What is wordpress?

What is wordpress

What is wordpress?

This articles cover to let you know everything about wordpress.

One of the popular content management systems that aid you into making your own blog or website. Almost around 39.5% of all the sites that you can find on the internet are powered by WordPress. This platform possesses GPLv2 licence. So it is available for free to everyone that they can make use of it or modify it for their purpose. So it actually becomes a cake-walk for you to develop your own website or blog with WordPress while managing all the contents as well. You will indeed not need any prerequisite knowledge of computer programming to use WordPress.  That is, even if you are not a developer, you can still build your website with WordPress.

Initially bloggers were using WordPress prominently. But at present the usage of  WordPress has extended to creating a lot of Business websites, Blogs, Resumes, Forums, Social Networks, Portfolios, Membership Sites and what not! 

So, how did WordPress happen? It was in the year 2003 when WordPress was developed as an independent software. The original version of WordPress was an alliance between Mike Little and Matt Mullenweg. Later then, a lot of contributions were made towards WordPress and that might be the reason for bringing up this open source content management system as one of the best solutions to create a website or blog. 

Why Do We Recommend WordPress? 

  • WordPress, as we know already, is an open source content management system available for free. There are a lot of open source themes and plug-ins that you can avail to make your page look unique.
  • Without being an expert in programming languages, you can make changes to how your website looks with WordPress. Themes can modify the website atmosphere while plugins can modify the way your site functions. For example, Plugins are used while developing an eCommerce store. At present, WordPress offers more than 50,000 plugins and around 5000 themes for free. 
  • WordPress is a flexible open source CMS tool wherein you can develop any type of website while letting the same evolve in time.
  • There are a lot of tutorials, blogs and other sources of help if you need any incase you encounter any issues with WordPress.

Getting Started

  1. Domain Names

We usually use domain name to let the users identify our website. It is a part of the URL.  Choosing the right domain name might seem a little difficult. This is because if you own a brand that is named with common english words, then finding a domain name with the same words might be difficult as it would’ve been taken already. It is commonly advised that you choose a domain name that is short and crisp. Moreover what you do with your website matters more despite the fact that branding is important.

If you are genuinely into branding, then you can probably register your domain so that you get a legal ownership of the site. The registration, by default, is usually for one year. If you have enough funds and at the same time if you are very much serious about taking your brand to another level, then you may even get your domain registered for five or six years. To remind you about the security issues, it is always better to keep your domain and hosting account separately. If someone could get into your hosting, then there might be a possibility of your domain being completely taken away somewhere leaving you empty handed. 

2. Hosting Packages

You can choose either of the three options that are given below

  • Shared Hosting
  • VPS Hosting
  • Managed WordPress Hosting

Shared hosting might seem to be a good option because you can use a single serve to house a number of websites while you can afford it with just $5 per month. But still, it comes with a number of negative factors. One of them is the bad-neighbor effect. This means that any attack targeting a single website might end up affecting the other websites as well making them unavailable. This obviously affects the security and is often unpredictable. Some of the companies from whom you can avail the shared hosts are A Small Orange, Inmotion Hosting, MediaTemple and SiteGround.

VPS is Virtual Private Server. It works more like the shared hosting but it keeps away the negative aspects of the shared hosting. Attacks may happen but in most of the cases it is predictable because the usage percentage is equally divided between the number of users accessing the same servers. For example, four users can get access to 25% of the assets each. So the attackers will have a very feeble chance of getting access to the other websites even if they attack one website. If you have enough funds you can choose VPS. Some of the providers for VPS are A Small Orange, Linode, MediaTemple, SiteGround and Vultr.

Opting for managed WordPress Hosting is like availing your website from WordPress.com. The whole construction of the server has been regulated to toil with WordPress effectively. This might be a safer and faster option. It provides automatic updates as well as server-level caching. Besides this, you can expect WordPress-specific support that is completely professional. One of the downsides of this option is that it is not as flexible as the other two options and some of the plugins might be disabled for security concerns. Flywheel, Kinsta, Pantheon, MediaTemple and WPEngine are the providers of managed hosting. 

3. WordPress Installation

If you have managed WordPress Host, you can probably get through this step by simply filling up a form followed by the installation of WordPress to your account. 

But when it comes to VPS, you are left with two options: One-click installation and Manual installation. Most of the hosts usually provide tools for making the installation easier. Even if you would like to take up the manual option, it will not turn out to be difficult. You will have to transfer all the files to the Domain folder as soon as you are done with downloading WordPress. Later, make a database and place the browser to the domain. You will now have to follow the instructions that are displayed on the screen. 

