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How to make your own website (Part 4 of 4)

How to make your own website (Part 4 of 4)

November 21, 2014 5:57 pm0 comments

Hi Everyone,

Welcome to the final part of my blog series on how to create your own website! Through part 3, we have gotten all of the configuration done and installed our first WordPress theme, now it is time to customize your page. What I mean by that is going through and editing the default colors, pictures, text, etc.. of the theme to fit the website we are making. This is where you need to bring out your artistic side!

The process of customization changes based on every theme and what you want your website to do, but there are a few common avenues that I go down when I do my customization.

1) General Settings

Editing the main colors and appearance of your site can be done by click on “Appearance” –> “Customize”

In this screen you can edit a lot of the basic features of your website

Another great way to edit the basic features of your site is to go through all of the “Settings”

Editing the “General,” “Writing,” “Reading,” and “Discussion” sub-settings control a lot of your site (e.g. allowing or not allowing comments of new posts in the “Discussions” sub-setting).

2) Standard Widgets

Another very common way to change the appearance of your site it to add or remove widgets. Widgets are small features that are typically at the bottom or the sidebar of a website. For example, on my site I have “Type of Posts,” search feature, and “Latest Tweets” widgets on my bottom of my page. You assign and add widgets through “Appearance” –> “Widget”

In this section, you can drag and drop the widgets you want to use in the difference sections

Once you add the widget, put in the required information, and save it then the widget will show up on your website. You can install a ton of different widgets (examples). You install new wdigets by going to “Plugins” –> “Add New”

Then search for what you are looking for, install it, and activate it. You can do A LOT with widgets and it is one of best features of WordPress.

3) Editing CSS (Cascading Style Sheets).

On more of a tech savvy way of doing edits, you can edit the basic structure of how a web browser displays your website. This should be done on a practice website first and not on your main site as messing up your CSS can seriously change the way your website looks, but that is also its benefit. As you start to spend more time working with WordPress you will find that it can’t always make the changes that you want. If you want to drastically increase your ability to tweak your site, knowledge of CSS is a must.

If you want to edit your CSS, I suggest this plugin that lets you simply make CSS edits. If you are new to CSS, here is a great starting tutorial. I learned CSS mostly by trial and error. I would Google search my problem and see if I could find how someone else fixed it through CSS edits. I have had a far amount of previous programming experience, though. If you have not, I would suggest starting with that CSS beginner’s tutorial.

A note on SEO or Search Engine Optimization: Everyone wants their website to be the first item when they Google search anything related to their website. Well, in short, this is very difficult. Google has certain criteria it feels makes website more deserving of the top spot based on so many factors. I heard they change that criteria on average more than once per day. So it can be difficult to keep up. There are some basics to keep in mind though.

Conclusion

That is it! You have gone through all of the steps to get your own website up, running, and customized! I hope you enjoyed this blog series and found it useful. If you have any questions, please feel free to comment or send me an email. If you would like to hire Bouman Technologies to create and/or design your site, shoot me an email with what you’re looking for and I can get you a quote!

 

-Troy

Troy@TroyBouman.com

www.TroyBouman.com

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