Is WordPress Easy to Use?
WordPress is one of those programs that seems to have been around forever but it was not actually launched until 2003. Since then it's gone through some major versions and lots of small revisions. It's popular – around one in every six new sites use it – partly because it's free and partly because it's flexible and well supported.
There are several versions of WordPress available at any given time but I'm going to concentrate here on the version that you can install on your own web host as this gives you the most flexibility without adding much in the way of complexity.
Installation of WordPress
Almost every host offers a simple installation procedure.
You go to a link – often directly on your control panel but, if not, behind an option called either Fantastico or Softaculous dependent on which of those two companies your host has done a deal with.
You then complete a few boxes – probably no more than you've completed for an online form – and the software is installed on your internet host.
If that scares you (it should not!) Then there are people on places like Fiverr who 'll do those few clicks for you in exchange for $ 5.
A freshly installed version of this program does show some of its roots.
WordPress was originally designed for hardened bloggers and it still adds a few things that betray those roots but they're getting less over time.
There are now tours and help buttons offered once you've installed the program or you can get tutorials on sites like YouTube for anything you get stuck on.
Most of the tweaks are in the section called Settings.
The most important section there is called Permalinks. Do not worry much about what they are, just change from the default to the one marked Post Name and click the Save button.
There are a few other tweaks you can do but you can come back to those later once you've got a few posts under your belt.
Pages and Posts
WordPress can be very confusing for beginners because it calls web pages two different things according to which menu you create them from.
This is partially historic but depending on how you intend to use your new site can be quite useful. You can use either or both depending on how you want to use your new site.
Pages are just that – web pages.
They act like normal web pages and appear in the menu structure of your site. You can also nest them so that certain pages appear underneath others in your site structure.
Posts are also web pages but unlike Pages they do not appear in your site's menu structure.
If you're only using posts then they will appear on the front page of your site – if you only want to show an excerpt on the front page then simply click the "more" button on the visual editor to insert a cut off point for the front page.
They'll also appear on their own individual page – the one you've changed the name structure of in the Settings section.
Or you can do a mix of both – the easiest way to that is to create a blank page with a simple title (Blog, News, that kind of thing) and then go into the Reading section the Settings menu and select that page as your posts page from the drop down list you're given.
Then you can start creating content for your new website to your heart's content.