4. All About Themes And Plugins

Let us begin with Plugins. Plugins are usually used for making the website function in a specific way. So you will have to choose a plugin depending on the type of website you want to develop. Plugins are usually correlated to the theme and the backend of WordPress when it comes to functioning. 

If you are to start a business website, then you can probably opt for WooCommerce. At present this is the standard plugin for ecommerce sites. When it comes to developing a forum, bbPress might be a good option. This allows the developer and the users to comment and reply. BuddyPress is another plugin for making a website for social networks. 

Once you are done with the base plugins, you can add contents at the backend to make your page look more appealing. It is to be noted that some of the themes may not support these plugins. So you can test the plugins with the basic themes that suit your website.

Now about the themes. Choosing the perfect theme to suit your website might be a tedious task. Because there is nothing called a perfect theme in WordPress. If at all you find it perfect for your purpose, then it’ll be short of some other features that another user may want. You can get a developer to make a theme of your choice but it is again going to be expensive. If you have enough funds, you can get your own theme. Otherwise you will have to make some compromises. 

Themes, as we know, add on good looks to the page.  They also include the error page, search page, archive and many more. Here are some of the basic guidelines for selecting a good theme:

Make sure if the theme has got sound readability,effortless navigation and elegant design style.

  • It should possess fast code.
  • A secured theme is always preferable.
  • The selected theme should work well with the WordPress’ latest version.
  • It should support the widely used plugins.
  • The theme should undergo development actively.
  • Documentation should be made easier with the theme.

Talking about plugins again, here are some of the essential plugins. 

  • All in one SEO Pack is something you’ll need if you gotta optimize your contents to make it appear easily across the search results. With this, it will be possible for you to have the Google result preview for your page. 
  • Dropbox backup and restore is another plugin that automatically backs up and restores the files and databases. All your files and database will be dropped in your dropbox or in any local storage. 
  • VaultPress is yet another plugin for backing up your files. As it is handled by WordPress it totally fuses with the system. 
  • Akismet is an in-built plugin that comes along with the installation of WordPress. It takes care of your comments session such that no spamming happens there. So Akismet is basically a spam protector.
  • And now comes the monster plugin, Jetpack. Despite the fact that it occupies a larger space than WordPress, it offers greater features like improvised galleries, buttons for social sharing, contact forms and what not.
  • Ninja Forms make it easier for you to add on any kind of form to your website to collect information.

There are a lot of other plugins and you can probably find them all in the repository. If you are likely to replace any of these, you can find the replacements in there.

5. Secure Your WordPress

Here are two simple guidelines to keep your WordPress safe from hackers. 

Keep all the Plugins and the WordPress updated.

Choose sturdy passwords and keep changing it every two months.

Hackers usually take up the easiest path to attack. The above guidelines may help you keep your WordPress safe.

6. Home Page

Make a dynamic home page with WordPress to receive a greater audience. The default home page usually displays the recent ten posts in the beginning. If at all you want to give information about yourself or the company or the brand, you can create a separate page for it and make it the home page in the settings. All you gotta do is choose the “Reading” Section in the settings.

7. About Page

If you are using WordPress for your personal website, you can probably talk about yourself in the about section so that the audience might get to know you. The branding websites usually have details about the company in the about page. This section is of more importance if you see it from the visitor perspective.

8. Contact Page

For this section, you can use some kind of form with Ninja forms and get your contact information displayed there. There is also an option to bring in Google Maps to show your location on the page.

9. Ecommerce Page

You should legally include contact details, privacy policy, terms of service and refund policy in your website if it is going to be an ecommerce site. The content you are going to put in there should be in a way that you keep it like a promise. The payment providers always look for such information to integrate with your ecommerce. These contents will make the visitors feel secured as well.

10. Cookie Handling

There is a law called “Cookie Law” passed by the European Union by which the website should provide information on how the cookies work. It is better if you include a separate page for it in your website. There are even plugins that provide information about cookies to the users automatically.

11. Website Analytics

This is usually for finding out the reach of your website so that you can reach out to certain advertisers to take the website’s value to a greater level. Google Analytics is a fairly good tool that tracks the number of visitors to your website. It also collects information of the time they spend on your site and the number of pages they visit.

You can use such data to analyse your website’s performance. You will get to know at what time your website seems active or when it is low. You can probably schedule your uploads or improvise your contents based on this to receive a larger audience. 

Final Words

There is still a lot more left to explore about WordPress. This article might be of good use for the beginners. WordPress is one of the user friendly content management systems that you can always rely upon.

You can read more on content marketing