So you want to start using WordPress to create a blog or website for yourself or your company. You don’t need to be a technical person to learn this stuff. This will be a basic explanation of what you need to have in place before you can install WordPress.
Things you will need to do to start using WordPress:
Get a place for your WordPress site to live on the internet.
This is called an internet host. An internet host (or just “host”) is a company that will rent you some space on their computers so your website can reside on the internet and be seen by people searching the internet for information. The work involved in setting up your own internet computer (called a server) to host your own site is too involved and too expensive unless you have a career in IT and have the equipment/training to do this. It is much easier to pay an internet host monthly to house your website. Expect to pay up to $7 a month for internet hosting.
If you cannot afford to pay for hosting your WordPress site, you may know someone who is already paying for hosted webspace and can host your site for free. Just ask any geek you know. There are also free, hosted blogs available at WordPress.com. If you are planning to use WordPress as a website, I recommend paying for hosted webspace. Learn more about this step and basically everything about WordPress – click here.
Next you’ll need to:
Get a domain name for your website.
What’s a domain name? It’s the name of your site on the internet. It’s what people type in their internet browser to reach your site. Domain names end in .com .net .org and many other suffixes. Another way to say domain name is “internet address”. google.com and yahoo.com are examples of domain names. Your domain name can be whatever you want –if it’s available.
You can get a domain name by visiting the website of a domain registrar and searching for an available name. Most internet hosts double as domain registrars and will also register domain names for you. The cost of registering a domain name with most registrars is about $10 a year or less. There are a few internet hosts that will even give you a free registered domain name for the life of your hosting account. Blue Host does this.
Install WordPress on your hosted web space.
Most hosts have a simple one-click install for WordPress. It takes more than one click altogether but it’s easy to get a WordPress installation done automatically with certain hosts.
Manual installation takes a lot longer and there are some tools you’ll need to use -like something called an FTP program in order to get WordPress up on your web space for the install. FTP stands for File Transfer Protocol. A file transfer protocol program just helps you transfer files from your computer up to your web space. Using an FTP program is something I will cover later.
After the WordPress files are in position on your webspace, the installation process is very quick and easy.
WordPress is VERY customizable. You can set it up as a blog or a website. It has thousands of plug-ins that you can install in a few clicks from the administration section or “backend” in just a few clicks.
There are thousands of themes too. All themes are free and can be browsed for and installed from the backend in a few clicks. If you want to design your own custom theme, there is software you can purchase that will allow you to create WordPress themes without any programming experience. Switching between themes installed in WordPress takes a single click in the backend.
The ability to easily theme and customize WordPress through an endless supply of plug-ins is what makes it so popular among people looking to create a blog or website.
WordPress sites are also easy to make search engine friendly. Search engine optimization (SEO) of your site will make it appear closer to the top of the page when people search for things relating to your site. Hundred’s of SEO plug-ins make this simple to accomplish.