If you’re thinking of setting up a website or blog to build your online presence and need a reliable platform that makes it easy to setup, own, and publish your own content, you really don’t need to look any farther than WordPress. While it’s not the only Content Management System (CMS) online, at least 22% of the Internet believes that it’s the best one.
Should You Own Your Own Online Real Estate?
While you may be thinking of using an established, shared blogging platform or a social media page to promote your work because they appear easy to set up, you have to remember that these are basically rentals. This means that if the landlord doesn’t like your content, you will have to remove it.
With WordPress self-hosted websites, you own the digital real estate. You can control all your content on a fully flexible platform, customizing it, renovating it, or upgrading as you please.
Like Publishing Your Own Newspaper
As an independent professional—say, a writer, designer, entrepreneur, consultant, or photographer—you are probably looking for a place where you can share your specialized knowledge with the world and build your clientele. With WordPress, it’s inexpensive, efficient and easy to set things up.
In fact, you don’t really need special coding or design skills to set up WordPress, and you can maintain it without paying anyone a webmaster fee. All you actually need to start is a clear idea why you want to build a website or blog and an open-minded approach to following some basic video tutorials on how to set everything up.
You can use WordPress to create any type of site, including a personal, corporate, or eCommerce site.
How to Setup WordPress
Setting up your WordPress can be done in three steps:
- Buying a domain name and hosting account. These can be from the same provider or different providers. Either choice is fine.
- Setting up the DNS and uploading the files to your hosting account from the CPanel. You set up the DNS by connecting the domain name with the hosting account in your Domain Manager panel. You then upload all the files of your website through the CPanel by using a software wizard like Fantastico.
- Configuring your website. You can upload a new theme via the Appearance panel if you don’t like the default theme. Then you need to fix the general settings, add pages, create a menu for the navigation bar, and add the plugins you need.
While these three steps may seem confusing to you, especially if you have no idea what a Domain Manager looks like or how to use a CPanel, you will find lots of videos in the help files of your hosting provider. These will help you setup your DNS, upload your WordPress files, and configure your site to give you the look-and-feel and functionality that you desire. They are simple, step-by-step processes to follow. Additionally, If you purchase a theme, you will also get lots of tutorials on how to configure it.
However, if you do get stuck, you can always call up the customer service department of your hosting account. A technician will either point you to the video tutorials to watch or explain how the process works. Once you’ve setup your first WordPress site, you’ll wonder why you ever thought it was challenging. The main difficulty in setting up is not knowing where to go and what to do — but video tutorials by your domain provider, by your hosting provider, and by your theme-provider carefully walk you through the entire process.
Search Engine Optimize Your WordPress
Matt Cutts, the Google engineer, has often said that WordPress can solve a lot of SEO issues. The All In One SEO plugin has received a lot of positive reviews and can be easily set up following the directions that come with the plugin.
Protect Your WordPress
Naturally, you will want to protect your new business with some excellent anti-virus software. The very best antivirus for Mac or PC will safeguard your digital assets, by blocking dangerous websites and allowing you to surf safely. Trend Micro also notes that it’s important for security software to protect your social media accounts on Facebook, Google+, Twitter, and LinkedIn
10 Reasons to Love WordPress
Here are the top ten reasons why WordPress is a great way to develop your online presence:
- 1. It was first released on May 27, 2003, so it’s a mature platform.
- 2. Although it first started out as a blogging platform, you can customize it work like a website, and you can even have a website with a blogging feature.
- 3. Its search engine friendly and Google loves it.
- 4. It’s simple to setup, easy to manage, and can be updated with the latest version with the click of a button.
- 5. It’s got thousands of professional themes—and they can be either free or paid. Usually, the paid ones offer more features, but are relatively inexpensive.
- 6. Its open source; so it’s not likely to go out of business, and will continue to be improved by passionate developers around the world.
- 7. It has a large, friendly, interactive community to help with any support questions.
- 8. WordPress plugins add complex business features to your website without having to hire a coder.
- 9. WordPress is so popular that an estimated 20% of websites use it and it’s ranked as one of the top 100 sites in the world on Alexa.
- 10. WordPress is mobile web friendly.
Musician Carrie Underwood’s advice on life is to “Throw caution to the wind and just do it.”Actually, with WordPress, there is little reason to be cautious because it is a tried-and-true platform that is easy to build yourself.