This simple guide will explain to you how to setup a website without any coding. This guide is completely targeted for beginners. So, if you are a freelancer or a SME (Small and Medium Enterprise) and have been planning to setup your own website, but do not have coding knowledge and don’t want to spend $500 to $700 on your website by hiring a professional Web designer/developer, then this guide is for you. Just follow this guide and in less than 1 hour, you will have your professional website up and running. And let me reiterate, you don’t need to know any coding and don’t even need to write even a single line of code.
I have divided this guide into three steps:
- Step 1 – Choose Right Platform for Your Website.
- Step 2 – Buy Domain name and Hosting.
- Step 3 – CREATE & CUSTOMIZE YOUR WEBSITE.
- 1 Step #1: Choose Your Website Plaftorm
- 2 Step #2: Buy Domain name and Hosting
- 3 Step #3: Create & Customize your website
Step #1: Choose Your Website Plaftorm
A few years ago most of the people were using platforms like: HTML/CSS and PHP to create their websites but I will not recommend these platforms to you because if you are a beginner, it will take months to learn these platforms. So I would recommend using a CMS (Content Management System) for your website. CMS is very easy to understand for beginners and it’s completely free. You can consider CMS as a pre-made template for your website. You just need to provide the content, and your website will be up and running.
These are the popular CMS nowadays:
These are popular CMS which you can use but I will recommend you to go with WordPress. Now we will ask a question that why only WordPress? Here is some data that explains how popular WordPress is:
Here are some reasons of choosing WordPress for setting up your website:
1. WordPress is FREE
Yes, you heard it right. WordPress is completely free. You don’t need to pay a single penny to use WordPress. You can use it on any type of website and don’t have to worry about paying any money.
2. No need to learn languages like HTML, CSS and PHP
If you don’t have a technical background or you don’t know any programming language, even then you can create a professional website using WordPress. You can add text, images, Slideshows, Social media icons, Contact Forms and other functionalities to your website very easily without learning any programming language. WordPress is really as easy as it gets, and is perfect for newbies to setup their website.
3. WordPress can be used for both small and large sites
With the help of WordPress, you can create small as well as big websites. Some famous websites like Sony Music, BBC America, MTV News, Microsoft New Center, techcrunch and many other famous websites are created in WordPress. With the help of WordPress, you can even create your online shopping website without any programming knowledge. So, even if you want to start selling products directly from your website, WordPress is a good platform for that.
(MTV News Website)
Step #2: Buy Domain name and Hosting
The second step involves purchasing a domain name and hosting service.
- Domain: In simple words, a domain name is your website name. If somebody wants to find your website then he/she needs to type your domain name in address bar. For example, websofttutorials.com is my domain name. If somebody wants to find my website, then he needs to enter my domain name. A domain name is very cheap and typically costs $10/year and can be purchased from websites like Godaddy, but in this article, I will explain how you can get domain name for free.
You need keep these things in mind before purchasing domain name for your website:
- Easy to Remember: If you are going to purchase a domain, then it should be simple and easy to remember. Don’t select lengthy domain names which are difficult to remember. The domain name should be one word, two words or maximum of three words. You can see examples below:
One Word domains: Uber.com, Amazon.com.
Two words domains: Snapchat, Facebook.com.
Three words domain: TheLonelySerb.com, WebSoftTutorials.com
- Be Creative: Sometimes you might not be able to find the exact domain name that you are looking for. In that case, be creative and add something before or after your brand name to get a domain name that is available or you can even tweak the spellings a bit. Some interesting examples are: bckpckr, profitblitz, etc.
- Explain your brand: Domain name which you are going to purchase should explain your area of services or brand. Suppose if you write blogs about technical stuff, then there should be something in the domain name from where visitors will be able to understand about your domain from its name. Like, I have added “tutorials” in my domain name.
- Use Commonly Known Domain Extensions: Always try to purchase domain with extension of .com as this is most popular domain extension and is most easily remembered by people.
- Hosting: Once you have finalized your domain name, next step is to get Web Hosting. Web hosting provides storage space for your website. This is the space on the Internet where you place your website’s files.
To explain the concept of domain and web hosting more easily, you can think of domain name as your street address and hosting is your land where you built your house. You need to have both Domain and Hosting to create your website. If you have just domain, but not hosting, then you won’t have a space where you can actually host your website.
