WordPress is by far, the most popular CMS (Content Management System) in the world. More than 76 million websites are built on it. That is an astounding 26 percent of the entire internet.
It therefore, makes a lot of sense that any person interested in creating a website would be interested in how to learn WordPress.
One of the best things about WordPress is its simplicity and ease of use. This makes the learning curve less daunting and you will not need too much effort to become a pro at using WordPress.
This article will take you through the steps of learning WordPress in the shortest time possible.
Why you should learn WordPress
WordPress is the most popular CMS of all time and is also very simple to use. This means that you can build great websites using it. Not only that, you can build almost any type of website using WordPress. That means, once you have mastered WordPress, you can build a wide range of websites right from simple blogs to large e-commerce sites.
You do not need to have any technical knowledge to use WordPress. This means programming skills are not needed, but can come in handy.
Additionally, it gives you the opportunity of creating your own website that you can use to generate constant income after you have configured it right.
Apart from this, you can just share your stories with the world without needing the help of an expert who will charge you a fortune for something you can do yourself.
How to learn WordPress
We realize that different people learn differently, and at different speeds. Also, there are usually several factors at play when one is learning something new. Therefore, we do not expect a stay-at-home mother with three children to look after to learn at the same pace as an out-of-college person with some extra time to spare learning new stuff.
For this reason, we will break down this tutorial into steps rather than what should be accomplished each day. You can do one step a day, or even three depending on how much time you have and how fast you can learn.
Now let’s get started.
Step 1: Install WordPress
The first step is to get WordPress setup. There are different options here. The first option is to buy a shared hosting account for as low as $5. This will be the easiest since you will get an account instantly. Moreover, this will give you an opportunity to learn different aspects of website builing- like domain names, shared hosting setup , cPanel, nameserver setup etc.
Another option is to use a Free WordPress.com account, though you will get limited functionality. You could also get a free trial from most renowned web host providers. Most will give you the first year free, or have a money back guarantee that you can take advantage of. A Google search of where to get free WordPress hosting will get you going.
Setup your wordpress website:
Step 2: Learn the Basics
Now that your WordPress site is installed, it is time to learn the basics. FastWebstart has a number of tutorials to get you going on this.
Some of the things you need to understand are the differences between posts and pages and categories and tags.
You should also learn how to create and edit content, add images, and format your content.
Step 3: Using Themes
In WordPress, themes are pre-made templates that control the layout and the ‘style’ of your website. You can install and customize them to get the look and feel you like.
There are thousands of free-to-use themes that you can install on your WordPress installation. This does not mean you try out all of them. Find one that looks close to what you need and have a look at its demo. If you like it, go ahead and install it.
The best theme should have a good balance of features and design. Too many features is not a sign of a good theme.
A good place to start is the WordPress theme directory (http://wordpress.org/themes/).
Step 4: Using Plugins
Plugins are what make WordPress one of the most powerful CMS. They expand your website’s functionality. WordPress plugins are software components created by developers. Plugins expand the features of WordPress. Some plugins add features that are not available in the base WordPress installation.
For example, there are plugins that add ‘share’ buttons to your posts. There are plugins to speed up your website Some other plugins can help you move your website to another hosting service.
The WordPress community is so large and strong that you can find plugins to do almost any customization on your WordPress website.
Take some time to research the best plugins to use for your desired website and install them. However, some basic and must-have plugins include social, backup, cache, and SEO plugins.
Our recommendations are Simple share buttons adder for social sharing, updraftplus for backup, W3 Total Cache for caching, and Yoast SEO for SEO.
You can search for more from WordPress plugin repository (http://wordpress.org/plugins/).
Step 5: Customizing your WordPress installation
After completing all these steps, you are now fully conversant with how WordPress works and can manage a website on your own.
But every website has different customization needs. For example, an online store would need to be customized for ecommerce and a business website would need a contact form so that customers can get in touch with you.
Depending on your needs, you can customize your website further either using plugins or editing code. Whatever method, there are numerous forums and resources on the internet that will give you very good step-by-step instructions.
We hope that this article has helped you learn how to use WordPress.