step 4: Installing WordPress on your site
You can log in to your cPanel account by typing www.example.com/cpanel on your browser assuming ‘example.com’ is the primary domain name associated with your hosting account. Then, enter your username and password that you received from your web hosting provider when you set up an account.
- In the Domains section of the cPanel home screen, click the WordPress icon.
- On the next page, click the install button.
- Create your Admin Account. Enter a Username and Password and an Admin Email you will check for WordPress notifications.
- Once you enter all the details click again install button.
- Log in to your WordPress site by typing the administrative URL e.g. http://www.example.com/wp-admin/
- On the next page, enter the username and password that you created at the time of installation.
- Now, you will be taken directly to your WordPress dashboard as shown below:
Step 5. Select Your Theme
Choosing the right theme is critical to the success of your website. Not only does it need to look good, but it also needs to be functional and easy to use. There are thousands of themes out there, so take your time and find one that suits your needs.
Go to Appearance → Themes from your WordPress dashboard and then click on “Add New.”
On the next screen, you will be able to search from 9,600 free WordPress themes that are available in the official WordPress.org themes directory. You can sort them by popular, latest, featured, as well as other feature filters (i.e industry, layout, etc).
If you want any theme from the list just click the “Activate” button on the theme in WordPress to make it go live.
Step 6: Add Content to Your Website
Content can be added to a WordPress website in one of two formats: as a Page or as a Post.
- A page is for content that is not time-dependent eg. “About” or “Contact” pages.
- A post is for content that is time-relevant and is typically displayed in reverse-chronological order. Posts can have comments and an associated RSS feed. Examples of “post’-appropriate content would be “News” or “Events.”
To create a new page in WordPress:
- Head over to Pages » Add New page in the WordPress admin area. This will bring you to the page editor screen.
- First, you need to provide a title for your page, let’s call this page ‘Home’.
- After that, you can add content in the text editor below. You can add text, links, images, embed videos, audio, etc.
- After adding content to your page, you can click on the publish button to make it live on your website.
- You can repeat the process by adding more pages for different sections of your website. For example, about page, contact us, and a blog page to display blog posts.
To create a new post in WordPress:
- Click on Pages » Add New.
- Add a title and then add content blocks to your post.
- On the right-side menu, select your preferred options. For example, you can select categories and tags for your post and set a featured image that serves as a post thumbnail.
- Double-check if the post looks good, and select Publish again.
Step 7: Install Plugins
WordPress Plugins are like apps for your WordPress site. They allow you to add features and customizations to your WordPress site. Think contact form, photo galleries, etc. These plugins let you add various features, ranging from contact forms and custom newsletters to website caching and WordPress security.
Here is our list of essential plugins that you should install on your site right away. All of them are free.
- Yoast SEO: Yoast SEO is one of the most popular plugins for WordPress, making it easy to optimize your pages and posts to rank higher on search engines.
- All in One SEO: All in One SEO (AIOSEO) is a popular WordPress plugin for managing comprehensive on-site SEO and making optimizations to make a site rank highly in search results.
- WPForms: WPForms is one of the most popular WordPress form builders in the market. Create forms with the code-free drag-and-drop builder, which lets you add just about any form field you would want in any order you wish.
- WooCommerce: WooCommerce iseCommerceing eCommerce plugin for WordPress — it converts your WordPress blog into a fully functional online store.
- HubSpot: The HubSpot WordPress plugin allows you to manage contacts, follow leads, track conversions, build email newsletters, engage with site visitors via forms and chat, and more.
- Elementor plugin: Elementor plugin makes it easy to create beautiful pages and posts with drag and drop, without having to learn code.
The easiest way of installing a WordPress plugin is to use the plugin search. The only downside of this option is that a plugin must be in the WordPress plugin directory which is limited to only free plugins.
- Log in to your WordPress dashboard and navigate to Plugins -> Add New.
- Find the plugin by typing the plugin name or the functionality you are looking for.
- After that, you will see a bunch of listings like the example below:
- Click on the Install Now button to start the plugin installation.
- Wait for the process to finish and click the Activate button to start using the WordPress plugin.
Step 8: Managing WordPress Security
Now that you’ve created your WordPress website, and added content to it, you’re almost done. But there are a few really important things you should work on immediately. For example, security, SEO, etc.
There are some easy steps you can take that’ll make things much better:
Keep WordPress Updated
You could have the nicest WordPress website in the world, but – and we really can’t stress this enough – if you don’t keep on top of your theme and plugin updates, then it’ll all be in vain!
To do as well. Just go to Dashboard > Updates and you can check if your WordPress needs to be updated.
SSL (Secure Socket Layer) makes the data of your website more secure. In fact, websites without SSL are marked by web browsers as ‘Not Secure’. To add SSL to your website, you can install it from your hosting provider account.
Backup your Websites Regularly
When it comes to website security, it is often better to prepare for the worst-case scenario. As a precaution against your site going down, you should make sure to backup your website data. Several amazing plugins can help with that.
That’s it! The eight steps above are all it takes to launch a WordPress site. To recap the process of How to make a website in WordPress, we included domain and hosting purchase, setting up WordPress, installing themes, and plugins, adding content, and security.
As you can see, the process is simple enough. The great thing about WordPress is that even absolute beginners will be able to have a site of their own in no time.