Do you want to create your own WordPress website but don't know where to start? Then you've come to the right place. In this article we show you how to create your own website with WordPress in eight steps - from the domain, to the design to privacy. Creating your own WordPress websites doesn't have to be complicated or time-consuming.
The tutorial is structured in such a way that even beginners without programming knowledge can get started right away. In addition, we reveal one or two professional tips.
What is WordPress?
WordPress is open source software and the world's most popular content management system (CMS) with a market share of almost 64 percent. WordPress can be used to implement all types of websites – from blogs, corporate websites, online stores to personal portfolio pages.
A CMS consists of a backend and a frontend. As an admin (or user with the appropriate rights, you can enterm manage and change the content of your website in the backend. All the changes you make are visible in the frontend - i.e. on the actual website that's displayed in your visitors' browsers.
WordPress is so popular because it offers many themes (templates), plugins and page builders that support you in creating your WordPress website. Even without deep programming knowledge, you can still create professional websites relatively easily and quickly in the block system.
If you want to start your own blog and are looking for tips, also read our article Creating WordPress Blog: 7 steps to get there.
How can you create your own WordPress website?
To create your own website with WordPress, you need two things first of all:
- A domain (e.g. www.meinbusinessistsuper.de)
- Web hosting (i.e. a server on which your website is stored and accessible)
Once you've found a domain name and the hosting provider you trust (more on that in a moment), you install WordPress on their server (usually a few click) and then create your website.
Here's an overview of the individual steps you usually take. We'll be going through them step-by-step below in detail:
- Find your domain
- Choose a hosting provider
- Install WordPress
- Set your structure and navigation
- Design your WordPress website
- Install plugins
- Create pages and content
- Include legal notice and data protection information
Managed WordPress hosting providers like Raidboxes help in this process by letting you create a new WordPress website in just a few clicks so you don't have to worry about the manual installation. This simple step saves you a lot of time, as explained in our article Advantages of WordPress Managed Hosting.
Step 1: Find a domain
The way to your own WordPress website starts with the right name. More precisely, with a domain. Because your website needs an address under which it can be accessed on the Internet. When choosing your domain name, you should consider a few things:
- Choose a name that's short and easy to remember. If you're creating a website for a company, for example, it's usually best to simply use the company name as the domain name.
- Make sure that your domain has the appropriate extension. For local services, you can choose the extension of your country (for Germany this would be .de). If you operate internationally, .com might be the better choice of top level domain.
- Make sure that your domain name does not contain any protected brand names. Otherwise, you might receive a legal warning pretty quickly.
Step 2: Choose a hosting provider
Once you have decided at which address you want your WordPress website to be accessible, the next step is to get hosting. That means your website has to "live" somewhere. The web space you need for this is best bought from a professional hosting provider.
Meanwhile, there are many providers who advertise their "WordPress hosting" offerings and entice with particularly low prices. But not all of them actually offer professional WordPress hosting.
How to find the right provider
Because every website project has different requirements, it's difficult to make a general recommendation regarding hosting. However, we have gathered some tips and questions that can help you find the right WordPress hosting. First of all, you should be clear about what exactly you are looking for.
Questions you should answer for yourself include:
- How much support and service do you need? What can you do yourself (also technically), where do you need the help of professionals?
- How much budget can and do you want to budget for hosting?
- How much will your website grow over time? When is it likely to be necessary to switch to a larger plan ?
- How long do you want to commit to a provider in terms of contract duration? How important is flexibility to you?
- How extensive will the project be? How many domains do you really need?
- How many visitors do you expect on your site? What is the minimum server performance required?
- What security features are important to you? For example, do you have to meet country-specific requirements?
- How much time can and do you want to invest in the care and maintenance of your WordPress website? What features should your hosting bring to save time?
Generally speaking, don't focus too much on the price. With many hosting providers who lure you with particularly low prices, you have to make sacrifices in the end. These might include, for example, frequent downtimes, slow loading times or suboptimal customer service.
