How to Build a Self Hosted WordPress Website

I have developed a series of videos for you in a new project of mine at This Design Girl. If you are a business start up, an entrepreneur, or just someone who wants to learn web design, this would be perfect for you. Save thousands of dollars from hiring a web designer by following my easy step by step instructions on making your very own self hosted WordPress website.

What is WordPress?

WordPress is an open source platform and it is free. This means that developers and coders are able to customize plugins and apps to sell or give away for free. However, just like with Facebook, or Gmail, you will likely not find a reliable tech support contact number should you run into issues. Most of your troubleshooting will be browsing forums and discussing with community members. The upside to WordPress is that it is a rather large community, in the millions. The reason I love WordPress is because of it’s flexibility and ability to use specific plugins for whatever task that you need.

I have built hundreds of websites in my career and felt it was time to share my knowledge. In this project, I will teach you step by step on how to build you own WordPress website.

Building a Self Hosted WordPress website for beginners

This project teaches you how to build a self-hosted WordPress website step by step. If you don’t want to hire a web designer or programmer, and want to build a basic WordPress website on your own, I will teach you how to purchase your own domain, web hosting, pointing DNS, installing WordPress etc.

Do you need to be tech savvy?

Kinda. You should have basic knowledge on how to navigate the internet, some technical terminology, time commitment and a willingness to learn.

Do you need to have an eye for design to build a website?

Yes and no. If you are on a budget and need to get a WordPress website up and running, my tutorials will help you accomplish that. You can achieve a nice looking website with some really good photos, a good logo and relevant content. If you want to take it to the next level and make it look really smashing, then Photoshop needs to be your best friend (I will also do tutorials on that), you should also know what colours go together, have an overall eye for design and a solid marketing plan.

Do you need to have programming skills?

No. I went to school for design and art. When I graduated, the internet had just started, so I was building sites with animated gifs, 3D photoshop titles and basic HTML in Macromedia Dreamweaver. Like this. Technology has changed so much in the past 15 years and the one thing I stuck with was my eye for design and that is what I always fall back to. Most of my web skills learned were through trial and error, on the job learning, working and collaborating with other partners, and sometimes winging it with clients and praying.

WordPress back then was considered just a blogging tool like Blogger. Eventually, WordPress evolved into something far greater, allowing everyday people to build really beautiful websites. WordPress is excellent for information websites with relatively low maintenance. Even for basic e-commerce websites as well. However, most beginners feel overwhelmed and do not know where to start with building a WordPress website from scratch. I am here to show you how.

4 Steps to building a WordPress website:

  • Domain Name
    A domain name is www.thisdesigngirl.com. Think of your storefront sign. I recommend GoDaddy.
  • Web Hosting
    A web host is a place where your files are stored virtually. Think of your store space where it houses your products. I recommend HostGator.
  • Web Security
    Think of an alarm monitoring system that will alert you if an intruder comes into your store and decides to steal or deface your products (your files). And even better than an actual alarm company, they will repair the damages that the intruders messed up so that your store is fully functional and ready to be back in business. I recommend Sucuri.
  • WordPress Theme
    You install a WordPress theme from Themeforest.net.

WordPress.com vs WordPress.org

My tutorials teach you how to build your own self-hosted WordPress website through wordpress.org.

With wordpress.com, you don’t have to worry about your files being stored on a remote server through a 3rd party hosting company like HostGator. But, your domain will be www.thisdesigngirl.wordpress.com. And this looks unprofessional and cheap if you are a company, but perfect for a personal blog on cats (I have a couple of personal blogs like this so I am not judging!) Note that you will be stuck with their really basic WordPress templates that looks very cookie cutter. You can upgrade and get your own domain name through WordPress for a fee which is comparable to other leading domain name services, however there are limitations when going this route, such as the inability to add Google Adsense. Premium templates are also offered a price, but I find that these themes are rather limited in functionality compared to other self-hosted themes. Go to wordpress.com and click “Get Started” and be set up in a matter of minutes for free.