How to setup a WordPress website for under $100
This guide will help you setup a WordPress website including the initial template, domain name and first month of hosting. Please note that there will be ongoing website hosting costs which are charged at a monthly or annual basis but we’ll cover that more below.
In terms of setting up a WordPress site I’m not talking about WordPress.com but I’m referring to a self hosted WordPress website. This will allow a lot more customisation and control than you would have on WordPress.com.
1. Purchasing your domain name
The first thing you’ll want to consider is your domain name. Domain names are relatively cheap and you can easily pick up a .com for less than $20 a year. Personally I tend to use Crazy Domains but there are heaps of options out there. This will make it If they are charging more than $20 per year for a .com I would recommend researching other options.
For a beginner try and get your domain name with the same company as your hosting. This is so that you won’t have alter and DNS records which can be tricky for those without the technical knowledge.
If you are unsure about what you want your domain name to be there are plenty of free domain name generators. Top examples include:
- Panabee: Just add two words in the search bar and Panabee will create a domain name from abbreviations, suffixes, prefixes and popular domain trends. Whats even better is that is will tell you which domains names are available and which aren’t making it easier to skim through the list to find something suitable.
- Domain Name Soup: This generator has heaps of options. Just place a couple of words in the search bar and out pops a heap of domain name suggestions.
- Wordoid: Creates made up words. If you’re looking for the next Google domain name this website might be the right place to start.
2. Setting up your hosting
You have endless options of affordable hosting these days, most of them starting off at less than $10 a month. I’ve gone with HostGator before of which I’ve had no issues since my websites don’t require that much in terms of disk space. If you expect your website to guide a lot of traffic then perhaps research some other alternatives. At the moment I go with NetVirtue as it’s an Australian hosting company which is much better for my requirements. I would recommend for a beginner going with a hosting company that has cPanel as its easier to guide through the setup process.
Once your hosting account is setup, login into cPanel. Go to the software section and click on Softaculous. Softaculous is a one click install program which will allow you to install WordPress. This option is much faster than installing WordPress manually. Once here click to install WordPress. You’ll need to go through and fill in the setup information. Once you click on install Softaculous will check all the information is correct. If not, it will prompt you which sections are missing. Once you have completed this process you are ready to login via the cms admin and install your WordPress theme.
3. Installing your WordPress Theme
My favourite place for WordPress themes in Theme Forest. They have heaps of high quality themes for you to choose from ranging from $20 to $60 for the majority of them. If you would like to get more bang for your buck and plan to switch out your website design down the line I’m a big fan of Multi-Purpose themes. Multi-Purpose themes contains many different themes rolled into one so you can try a bunch out, or simply switch the theme a couple of months down the line if you find you’re getting bored of your web design.
With WordPress themes they will come with documentation on how to install the theme which will require no coding knowledge at all. Below I’ve listed some of my favourite themes:
This theme comes with over 150 pre-made pages with templates setup for online shops, photography, business & finance, blogs, real estate, restaurants and heaps more. The beauty about this template is if you get bored of one design, instead of purchasing a new theme just switch it up.
The Avada impresses me due to its constant updates and new release features. The theme boasts an impressive performance rating in relation to loading a fast and light coded website. You’ll be spoilt for choices in terms of design options and Avada contains a large amount of customisation options to deliver you the design you want.
Over 4000 sales can’t be wrong for this delightful theme. Salient has 475+ shortcodes so you can configure your website just the way to want. The great thing about this theme is that you’re going to find something a bit different that the usual templates out there. And for a limited time the theme is available for only $39.
And there you have it. All done! I estimate overall only about 2 -3 hours of your time to setup a website so instead of just waiting and reading more articles “Just Start“. You’re first attempt doesn’t have to be perfect but you are going to make more progress starting that you will just sitting there thinking about it.