Also, make sure you choose a hosting package that fits your needs - and ideally is tailored specifically for WordPress. Specialized WordPress host like Raidboxes offer clear advantages when it comes to performance, security and service. site You may have to pay a few euros more, but at the same time you save a lot of time and benefit from a team of WordPress experts who are available almost around the clock to help you with advice and support.
Step 3: Install WordPress
You've got your domain and hosting sorted? Great! The next step is to install WordPress. You can also do this manually, but almost all hosts now also offer an automatic 1-click installation for WordPress.
Easy start with WordPress
Install WordPress with Raidboxes
At Raidboxes you simply start the WordPress installation by clicking on Create new Box in your account and then enter a username and password for your WP admin account. Another click on Box will start the installation in the background.
You can get started free of charge and you'll first create a Demo Box. All the information you enter in the first step can be changed later. To use the Box – your WordPress website – to its full extent and, for example, to register your own domain, you have to activate it with a paid hosting subscription.
Then you can register your individual domain directly from your Raidboxes Dashboard and link it to your Box. You should also set up the free SSL certificate and convert your website to HTTPS. This can also be done in the Box setting (under the item SSL in the left menu) simply by pressing a button. If you need help with the individual steps, you can contact our support at any time.
Install WordPress manually
Of course you can also install WordPress yourself. In this case, WordPress will be uploaded to your server via FTP access. This takes a little more time, but is also possible with most hosting providers.
If you decide to set up WordPress manually, you should go through the following steps:
- Create a MySQL database for your WordPress installation
- Set up FTP access (e.g. with FileZilla)
- Download WordPress on wordpress.org for free
- Prepare your WordPress file (e.g. rename from wp-config-sample.php to wp-config.php as well as enter your own information like database, username, password, server address etc.)
- Upload WordPress to your server via FTP
- Install WordPress (via 5-minute installation)
Let Raidboxes migrate your WordPress website for you
Make important basic settings
Once you've successfully installed WordPress and logged in, it's best to set up some basic settings right away before moving on to the next step in website creation.
You can find them in the menu of WordPress on the left site under the item Settings. Three important basic settings are included:
- General: Enter the title and subtitle of your website here and check if your URL has https (not http). If not, you probably haven't activated your SSL certificate yet.
- Reading: The most important point in this area is the visibility for search engines. The checkmark should not be set here in the long term – otherwise your website cannot be found by Google and other search engines. As long as you're still working on your website, you can check this box to prevent Google from indexing your website while it's still under construction. Important: As soon as you are done with the creation of your website, you should remove the checkmark.
- Permalinks: WordPress gives you the option to create custom URL structures. We recommend the setting post name. This is usually selected by default by WordPress, but you should check it again under Settings → Permalinks.
Step 4: Set structure and navigation
With the installation of WordPress you've laid the foundation for your website. Before it goes to the design and content, you should now think about how you want to build your website. That means, you should create a (rough) page structure and maybe create the most important pages as placeholders (without content).
How your website is structured will vary, of course. Depending on what kind of website you want to create, the structure can look completely different. Blogs are structured differently than corporate websites or portfolios.
For example, a simple structure for a corporate website might look like this:
- Home page (Homepage)
- Benefits (products, services)
- About us (e.g. company profile, team, jobs/career)
- Resources (e.g. news, guidebook, blog)
- Legal notice
- Data protection
How to create pages in WordPress and create navigation
You can create a new page in WordPress via the item Pages → Create from the menu bar on the left. There you simply enter the page title (e.g. Home or Contact) and click on the Publish button in the upper right corner.
Once you've created the desired pages, you should make sure they can be found on your finished website. For this you need a navigation menu. You can create it in the WordPress menu under Appearance → Menus, where you can easily add the created pages to the menu via multiple selection. If you remove a page from the menu again, it doesn't get deleted but only disappears from the menu.
