How To Setup A WordPress Blog Or Website [Checklist] TinaBarnash.com
Getting your WordPress website or blog ready to rock can be a bit stressful. Especially if you have never done it before. But I assure you it’s not as difficult as it may seem. So, I am going to share my WordPress Setup Checklist to help you get your site up and running quickly.
This checklist will help you set up your WordPress site, whether it’s a blog or your business website. The set up is basically the same. However, in the few areas where there is a difference I’ll be sure to point that option out so you can come away with the style of site you want.
Now, I know you may not have the time, or the patience to set everything up all at once. So to make things easier I have broken my WordPress Setup Checklist down into 5 easy to manage parts. I recommend that you commit to completing 1 part each week. This will make the process less overwhelming. And by the time you complete the checklist you’ll have your website or blog set up and ready to greet visitors!
5 Steps To Set Up Your WordPress
Yes, that’s pretty much it. 5 basic steps to setting up your brand new WordPress blog or website. No coding, no techy, confusing junk. You don’t need to spend months or years to get a WP site or blog. And you don’t have to pay someone hundreds or thousands of dollars to set it up. No joke. I guarantee you it is easier than you think.
Even though we won’t be covering much of the actual, in depth instruction behind these steps in this post, I’ll show you the Checklist, or Blueprint if you will, for creating a WordPress website. This will help you know exactly what you need to take action on, and in what order, so you can go about building your website in an organized, efficient manner. Because most of the difficultiy comes from not knowing this.
WordPress Training Course
Now, before we begin I would like to let you in on something I have coming for you down the pipline for the near future. I am currently planning a WordPress Training Course to give you the exact, step by step “How To’s” for building your site. And I am going to make this training free, right here on my site. I am doing this because I really want to help people just like you, to walk you right through setting up your entire blog or business website. So I am creating a video training course to show you how to create your WordPress blog or website. The course will include detailed instruction for the WordPress Setup Checklist I am about to reveal to you.
From settings and plugins, to themes and finishing touches of your website, and even content, I intend to show you everything you need to build your WordPress website. The exact actions to take, exact instructions to make it all happen.
I’ll break it all down into managable chunks you can easily accomplish. You will be able to follow along as I show you exactly what to do every step of the way, so you won’t get confused or lost. We are going to have lots of fun building your WordPress site together. And show you how to do it for a fraction of the cost web designers and developers, or big companies will charge you.
Again, the training will be free. But there are expenses involved in setting up a WP site, like hosting, a theme, if you choose to buy one instead of using a free theme. And one of the plugins I recommend for helping you build your pages, and make those pages completely mobile friendly is paid. However, I assure you that my method will be far lest costly, yet just as effective as having your site built for thousands of dollars.
I am not going to name names, but you can easily pay thousands of dollars for fewer features, limited design capabilities, and a whole list of “less value, more stress”, nickle-and-dime-you to death and waste your time services. You generally come away from those deals with far less than you were promised, for a much higher price than you were initially promised, and months out from the timeframe they initially promised as well.
All for just basic features you could have done yourself, with a little help.
I do not want that to happen to you. It’s just un-necessary. You can get everything you need, those basic features plus a whole lot more, by simply following the no-brainer instructions I am planning to provide you with. And come away with the site you need at a cost you can afford.
The Hosting Service You Need
I even plan to reveal my “super-secret” hosting solution, practically hand you great hosting that is also a steal of a deal! Honestly, this is some seriously white-glove hosting services these guys provide. And at an extremely affordable rate (as in, less than you probably pay for coffee in a month). This little known gem of a hosting company is actually operated by the very guys who will set you up with your own hosting account, install WP for you, and be right there to support you any time of the day or night you need them. And if your website is ever hacked or goes down, they will do everything they can to get it back up and running fast!
I won’t recommend anything less that the best. I have this all set up and arranged so you can personally get in touch with my awesome hosting guys! They will be waiting to help you out. And that stellar service level doesn’t mean you have to put yourself in hock to get it either. Their pricing is highly affordable and totally scalable. So you’ll be in good hands as your business needs grow.
This will make your initial setup super easy. Your hosting and wordpress install practically done for you. I promise you it will be more than worth it.
Best WordPress Theme & Plugins You Can Get Your Hands On
I also want to show you the very best theme you can currently get for your WordPress site, in my opinion. And it’s not just me saying that; I actually use it on several of my own sites, and lots of experts like it too. This theme has it all; different versions of the core theme for niche specific design, fast load time, fully mobile friendly, highly sharable content, top-notch video display, big-time affiliate friendly, ecommerce friendly, with LOADS of options built right in…honestly the best theme I have ever seen for WordPress. Again, lots of experts and online businesses agree.
And I am going to tell you exactly what it is, where to get it, how to install it, how to set it up…even how to customize it to be exactly what you need!
