Creating your own website may not be as difficult as you think. In fact, you do not need to be a web developer or even learn any form of coding in order to create your own website.
In this guide, you’ll learn how to create your own website using content management systems such as WordPress. This method of creating a website is very easy and powerful. In fact, more than 39% of websites on the internet including BBC America, Bloomberg, The New York Times, Beyonce, e.t.c are built on WordPress.
You can build any type of website on WordPress and the good thing is that there are thousands if not millions of WordPress plugins out there that can help you add any type of functionality to your websites.
CLARIFICATIONS: Before going further, I would like to make some clarifications:
This is a guide on how to build a website for yourself or for others. it is entirely focused on building a WordPress website.
To build this website, you will need to buy a domain name and pay for Web hosting with a hosting provider. More details on this later. If you are looking for a way to build a website for free, check out my guide here on how to build free websites.
That having been said, if you are looking to learn web development, design, or any sort of coding, you are on the wrong page. Please check out this guide on the best courses on web development (both free and paid)
Without wasting much of your time, we are going to dive straight into the work ahead to get our own website.
What you will need
- A small budget
- Domain name
- Web hosting
A Small Budget
Building a WordPress website requires a small budget that you will use to buy a domain name and pay for web hosting. This is usually between $20 – $100 (5,000 – 50,000 naira). It cost me around $18.46 to get my own domain and hosting from Namecheap. Although I later bought my own name as a domain and paid an extra $7.17. I spent $25.63 in total (around 12,000 naira).
In order to get a website, you need a domain name. A domain name is an address to your website just like the address to your house. It is what people type into their browser when they want to visit your website. Examples are www.google.com or www.chilochibueze.com;
There are so many websites where you can get a domain name from the internet. In fact, we have compiled a list of the best domain name registrars on our website. You can go check it out here.
For the purpose of this training, we are going to use Namecheap to get our domain since they are one of the best places to buy and register domain names on the internet. In fact, you can get some domain extensions for as low as $1 for the first year.
Now that you know what a domain is and where to get one, let’s go find out what web hosting means. Don’t worry if everything is not making sense yet, we are going to put everything together.
In order to have a fully functional website, you need somewhere to store up all your pages and files. This is where web hosting comes in. web hosting is like your own plot of land where you can build your house and put in everything that you have. Just as the name goes, a web host provider provides you with a space to host your website on the internet.
The type of web hosting you choose is very important as it determines to a large extent the performance of your website. If your hosting is down, then users cannot get to your website.
There are several web hosting providers on the internet. We have also compiled a list of the best web host providers for you. You can go check it out here.
For the purpose of this training, we are going to use Namecheap shared hosting to build our website since they also offer very cheap web hosting services.
WordPress is basically a content management system (CMS). A content management system helps you to put up and manage content such as texts, images, and videos on your website. In fact, it basically helps you to have 100% control over the content on your website.
With a content management system such as WordPress, you can control, the look and feel of your website. And there are tons of plugins to help you with advanced functionalities without writing a single line of code.
Most web hosting services come with WordPress which you can install from your ‘Cpanel’. Don’t worry, we are going to show you step by step how to do that. But just in case you use another web hosting service that does not have WordPress, you can download the zipped file of WordPress from wordpress.org and install it on your website. Don’t confuse this with wordpress.com
Now that you are conversant with what you need to set up your own professional website, it is time to build your own website. So let’s get into a detailed step-by-step guide on how to build your own website.
We are going to build our website in five steps
- Step 1: Get a domain name from Namecheap
- Step 2: Get web hosting from Namecheap
- Install wordpress
- Install your themes
- Add content to your website
Step 1: Getting a Domain Name
To get your domain name and hosting, visit the Namecheap website and you will see a page like the one below and you enter your desired domain name in the domain search box. Click on search to see if your domain name is available.
If the domain name you searched for is available, then click on add to cart and then go to the next step.
You can scroll down to get cheaper extensions (.xyz; .me; .club; etc) for as low as $1 for the first year. These domain extensions are best for testing out something or creating temporary landing pages. If you are serious about building a brand, please choose a professional domain extension.
One more thing
If you are looking to use these cheap domains for more than one year, please check how much it costs to renew them after the first year. That is the smaller prices you see just below the bigger discounted prices.
Step 2: Get Hosting for your website
After you have added your domain name to the cart, the next is to get your hosting. To do that, you have to click on the hosting tab to get started.
From the dropdown list of options, click on ‘shared hosting’.
On the shared hosting page, select one of the options available. Basically, for your personal, website, the stellar plan should be a good choice for you both in pricing and performance. You can choose the two-year plan to get a better deal. Click on “Get Started”
Click on “Add to Cart”
Click on “Confirm Order”
Create your Namecheap account by filling in the details on the right side of the page.
Click on Create account and continue
Once you are done with creating your account, you will be able to pay for your domain name and hosting from Namecheap. One big advantage of this is that you won’t have to go through the stress of changing the DNS server in order to connect your domain to your hosting account.
Namecheap will automatically connect your domain to your shared hosting account and you are good to go.
However, if for any reason, this does not happen, you can check out this video on how to connect your domain to your hosting account.
After you have completed your purchase, Namecheap will send you series of emails like the one below:
You should try to read all of these emails as they will help you understand your account more and then guide you on how to set up and manage your Namecheap account.
however, there are two very important emails you will receive immediately after you complete your orders. One is your hosting account details:
This is where you will receive the login details to your Cpanel account.
Another very important email you will receive from Namecheap immediately after the ‘hosting account details’ is the ‘IMMEDIATE VERIFICATION’ email.
When your open it, you verify your domain and the email associated with it.
Step 3: Installing WordPress
Once you have completed your domain verification, your next step will be to login into your Cpanel account using the hosting account details sent to you by Namecheap. Once you log in, your Cpanel dashboard will look like this:
Scroll down to where you have “softaculous apps installer” and click on the WordPress icon under it to begin the installation of WordPress
Once you click on the WordPress icon, a page like the one below will come up:
fill out your site information including your admin username and password
Scroll down to the end of the page and click on install
Allow some seconds for WordPress to be installed on your domain. Once the installation process is completed, visit your WordPress dashboard to start customizing your website.
You can access your WordPress dashboard from yourdomain/wp-admin/ (example: bigwilliams.com/wp-admin/).
This will take you to a page like the one below:
Enter your admin username and password and you will be taken to a page like this:
From here you can customize everything about your website
Step 4: Install a theme on your website
If you didn’t choose a theme while installing WordPress, this is the right time to do so. You can install a theme by clicking on “Appearance” and then clicking on “themes”
Step 5 Adding content to your website
There are two ways to create content on your WordPress website
The first way to add content to your website is through ‘pages’.
Pages are good for creating sections and subsections on your website. The most common types of pages to create include home page, about page, contact page, blog page, etc.
The second way to create content is through ‘posts’.
What you are reading now is a post on my website. Posts are used to share what you know with your audience. To keep your website active, you should create posts as often as possible.
So there you have it. Your website is up and running in 30 minutes. How easy is that? Feel free to stick around and check out other posts that might interest you from our blog.
Don’t forget to share with your friends and colleagues, they would be eternally grateful to you.