If you are looking to develop a website for yourself or for your organization, you’ve landed on the right page. Previously, starting a website was almost a nightmare, especially when you are not so tech-savvy. But nowadays, starting a website has gotten easier by the year, and now it’s a breeze. All you have to do is blindly follow this comprehensive step by step guide on how to make a website. Ok – not literally blindly, else you would fall into a deep slumber.
This all-inclusive guide will prove useful for people of all age groups and skill levels. However, if you need any help, please feel free to contact our expert team and we will be more than glad to assist you.
If you think you can do it by yourself, then please follow our step by step guide on how to make a website.
Listed below is an overview from start to finish, of all the steps we will be covering in this guide.
- How to find and register a domain name for free
- Choosing the best web hosting
- How to install WordPress
- Installing a template to change your site’s design
- Creating pages in WordPress
- Customizing WordPress with add ons and extensions
- Resources to learn WordPress and get support
- Taking it further, building websites with more features
Before we begin, let’s look at some of the most common questions that you should be aware of:
What do I need to create a website?
To know how to build a website from scratch, you will require the following three things:
- A domain name – the name of your website, such as www.yourdomainname.com.
- WordPress hosting – Online estate where your website files are stored.
- 45 minutes of your time and attention, with two coffee breaks.
Which is the best platform to create a website?
Although there are many online website builders that help you set up a website, we highly recommend you to use self-hosted WordPress as your website platform. Why, you may ask – the reason is quite simple. WordPress happens to be the most popular website platform available today, powering 28% of all the websites on earth.
Good news is……WordPress is free and it comes with thousands of website designs, extensions and other irresistible goodies. It is highly flexible and works with almost every third-party tool and service available.
How to make the most out of this tutorial?
This is a very simple and detailed step by step tutorial on how to make a website. We have presented this elaborative tutorial as a step by step guide to design a website, so that it is easy to understand for beginners and novices. If you just follow along the instructions, you’ll end up having a very professional looking website in the end. If you’ve long been wondering on how to build a great website by yourself, you’ve landed on the right page.
Also, if you want to take your website to the next level, we are always ready to help you! If you ever need any help, feel free to get in touch with us; we will even set up your website at a very nominal rate.
Go ahead, get started. Have fun, and learn how to create a website of your own.
Step 1. Setup
Choosing the wrong website platform is one of the most common mistakes that beginners make. Thank your stars you are here, so you will not be making that mistake.
If you ask us or any expert, they will tell you that a self-hosted WordPress.or site is the perfect solution. With its thousands of designs and add-ons, it allows you to create all kinds of websites.
WordPress is free for everyone to use and build any kind of website, without any restrictions.
Next in the setup process comes the domain name. A domain name the address of your website on the internet. This is what the users will have to type to reach your website. (For example, www.zenwebnet.com or www.blueastral.com) Ideally, go for a .com domain name, and ensure it is related to your business, easy to pronounce and spell, and easier to recollect.
You’ll next need website hosting. As a matter of fact, all websites on the internet need hosting. This is your website’s home address on the internet. Usually, a domain name costs around Rs. 499/year and hosting costs start from Rs.4500/year. We hope this is not a lot for people who are just starting out. Thankfully Zen Webnet offers domain names at just Rs. 199/year and 3200/year for web hosting charges.
Go ahead and purchase a domain name and hosting. After you have successfully purchased your domain name and hosting, you will receive an email with details on how to login to your web hosting control panel (cpanel). This will be your dashboard from where you can control and manage everything like support, set up,emails, etc. More importantly, this is where you will install WordPress.
Step 2. Install WordPress
On your dashboard, you will find thousands of icons to do different things. Even if you have all the time in the world, don’t bother about them. You will never need to use 98% of them, so you can safely ignore them and invest your time in better places.
The only thing you need to be know is to scroll down to the website section in the cpanel and click on the WordPress icon to install it. Select the domain name where you want to install WordPress.
Now you need to enter your website name, admin username and a password for your website. And obviously, you can change them later in WordPress settings as and when you please.
Next, click on the ‘Install’ button and you should be good to go!
Once the installation is complete, it will take you to your WordPress login page.
Congratulations! You have successfully created your first WordPress website.
You can now happily head over to your WordPress login page. Your login URL will look something like this: http://www.yourdomain.com/wp-admin
Login to your WordPress site using your admin username and password entered earlier.
Easier than expected? – Yes, we know!
Now let’s move on to the next step and choose a dashing design for your website.
Step 3. Select Your Theme
How beautiful your website looks depends totally on how beautiful you want it to look. You can customize your website design to please your eyes or the eyes of your audience. The visual appearance of your website is determined by a WordPress theme. There are tons of WordPress themes which are professionally designed templates that you can install on your website to alter its appearance.
By default, every WordPress website comes with a basic theme, and that is not so appealing to most users. But why worry when you have thousands of free and paid WordPress themes to choose from.
To change your theme from your WordPress admin dashboard, just head to Appearance > Themes page and click on the ‘Add New’ button.
You should now be able to view and search from 4500 free WordPress themes available in the WordPress.org themes directory. You can conveniently browse and see which theme suits you the best.
