Make and Publish a Free Website Using WordPress

30 in 30 Dec 24, 2020

There are so many ways you could use to make a website. For example, you can make a website using code with technologies such as HTML and CSS. Or if you don't know how to code there are a lot of other avenues you could use to make a website. One of those avenues which don't necessarily need you to know how to code is WordPress.

What is WordPress?

WordPress is a Content Management System or CMS in short. A Content Management System is a system that enables you to create, manage, and publish content. In our case, WordPress is a CMS that will allow us to create, manage, and publish the content of our website.

The approach I am going to use today is that of creating a free hosted website using WordPress.com. The term 'hosted' just means WordPress.com will be the one handling the storage for our website as opposed to 'self-hosted' which means we ourselves will be responsible for handling and choosing where we store our website.

So that at least makes things easier, that we don't have to worry about where this website will be stored/hosted and whether we have to pay or not. WordPress.com offers a free plan for us to make our website.

Ok, that's enough for the introduction. Now let's build our site.

Step 1: Visit WordPress.com

Open your browser and navigate to wordpress.com. See photo below

WordPress.com Website
WordPress.com Website

Click the button that says "Start your website". And you will be directed to the following...

Step 2: Create Your WordPress Account

Just like you see in the photos below, create your WordPress account. You can choose either to create it from scratch like I have done or you have the option at the bottom to create an account using your Google account or your Apple account.

Step 3: Name Your Website

In this step, you pick a name for what you want your website to be called. You will see that as soon as you start typing, a list of all the available names will start to populate. Don't be overwhelmed by the options. There is only one website name we are interested in.

As you can see in the right photo above (indicated by the arrow), the name you want to select is the one that ends with wordpress.com

I have named my website "monalidor" and hence the free version of the website I will pick is monalidor.wordpress.com

Be free to name your website whatever name you like, just know that automatically the name you pick will be appended by 'wordpress.com'

Then click Select just right of your website name. As soon as you click select you will be directed to the following...

Step 4: Pick a WordPress Plan

Remember when I said we are creating this website for free? So here, is where we are going to pick a free plan. Forget about all those pricing plans you see. Our focus will be on their free plan. You see the arrow?

Now click where it says "Start with a free site". Upon clicking that WordPress will prepare your site and after that you will be directed to the dashboard.

Step 5: The WordPress Dashboard

The first you see WordPress Dashboard, it can look pretty intimidating with all the menus and links.

Right now I want you to focus on only a few things. Right at the middle of the dashboard, where it says My Home - Your home base for posting, editing, and growing your site. Just below that is where we will start setting up and launching our website

The first step which was creating the site has been done. Now we move to the next step.

Name Your Site

Click the button that says "Name Your Site". Here is where you will give a title to your website and let people know what your website is about. See below

After writing your Site Title, click the button that says "All done, continue".

I have named my site "Monalidor | Tech Blog", you should pick whichever title you think is right for your blog. And while you're still there you can add your Site tagline if you want to.

Then click the button that says "Save settings" See below

Then click another button "Return to My Home" that pops up.

The next step is...

Create a site menu

We're going to skip this step for now. Click where it says "Skip for now"

Update your Home page

We're also going to skip this step. So don't do anything yet...

....

While we're still here please remember to confirm your email address. Just click the link to the email that was sent to you when you signed up for WordPress if you haven't done that yet.

...

Step 6: Choose a Theme for your Website

You might have tried to play a bit with your website to see how it looks, if you haven't that's fine. The moment you create your site, a default theme named Hever comes with it.

A theme is just like a template for your website. It handles the look and feel of your website. So in this step we're going to pick a theme for our website.

On your left navigation, click where it says Design.

A drop-down menu will open. Then click where it says Themes

Now, there are a lot of themes. Some people spend so much time in this stage that they slow down the process of publishing their website. Don't spend too much time here because the theme you pick can easily be changed later.

Like I said previously that our site comes with Hever theme by default and you can see it there listed as current theme. I personally don't like it...so I am going to choose a new theme

The theme I am going to pick is called Brompton and it's near the bottom of the Recommended themes section. See below

Then hover over the theme (You will see the word info pop up) and click the theme.

Our next step will be to activate the theme. Activating this theme means the previous theme will be replaced by the new one.

Theme Activation
Theme Activation

Click where it says "Activate this design". You might also want to read the Overview section that contains more info about the theme itself.

After clicking Activate this design...the following box will pop up

Theme Activation
Theme Activation

Now because we want to completely get rid of the previous theme...we are going to pick the second option of using Brompton's homepage content just like you see above. The content of the Hever homepage will automatically be saved as draft.

Click the "Activate Brompton" button. WordPress will activate the theme then you will be directed to this pop up below

View Site

Click on the "View Site" to see how your website looks. It should look something like this...

Website Preview
Website Preview

Congratulations 🎉 ...You have successful created your WordPress site (almost)

Step 7: Theme Customization / Editing Content

This will be our last but one step where we're going to edit some content and maybe customize our theme a bit if we need to.

Customize Theme

On the design section of the dashboard, click on Customize.

Theme Customization

Then you will be directed to this page.

Theme Customization
Theme Customization

Now I won't go too deep into this section, try to open the different sections you see there like Site Identity, Colors & Background, Menus, etc. The top three might be important for now...try to adjust those settings to your liking.

When you finish remember to click the Save Changes button. But if you don't want to change anything you click the X above the section and leave that page.

Editing Content

Now back to our home page. Let's click on the left navigation where it says Site. Here is where we will be editing our content. Then under Site click Pages just like you see below

There are more subsections under Site like Posts, Media, Comments and Feedback. But for now we will only focus on Pages. Be free to explore those options too later.

After you click Pages you will see this page

The pages you see here are the same pages you saw on your navigation on your homepage. And on top you will see links for your published, drafts, schedules and trashed pages.

Now, let's edit together the page named Home. Hover over the word Home and click it. Then you will be directed to a homepage where you can edit words, pictures, colors, etc.

See below before and after editing...

Like you see above I have edited that block of texts. All you have to do is click on the texts and the cursor will appear and you can start writing whatever you want to write.

Also, did you see that white bar with icons? That is a floating tool bar or menu with options on how to edit your content.

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One of the most important skill to learn in tech is to play around with things and figure out how they work. So I won't go over each option, up to this stage you should have gotten pretty a good hang of it.

Step 8: Launch Site

This is our last step and we're going to launch our site for the world to see. On your top right corner you will see a blue button that says Launch. Click it to launch your site

Launch Site
Launch Site

Thanks for following this tutorial. Any time you want to edit your website just log in to WordPress.com using your registered email address and password

Hope you enjoyed. Any comments or questions, leave them on the comment section below.

...🥑

Creativity is inventing, experimenting, growing, taking risks, breaking rules, making mistakes, and having fun

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Ami Amigo

Ami Amigo (pseudonym) is one of the main contributors to this blog. He is a tech aficionado, developer, blogger and an online instructor. Ami Amigo studied Computer Science and Philosophy in college

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