Having an online presence will help you launch your business and increase your current clientele. In this guide, you will learn how to create a WordPress website using WordPress. Let’s start!
Want to learn how to create a website with WordPress? Good choice! Nowadays, knowing how to make a site and manage it to promote your products or services is essential.
Without a doubt, WordPress is the ideal platform to learn how to create a beautiful website, eCommerce, multilingual or even just blog.
Creating a website with WordPress will be relatively simple and fast. Moreover, today, the cost to create a site is quite low compared to 10 years ago, for example.
By learning how to use WordPress and following the advice contained in this guide, not only will you be able to make your website spending little money, but you will also be in control of your site!
Is creating a website alone difficult?
The answer is simple … it depends!
First of all, the investment (both in terms of money and time) varies according to the nature and size of the project.
Likewise, as easy and intuitive as it is, making a site using WordPress will take some time as this is software that includes innumerable features. For this reason, you will no doubt have to spend some time learning how to use it, so you can move easily around the platform.
Another aspect to consider is that, no matter how simple the website you want to achieve, the development of an online platform is still a fairly complex project, which requires working on different elements.
It is therefore advisable to have a plan or a set of things to work on. And now we’ll see them all.
How to create a WordPress website independently
The secret to succeeding online is to identify a niche in which to position yourself.
If you want to know how to create a showcase website + blog for your company, start by asking yourself these questions:
- What specific problem/need is your product solving?
- Who is your typical customer?
- What is the aspect that differentiates your company from all the others that operate in the same sector?
- What is the communication style of your brand?
Answer these questions and keep them in mind throughout the project. They will serve as a guideline for developing an online presence that is consistent with the image of your company or personal brand.
1. Before creating a website, choose the right name!
Now that you have in mind how you want your company or personal brand to appear online, you must choose the name of the site (this will then be the real domain / URL).
Generally speaking, creating a business website should have the same name as the business as a personal brand should have your name.
Making a website is meant to help you find new customers. Unless you are working in a sector where creativity represents a real strength, try to choose the clearest and easiest to remember the name.
2. To create a website you need a domain name and a hosting space:
We continue our guide on how to use WordPress to create a website. After you have chosen the site name, you will need to register the real domain. The domain is the URL – that is, the web address – that users will type in the search bar to find your pages.
Again, take some time to think about which extension to buy. The extension is the final part of the URL. For example, .com , .net , etc.
The domains with the extension .com, .net, .info are called top-level domains, as they are not associated with a particular geographical area.
Localized extensions like .it, and .fr are associated with Google to a particular country.
In general, avoid buying domains with localized extensions unless you actually want to target that specific geographic area.
To make a site of an activity that operates in Italy, I suggest you buy at least two domains:
- the one with the .it extension, to target the Italian public
- the one with the .com extension, to ensure you have the top level domain par excellence.
Together with the domain, I recommend buying the hosting plan as well.
The hosting plan is actually a license to use the space on one of the servers owned by the provider you have chosen.
There are many hosting services, which in turn offer many different plans.
In the vast majority of cases, the ideal hosting plan for those who want to create a website on WordPress is a Linux one with a cPanel control panel.
A plan of this type allows you to use the applications for the WordPress installation wizard, access the file manager to manage the files uploaded to your server manually, create email addresses, and so on.
These packages are fairly cheap; on average, a good quality hosting plan has a decent cost/year (many providers also include a free domain . com for the first year).
3. To create a website you need to install WordPress:
Continuing our guide on how to create a website, after you have purchased a domain and hosting space, you will obviously need to install WordPress and here is my video on how to install WordPress.
I also suggest you take a look at my WordPress course to have a manual video always at hand.
If you have chosen a hosting provider that uses cPanel, this step will be extremely simple.
Inside your control panel, you’ll find an application (QuickInstall, Fantastico or equivalent) for installing the platform.
Simply follow the steps and fill in all the required fields.
Mainly pay attention to two aspects:
- if you want to create a website in the USA, make sure you select English as the installation language. This is very important. In fact, plugins and themes (if available) will also be automatically installed in English.
- Take note of the username, password and email address you enter for the admin user. These are the credentials you will use to access the platform.
Having done all these steps, start the installation. In the end, your WordPress site will already be visible on the web with one of the default templates (currently Twenty Sixteen ).
4. Suggested next steps to create a professional website:
When you install WordPress for the first time, there are two additional steps I recommend you do.
The first is to discourage search engines from indexing your site. If you are going to create a completely new website, chances are you will need a few days to create and upload all the content.
In this case, WordPress has a feature to block access to search engine robots and to prevent your pages from being indexed with temporary content.
To activate this feature, within the Dashboard navigate to Settings > Read and check the ” Discourage search engines to perform the indexing of this site ” item.
In this case, it is important to note two aspects:
- the first thing is that I suggest you create the contents for the pages before starting to create the website. Obviously, it is better to block access to the robots for the shortest possible time. Preparing texts in advance will allow you to upload them faster.
- The second is that you will obviously have to remember to remove the check from this option once your site is ready to be indexed.
Another aspect to consider is the maintenance of your site.
