WordPress is one of the most versatile web-building tools in existence. Well-known brands ranging from The New York Times to CNN use WordPress as a tool for creating and maintaining their websites. WordPress is, in fact, the most widely-used content management system (CMS) in the world!
With premium themes and endless design flexibility, WordPress is an incredible tool for beginning and amateur web designers. Users can design visually stunning websites with little or no HTML or CSS coding knowledge. Beginners can build a website exclusively through WordPress intuitive web design interface. Over 30,000 free plug-ins are available for use on WordPress, too! These plug-ins, ranging from Google Analyticator to WordPress SEO, can be used to customize your website in dozens of ways and optimize your site’s performance.
Simply put, WordPress is an incredible web design toolkit! With WordPress, you have endless potential to customize your website and improve it, even to professional levels. In this guide, I’ll show you how to setup a WordPress account!
WordPress.com Versus WordPress.org: Which Is For Me?
Newbies to WordPress are often confused by the fact that there are two WordPress websites out there: WordPress.com and WordPress.org. Both sites are legitimate and are run by the same company. The main difference is the depth of customization allowed by each site.
Some beginners opt for WordPress.com. With this version of the web design program, users can focus on content creation without worrying too much about the “nitty-gritty” of web design.
In this tutorial, however, I’ll be focusing on WordPress.org. With WordPress.org, users can install custom themes, build their own websites with CSS and PHP, install plug-ins, and much more. Unlike WordPress.com, WordPress.org requires that users find their own website hosts and perform site maintenance and backups on their own.
I’ll be showing you how to install and setup WordPress on your domain’s website hosting plan.
Connecting WordPress to Your Web Hosting Plan
To begin using WordPress.org, you will need to use an independent web hosting service. If you do not yet have a website hosting provider, consider looking for one that will best meet your hosting needs.
These how-to instructions are based on a template used by many hosting and domain registration websites. If your web host uses the standard cPanel interface (used by a number of well-known web hosting companies), then these instructions will likely be very easy for you to follow. Even if your host uses a different interface, the procedure should be fairly similar for your host provider.
1.) I’m going to go through the WordPress installation process using my host’s cPanel interface. This option will most likely be available to you, as it’s offered by almost all of the leading hosting companies today. If you have cPanel available to you, I’d definitely recommend that you use it. There’s simply no reason to struggle with the complex manual installation process if you can easily install WordPress with cPanel. Begin by logging into cPanel. You should be able to do so using your login details from your web hosting account.
2.) Search through the dozens of cPanel icons until you see the one titled “Fantastico De Luxe.” If you’re struggling to find the icon, consider sorting the icons by section. My web host lists Fantastico De Luxe under the “Software and Services” category.
3.) Click on the Fantastico De Luxe icon. This should bring up a long list of sites and services. After a little bit of scrolling, you should come across “WordPress” on the list. Click on it.
4.) Select the “New Installation” option on your screen. This should bring up a long WordPress installation form. Though this form might look complicated, it’s actually fairly simple to complete.
- Under “Installation location” there will be an option titled “Install on domain.” This section of the form should already be filled out with your website’s correct domain name. If, for whatever reason, your domain name is not yet listed in this box, type it in now.
- You don’t need to put anything in the “Install in directory” box. You can leave this section of the form blank.
- Under the “Admin access data” section, type in the username and password you want to use for your account. Be sure to write this information down for later access.
- The “Base configuration” section should be easy to complete as well. If you plan on being the site administrator, simply put your name in the “Admin nickname” box. Put your primary or business email address in the “Admin email” box. Make sure that you don’t link your account to a junk email address! If you ever forget your login details, you’ll need access to this email account to reset your WordPress password.
You can fill out the “Site name” and “Description” sections in any way you desire. This information won’t affect the installation process.
5.) Click the “Install WordPress” button when you’re done filling out the first page of the form. You’ll now be brought to a screen with your MySQL database details. If this information seems irrelevant to you at this stage of the process, don’t sweat it. I’d recommend saving this information for future reference, though. You might need these details someday in the future.
6.) You can now click the “Finish Installation” button. After a brief moment’s time, you should be shown a screen that tells you that your WordPress installation has been configured.
There’s some very important information on this screen, so don’t close it just yet! The full URL for the admin area of your WordPress site should be listed near the bottom of your screen. Be sure to bookmark this link for easy access! Consider copying this link along with your username and password into a Word document for safe-keeping.
7.) You’re probably excited to start designing your new WordPress website, aren’t you? I was, too! If you’ve just registered your domain, however, it might be a little while before you can begin adding content and graphics to your new website. If you click the admin area URL and find that you’re getting an error stating that the “page cannot be displayed,” you’ll probably need to wait a day or two before you can get started with your new WordPress site. It generally takes between 24 and 48 hours for a newly-registered domain to appear on the internet. If, however you registered your domain a while ago, you may be able to get started more quickly.
8.) If your domain has been registered for a while, click on the URL to access the admin area of your site. You should now see the login page for your brand-new WordPress site!
9.) Type in the username and password that you created during the WordPress installation process. Click the “log in” button and wait a moment. The WordPress dashboard should soon appear before you!
10.) Congratulations! Your WordPress website is now up, running, and ready to be filled with content! By clicking on your domain name in the upper left corner of your screen, you can view your website as it currently appears. For now, it will probably have a simple theme and some sample text. The site is now ready to be customized to your heart’s desire.
Feel free to play around with the many customization tools offered by WordPress. You can now begin building your new WordPress website. Have fun!