A best practice in web design is to create two navigation menus at once: The important pages (e.g. Start, Services, About us) usually belong in the top menu of your website (at the top of the page), mandatory legal pages (e.g. Legal Notice and Privacy) can also be placed less prominently in a footer menu (at the very bottom of the website).
It all depends on how you want your website to look in general, but also on what structure your WordPress theme is most likely to support with the design.
Step 5: Design your WordPress website
After all pages are created and your navigation menu is set, the fun part comes: the design of your website. Here you can really let your creative juices flow and give your website a look that perfectly suits you and your business.
WordPress offers countless possibilities for the design, depending on how big your budget is and how good your programming skills are. To list them all would be too far, so for this tutorial we'll focus on two variants that can also be combined well with each other: Themes and Page Builders.
Design a website with themes
Probably the easiest variant for the design of your website is to fully rely on one of the numerous prefabricated themes that WordPress offers. Because every WordPress website needs such a theme as a basis anyway (more about that later).
Themes are templates with which you can influence the layout and design of your website (i.e. the presentation in the frontend).
WordPress itself provides some designs. Via the item Appearance → Themes you have direct access to the complete database of wordpress.org in the WordPress menu on the left – a good first place to find new design templates and install them directly. The themes listed there can also be filtered by their functions or colors, for example, or you can search directly for a specific theme. Use the preview function to get an impression of how the theme will look like on your website.
In addition, there are countless other themes on the market from other providers such as Elegant Themes or Themeforest. These mainly provide premium paid themes with extended functionality. The prices of these themes also vary.
Finding the right theme
Once you've found a theme in WordPress that you like, you can add it directly to the website by clicking on Install. As soon as you have activated the them, you'll find the different design settings under Appearance → Customize . Most of the settings can be customized here:
- Website information (e.g. logo, website icon, favicon)
- Layout (e.g. container, header, footer, sidebars)
- Typography (e.g. fonts, font sizes)
- Colors (e.g. background colors)
- Menus (e.g. pages, posts, links)
- Widgets (e.g. slider, calendar, comments)
For smaller changes to the design (e.g. buttons in a different color), you can also add your own code under the item Additional CSS. However, you should only try to write your own code if you know what you're doing and how to fix any errors that may occur if the changes don't go as planned!
If you want to create a fast, stable and performant website, you should use a lightweight theme and avoid multipurpose themes (e.g. Avada). These are quite cheap, but are often unnecessarily cluttered and slow due to the many features. Lightweight themes (e.g. Astra or Ocean) offer fewer features, but are more flexible and perform much better.
Use a page builder for the design
You have even more freedom in the design of your WordPress website if you design only the absolute basics, e.g. header and footer in the theme settings and design everything in between freely according to your wishes with a page builder like Divi or Elementor.
What's the benefit of designing this way? Page builder plugins like Elementor offer you a system with which you can design your website according to your wishes without any limits. They provide various design elements called widgets. You can then drag and drop them to exactly where you want them on your page.
If you want to know more about how this works and which page builder is right for you, you should take a look at our magazine. We've got a Complete Tutorial for Elementor and other articles on the topic including:
- The 16 Most Popular WordPress Page Builders in Comparison
- WordPress Page Builder: The Most Important Features and Best Plugins
- Page Builder: Curse or Blessing for the WordPress World?
Step 6: Install plugins
If you've chosen a page builder for your design, you'll have already entered the world of plugins in the previous step. In addition, there are other plugins that can be useful for your WordPress website. While ones are most relevant for you depends, of course, on how you build you website.
Overall, WordPress plugins serve to extend or modify the functions of WordPress. Most plugins are rather nice-to-haves that you don't really need. But there are some that pretty much essential if you want to get the most out of your website.
Some very well-known and good plugins that we can generally recommend are:
- WPML (for multilingualism)
- Advanced Custom Fields (for advanced functions in editor mode)
- RankMath (for SEO)
- Gravity Forms (for forms, e.g. contact or newsletter)
Plugins are installed in WordPress similar to themes: Under the menu item Plugins in the left sidebar of your WordPress backend you'll find your already installed plugins as well as access to the official database (sub-item Install), where you can browse or search specifically for individual extensions.