As an example, let’s take the Bento theme. It’s a popular multi-purpose free WordPress theme with flexible design options for all kinds of websites. If you happen to know the theme name or the type (like black, minimalistic, colorful, business, etc.), you can look for it by entering the keyword or name in the search field. When you find your desired theme in the search results, you need to simply install it.
Once installed, you can customize it by clicking on the Customize link under the Appearance Menu. This will launch the theme customizer where you will be able to change your theme settings along with the live preview of your website.
You don’t need to stress out and finalize all theme settings right away. Once you have some content ready in hand, you will be able to decide better.
Let’s now learn how to add content to your WordPress site.
Step 4. Add Content to Your Site
WordPress has two default content types – posts and pages. Posts are part of a blog and appear in an order where newer items are displayed first.
By default, WordPress displays your blog posts on the front page of your website, which you can change to any page you like.
If you want, you can create a separate page for your blog section or news section. You can also create a website without any blog or news section at all – totally up to you.
Now, let’s see how to add some content to your website.
You’ll start by adding a few pages. Don’t worry if you don’t have sufficient content for the pages at the moment. You can edit, add content and update them whenever you like.
Head to Pages > Add New page in the WordPress admin tab and it will bring you to the page editor screen.
Initially, you need to provide a title for your ‘Home’ page. You can now add content in the text editor below. You can also add text, images, links, embed audio and video, etc. You may repeat the process by adding more pages for different sections of your site.
Once you are done adding content to your pages, you can click on the publish button for each page, to make it live on your website.
For adding a few blog posts, head over to Posts > Add New in your WordPress admin area. Add a post title, content and images in the visual post editor. You can also use the extra options like post formats, tags and categories. You may choose to save your post as a draft or publish to make it visible on your website
Step 5. Customizing and Tweaking Your Website
After you have created some content on your website, you can customize and put it all in a more presentable manner on your website. Let’s start by setting up a static front page.
Setting up a Static Front Page
Visit Settings > Reading page in your WordPress admin area. Go to ‘Front page displays’ option and click on the static front page and then select ‘Pages’ you created earlier for your home and blog pages. And then click on ‘Save Changes’ button at the bottom to save your changes.
WordPress will use the page titled ‘Home’ as your site’s front page and ‘Blog’ page to display your blog posts.
Change Site Title and Tagline
During the installation process you must have come across the option to choose your site’s title. WordPress adds a dummy tag line to your site title that says ‘Just another WordPress site’. Usually, the tagline is a one-liner that describes your website. You can change your site’s title as well as the tagline at any time by going to Settings > General page. If you wish, you can also leave the tag line field blank. And then don’t forget to click on the save button to store your settings.
Set up Comments Settings
WordPress has a built-in comment system that allows users to leave their comments on the posts. This is very useful for user engagement, but it can be targeted by spammers too. For this, you’ll need to enable comment moderation on your website. To do that, head to Settings > Discussions page and go down to ‘Before a comment appears’ section. Tick the box next to ‘Comment must be manually approved’ option. And then please save your new settings.
Create Navigation Menus
Navigation menus allow your users to visit different pages or sections on your website. WordPress has a powerful navigation menu system and your WordPress themes uses this system to display menus.
Let’s learn to add a navigation menu now.
Visit Appearance > Menu page. Name your navigation menu and click on the Create Menu button. WordPress will create your navigation menu, but it will be empty initially. Next, you’ll need to select the pages you want to display in your menu and click on ‘Add to Menu’ button. You will see the selected pages filling the empty area of your navigation menu. You can move them up and down to rearrange their order in the menu.
Now, you will need to select a display location. These locations are determined by your WordPress theme. Generally, most WordPress themes have a primary menu on the top. Finally, save your navigation menu settings.
Step 6. Installing Plugins
Plugins in WordPress are like apps for your WordPress site that allow you to add features to your WordPress site. Like contact form, chatbot, photo galleries, etc. More than 49,000 free WordPress plugins are available for download. There are some paid plugins sold by third-party websites and developers too.
With these many plugins at your disposal you may find it hectic to understand which plugins to install. So we have assembled some essential plugins you should install on your site right away. And the best part – all of them are free.
- WPForms Lite – Lets you to add a contact form to your WordPress site.
- Envira Gallery Lite – Lets you add beautiful image galleries to your WordPress site
- Soliloquy Lite – Displays beautiful image sliders on your website
- Yoast SEO – Enhance your WordPress SEO and generate more traffic from Google
- WP Super Cache – Boost your website speed by serving cached pages
- Updraft Plus – Create automatic scheduled backups of your website
- Sucuri – Great website security audit and malware scanner
Step 7. Mastering WordPress
WordPress is such an expansive and powerful web development tool that from time to time you may find yourself looking for some quick answers. But the good news is that you will find plenty of free WordPress help available. Or you may contact us, if you are lazier.
So far we have understood how to make a website, add a theme, and install essential plugins. If you want to take it one step further, you can explore other tools like add an eCommerce store, start your own podcast, create a membership website, create a web directory, create a coupons website, build a reviews website, create multilingual websites, create a job board website, create a question and answers website, create a wiki knowledge base website.
That’s all for now. Until you read our next blog, Adios Amigos!