So you’ve decided to dive into the world of digital content with your very own WordPress website. First off, allow me to say congratulations, as choosing to use WordPress is a significant first step towards creating a website or blog that is perfect for you. Click here if you need help with getting your blog up and running before starting with WordPress.  However, I’ll be the first to admit that the next steps can feel overwhelming at first. Go through the steps at your own pace, there’s no rush!

As one of the world’s leading website development platforms, WordPress is overflowing with great features. These tools are great for seasoned professionals, but have been known to confuse novice developers. To address this issue, I’ve created the following beginner’s guide to help you jump start your WordPress journey.

Getting To Know The WordPress Dashboard

The Dashboard serves as the operational center for your website and will greet you every time you fire up WordPress. You’re able to do everything from publishing content to manage the appearance of your site from the Dashboard, so it is vital that you become familiar with its interface.

Instead of walking through the standard tutorial prompts, I suggest exploring the Dashboard yourself, as this will help you gain a stronger understanding of what WordPress can provide as you explore its features. Once you’re familiar with the WordPress Dashboard, it’s time to configure your account.

Setting Up Your Account

While it can be tempting to get started with the development of your site right away, consider taking the time to set up your account first instead. Completing this step first will help to ensure that the experience is as smooth as possible moving forward.

From the Settings menu, one of the first things to consider changing is the account username. Cybercriminals have been known to use default admin settings to steal accounts and information, so it is critical that you change this setting before doing anything else.

After you’ve created your own unique credentials, updated your contact information, and set your account to the “Administrator” role, feel free to adjust other settings as you see fit. This will help to ensure that you are in full control as you move throughout the development process.

Create Your Website’s Title and Tagline

It may seem trivial, but one of the most important aspects of your new site will be its title and tagline. Internet users are notoriously impatient, so if your site’s title and tagline don’t appear to relate directly to what they’re looking for, they probably won’t visit your site. Consider a title that is unique and identifiable, yet clearly communicates the topic of your website.

Starting With A Clean Slate & Installing Plugins

Deleting the default content before adding your own can help you start with a clean slate. This will guarantee that you are in complete control of the content (and by extension, branding) of your site.

Additionally, consider adding tried-and-true WordPress plugins such as Yoast SEO and Antispam Bee to your WordPress site. Plugins are an easy way to get instant access to tons of unique features that can help your website stand out among the pack.

Dive Into The Development Process

From here, it’s time to explore the process of creating your own WordPress website. Whether you’re looking to create an award-winning blog or a web presence for a growing brand, WordPress offers everything you need to get started. It is up to you to f you’d like to pay someone hundreds or thousands of dollars to create a theme for your website for you. However, I highly recommend hiring a freelancer from Fiverr! You can get high quality work done for a very reasonable price!

Once your theme is set-up, you are good to go to creating your first blog post!

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