If you want that, in the days when you configure your WordPress site, this is not publicly visible, install a plugin to put it in maintenance and publish a screen with a message of your choice.
5. Let’s start creating a website:
Now that you’ve purchased domain and hosting, and you’ve installed WordPress, we can move on to creating a website.
As you may already know, WordPress sites are built using a theme. A theme is actually the layout of your site. However, it is also something more: each theme is optimized for the implementation of particular features.
For example, there are more suitable themes for creating eCommerce sites, others perfect for news portals.
For this reason, it is essential that, before buying a template, you decide which are the main features that will need to be supported. For example:
- Do you want to create an eCommerce site? (in this case, you will choose a theme compatible with WooCommerce)
- Do you want to create a multilingual site? (in this case you will choose a theme compatible with WPML )
- Want to create a review site? (look for a theme that may have this feature already integrated).
Take a few minutes to make a list of all the key features of your site.
6. Now you have to choose a WordPress theme:
Once this is done, you can switch to searching for the best among all the WordPress themes in circulation. If you want to know how to create an optimal looking website , the choice of the theme is fundamental. Believe me, here you really want to do your best to select the best template for your case.
Simply visit a site like ThemeForest and look for a template that has the features you’ve identified, or that is compatible with the plugins to implement them.
This is obviously the starting point. Having made a selection of themes that meet your basic needs, you will have to look at other aspects:
- First of all, it’s a reliable theme (lots of downloads, positive reviews, etc.)
- that we have a style in line with the image of your business
- that is responsive (that is, perfectly visible even on mobile and tablet).
If for your specific niche you don’t find any theme that satisfies you particularly, you can use a multipurpose theme (that is, suitable for different types of sites). Two templates that surely won’t disappoint you are Enfold and Avada.
Perhaps you are wondering: why not use one of the free themes available on the official WordPress site?
The answer is simple: because in most cases the premium themes are more flexible, powerful and better supported in the long term.
7. How to install a WordPress theme and configure it:
When you have chosen and purchased your favorite theme, you will need to install it. Simply log in to your WordPress Dashboard and go to Appearance > Themes > Add New > Upload and upload the .zip folder of your template.
Once the theme is installed, you will need to start configuring it.
All themes have different functions and options. The main aspects to work on are:
- color combination
- page layout (ie, sidebar location)
- logo and navigation bar
and many more.
One aspect I suggest you work on immediately, as soon as you install the theme, are the permalinks. If you want to know how to create a WordPress website with an optimal SEO structure, this aspect should not be overlooked.
When you install WordPress, the permalinks are configured by default to include the pageID of the pages.
However, this configuration is not optimal. Then navigate to Settings > Permalink, select “post name” and save.
9. Install the necessary WordPress plugins:
After you have configured theme and permalink, you can start installing the first WordPress plugins. Plugins help you create a feature-rich website. Here you can read my guide on what plugins are.
There are some plugins that I recommend to install on all sites. They are used to implement very important features for any WordPress platform. Here they are:
Akismet is such an important plugin that it is often installed automatically along with WordPress itself. Browse the Plugins section of your site and check if it is already present (if it is not already, install it as soon as possible).
Once activated, Akismet serves to protect your site from unwanted comments. For other tools that protect your site from SPAM.
When creating content for your site, it is important that it is optimized for SEO, that is, for search engines.
One of the main techniques for optimizing texts is the inclusion of the right keywords.
WordPress SEO by Yoast is a tool that has many features and will serve as a guide to optimize all your pages and posts. So make sure you use it from the beginning.
10. Now we move on to creating the pages of your website:
After you have configured the main aspects of your theme and installed the basic plugins, the next step in creating a showcase website with a WordPress blog is the creation of static pages.
Static pages are the fundamental contents of your site. Those that will always be visible to users and that you will undoubtedly update with less frequency than the blog.
These pages are used to introduce your company, its mission, and the products offered.
Let’s see what are the main static pages:
At this point, I suggest you also create a page called Home. You can configure it later, but creating it will help us assign it as your home’s start page.
This is the real presentation of yourself or your company. Any website, showcase or blog should have one.
Enter the information that allows users to get to know you better. For example, the date of foundation of your company, the reason for its birth, the type of customer to whom you turn, and so on.
Products / Services
If you want your showcase website to help you expand your circle of customers, you can’t miss a page dedicated to presenting your products/services.
Here too, including all the information a potential customer might have.
The name says it all: a showcase site serves to present your services and your work.
You will then need to create a portfolio page, where you show a selection of your projects.
Many of the best WordPress themes already have several built-in features to add portfolio items to pages.
Finally, the fourth static page can never be missing on any website is that of contacts.
Here you will need to enter:
- a contact form that users can use to send you requests from your site (the absolute best plugin to add contact forms is Contact Form 7 )
- your email, Skype and possibly even telephone numbers for users to contact you directly
- if you manage a local activity, also enter the Google map with your location.
11. Create a blog on your WordPress site:
Any website should have a blog. The free contents – like the posts – are in fact extremely effective to let you know, increase the credibility of your business and find new customers.
