WordPress is the most popular CMS (standing for Content Management System) on the web at the moment. It has earned its popularity because it’s an easy to use beginner-friendly platform, which also has a lot of advanced customization options for web programmers and developers.
When you are about to use WordPress for the first time, there are some basic things you should be aware of:
Installation of WordPress
WordPress itself is free and there are no recurring costs. However, if you want to create your own blog, you have to purchase a domain, and web hosting. The domain should be something relevant to the topic of your blog.
When you get hosting from a big provider, you will have the option to install WordPress from the control panel, just by making one click. All of the modern hosting companies, give the opportunity to install famous CMS’s automatically.
However, if your web hosting provider does not have a one-click WordPress installation, you will need to download the WP archive file from WordPress’ official website and upload it onto the web hosting provider’s server, where it will install automatically.
Create ‘About’ and ‘Contact’ Pages
Before you begin writing for your blog, you should create these two pages, to gain credibility. This way people will be able to read a paragraph or two about who you are and how they can contact you if they have something interesting to share or ask you.
The most important thing to keep in mind when creating your ‘About’ page is to be sincere and sound like a real person, not some made up character.
I know that you’re really keen on writing your first post, but you need to take care of a few more things before sharing your knowledge with the world.
Plugins are perhaps WordPress’ most powerful tools which customize your blog, alongside themes. Plugins can take care of almost everything you can think of – from sharing your tweets automatically, to advanced SEO options.
You can install plugins from the ‘Plugins’ submenu on your sidebar, by selecting ‘Add New’. There you can navigate through pages of different and useful WordPress plugins.
Create your first blog post
For the most part, you will be using posts for creating new content pages on your blog, but sometimes, you might have to create a page or two, just like you did with the ‘About’ and ‘Contacts’ pages.
The main difference is that posts are somehow like magazine articles: only the newest pose interest to your readers. Pages, on the other hand, are a type of posts that you want your audience to always be aware of – they will be always visible on your blog menu no matter when you’ve created them.
If you are used to writing your articles on MS Word, or any other popular text processor, you will be very pleased to know that WordPress’ pages and posts give you a reasonable text processor, with lots of customization options for text size, fonts, colors, alignment, and so on.
Try Different Things
These are the basics, but they are not something that you should always stick to. The best way to see what your audience likes is to experiment. Try new themes, plugins, paragraph alignments and so on.
Stimulate your audience to tell you which blog design and sidebar widget fancies them the most and which they don’t like. Remember that the most important thing about your blog is your readers, so try to always be in touch with them.
Now it’s all about you. You can do whatever you want with your blog. You can install new themes, add sidebar widgets, get new plugins, create categories and tags for your posts and so on. From now on, everything you can do will only give you valuable experience and will help your blog progress.