I have been programming, maintaining, and securing WordPress business websites since 2007, 5 days a week.
Even 7 days a week at times. But with great pleasure, busyness, and sometimes the overwork that you can expect from an entrepreneur.
As a result, my knowledge and experience with themes & plugins, as well as WordPress itself, are quite extensive and growing every day.
Because I am frequently asked what I would do with various aspects of a website, I will tell you:
How I create a new WordPress website
Please note that I already have all the resources such as Notepad++, SmartFTP, hosting, Photoshop, various licenses, themes, and (premium) plugins. Approximately 50% of what I use is open-source, but other essential programs I use come at a cost.
- I always start with a fresh WordPress release.
Directly the version with the Dutch translation.
- Then, I delete the Readme.html & License.txt files since they only reveal which WordPress release it is.
That’s only useful for hackers.
- I register a domain name with Reviced.
I also have 40+ domain names lying around, and sometimes I pick one up spontaneously.
- I create a new domain/data space on the server.
I do this on a CentOS server with Nginx and PHP7 + Directadmin.
- Then, I choose a theme, which varies depending on the purpose it needs to serve.
Sometimes I work with a blank theme. These are a few WordPress files with the raw basics without any other clutter. I style them from scratch using CSS, Photoshop, and custom code.
There are times when I work with a “premium” theme. They can cost upwards of 50 euros, but sometimes they are just so beautiful 🙂 Until I want to make a customization… then I get tangled up in the spaghetti code they put in those themes 🙁
And every now and then, I use a theme from ElegantThemes. I’ve had a Developer subscription with them for about 8 years, which allows me to use their themes unlimitedly.
- Next, I download and install plugins like Contact Form 7 (Contact forms), Count per Day (Visitor counter), and sometimes Visual Composer (Advanced editor).
I also use the Advanced Custom Fields (for posts with extra info fields) and WPML (for multilingual sites) on 5 websites of mine.
- Then, I start creating the pages. These are usually the Home, News, Contact pages.
- I set the Permalink structure correctly and make the “Home” page as the front page (admin » settings » reading).
- After that, I activate the WPbeveiligen Antivirus plugin and configure it.
This is not advertising, but rather a standard practice for the past 3 years. I don’t want hackers or unexpected issues on my site.
- I forgot to mention the automatic backup plugin Updraftplus, which I have been using since 2016. I activate it (I have UpdraftPlus make a backup) once I have set up most things properly. There is a free version that already offers many features, but I personally use the premium version.
- Then, I start putting my ideas onto the pages. The texts with a few images.
I purchase images from 123rf.com, and sometimes I download them from free stock sites like Freeimages.com (formerly SXC.hu) and Pexels.
- For many sites, I also install a version of Yoast for Google. This is because I like to control which description Google displays. And to remove the /category/ slug from topics.
That’s roughly how I set up a site for myself!
In my opinion, anyone with this basic knowledge can create a good WordPress website. Don’t you think so?
Share your opinion on social media or here in the comments.
I would love to hear if you succeeded!