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Are you ready to build your own website but not sure where to begin? This guide will help you to quickly build your website using the WordPress platform.
Post contains affiliate links. Disclosure can be viewed here.
Purchase Affordable Web Hosting
Here at Tanzek Media, we currently use Siteground as our web host. However, we also have experience with Bluehost and highly recommend their service for beginners and those building on WordPress.
You can check out our comparison post to help you determine if Bluehost or Siteground is the better fit for you.
Select a Theme and Start Building
An effective website begins with a reliable website-building framework that allows you to get more done in less time. Make sure you select a theme that best fits the purpose and function of your website.
You can take advantage of some of the most popular WordPress themes such as Divi – one of our personal favorites. These themes make it easy for you to build out a professional website without advanced coding knowledge and without having to spend a ton of time or money.
There are many free WordPress themes available, but I always recommend premium WordPress themes for the advanced customization and security features. But this doesn’t mean you need to feel pressured into buying a premium theme right away. As always, keep your budget and business needs in mind. There is no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to website-building.
It can be easy to get caught up in all the glitz and glam, but you have to remember who you’re serving. The website for a candy shop likely wouldn’t look the same as a website selling auto parts. An essential oil store obviously wouldn’t be set up the same as a law firm’s website. I think you get the point here.
Tailor your theme to your unique needs.
Take advantage of free plugins
One of the reasons we highly recommend WordPress is because of the availability of very useful plugins. WordPress plugins are basically like apps for your website and allow you to take advantage of more advanced features.
There are thousands of WordPress plugins available to you- and many are free!
Some of my favorite WordPress plugins include:
- Yoast SEO -FREE
- W3 Total Cache– FREE
- Thirsty Affiliates– FREE
- Jetpack– FREE
- Akismet– FREE
- XML Sitemaps- FREE
As the #1 WordPress SEO Plugin, Yoast’s free plugin is a great way for beginners to manage their SEO. They also have a premium plugin available which unlocks even greater functionality.
Using the free plugin you can:
✅ Add title and meta descriptions
✅ Manage canonical URLs and meta tags
✅ Gain key insights about your current SEO through a brief analysis
✅ Monitor readability
✅ …and MUCH MORE!
W3 Total Cache
Speaking of SEO, W3TC can boost your SEO efforts significantly by speeding up your website and greatly improving your website performance. This plugin is a reliable and easy way to optimize your WordPress website.
This plugin can also help improve your conversion rates and help you save bandwidth by minifying HTML, CSS, and JS files. Whether you’re using shared web hosting, virtual private/dedicated servers, or dedicated servers/clusters, this plugin can be utilized to your advantage.
If you plan on using affiliate links on your website, you will definitely want to make sure you have the Thirsty Affiliates plugin installed and activated.
This plugin is so easy to use, it’s almost too good to be true. Using this affiliate link management plugin, you can:
✅ Turn ugly and long affiliate links into visually appealing short links
✅ Quickly add affiliate links to a blog post by simply highlighting the text you would like hyperlinked and select the “TA” button
✅ Manage your links all in one spot to save time and avoid broken or outdated affiliate links in multiple blog posts and web pages
✅ Safely redirect links
✅ Take advantage of smart uncloaking
You can use the Jetpack plugin to make your WordPress website safer and faster. In addition to real-time backups, you can also enjoy peace of mind with spam protection, malware scans, downtime/uptime monitoring, and more.
There is also a premium version of this plugin available which unlocks additional features.
Protect your content form submissions and comments against spam. Trust me, as soon as you get your website up and running you will understand how useful this plugin truly is.
This plugin is another useful tool to assist with your SEO efforts. It allows you to create XML Sitemaps so that top search engines understand how to best index your website.
Sitemaps allow search engines to clearly see the structure of your website (which of course helps with your ranking) so yes, this is very important and should not be overlooked.
Use high-quality Photography
If you will be taking your own photos for your website, make sure they are HIGH QUALITY and all of the images should be properly optimized for search engines by doing the following:
- Save your images in the correct format.
- JPEG is best for larger images that you need to maintain their quality once uploaded
- PNG is appropriate for images with transparent backgrounds
- SVG works well for icons and logos
- When naming your file, make sure you use your focus keyphrase
- Scale and compress your images to keep your site moving quickly. There are plugins that can help you do this!
- Always add alt and title text
- Of course, make sure the image itself is relevant to your text!
If you’re not in a position to take your own professional photos, you can always utilize stock photos from websites such as Unsplash.
Don’t forget to optimize for search engines!
Take a look at the plugins mentioned above if you’re not sure where to start with search engine optimization. You can also check out these SEO Hacks.
Still have questions about how to build your dream website? Feel free to leave it in the comments below!