Your Very Basic Training Guide To Using WordPress
Welcome to our WordPress Tutorial page
Below we’ve tried to cover the most basic tasks you’ll need to complete in the early days of using WordPress by yourself. As mentioned on our “Why WordPress” page, the more you use WordPress, the better and more skilled you’ll become with this fantastic free CMS platform. Don’t freak out, it’s a lot of fun!
If you’re interested in what WordPress is, and why we advise so many of our clients to build their business or personal websites on this platform, please visit this page for some info.
Choosing commercial vs. custom design themes
Off the bat, you’re going to need to choose a theme for your site.
One of the most popular features of WordPress is the amazing number of affordable commercial themes to choose from. As a business owner, designing the look and feel of your own website is easy and fun. This is also one of the first decisions you’ll get to make in the development of your very own professional looking website.
All you would need to do with a commercial theme (and by this, we mean a theme purchased off the shelf of a theme market website like ThemeForest.Com is to make a few basic modifications (adding your business logo for example), and you are good to go.
Custom WordPress themes for a unique design
Alternatively, if your budget allows you can take your website’s design one step further and create a truly unique design by having it custom developed. Any graphic artist worth their weight in gold will be able to provide you with customised graphics and also be knowledgeable in SEO optimisation strategies, online marketing and visually appealing graphics to use on your website pages as well as social media platforms to keep your brand identity strong.
How to add and edit website pages on WordPress
Editing a page is quick and easy with WordPress – Watch the Video
- Log into WordPress.
- Once you’re logged in and you’ve accessed your dashboard (we like to think of it as the control centre of your website), locate the “Add Pages” button found on your left-hand side. You will be given a list of all the pages you already have on your website.
- To add a new page, click on the “Add New” button found under the “Pages” section on the left-hand side. You now have a new template to work with.
- Give your page a title and add content in the designated space provided. Once entered, click on the “Publish” button for the new page to be displayed on your website for all your visitors to see.
Insert new pages into website navigation
- To insert a new page into your website’s navigation structure or sitemap, select the “Appearance” button and go to “Menus” where you will be directed to the structure of your website.
- On the left hand side you will see three tabs: “Most Recent”, “View All” and “Search”. Your new pages should be listed under “Most Recent”. Select your page or pages and then add them to menu. Then hit save menu.
- To test whether they appear on the website, go to the “Home” page, refresh and your newly added pages should appear. If you need them placed in a different category simply drag them into the box they need to go on the “Structure” page. Don’t forget to save.
Edits can be made quickly by clicking on the “Edit” button, wait for the page to load. You can then make any changes or edits or add images by dragging or uploading files from the media library. Once you’re satisfied that you’ve made all the edits required hit the “Update” button to save the changes.
How to add a blog post
Blogging is one of the most effective ways to keep a website updated with fresh content and help performance rankings on search engines. Again, WordPress has the best content management system to make blogging hassle and stress free for busy business owners.
On WordPress you have website pages (your services or product pages) and blog posts. Your blog page can be broken up into categories to make searching relevant content easier. For example, if you have an online clothing store you could include different categories: accessories, sportswear, workwear and footwear. If a visitor is only interested in sportswear he or she will select that category to see all the posts related to sportswear.
The blog page provides a list of blog post titles and a little snippet on what the content of the post is about. Clicking on the “Continue Reading” button will direct your visitor to the full blog post.
To get started:
On the dashboard section pane select the “Posts” button that will direct you to all the blog posts you have published on your website.
Add new blog post
If you have a post already typed out in a word processor like Notepad (a great option as it removes all formatting) or Word, WordPress allows you to copy and paste from these programs onto its blogging template. If you use Word you may have to fiddle around with formatting but this is also easy to do.
- Enter the title of your post into the “New Title” line.
- Once you’ve pasted in your content remember to select the category your post is suited for. You can select more than one category for a single blog post. If you haven’t allocated a category you can add a new one by entering a new category section you want the post to appear in.
- Add an image
Adding an image to your post helps your audience relate better to your content. It is an effective way to break up blocks of text and can benefit SEO. Place the cursor where you want the image to be inserted and then click on the “Add Media” button at the top to upload the images you want. These can be already on your website or select images from your computer’s library folder, click on the “Insert into the post” button on the bottom right hand side.
One of the beneficial uses of inserting images into your blog post is that you can use your keywords in the image title and ALT text areas to improve the relevancy and search ability of your post.
Once you’re happy with your title, content, category and image you can go ahead and click on “Publish”. Congratulations you have just published a new blog post.
Editing a blog post
Editing is easy as you simply click on the “Edit” button to make the required changes. Don’t forget to save any edits you make by clicking on “Update”.
