A website is an integral part of any business. It acts as a digital identity for your brand and keeps you ahead of your competitors. Not to mention, a professional-looking website can also help you acquire potential leads and improve the overall conversions.
Ideally, when business owners want to build a website, they tend to look for professional developers. But, if you have limited resources and don’t want to spend thousands of dollars as “development cost”, it would be better to design the entire website on your own.
As daunting as it may sound, designing a website is quite a straightforward process. Thanks to website platforms such as WordPress, anyone can build a website from scratch without writing even a single line of code.
So, if you are also planning to make a website using WordPress, continue reading; this step-by-step guide will help you set up your website without any effort.
Why Should You Choose WordPress?
Even though there are thousands of website platforms out there, the majority of businesses choose WordPress while designing a website. Why? To be honest, there are several factors that make WordPress a superior platform to others. First and foremost, it has an intuitive user interface and a variety of features that’ll help you set up different web pages in no time. Secondly, WordPress is available for free, which means you won’t have to pay any subscription charges to use its features.
Some of the additional features of WordPress include:
- WordPress is open-source
- WordPress is SEO-friendly. You can optimize different elements of your website without any hassle
- It has several built-in designs and templates to speed-up the entire designing process
- You can use WordPress to create different types of websites including E-commerce, a Blog, or even a Single-Page website as well.
- WordPress is highly secure
These are the reasons why WordPress has 59.7% of the overall market share and 39% of all the websites on the Internet run on WordPress itself.
How to Create a Website in WordPress?
So, now that you know the benefits of choosing WordPress over other CMS (Content Management Systems), let’s dive into the first step of designing a website using WordPress.
Buy a Domain Name and Choose a Hosting Package
As of now, the Internet has more than 1 Billion active websites. This means if you want to stay authentic, you’ll have to choose a unique domain name that separates your brand from the rest of the crowd. Ideally, you should choose your “company’s name“ as the domain. But, there’s no harm in getting a little creative and choosing a domain name that’s more appealing.
In either case, however, here are a few rules that you should remember while deciding on a domain name for your business.
- Keep the domain name as short as possible
- The domain name should be easy to type and memorize
- Avoid adding any numbers or special characters in the domain name
- Make sure that the domain name is associated with your niche
Once you’ve figured out the right domain name, the next step would be to choose a Domain Registration Provider. We recommend using Bluehost because you can also use it to buy a hosting package for your website. No doubt you can buy the domain and hosting package from two separate service providers, but if you want to keep things simple, it would be better to choose the same company.
Also, when you buy hosting from Bluehost, you’ll be able to register the domain name for free as well. This is one of the many many perks of choosing Bluehost as your hosting provider.
Follow these steps to buy your domain name and hosting plan using Bluehost.
Step 1 – Go to Bluehost.com and click “Get Started”.
Step 2 – You’ll be prompted to the “Select Package” screen. Initially, it’s advised to choose the basic plan, especially if you want to keep the overall cost as low as possible. So, select the “Basic” plan to proceed further.
Step 3 – In the next screen, enter the domain name that you’ve decided earlier for your website and click “Next”.
Step 4 – Bluehost will check the availability for the entered domain. If it’s available, you’ll be asked to complete the remaining process by entering your personal information. Make sure to provide accurate details in each respective field.
Step 5 – Finally, confirm all the details and tap the “Submit” button to complete your purchase.
After you’ve completed the payment, your web hosting will be up and ready. At this moment, you’ll also receive an email from Bluehost containing your login details and detailed instructions on how to sign-in to your website hosting control panel, most commonly known as C-Panel.
Follow the instructions, shared in the email, carefully, and log-in to your cPanel. Once you’re successfully logged-in, the next step would be to install WordPress for your website. Tap the “Install WordPress” option on cPanel’s home screen to get started.
You’ll be redirected to Mojo Marketplace, a third-party platform that makes it easier for uses to install WordPress with a single click. Here simply, tap the “Install New Scripts” option.
On the next screen, use the drop-down menu to choose your domain name and then click “Next”.
Now, you’ll have to enter your WordPress login information including the Website Name, username, and password. After you’ve entered all the information, make sure to check all the boxes and click “Install” to initiate the installation process.
Once the process completes, you’ll see a confirmation message on your screen.
That’s it; you have successfully created a WordPress website from scratch. Didn’t seem that challenging, did it?
Install a Theme for Your Website
Now that you’ve successfully created a WordPress website, let’s go ahead and customize its visual appearance. The first step would be to install a theme for your website. By default, each website comes with a basic theme. But, thank
s to the WordPress store, you can get access to thousands of free themes and choose the one that best suits your brand identity.
So, let’s quickly take you through each step of installing a new theme on a WordPress website.
Step 1 – First of all, go to http://www.yourdomain.com/wp-admin and sign in with your WordPress credentials.
Step 2 – This will take you to your WordPress Admin Dashboard. Here click the “Appearance” button in the left menu bar and select “Themes”.
Step 3 – You’ll be redirected to WordPress’s directory that has almost 5,000 unique themes. Browse through these themes and select the one that you like. If you have a specific theme in mind, you can also use the search box in the top-right corner.
