Creating a Website nowadays is extremely easy, especially since there are many options for people and businesses to choose from. The obvious choice for many is to choose WordPress to power their website.
The reason for this is because the WordPress software itself is free to use for both personal and business type websites. And unlike some other services, with the self hosted version of WordPress, you completely own your website/content and can customize it to suit your needs without concern of a third party provider.
I create websites for myself and my clients using WordPress and I’m proud of the fact that the sites I make, validate with some of the most important online organizations like W3.org, PingDom Tools, Google PageSpeed and others. On top of that, the websites I create all perform extremely well in the browser in terms of Page Speed and SEO factors.
Obviously Content is King/Queen, but the platform you use can make a world of difference. So how hard is it to use WordPress and where would you begin?
What Powers a WordPress Website?
Domain Name & Web Hosting
This is one of the first things you’re going to need when building your website. Every website needs a name and a home. The name of your website can speak volumes about what your website is about so spend some time thinking of a good name. The home for your website is also very important but the fundamentals are provided by the vast majority of web hosts.
I have a great solution for you when it comes to Domain Names and Web Hosting. You can check out Shop.PixemWeb.com and from there you can get a domain name for around $10 per year and web hosting starting at $6.99 per month.
Once you have your domain name and webhosting account, you will need to install WordPress. It’s actually very easy to do. Especially if you use a service like the one I mentioned above since you can easily use the one click installation that’s found in the cPanel of your Web Host.
You’re on my website, so obviously I’m going to suggest you use Evo Pro. It’s my premium WordPress Theme and it is full of the features you will need to have a website that performs well. I also specialize in the Genesis Framework and Equity Framework. Since I have the developers license for those, I can install them on my clients websites if that’s what you are looking for.
The great thing about these frameworks, is they are well coded and provide high levels of functionality.
Choosing the right mix of plugins for your website can be tough. But I have you covered. Check out my Top 10 WordPress Plugins Post. When I setup a client’s website, I also include several Premium Plugins that I hold the proper licenses to, to install on their site. The best part is they get the updates, right in the dashboard.
Themes vs Plugins, What is the Difference?
Great question, WordPress Themes typically handle the presentation of your website or as some call it, the styling aka look and feel of your site. Themes are what we see when we first visit a website while Plugins are what typically add the dynamic functionality of a site.
The lines do get blurred since it’s easy to code plugin functionality into a theme and theme styling into a plugin. While the “WordPress Way” tries to separate the two, you will often find that themes and plugins will often freely cross over the not so carved in stone idea of the separation of the two.
I Digress SMH
WordPress Secret Sauce, “Openness”
WordPress is coded in the same web dev stack that powers the vast majority of the web.
- HTML – The Skeleton of a website
- CSS – This makes the skeleton look visually appealing
- PHP – Is a server side programming language that processes requests and makes decisions on what is to be delivered.
- MySQL – Is a relational database management system used by some of the largest websites and robust platforms.
The most important ingredient of all is “People/Community”. WordPress thrives not because it is the absolute best (although I will say it is). It thrives because the people who are committed to creating themes and plugins to meet the needs of the masses for free or just a nominal fee.
The willingness to spend days, weeks, months and years working on something that is open for the world to see and use. WordPress is open, Open Source Software. It’s code is right there for you to view, study and use. It isn’t locked away like Coca Cola’s Secret Recipe.
Elements of a Website
While websites may differ on their topics, there are a few things they all share in common. Most websites need pictures, content and maybe video. Websites need to be viewable on a mixture of devices from Smartphones to Desktop computers and yes, even a watch or refrigerator.
Websites also need to be well coded in order to thrive on the web. From search engine optimization to user experience, a website is more than just an online brochure, it’s an invitation to others to share in one’s ideas.
The most important thing about a website is the ideas presented in it. Style matters, pictures matter but most important, it’s the ideas.
Hopefully you enjoy this quick blog post and had time to review the video up top. Take a moment and think about what ideas you’d like to share with the world.
Knowledge is meant to be shared with the masses!