We may earn money or products from the companies mentioned in this post, but this does NOT cost you anything extra! Check out my full disclosure for more info.
Installing WordPress is the next step of getting your website up and running.
If you don’t know what WordPress is or what it does, you are in the right place!
Before installing, you might want to understand a little more about WordPress. If you already know about WordPress, skip around to find other useful information.
If you search around the internet, you could take weeks or months to understand everything with this software. The hope is that you only have to read this to understand how to use it.
What is WordPress?
To start, we need to know what WordPress is a Content Management System (CMS). Not only that, but as of this writing, WordPress is used in over 455 MILLION websites!
Simply put, a CMS allows you to build a website and publish content on it. A perfect example is this website you are currently on!
There are many things you can do with WordPress. A few of them include:
- You can easily navigate to and around the website you create
- Add content (including adding videos and photos to your pages and posts)
- Multiple ways to manage and structure your content (mainly depending on the theme you choose)
- Various options to customize how your site works and what it looks like (by using addons called plugins)
Until this point, if you have read the previous posts, you might realize that setting up your own website isn’t as overwhelming as you thought.
Another neat thing about WordPress is that it’s always improving. It does this by using open-source software.
What Is Open-Source Software?
There are many open-source software sources, but WordPress is one of them.
With open-source, everyone can and is encouraged to use, alter, and build upon the program. And this makes for a better-improved platform and community.
The top three reasons open-source software is incredible:
- One of the best ways to get solutions to the problems we face (working in a group will achieve more than one person)
- Removes wasting time (nobody wants to have to reinvent the wheel)
- Everyone can participate, and therefore it’s inclusive (we all have our own talents and can help the software)
So what can you do with WordPress? It’s really more about what you cannot do with it.
Do you want to build a blog? That’s awesome and what WordPress was originally built for!
WordPress has flexibility, and it’s not just for blogging. Here are some additional sites you can build using WordPress:
- News sites
- Membership sites
- Niche sights such as photography
- Online stores (also called eCom)
- Any business site
- Discussion forums
As you can see, there really is no limit on what direction you can go.
There are many other sites you can build, as the above list is just an example of what you can do. Again, you can do so much because it’s easy to customize this to your specific needs.
What Does WordPress Cost?
This might be the best answer you will get. WordPress is FREE!
You will never have to pay for a license to use it.
Add to it that most hosting companies (like Bluehost) make downloading it very straightforward. Oftentimes only a click of a button.
Two Different Versions of WordPress
There is something you need to be aware of. WordPress does have two different versions.
The better and more popular version is WordPress.org. I mention this because the other version of WordPress, such as WordPress.com, have paid plans available.
You will want to know the differences between the .org and .com versions.
I will do my best to break share the differences between them below.
If you want my advice, I suggest the .org version (and what I will be focusing on in this post).
Three differences between the versions of WordPress:
- Who is hosting your site
- Are you going to monetize your site? If so, you need the .org version.
Here is a way to understand the differences between the two versions. When looking at the .com version, think of it as renting a house. You will have limited power and control over what you can and cannot do, but you also don’t have to worry much about it.
- Your hosting is taken care of.
- Your domain registration is included.
- The free version will have ads.
- You will have limited domain options (free version).
- Restricted ownership, similar to renting a home.
- Maintenance (such as updates, backups, and security) is taken care of automatically.
Now for the other side of the coin. Retaking the house rental, let’s look at owning your house. In this case, the .org version, you will be in full control of everything.
- You are in full control.
- You will have full ownership of your site.
- You are responsible for finding hosting (meaning you will have to pay for your hosting and domain registration)
- Many different custom domain options
- You will have maintenance responsibility (you have to take care of all updates, backups, and security)
As I mentioned, having control and ownership of your site is important. It’s common to use the .org version of WordPress, as it provides you with the most control.
But, like everything in life, you need to make your own decision.
Quick Side Note: It might also be a quick plug to get you to sign up with Wealthy Affiliate.
If you choose to give them a try, you will be using the .org WordPress version for your site.
Whether you choose to use Wealthy Affiliate or not, you can always check out how easy setting your website up with this post, getting your site up in less than a minute.
Watch the video, and you will see for yourself.
How To Get WordPress Up and Running
Now for the information, you are really interested in. How do you go about getting your site up and running?
Well, WordPress happens after you have your domain name and hosting account set up. If you don’t have these two important things done, I will cover them quickly below.
That is awesome if you already have your domain name and hosting set up! You will be glad to know most hosting sites will walk you through the process.
Getting WordPress set up is very simple. It’s almost like it was designed that way. Who knew?
Picking your domain name can be tricky, but it doesn’t have to be. Just remember that your domain name is what people will type in when looking for your site (www.YourDomainName.com, for example).
When choosing a domain name, remember you want it to be easy to remember, short, and spell. Some ideas could include your business name, your personal name, the niche you choose.
I also suggest sticking with a TLD (the ending of your domain) of .com as everyone knows what it is.
I suggest you go to the hosting company website and check out the features they offer while deciding to go to the hosting company website. Many have different plans to suit many needs.
There are some things to look at when looking at hosting companies, such as
- Do they offer an SSL certificate (something I highly suggest)?
- Admin interface, so you can do edits and add things to the backend of your site.
- Do they support the themes you might be using (WordPress, for example)?
- How much does it cost?
- How many sites can you host with them?
- How easy is it to install WordPress? Many hosts offer simple one-click solutions, such as Bluehost
There are many other things to ask yourself, but my goal was to keep this short(er) post.
WordPress – First Things To Do
Here are a few things you want to do right after installing WordPress on your website.
Go into your admin or dashboard. You will get very familiar with this, but don’t worry, I’ll help you with it in later posts.
You will see many things on the left-hand side of the dashboard. Go to the “Users” tab. Here you want to make sure you change the temporary password and keep it safe. You do not want anyone getting on your site.
You do not have to change the default username, but it couldn’t hurt for added protection. All sites are set up with an “admin” username. This is also the first username hackers will try when attempting to get onto the backend of your site.
WordPress automatically sets up some default content. You can view it under the “Posts” tab, “Pages” tab, and even the “Comments” tab. Later, we will delete all this as you do not need or want it. But for now, it doesn’t hurt to keep it there.
Want to know how you can always get to the dashboard from anywhere?
Well, I got you.
Access your site anywhere you are by opening a web browser, such as Google, and typing in “YourDomainName.com/wp-admin.”
You can then log in with your username and password (the one you just changed and wrote down).
If you have further questions, let me know in the comments below.
It’s Time To Start
If you already have everything set up, you are off to the races!
I hope this has helped you understand WordPress and why you should have it on your site.
Having set up a few websites myself, I know a lot of work goes into it. Knowing how to navigate WordPress will help you build your page.
The previous posts I have written help you build a website. And they are there to remind me of what to do as well. I want to make sure I have this all dialed in to repeat it as needed easily. And you can too!
I know you have more questions, such as how you can customize your site and add content to your site?
Come back in a day or two, depending on when you find this page. I’m working on those two specific topics as we speak!
As always, if I missed anything or you have questions, let me know in the comments below!
Before I let you go, I have one last task for you. By now, you do or are close to having your own site up and running. In the comments below, leave a link to your site. That way, we all can check it out, offer suggestions, and help get yours on your way to getting traction with Google and other search engines.