This course was designed to help "business types" build and maintain their own WordPress website.
In this course, students will learn the basics of installing, setting up and configuring your own website using WordPress. I have designed this training so that I can address many of the questions faced by business owners and non-technical types as they work to launch their own sites.
We will review all the different sections that are “out of the box" for WordPress. We will also review easy add-ons like custom themes, plugins, and widgets. Towards the end of training, we'll get into some basic customization that won't require much more technical knowledge than HTML and CSS.
This course includes about 4 hours of video training sessions, plus various mini-eBook with the step by step content used in this training to keep as reference.
I will also provide weekly "office hours" and, using the discussion board on the course, will help students through the setup and configuration of whatever theme they have installed on their sites.
In this video, we will cover the steps to complete a WordPress "Quick Install" using your web hosting provider's online system.
The manual installation of WordPress files is detailed and extensive. It is better to use the Quick Install if available. If you have to install WordPress files yourself, you can follow the process I've laid out in the attached document.
I will be producing a video of these steps soon, so stay tuned!
Let's go through the different "out of the box" settings for WordPress, so that it's set up the right way from the beginning to create your pages and other content.
With the explosion of WordPress use as a main Content Management System for website deployment, there are now thousands of themes available to all users. There are many free themes, as well as premium themes that range from $19 to $200 in price. To pick the right one, you need to make sure you are clear on what's important for you and what you're trying to achieve with your site.
Once you've chosen a theme for your website, learn the fast and easy way to install it on WordPress.
Begin building your site by customizing your theme's general settings, and learn how to modify background colors and images, header images, the heading area.
Add content to your website, including the basic set of pages found in most sites: Services or Products, About Us, Contact Us. And learn to format the content and add images for visual interest.
Build a media library with images, videos, or even PDF files, to add visual interest to your content, or provide specific information to your visitors.
Create posts frequently to keep your content fresh!
Widgets is where you add content, buttons, forms, and other features to the sidebar and other “widget-ready” areas of your site. You can basically use widgets as containers for other content. Let's go through some basic widget settings to help you build great sidebars.
Custom menus are the best way to build the navigation you want for your site. We will build a custom menu together and learn about parent and child pages.
Let's work together through customizing our selected theme by including a logo, footer, and custom CSS.
We'll use the color options in our WordPress theme to make variations of the same website.
Let's continue building the website's home page, and learn the tips and tricks to make it look good, even in mobile devices.
Whether you need to add SEO, google analytics, embedded twitter feeds, contact forms, Google maps, there's a plugin for that.
We'll go through the detailed steps to find and install new plugins to your website.
Build simple, clean forms to allow visitors to contact you, ask for information about your services or products, and even sign up for a newsletter.
If you already use MailChimp to manage your mailing lists, this plugin is the fastest way to add forms so your visitors can sign up for your newsletters or additional product information.
You can easily add interactive maps to your pages or posts using a plugin like MapPress.
If you have forms for visitors to contact you from your website, you may want to consider using CAPTCHAs to avoid getting spammed by robots. One easy to use plugin for this is “Really Simple CAPTCHA”. It integrates seamlessly with Contact Form 7.
If you are using your site to publish articles or blog posts, and especially if you have a team of authors, you should definitely consider using “author boxes”. Having a picture and a bio for each of your authors will give your posts or articles that human connection, and it will give you a chance to connect with your readers, give them the chance to connect with your social media profiles, and learn more about you.
To let your visitors share your content on many different social media sites, you can use Social Share Button. This plugin has links to the main platforms, like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Reddit
You can use Tweet This to embed tweetable content boxes in your posts and pages. Basically, this gives your visitors a headline to share with their Twitter followers. We'll go through the setup steps, and some tips and tricks on how to use it effectively.
Another popular social media plugin is the Easy Twitter Feed. This allows you to display the twitter feed for your twitter account right on your website.
One of the challenges for business websites is analyzing their own content for Search Engine Optimization. An easy way to get guidance on the effectiveness of your content is to use a plugin that analyzes your text and images. One of the most popular, and easier to use, plugins out there is Wordpress SEO by Yoast.
What are Child Themes? When should you use them? Why should you use them? We'll cover all these basic questions during this session.
We will cover each step necessary to create a child theme and set up the necessary files to make it work seamlessly with the parent theme.
We will modify the style.css file for the child theme to make additional "look and feel" changes to the site.
Sometimes your WordPress install may lock you out of the ability to edit CSS files straight from the dashboard. I'll show you how to identify this issue, and correct it, so that you can modify the child theme and look at updates to your website design in seconds.
In this session, we will discuss some recommendations related to keeping your content fresh, and managing your website efficiently.
It is important to maintain your WordPress files updated as the software becomes available. This includes your WordPress files, theme files, and plugins. We'll cover the basic steps to perform these maintenance functions.
The attached mini-eBook covers the steps to back up your WordPress site, so that you are ready in case of data problems.
Carmen has been a software project manager, developer, consultant and trainer since 1999. She has extensive experience building and training software development teams in many different technologies. Most recently, she has been building her skills in the front end development arena for web and mobile applications, including technologies like HTML and CSS, frameworks like Bootstrap and Foundation, and Content Management Systems like Wordpress.