Now Buy Domain and Hosting
Now it’s time to purchase hosting. The hosting is very cheap and costs just between $3-$5 per month. So, in less than the cost of a coffee, you will have your website up and running!
As I mentioned earlier, even though domains typically cost $10/year, I will tell you how you can get domain name for free when you purchase hosting. For this, we will use a hosting service called Bluehost. I have been using Bluehost since last 5 years and most of the other web developers also recommend Bluehost.
If you are a reader of WebSoftTutorials.com, then you will get Free Domain when you purchase hosting with Bluehost. For that, you can click this below button and coupon code in included in this link. So that you will get free domain with hosting.
Why Should You Go with Bluehost
If you are still wondering whether you should go with Bluehost or not, here are some facts that will help you decide:
- Free Domain Name: First and foremost, Bluehost gives you a free domain name if you purchase hosting with Bluehost. This is an incredible offer that is hard to ignore.
- Huge Hosting Space: Different plans of Bluehost provide between 50GB to unlimited hosting space, so you don’t have to worry about how big your website becomes. A lot of other hosting companies give a very limited hosting space, and Bluehost outshines them in this regard.
- Unlimited Data Transfer: Bluehost provides unlimited data transfer. This means that when your website becomes very popular, you don’t have to worry about how much bandwidth you are consuming.
- Free Email Accounts: Another great feature provided by Bluehost is that it offers free email accounts. This means you can create professional looking email accounts (like, [email protected]) to make your email communication look credible. Not only that, the dashboard of Bluehost makes it very easy to create email addresses.
- 24/7 Support: A website needs to always stay online. For this, Bluehost provides 24/7 support. If you ever face a problem with your website, you can contact very professional support team of Bluehost.
- High Performance: Bluehost uses high performance servers that give good performance to your website, so that your website opens fast.
- Good Uptime: Bluehost has 99.99% uptime performance, which means that if you host your website with Bluehost, it will stay online.
- WordPress Optimized Hosting: Even WordPress recommends using Bluehost for all the hosting needs. This is because Bluehost hosting is specially optimized for Wordpress.
- One Click Install: Bluehost has a dashboard that makes it very easy to install any application for your website. Applications like WordPress, Drupal, Joomla, etc. can be installed with just 1 click.
- 30-Day Money Back Warranty: Bluehost provides 30-Day Money Back warranty in case you are not happy with their services. So, you can buy hosting on Bluehost with confidence.
Now, let’s proceed with purchasing domain and hosting on Bluehost:
Go to Bluehost website. Now, Click on “Get Started Now” button.
You will be redirected to plans page where you can select plan according to your choice. Prices will vary according to features provided in hosting plans. You can go for basic plan for now. Basic plan has all the features that are required to get started with your website. Now, Click on “Select” button.
Now it’s time to select our free domain name. Enter your domain name and click on next button. Bluehost will see if this domain name is available to purchase. If it’s available then you can add it to cart. If it is not available, you can try some other domain name that describes your business.
Bluehost will provide you an option to choose this domain name later means if you haven’t decided your domain name then you can buy it later at free of cost.
After clicking next button you be redirected to a page where you need to create your Bluehost account. You need enter your personal details here to create account or you can use your Gmail as well to create account on bluehost.
You will see your package information here. By default Account Plan will be selected for 36 months, you can change it to 12 months but if you will go for 24 or 36 months then you will get more discounted prices.
There will be some services like Domain Privacy, SiteLock will be selected by default. You can uncheck them if you don’t want to use these services for now.
Step 5: Congratulations – now you have successfully purchased hosting for a very low cost and you also got a domain for free. Now you need to set a password for your hosting. You need to click on Create a password button.
After clicking create your password button you will be redirected to a page where you need to enter your password which you want to use to login your Bluehost hosting account.
Enter your password here which you want to use to login to your Bluehost account and then click on next button.
You have successfully created your password. You will receive your hosting details via email. Bluehost will send you information like Domain, host, Username, directory, Email server, Name Servers and link to reset the password.
Now click on Log in button to login to your hosting account.
If you have just completed your Signup process then Bluehost will provide you very cool feature to create your WordPress website during the Signup process.
Step #3: Create & Customize your website
Once you will log in to your Bluehost account, Bluehost will give you an option to select a theme for your website. You can select a theme for your website or you can skip this step by clicking on Skip this step link.
After picking your theme or skipping this step link, you will be redirected to next page where will see a message “All done”.
