The art of designing websites is similar to building a house. Everyone knows that you cannot have a house built without a solid foundation. If you somehow manage to build a house without one, it will lead to disaster and can hurt people later on.
Website designing is similar. If the back-end (foundation) is not configured and built properly, the website can crash later on it its life. This document aims to guide you, in setting up the foundation of your website so that you avoid headaches later on.
WordPress is a good content management system (CMS) for managing digital content hosted on a database somewhere. These digital contents are text data and hyperlinks. The wordpress system itself stores media files in its local directory and provides links to it which are stored in the database. This makes the wordpress system versatile and very useful.
Step 1: Basic Hosting Setup (Website and Database)
All websites created using the wordpress CMS needs to be hosted on a server somewhere. There are a lot of companies out there who provide this service. They are willing to host your website files but they will charge you for it. Most of them don’t only host the website files but they also host the website’s database. Apart from hosting the website files and database, they also provide support whenever your website runs into errors.
Database hosting is as equally important as website hosting in the sense that all links and text data for your websites are stored in there as well as sensitive user information.
These are some of the best web hosting companies on the internet today:
Step 2: Post Installation Tasks
After finding a suitable host for your website files and database, you need to make a list of the things that you will be featuring in your website. All of these come under post installation tasks and they are listed below:
- What type of information will you be displaying on your website?
- How often would you be updating the content on your site?
- Consider linking your site to social media. This will enhance your readership and get more people to view your website.
Step 3: Choosing a Theme
Choosing a theme for your website is part of step 2: Post installation tasks but since it is really important you choose the best theme to portray your business concept, it has been take out as step 3. There are tonnes of themes out there for wordpress. Some of these themes are free while others will cost you some money. Most free themes contain basic support for wordpress sites, but to get the most out of your theme, you will have to buy a premium version of the theme. Some themes are provided as basic barebones for those who love the idea of creating their own theme. There are resources out there on the Internet which guide individuals or teams who are interested in developing their own themes.
A theme is very important because it can make or break your organisation’s image. If the theme is mobile/user friendly, it will boost your user activity and such on the internet but if its not it will drive away visitors to your site and as a result you will lose your potential customers. A theme is there for your first impression to a first time viewer to your website. If s/he enjoys the visit, they will come back for more. However, if the user experience is terrible, they will not return.
You can find thousands of wordpress themes in the theme repository here: www.wordpress.org/themes.
Step 4: Plugins
Plugins add enhanced features to your website. Some examples of plugins are the enhanced function of adding different slideshows on every page on your website. Other plugins can allow you to embed youtube videos or google maps or even interactive games and carousel sliders. There are millions of wordpress plugins out there. Most of them are free but others which have extended functionalities and capabilities will cost you money to get the special features.
You can find thousands of wordpress plugins in the plugin repository here: www.wordpress.org/plugins
Step 5: You’re done – Summary
The WordPress Content Management System was built on a blogging platform, therefore, it is very handy if you are trying to build for yourself and/or your organization a blogging website. The codes are easy to master and there are tonnes of resources out there which can help you from getting started to becoming an expert wordpress developer.
It shouldn’t be a problem running and managing a wordpress website once you’ve master the basics and that you have all of your foundations configured properly. Ofcourse, you will need some understanding of website designing and web standards including web technologies to help you also on your way to producing and managing an effective website.