WordPress is a great platform for your site, right out of the box. If you need extra features and functionality, just about anything you could need is avialable in the form of plugins. These are basically little programs you can install on your site that extend the core WordPress features. You are likely to want or need some of these, so I’ll show you the best plugins for just about any common function or feature you could ask for. Most are free. All are supported by trusted developers and kept up to date.
Like my Sticky Top Bar you see at the top of my site here? I’ll tell you how to get that too, along with another great option in case you need it!
Again, only the best recommendations, options, advice and training I can give. Always. End of subject.
Easiest Most Effective Affordable Way To Add Ecommerce To Your WP Site
Between my own websites and my clients’ sites, I’ve tried just about every ecommerce solution worth it’s salt. And now I want to share with you my #1 Go-To eCommerce Solution. It’s no big secret, Shopify is king, currently and for the foreseeable future. And Shopify has an amazing way to source products if you don’t have them, or would like to add a product line to your services, or existing products. NO inventory needed, NO upfront costs. Just good old dropshipping made simple. I’ve been doing this for years, so have a lot of successful online businesses. And it works. But shopify has really revolutionized dropshipping and made it so easy-I wish it had existed when I started out years ago.
So after we get your site up and going, I will show you how to set up a Shopify store and integrate it with your WP site so it looks seemless and functions flawlessly for your onsite sales. And if you want to dropship products, I’ll point you towards the information you need to get that set up too.
Real WordPress Training, Real Solutions To Your Needs
I want to show you all of this to help you get your website up and running fast, without the hassle, without paying super-inflated prices. Because I am really tired of having people come to me with these horrible stories about how they got taken by unscrupulous designers, developers and big corporations. I always feel so terrible for them, because they didn’t know any better and just simply got ripped off. This is just wrong. People don’t deserve to get treated like that. Plain and simple.
You deserve more. You deserve the best. You deserve control over your business, your website. You CAN have it, and I intend to show you exactly how.
This course is in the works, but it takes time to create a quality course like I have in store for you. So, in the meantime, if you are really interested in step by step, easy to follow WordPress setup instruction, if you are really ready to get it done, and you want all those great services and goodies I just mentioned, please feel free to Contact Me! I will be releasing the written version of my training course ahead of the video course for those who cannot wait to get started. And you will still be able to come take the video course when it becomes avialable!
I’ll also have lots of other informative training available for you, like Content Marketing, Branding, and Content Creation.
Okay, enough about the upcoming training for now. Let’s get you started with the…
WordPress Checklist I promised you.
So, these are the 5 Steps To Creating Your WordPress website or blog. Assuming of course that you have hosting in place, and have installed wordpress.
These 5 Steps are:
5.) Finishing Touches
To begin, simply login to your WordPress dashboard using the user name and password you created when you installed WP. You will be presented with a rather intimidating dashboard full of options and settings, but don’t worry, it is not as difficult as it seems.
Really quick before you start, know that WordPress comes with a lot of junk you don’t need. You can get rid of some of it, like deleting the “Hello Dolly” plugin, and the first demo post that WP automatically sets up called “Hello World!”.
Now lets’ cover some of the basics for your setup. I’m not going to go into every detail here in this post, just give you some important setup and settings information…
Spam Filter Setup
You don’t want a bunch of spam/junk to deal with, so the first thing you need to do is set up your spam filter. Fortunately, there is an awesome FREE plugin that takes care of all of that for you; Akismet. It should have come already pre-installed with your WordPress installation. You should take care of this now because technically, Akismet is part of your settings. So be sure to configure Akismet.
Navigate to the “Plugins” panel of your site; you’ll find this in the options in the sidebar to the left of your screen. Locate the Akismet plugin and look for the three options under the Akismet plugin; Settings, Deactivate & Edit. Look just to the right of that, and you will see some info about the plugin. You’ll also see where it says “to get started…set up your API key.” Click on the text link “your Akismet Settings page”. (See Image Below.)
You’ll be directed to the Akismet key configuration page.
Akismet makes this super simple, so just click on the blue button that says “Get Your API Key” and follow the instructions. You’ll be asked to set up and account (if you don’t already have one), and activate Akismet for your site.
Either way, once you have fully activated Akismet you’ll see the plugin settings panel. Tick the box next to “Show the number of approved comments…”, and under “Strictness” select the “Silently discard the worst spam…”, then click “Save Settings”.
Okay, so now you have your spam filter all set up. Let’s move on to the rest of your WordPress settings.
When you installed WordPress, you probably wound up with default username “admin” and some default generated password. If so, this is not the most secure setup. And since you cannot change a username once the user is set up, you will need to create a new user to ensure better security.
If however, you created a unique username and a good strong password (I recommend at least 20 characters) when you installed WP, you can skip this step. Just be sure to check your user settings and make sure that the email is the one you want to use.