Basic guide to onsite SEO on WordPress
Watch the video on WordPress SEO plugins (Tutorial)
Maybe you’ve got a service or product page or blog post on your website that you think requires optimising. Maybe you’re not seeing as many visitors on that page/post that you would like to see. One reason could be that the page/post hasn’t ranked well on search engines and needs SEO to boost visibility. There are a few onsite SEO techniques you can do yourself to ensure a page receives better performance rankings. We’ll show you how.
If it is a service page that needs optimising, use the dashboard to select the “Pages” section and find the relevant page to optimise. Remember the more visibility your page gets, the more enquiries about your service you receive and ultimately, more sales leads.
The first thing you want to do is to test your page’s content. At the bottom of the page you should find a plugin – Yoast SEO. Put in a focus keyword (the more specific the better) you want the content to rank for in the focus keyword area.
The content analysis then points out all the issues in your content for that particular keyword listed under red bullets: perhaps you have not included the keyword in your page title or the focus keyword does not appear in any of the subheadings or the keyword density is too low (it could also be all three) which is why your content does not rank well for that keyword. The red points are areas that need attention and redressing.
Green bullet points provide key information such as an analysis on keyword density, how many words the text contains and whether your focus keyword has been used in the meta description snippet. The more green points your content receives, the better it has ranked for that focus keyword.
Changes to meta description can be made in the meta description box. This is a short description and WordPress will tell you that you’ve used too many words when they appear in red lettering.
Optimising SEO requires you to know the keywords you want to rank for well and those your intended audience will be using during their searches. Keyword research and seeing what keywords your competitors are using successfully are useful techniques. A well-optimised page can be used as landing pages linked to Facebook ad campaigns and PPC. More on Professional SEO Services.
How to use Media Manager on WordPress when using images
On the left hand side of your dashboard you have a button labeled “Media” that will take you to the media manager page.
To add media, click on the “Add Media” button that will allow you to drag files from your desktop or select files from your computer’s library folder. To keep things simple and organised you can store all your images for your WordPress business website in your Media Library section. They are all safe in one place for when you need them.
When working with images for your website it is important to bear in mind that the size dimensions relate to how quickly a page will upload. Quicker uploads keep web visitors and search engines happy. The recommended size for images is 800x1000px. If your images are too large in size there are a number of free image editing software you could use (we favor PIXLR) to reduce size but keep quality.
All images ideally should have an ALT text and an image title. You can add in a short description as well in the space provided. WordPress also allocates each image its own url. Once all of these details are completed, your images are ready to be included on your pages or blog posts.
How to add a shopping cart feature on WordPress
As stated before building a website on WordPress is made wonderfully simple with the vast amount of plug-ins available. The best of ecommerce shopping and blogging comes together on WordPress.
The WooCommerce plugin enables you to set up a shopping cart easily and can accommodate accounting software you are already using (Xero, for example). Magento, reputed as a top ecommerce platform especially for multi-stores, can also be easily integrated into your new WordPress website.
Stress-free software integration
Subscribed to software and need it incorporated into your WordPress website? No problem. WordPress works well with programmes such as Mailchimp and Quickbooks as well as with numerous Social Networking platforms, notably the ever popular Facebook and Google+. WordPress allows for the easy incorporation of all your programmes and products allowing you to save time by managing all of this in one easy to use management system.
Streamlining Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
If your desk is hidden under a mountain of paperwork then you will love this feature from WordPress. Managing your CRM contact forms is easy on a WordPress-enabled business website. A customer fills out the contact form on your website and the details are automatically entered into your CRM. This is a time-saving solution to make organising sales leads and responding to enquiries easier and simple.
Set up your CRM on WordPress the smart way. For existing business websites we are able to fit in any software you currently use into your WordPress site. This includes software for ecommerce websites such as Xero and Mailchimp to integrate your customer database into a new and improved website.
RCS Websites enjoys strong relationships with a network of reputable CRM management companies whose specialist services are dedicated to taking care of set up and management of CRMs for you meaning you have one less thing to do. We offer a free 14 day demo. Give us a call for more information.
Why is WordPress a must-have for the serious Australian business owner? While WordPress does offer free basic services, in order to grow a business online you will need a website that has its own domain name as well as one you have complete control over regarding security and maintenance. Other bonuses include hassle-free hosting and not being locked into unforgiving contract agreements.
For more in-depth help on any part of using WordPress including implementing SEO strategies, the experts at RCS Websites are quite happy to assist. Give us a call or send us an email. Once your WordPress website is set up, all that is needed is to keep it regularly updated with fresh engaging content. RCS Websites can help with that too!