Step 4 – After you’ve found the right theme, simply hover your mouse on it and tap the “Install” button.
Step 5 – Wait for the selected Theme to get installed. Once the installation process completes, go back to the WordPress dashboard and go to Appearance>Theme. Now, click the “Activate” button next to your newly installed theme to set it as the default theme for your website.
Step 6 – Now, tap the “Customize” button under the “Appearance” tab.
Step 7 – This will take you to the official “Customizer” window where you can change the default settings of your new theme and check the live preview at the same time.
Add Pages to Your Website
At this stage, your website will start to look somewhat professional. However, you still haven’t added any pages to your website yet. So, as soon as you’re done customizing the theme, the next step in creating a WordPress website would be to set up different pages.
In general, all websites, regardless of the business niche, have a few common web pages. Let’s quickly walk you through each of these pages and discuss their individual purpose.
- Home – This one is quite obvious. The homepage is the first page that any user would land upon after entering your site’s address. You don’t need to set up the homepage from scratch as every theme has a default homepage of its own that you can customize as per your preferences.
- Contact Us – The “Contact Us” page is built to share your brand’s contact details with the customers. This will help the visitors to quickly contact your brand/customer service for different queries. Here you can share the email address, phone number, and physical address of your company.
- About Us – The “About Us” page is where you’ll share all the details about your brand. For instance, you can talk about the objective of your brand, your services, and how your business can help the customers. As soon as a new user will land on your website, the “About Us” page will help him/her understand the basic USPs of your business.
- Portfolio – If you are a service-based company, it’ll be important to add a dedicated “Portfolio” page where you can showcase your past work to potential clients.
So, now that you know the importance of different web pages, let’s quickly discuss the detailed steps to create a new page using the WordPress dashboard.
Step 1 – Again sign-in with your WordPress credentials to open the WP-Admin dashboard.
Step 2 – Click “Pages” and tap “Add New”.
Step 3 – You’ll be prompted to the page editor window. Start by adding a title to the page. For instance, if you’re creating a “Contact Us” page, enter “Contact Us” in the title bar.
Step 4 – Then, head to the next text editor to add the body-content for the web page. Here you can add text, images, videos, etc.
Step 5 – Finally, click the “Publish” button to make your new page live.
Repeat the same process to add multiple pages to your website.
Customize Site Navigation
After adding different web pages, you’ll need to ensure that people can easily navigate through all these pages anytime they want. This is done by adding a dedicated “Navigation Menu” that allows the users to go to different pages on your website with a single click. The navigation menu is displayed at the top of each web page.
Let’s take a look at how to add a new navigation menu to a WordPress website.
Step 1 – In your WordPress dashboard, click “Appearances” and select “Menus”.
Step 2 – Enter the “Menu Name” and click “Create Menu” to add a new menu to your website.
Step 3 – By default, the new menu will be empty and you’ll have to manually add pages that you want to display in it. To do this, select the pages and click the “Add to Menu” button.
Step 4 – You can also change the order of the web pages by simply dragging them over one another to rearrange their appearance in the navigation menu.
Step 5 – Finally, choose the “Display Location” to decide the location of the navigation menu. Almost every WordPress theme gives users two different display locations, i.e., “Primary Menu” and the “Footer Menu”. Primary Menu is displayed at the top of the screen whereas the latter is displayed in the footer section.
Once you’ve picked the right “display location”, simply click the “Save Menu” button to make your navigation menu live.
Install Plugins to Add Basic Functionality to Your Website
Congratulations! Your new WordPress website is up and ready. At this point, you’ll just need some final touch-ups to tweak the overall functionality of the website. You can do this by adding a few plugins to your website. For people who don’t know, plug-ins act as “third-party” apps that are designed to help WordPress users make their website more functional.
Here are a few important plug-ins that you should consider adding to your website, irrespective of your business niche.
Yoast SEO – It’s a crucial SEO plugin that’ll help you optimize different elements of the website to make them SEO-friendly. If you are planning to add blogs to your website, Yoast SEO will make it easier to check if they are well-optimized or not.
Wordfence Security – Wordfence Security is yet another important plugin that’ll make your WordPress website more secure.
WPForms – Adding forms on different web pages can be extremely challenging. Fortunately, WPForms will help you create interactive forms without any hassle.
These are three of the most important WordPress plugins that every website owner should add. Follow these steps to add a new plugin to your website.
Step 1 – Open your WordPress Dashboard and select “Plugins” under the “Appearance” tab.
Step 2 – Click the “Add New” button and use the search bar to find the plugin that you’re looking for.
Step 3 – Once you’ve found the right plugin, simply click the “Install Now” button to install it to your WordPress website.
Step 4 – After the installation process completes, you’ll have to click the “Activate” button to activate it.
That’s how quick and easy it is to add different plugins to a WordPress website.
So, that concludes our guide on how to set up a new WordPress website from scratch. The best part is that we didn’t ask you to write even a single line of code while creating your website. And, since you executed a DIY-approach, you didn’t have to spend thousands of dollars as “development cost” to get the website up and running. After this, you can dive into advanced WordPress tutorials to further tweak the overall design of your website and make it more professional.