Creating a new user is simple, and if you have someone else you want to add as a user you can use these instructions as well. Locate the “Users” option in the left sidebar and go to “Add New”. Once you have your new user all set up, proceed back to “All Users”, and delete the old user you set up when you installed WordPress. That will get rid of that unsecure user account.
An Important Note: I recommend changing your user(s) passwords every few months or so for optimal security. Just like your Paypal account password, email password, or other important accounts, be sure to update this too.
WordPress General Settings
Okay, so now you have a nice, secure user account. Now you need to make some changes to the default settings, and some of these are critical.
- General Settings
Hover over “Settings” in the left sidebar and click on “General Settings”. This area is for the basic information about your website or blog. There are several settings here, but only a few that are critical. I’m just going to cover those.
First, you should change your Site Title to reflect your site name. If you want to add a Tagline you can do so.
And most importantly, make sure that the WordPress Address (URL) & Site Address (URL) are correct. An important note here; if you have an SSL installed on your site make sure that your url includes “https” instead of just “http”. But don’t set your url to “https” unless you have an SSL Certificate installed on your site.
Don’t forget to click “Save Changes” at the bottom of the page to save your settings.
WordPress Writing Settings
These are found under Settings>Writing in the left sidebar of your dashboard. For now, you don’t need to do much here except to set your Default Post Category and Default Post Format.
These settings are found under Settings>Reading. Make sure to determine your “Front Page Displays”. If you are using a static page for your homepage be sure to select the radio button next to “As static page”, “Blog Posts” to display your blog on homepage. Save your settings.
Discussion Settings are found in your sidebar under Settings>Discussion. All you really need to do here is make sure the box is checked next to “an administrator must always approve the comment.” to manually approve all comments on your blog or site. This will help avoid spam comments, or junk you don’t want being published to your site. This is recommended. Be sure to save your changes before moving on to the next step.
I just want you to be aware of this area located under Settings>Media, which contains the settings for your site media.
This section contains perhaps the most important setting of all; your permalink structure. This helps ensure that the search engines will find your site to be search friendly, and you definitely want that. To set your permalinks go to Settings>Permalinks. Just click the radio button next to “Custom Structure” and in the box next to it enter this:
This structure will make your website or blog search engine friendly by adding the name of the post to the end of that posts’ url. Again, don’t forget to save your changes.
Your sharing settings are located in your dashboard sidebar under Settings>Sharing. This is where you will configure important settings to share your sites’ content and connect/integrate your Social Networks with your site.
First you will see your Social integration area at the top. Simply click “Connect” next to the Social Network you wish to integrate and follow the on screen instructions to connect your accounts.
Next you need to enable your sharing buttons. These are the Social Network buttons that will appear on each page you enable them on so that your visitors can easily share your awesome content. Under the “Sharing Buttons” section you’ll see the available services. All you have to do is drag your preferred services into the enabled services section just below.
Next, select your button style. Make sure to set your sharing label. Select where your buttons will be shown under the “Show Buttons On” section. You can also set your Twitter Site Tag (username), and turn on WordPress.com likes (recommended). Leave the box next to “Disable CSS & JS” unchecked.
WordPress Settings Are Step 1
Settings are the first step in getting your WordPress site up and running. So be sure to take the time to properly configure your settings. We didn’t cover everyting here, however, this should give you a basic idea of the task, and help you understand that, as promised, WP is simple and easy to set up. Not so scary at all.
Next week we’ll talk Plugins. I’ll show you some of my favorite, can’t do without plugins. Most pros recommend these too, and most are free to use.
In the coming weeks we will briefly discuss the three remaining steps to setting up your WordPress site; Content, Themes and the Finishing Touches! Of course, themes will be the most exciting part, because your theme determines the overall design of your site. We will dicuss themes so you have a basic idea of what they are, how they work, and how to use them. And we’ll cover free vs paid themes.
Okay, so get started with your WordPress Settings and get those configured. Once you are done, give yourself a nice pat on the back for me. You deserve it, because you are well on your way to setting up your website or blog!
Or drop me a line via email and I’ll give you a VR pat on the back when I respond back to you!
If you are reading this post after Sept 2017 then those next steps are already published here on my blog. You can click here to move on to the next step whenever you are ready. I’ll see you there and we’ll discuss those next steps to set up your WordPress site.
And don’t forget, if you would like to get WordPress Setup Training be sure to contact me and let me know! I want to hear how I can help you out most. How would you like that training? In person? Via eMail course? Video training Course? Let me know in your message so I know how I can best provide that training to help you!
Just type your message, include “WordPress Setup Training” and the method you would prefer, so I know what would help you best. I’ll get back to you within 24 hours with more information.
Also, I have a FREE Webmasters’ Resource Guide for you when you SUBSCRIBE to my Newsletter Here➦
Until next time, enjoy getting those WordPress Settings knocked out! I’ll be back with more on How to Setup A WordPress Blog Or Website next week!
How To Setup A WordPress Blog Or Website [Checklist] TinaBarnash.com