You can find more recommendations for plugins on specific topics as well as comparisons in our magazine, for example in these articles:
- The 5 Best WordPress Plugins for Image Editing
- Yoast vs Rank Math: WordPress SEO Plugins Compared
- Eight Popular WordPress Slider Plugins in Comparison
- WordPress UX Plugins: Improve the Usability of Your Website
Step 7: Create pages and content
By this point, you're very nearly ready with your finished website. your finished website. Now you "only" have to breathe life into the framework you've built so far – with exciting, ideally search engine optimized content.
How exactly you fill your predefined pages with content depends on the approach you've previously taken to the design or build of your WordPress website.
- If you rely completely on a prefabricated theme, there's usually a modular system included that you use to edit your pages. WordPress itself also has the Gutenberg editor by default. It's a pretty flexible system where you create content in different blocks (e.g. text, video, images) and arrange them on the page as you prefer.
- If you've used a page builder for the design, you are even more free in your content design. In most cases, you can create the content of your website relatively flexibly and according to your personal taste.
Step 8: Add your legal notice and data protection info
Last but not least, as a website operator, you must not forget to properly implement the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Of course, this section can in no way replace legal advice. It should only give you a short overview and a general idea of what is necessary to have a legally compliant website.
The checklist belows has the most important points you need should at least consider from the legal perspective:
- Depending on your juristiction, your website may need a legal notice that is accessible from anywhere on your website.
- You must sign a GDPR contract with your webhosting provider.
- Your website must have a privacy page that is written in clear and understandable language and is also clickable from all pages and sub-pages.
- Your website should be encrypted via SSL .
- For contact forms or comment functions, there must be a GDPR checkbox for consent as a mandatory field.
- Google Fonts should definitely be integrated locally.
For more detailed info on how to use WordPress in a GDPR-compliant way, check out our article GDPR & WordPress: Technical Measures You Should Implement Now.
WordPress website is ready – What now?
After the creation is before the maintenance. Once your website is filled and online, there are some administrative topics that you should take care of not just once, but on an ongoing basis. We would like to at least briefly touch on these here so you don't forget anything along the way.
- You should provide security for your WordPress website from the very beginning. Appropriate security plugins can support here. You should also make sure that your hosting provider gives your comprehensive server-side protection.
- Improving performance should also be on your to-do list on a regular basis. Again, you'll gain a lot with WordPress hosting that's designed for fast loading times. You should also regularly clean up your WordPress database and keep your website as clean and lean as possible. Check out our e-book on also our ebook on Making WordPress Faster.
- Without search engine optimization (SEO), your website has virtually no chance of being found by interested readers. Therefore, it is best to keep yourself informed about what is important for top rankings on Google & Co. and adapt your content accordingly. See our guide on the topic of SEO Audit.
- WordPress maintenance is something you should take care of on a monthly basis. The focus is on updating WordPress Core and the active plugins.
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Frequently Asked Questions
How much does a website with WordPress cost?
There is no general rule of thumb for how much a WordPress website costs. The price depends on, among other things, what type of hosting you choose, which theme you choose and what features your website should have. The cost also varies if you want to work with a WordPress agency or developers who'll take over the design and/or maintenance for you.
Can I create a WordPress website without programming knowledge?
Yes, it's certainly possible to create a professional-looking website with WordPress even without programming skills. Themes or page builders offer intuitive and flexible possibilities. However, depending on the size of WordPress website, at some point you'll reach your limit. When you get to that point, you should consider getting support from experts to develop the WordPress website individually based on your specific needs.
What do you need for a WordPress website?
The basis for your own WordPress website is (1) a domain, (2) a suitable hosting provider, on whose server you (3) install WordPress and run your website.