The steps to create a blog on your WordPress site, with the aim of becoming a successful blogger, are very simple:
- first, create a page called, precisely, Blog.
- Then, navigate to Appearance > Customize and, in the ” Static Home Page ” field, select the Home page we have just created.
- The following item will appear ” Items page “. Here, select the page called Blog. Now all your new posts will be published automatically on the blog.
12. Writing and uploading the first posts:
When you have set up your blog (depending on the theme you are using, but you will usually find many options on the template configuration page), I suggest you create at least 5 posts. It is, in fact, important that those who visit your site find content.
If you want to create a website with a blog to promote your company, the posts you post on the blog will probably be informative. That is, they will be a free resource for those who want more information about your products.
Another useful feature that you can implement to give more visibility to your content and keep users on the site is to show related posts (ie, links to other articles at the bottom of the page).
Again, plugins are the easiest and fastest way to implement the functionality.
Author Box Insertion
An interesting detail to enrich your blog is the author box. This element serves to show information about the person who writes blog posts.
You can also add the author box by installing a plugin.
The next step in creating a website + blog in WordPress is the configuration of the navigation menu. Now is the right time to work on this aspect: you have already created the pages and the blog and you can insert the links in the menu.
Navigate in Appearance > Menu, choose a name for your menu and finally click ” Create Menu “.
Then, drag the pages in the same order you want them to appear on the page.
Finally, assign the menu you created to the desired location.
Once this is done, the navigation bar will be visible on your live site.
14. Final configuration of the Homepage:
We have now arrived at a crucial point in your project: that is, the configuration of the homepage.
The start page is your business card, it’s the first thing people see when they access your site. For this reason, it must be aesthetically beautiful, functional and contain all the necessary elements to allow users to navigate easily within the site.
Most showcase websites have a homepage containing a slider (a slider is an element with large sliding images).
One of the absolute best plugins to create sliders is the Slider Revolution. It certainly has a professional look and lots of options.
Let’s make a point of the situation. So far, we have configured the theme, created the static pages, created the blog, the menu and configured the homepage.
We have arrived at another very important phase of this guide on how to create a site on WordPress. We will, in fact, connect your site to social networks.
First, if you don’t already have them, create social profiles for your activity on the main social networks (Facebook, Twitter, and Youtube). Which social networks you decide to use, obviously depends on the nature of your activity and the time you have to manage them.
For example, other extremely useful platforms are also LinkedIn (to find professional contacts), Instagram (to connect with younger audiences) and Pinterest.
When you have created your social profiles, you will need to link them to the site.
If your audience is very active on Facebook, I also suggest you post Facebook comments at the bottom of your posts.
Now let’s talk about widgets. Widgets are elements that appear in the sidebar (the sidebar is a vertical section that you can choose to make appear on the right or left of your site).
The sidebar is configured in Appearance > Widget. Here you can drag the various elements and reposition them as you like.
After the sidebar, another important section to work on is the footer (this is the bottom part of your site).
Make sure you don’t neglect the footer: although it is not the central and most important part of your pages, it must be taken care of carefully. Conventions do exist and users expect to find certain information in this section.
I refer, for example, to the contact information, to the note on the copyright of the contents and to the VAT number of your business.
In most cases, the latest generation of WordPress themes allows you to configure the footer as a widget area.
Also, in this case, you can drag the elements to the desired position.
18. Connect Google Search Console and start site indexing:
We are coming to the final stages of this guide on how to create a showcase website + WordPress blog.
All the key sections and main contents of your site are now ready. We must, therefore, prepare for the launch 🙂
First of all, remember to remove the check mark from the “Discourage search engines to index this site” and disable the site maintenance plugin. In fact, we want search engines to be able to access your pages and start indexing them.
In addition to allowing Google & Co. robots to access your content, we need to take a more active approach. This means notifying that your site is live and indicating which pages it is composed of.
First, create an account on Google Search Console. This is the platform where you can monitor the status of your site against Google indexes, and if there are errors or problems of any kind.
When you have added your site to Webmaster Tools, generate Google XML Sitemaps from Yoast SEO plugin.
Once generated, you can report the URL of the Sitemap to Google through the Webmaster Tools. By doing this, you will actually send an indexing request.
19. Link Google Analytics to WordPress:
This is an aspect overlooked by many, but really important.
To be successful online, it is important that you know all the statistics of your site. Regularly monitoring traffic, duration of visits, the origin of users. Here is Google Analytics is a platform that provides a lot of information to better refine your online strategy.
20. Activate a caching plugin:
Finally, the last step I will discuss in this guide on how to create a website on WordPress is the loading time of your pages.
There are so many ways to speed up your WordPress site. The functionality I suggest you implement when first (but after you have finished configuring your site) is caching.
After activating a plugin like WP Rocket, static copies of your pages will be generated. These will then be displayed on the PC of those visiting your site very quickly.
Once this is done, your new site is ready to be launched, promoted on social media and used by users.
You will probably encounter many other aspects to work on, specific to the features you want to implement on your site or the theme you are using.
In this guide, however, I wanted to provide a general guide on how to create a WordPress website in which all the main steps to be taken are presented, in the correct order.