WordPress is a completely free web publishing platform and content management system (CMS) that enables anyone to operate a website or blog. Created in 2003, WordPress is now over 10 years old and currently powers 1 out of every 5 sites on the internet, making it the most popular web software for end-users and businesses alike.
Among the many reasons for the popularity of WordPress are its ease of use, compatibility with most web hosting providers, customizability and a vast library of themes and plugins. WordPress is also constantly updated and improved on by its team of developers and designers, along with hundreds of contributors.
Why use WordPress?
The WordPress community is among the most robust web communities on the entire internet. Given that WordPress is the most commonly used blog and CMS on the internet, there are literally millions of websites and owners that are all using WordPress every day. With this level of popularity comes a demand and need from just about every type of person out there.
One of the most powerful aspects of WordPress is its ability to integrate with pre-made themes and plugins. While WordPress is highly customizable, themes and plugins are an easy way of unlocking the power behind WordPress by changing the look and feel of your website with a few clicks. You can think of WordPress as the engine, themes as the body, and plugins as the features.
Themes represent pre-built packages that completely overhaul your site with a new look, organization and design. Whether you are a blogger, business, artist, real estate agent, store owner or magazine, there is a theme out there for you.
Plugins, however, add features and functionality to WordPress that extend it beyond just a blogging platform. If you need to take reservations on your website, have an event planner, track how many people visit your website or add a chat forum to your website, there are plugins for each of those. In fact, WordPress.org lists over 35,000 plugins in its repository that are all free to download. This list doesn't even include the paid plugins that are available all over the internet as well.
WPHUB is a marketplace that sells premium WordPress themes and plugins. While there is a vast selection of themes to choose from, our selection of products are hand curated so that we only offer the
How to use WordPress
In order to use WordPress, you first need a web hosting provider. What a hosting provider does in operate web servers that are able to run a variety of software. While WordPress has a few requirements in order to run, most web hosting companies today support WordPress by default due to the overwhelming popularity of WordPress.
The current requirements for installing WordPress are:
- PHP 5.2.4 or greater
- MySQL 5.0 or greater
- mod_rewrite Apache module
As a convenience to our customers, WPHUB offers both WordPress hosting as well as WordPress installation services. This ensures that our customers can quickly and easily have a website up and running immediately without the need for technical skills. Most of our customers opt for this option as the vast majority of WordPress users are more interested in writing and uploading photos to their website instead of being junior coders and database administrators.
That said, if you don't mind getting your hands dirty, you can always download the latest version of WordPress at WordPress.org and give it a shot. For additional reading, you can read our quick WordPress Installation Guide that will walk you through a typical install.
Using a Domain with WordPress
Domains are easy to remember and unique internet addresses so that people know how to get to your website. A domain is essentially an internet address that gives browsers directions on how to get to your website.
You can obtain a domain either directly through a domain name registrar or through your web hosting provider. For your own convenience and ease, we recommend you sign up for a domain through your hosting provider, as they will automatically configure your domain to point to your website.
Adding a domain to WordPress is simple, as the WordPress installer will automatically ask for you to enter in your domain and configure your website to use your domain information. If you are using WPHUB to install WordPress for you, then this will all be taken care of automatically as well.
Running a WordPress website
WordPress performs two main duties: letting visitors read and browse your website and letting you add and upload content. In order to prevent anyone from simply having access to your website, you are given an Administrator login and password when WordPress is installed. If you used WPHUB or another third-party installation service, your login and password will be issued to you from the service provider.
To view your website, simply go to your domain address in your browser after you have WordPress installed and you should see everything working. To start editing, you want to go to the Administrator login page, which is located at:www.yourdomain.com/wp-admin/ (replace yourdomain.com with your domain name)
Log in with your username and password and you will have access to the Administration area of WordPress. This is where you will want to play around and learn the ins and outs of WordPress, but to start you off, read Getting started with WordPress admin as well as Getting Started with WordPress.
It will likely take a little bit of exploration before you become totally comfortable with WordPress, but that's the fun of it! Most of our users are just so excited to finally be running their own website that they take a lot of joy from simply publishing their first post.
When you are a bit more experienced, you can start reading on how to really push the full power of WordPress. Here's some articles that we would recommend:
- Intro to Blogging
- Writing Posts
- Writing Pages
- WordPress Lessons
- Essential HTML for Editing WordPress Content
- Blogging by Email (useful for blogging from your phone)
Getting More Help
If you're totally lost or need specific advice, the WordPress Support Forum is a good place to look for tips and advice on everything from installation tips to advanced WordPress hacking.
You can also attend WordCamp, which are world wide WordPress events that are meant to introduce new and existing users to WordPress. WPHUB is proud to has sponsored WordCamps both in Seattle and Warsaw and was a presenter in Warsaw for WordCamp 2014.