Setting up a website can be daunting if you have little knowledge about the Internet. This post will help you on how you don’t need to hire professionals to help you start a website, a blog specifically. Follow these steps to start your very own website.
Domain Name & Hosting
What is Domain Name
Domain name is the name your website will be. For example; http://www.google.com, http://www.amazon.com, etc.
What is Hosting
Hosting is the place where you upload your website files. When you purchase a hosting package, you will have to point the hosting to the domain name. However, if you purchase these two items together with the same company, they will hook these two items for you.
Here are a few places where you can register your domain name as well as getting your hosting setup. Some of these companies even offer free domain name when you register a specific hosting package.
Which Hosting Package
Look through the features that each package offers and decide which one suits you the most.
Do I choose Linux or Windows
It’s a personal preference. I personally prefer Linux.
How much storage should I choose
If your website uses a lot of pictures, then choose a package that offers a higher storage. So it all depends on how you want your blog to be.
Do I need SSL
Once everything has been purchased, you will receive an email from your selected hosting provider and in this email, you will have all the login details to your control panel.
Installing the Blog Engine – WordPress
There are a few ways to install WordPress onto your website. We will explain this briefly and if you need more information on how to install WordPress, you can refer to the WordPress Codex.
Most hosting providers offer a one-click setup application. If your hosting provider offers this option, just login to your control panel and click on the WordPress installer under the one-click setup section. With this option, you do not need to worry about the database as the application handles it automatically for you. Once everything is ready, you should receive further instructions on how to proceed to WordPress.
If you are feeling adventurous, you can try the manual way below.
Download WordPress here. Once you have finish downloading the package, unzip the file and upload all files to your server with the hosting details that your host provider has sent to you.
FTP – Uploading Files
If you do not have a FTP client on your local machine, I recommend that you use Filezilla.
If you want your WordPress to run in a folder (e.g. http://www.ravingcode.com/folder-name), you should create the folder in the root folder and the upload all the files in this folder. Otherwise, you can upload all the files to your root folder.
MySQL – Creating Database
Once your files have been uploaded to the server, login to your control panel and create a MySQL database as well as a user that has all privileges for accessing and modifying the database. Look for the file wp-config-sample.php in the WordPress files and open it with a text editor. You will see this section of code in the file.
/** The name of the database for WordPress */ define('DB_NAME', 'database_name_here'); /** MySQL database username */ define('DB_USER', 'username_here'); /** MySQL database password */ define('DB_PASSWORD', 'password_here');
Enter your database details here (the bolded text) and rename the file to wp-config.php. Upload the file back to the server. You are now ready to run WordPress installation. Open your preferred browser and type in the domain name. Follow the instructions on the screen and you will be able to install WordPress successfully.
Congratulations, you have successfully setup your brand new blog. You are now ready to start writing. Below are some of the recommendations that I would suggest you to consider implementing to your new blog as it will help you to enhance your website.
Give your website a new look with customized WordPress themes. You can either download them for free here or purchase them from marketplaces. Free themes normally would not provide you support whereas paid ones do.
Plugins are modules that enhance certain areas of your website. Below are some that I normally use.
Yoast is a WordPress plugin that helps to track the number of visitors and visits of your website. It shows you the number of visits to each of your blog post. That way, you can keep track the preference of your readers. Download it here.
Regenerate Thumbnails is a WordPress plugin that helps you regenerate your entire collection of images to different sizes. Use this to regenerate images after installing a new WordPress theme. Download it here.
Contact Form 7
Contact Form 7 is a WordPress plugin that helps you build and embed forms easily. Download it here.
Let me know in the comment box below if you have any questions.