When WordPress was created several years ago as a blogging tool, nobody could have envisaged that it would grow into the software that powers millions of websites around the world. It is estimated that 20% of websites world wide are now powered by WordPress. More and more people want to use WordPress so here are the basics.
WordPress is a very flexible website software that you can use to create beautiful websites and blogs. It is open source software, created by volunteers, so the first thing you will need to do is to download a copy to install at your webhost. That said, many hosting packages already include WordPress and several other content management packages that will self-install in one mouse click. So it is best when choosing a host to select one which includes WordPress to avoid downloading and installing.
When you have installed WordPress, you will need to choose a theme which will determine the overall look and feel of your website. There are a few standard themes included with the installation, and there are thousands more, many of them free, which can be downloaded.
When you first log in to WordPress, you may be overwhelmed by the number of optional settings that are available to enable you to customize how the package operates and ultimately how your website looks, but at first just leave all the options on default and you should not have too many problems.
Plug-ins are just about essential for a successful WordPress website. They are add-on software packages which improve performance in all sorts of ways. For example, improving security, building lists, tracking visitors and search engine optimization to name a few.
If you think that as a website package that WordPress is too big for your project, and you find all the administration screens confusing, you can visit WordPress.com where WordPress sites are hosted free of charge and minimal technical knowledge is needed to get your site up and running.
It doesn’t matter if you choose to host WordPress on your own host, or to use WordPress.com, either way, planning your website will be important. Working out what pages you will need, assigning them to categories, and sketching out your website structure will be invaluable when it actually comes to start building your WordPress site.
This is just a basic introduction on how to use WordPress. There is almost unlimited information available online, and several good books to read as well, which will help you get the very best out of this very comprehensive website package.