Everything that a beginner needs to learn about WordPress basics. WordPress Tutorial Free for everyone to learn WordPress and create engaging, scalable and informative WordPress sites.
What is WordPress?
WordPress is a Content Management System for creating dynamic websites. It is written in PHP, MySQL and runs on Linux based servers that have Apachce or Nginx web server software installed. WordPress was originally developed as an opensource blogging software by Matt Mullenweg and Mike Little in the year 2003. The software is released under the GPLv2 (or later) license. You will find WordPress Tutorial free all over the web but we create guides that are practical and simple to use for beginners to learn WordPress and to build a website.
Today, WordPress powers more than 33% of all the websites in the world and is one of the most popular Content Management System on the web and that’s mainly because of its simplicity to install and an intuitive WordPress dashboard. It has both self-hosted version as well as well as a blogging service under the name ‘WordPress.com’ which allows creating WordPress blogs and websites by simply signing up for the service. You can create your own website, WordPress blog or ecommerce websites using WordPress.
To run the WordPress, you need a web hosting service that has a web server installed on it and it must be a linux based server. WordPress needs a LAMP (Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP) environment to work which is provided by a reliable web hosting service for WordPress. Bluehost is among the most popular WordPress hosting providers. For testing and learning purposes you can install it on a local computer using XAMP or WAMP servers and run on a localhost. Unlike Joomla or Drupal, WordPress dashboard is simpler to use and easy to learn.
Understanding WordPress Site Architecture
As you already know that WordPress is an opensource CMS for creating websites, but do you know how a WordPress website works and what’s the WordPress architecture like?
The main parts of a WordPress websites are:
Theme: Every WordPress installation comes with a default theme. Now what is a WordPress theme? Basically, a theme is what you see in a browser when you access a WordPress website by typing in the URL. Theme is actually something that decides the design, look, feel and functionality of a WordPress website. Themes are available for almost every kind of website such as business website, ecommerce themes, blogging themes etc. Most of the free themes have a simple customizer feature that allows easy editing of the website to give it a desired look.
Plugins: WordPress architecture is all about extending the features and functionalities of a WordPress website and plugins play a major role in it. Plugins are an integral part of WordPress. What are WordPress Plugins?
Without plugins WordPress will be dead. Plugins are independent scripts/software written to perform unique functions in a WordPress website. WordPress has a collection of over 55,131 plugins both free and paid versions (but mostly free) for carrying out various tasks on a website. These tasks and functions range from Search Engine Optimization to adding membership signup features to Speed Optimization to ecommerce features and everything else that you can imagine, there’s a WordPress plugin for that.
Widgets: Similar to Plugins, Widgets also play an important role in extending the functionality of a WordPress website. Every WordPress theme has widget areas pre-defined and you can use Widgets to make your web pages stand out.
Widgets are like information blocks on a web page that can be used to display information such as contact details, maps, important links on a website, images, categories etc. Mostly, WordPress themes come with 3 to 4 pre-defined widget areas.
Sidebar: Sidebar is a block on a web page either on the left side or right side or can be on the both sides of the main body section of a website. Sidebar(s) are generally used to display contact forms, similar blog posts and pages, promotional content or testimonials on a WordPress Website. You can add any stuff that you like on a Sidebar using widgets.
Here’s a video tutorial by wpbeginner.com to setup a WordPress website
Main Template files of WordPress CMS
Main WordPress template files include:
- header.php – It is used to display navigation/menu and header.
- index.php – it is used to display blog post index.
- home.php – this template file is also similar to index.php as it can also be used to display blog post index. If this file is missing in a WordPress installation then WordPress looks for index.php file.
- front-page.php – This template file is used to display a website’s main/homepage and your front-page can be a static home page or a blog post index.
- page.php – this file is used to display page titles, its contents, comments and comment form.
- single.php – this file displays various information such as blog post’s title, content, author name, date, post category, tags, comment list and comment form. Also, navigation links to the previous and next post.
- functions.php – It contains the main functions of a WordPress theme and you can use this file to define your own functions or customize the existing functions in your theme. This file is theme specific and each time you install a new theme, you will notice new code in functions.php file.
- footer.php – this file contains footer information such as webmaster credits, developer information and copyrights info.
- style.css – This file contains the CSS code that controls the design, look and layout of your website.
WordPress is quite popular all over the world but still thousands of new WordPress users join to the WordPress community everyday, though there are several WordPress alternatives available on the web for free.
You will be amazed by WordPress, it’s features, functionalities and powerful architecture that allows creating both small and large scale websites. When installing WordPress for the first time you have to go through its documentation to to check WordPress security aspects and address those issues to make your website secure.