When it comes to building a website, people are sometimes overwhelmed with all the platforms you can choose to build on. You have the big website builders like Wix, Squarespace, Magneto, WordPress, Shopify and so on, you have the more traditional website’s hardcoded in HTML 5, CSS and PHP.
Let’s be honest, a hardcoded HTML 5 website would be the best decision any day of the week, but with the high costs and time consumption, a website builder is the smartest, also the cheapest option. In this article, I will teach you how to build a professional website using the platform WordPress.
Find Your Hosting
First of all, you need to purchase your server space (This is essentially where all your website files will be stored), there are lots of choices out there and it can again seem very overwhelming. The best place to start would be to go with who you know, the big brands are the safest like GoDaddy, 123 Reg, Hostinger, etc…
But they might not always be your cheapest option. WordPress offers website hosting, and I do use it for 1 of my websites, but it isn’t the cheapest, nor the fastest hosting I have had.
You can find really cheap hosting companies if you are on a tight budget, a quick Google search will bring up loads of options for you and you can compare prices and features until you have made the right choice.
Choose Your Domain Name
With most hosting plans, comes a free domain name. A domain name can cost less than £1.00 in most cases and usually comes free with your hosting plan. If you have purchased your domain name from a different provider than your hosting, you just need to point your domain nameservers to your hosting and within a few hours, you will be good to go.
The next step is to install WordPress on your server. This is a fairly simple process and only takes around 5 minutes. Just go to the control panel of your hosting, locate the applications tab and find WordPress.
This will be different depending on the type of control panel your server uses, the most common web servers are Apache, Nginx, Caddy, Lighthttpd, MonkeyServer, and OpenLiteSpeed. All of these web servers will allow the installation of WordPress.
Once WordPress is installed you can then access the WordPress dashboard, to access the dashboard you can either do it through your server control panel or by going to the following address: http://www.yourdomain.com/wp-admin/ and from here we can start to build the website.
Making your website look beautiful is essential in capturing your audience’s attention and converting them into customers. In your WordPress dashboard, you will need to locate the tab on the left-hand side named “plug-ins”. Select the tab and search for Elementor.
Once you locate the plug-in, install it and activate it. You can also install some other plug-ins to help with SEO and marketing. Mailchimp, Yoast, Hustle, WP Rocket are some good ones to start with.
Once Elementor is activated, head over to appearance and then themes and select the Astra theme. This is a free responsive WordPress theme which gives a great blank canvas to start building your website with Elementor.
Building Your First Page
To build your first page with Elementor you go to “add new page” tab on the left-hand side of your WordPress dashboard, from there its best to change your page template on the right-hand side of the page dashboard, it can be located under page attributes and you want to select “Elementor full-width” layout.
Then scroll back to the top of your page dashboard and click on the button labeled “edit with Elementor”. This will load up Elementor page builder where you can start working on your website.
When on the Elementor page builder you will see 2 symbols a + and a folder. The folder contains loads of pre-built templates and blocks which you can use and then easily customise with your branding and content.
The plus symbol allows you to add columns from 1 to 6 with different layouts, you can drop elements into the columns such as headings, images, videos, text, flip boxes, maps, posts, sliders, price tables, carousels, Elementor has over 800 elements you can use on your website and its very symbol to use.
It uses a drag N drop feature with a menu on the left-hand side containing all the elements, settings and style.
Once you have customised your page just click on the update button and that is it. Remember to use WebP images for fastest load times and optimise them all. Use Yoast plugin to take care of on-page SEO.
To set your new page as the homepage of your website you would go back to your WordPress dashboard, click on Appearance on the left-hand side and click on customise. This will load your WordPress customizer, click on homepage settings and you can choose the homepage of the website.
Author Bio: Paul Gray is a Digital Marketer and owner of Multicore National A UK based nationwide emergency engineering service. Paul also works for a number of entertainment companies around the UK doing digital marketing, SEO and WordPress website development.