Now you need to click on Start Building button to start building the website right away or you can click on Go to my Bluehost account. if you will click Start Building button then it will take you to WordPress dashboard but I will click on Go to my Bluehost account so that we will be able to understand Bluehost hosting panel.
After clicking go to my Bluehost account, you will be redirected to Bluehost hosting panel which will look like this.
This is Bluehost dashboard from where you can manage your hosting account. You can login to your WordPress dashboard by clicking Log in to WordPress button or you can click my sites link from where I will log in to WordPress.
After clicking Log in to WordPress you will be logged in to WordPress dashboard.
Now we will check our WordPress username and password so that we will be able to login directly from URL. In order to find our username and password, we will click on users tab from WordPress dashboard.
You can see that admin is the username. Click on edit link to reset WordPress password to login in future directly from URL.
After clicking edit link you will be redirected to profile page and then you need to scroll down to change the password. You will see Generate password button. Click on this button and then enter your new password for WordPress.
Click on Generate Password button and click on Update profile button. Now your password has been changed. Now you can use this username and password to login directly from URL which I will explain in this article.
There are two ways to log in WordPress dashboard. First way is to login from Bluehost hosting account and second way to login directly from your website URL. I have already showed you that how can you login from Bluehost hosting dashboard now I will show you that how can you login from URL.
In order to login from URL you need to type http://www.yourwebsite.com/wp-admin where you need to replace yourwebsite with your actual domain name. Then you will be redirected to WordPress login page.
You need to enter your WordPress username and password and then click on log In button.
If you have logged in for the first time then you will see a Welcome Wizard. It will ask that what kind of website you are going to create. You can select Business or Personal then it will display setup options accordingly. But I will click on I don’t need help link because we will setup these options manually so that you will able to understand WordPress dashboard in a better way.
Choose a Theme for your website
After installing WordPress when you will go to your website then you will see your website with default WordPress theme. It is a very basic theme, and we don’t have to use it. We can instead use a more professional looking theme. A great news is that WordPress provides tons of themes for free. And installing a theme is as simple as clicking a button. You will be surprised how quickly your website will have a great looking theme.
Find a theme for your website
In the left sidebar, you will see many options. One of these options is “Appearance”. Go to Appearance >> Themes. This will open the Themes section of WordPress.
Here you can look for a theme that matches the purpose of your website. For that, click on Add New button and enter a keyword in the search box. You will see a lot of themes will show up that match the keyword that you have entered.
Just take your mouse over any theme, and you will see “Details & Preview” option. Click on this option to see a complete Preview of the theme.
When you find a theme that you like, just click on Install button, and then Activate button. Now you have your new theme. If you don’t like any of the free themes, then you can go with more professional themes that are available at ThemeForest.
If you face some problem, then you can take help of this WordPress theme installation guide.
Create Pages for your Website
So, now we have a nice looking theme for our website. The next step is to add the pages that we want in our website. You know that most of the websites have pages like Home, About us, Services, Contact Us.
Let’s start creating these pages. It’s really easy to do that:
- To create a page, we will use “Pages” option in the left sidebar. Go to Pages >> Add New. This will open a simple editor to create your new page. It looks like the screenshot below:
In this, the textbox at the top is used to provide a title for your page. For example, it could say “About Us”, “Services” etc.
- The big box below that is the part where all the content for that page will go. It is really easy to use this section. Just imagine yourself using Microsoft Word. As you can write your text in Word, format it, add images, etc., similarly, you can create content here. Just add all the content that you want on your page, and use formatting options available in the toolbar above this box. To add images, you can use “Add Media” button that you see above this box.
- At any point of time you can preview how your final page will look. For this, click on “Preview” button. This will show you how your page will look on your website. I recommend doing it often while you are making a page, so that you can change formatting etc. if anything looks out of the place.
- Once the page looks good, just click on “Publish” button. This will publish your page and it will be visible on your Live website. If you spot any mistake, you can just go back to your page in WordPress and easily edit it again.
In the same manner, create all the pages that you want to add to your website. You don’t have to create all the pages in one go; just keep creating them as you proceed, at your own pace. The great thing about WordPress is that it gives you complete flexibility in terms of easily making changes anytime you want.
Add Pages to Menu of Website
Once you have created all the pages that you want, we can proceed to add the pages to the menu that will be visible on the website. This will ensure visitors will be able to easily navigate your website.
- To add these pages to menu you need to go to Appearance >> Menus. Then you will be redirected to this page:
On this page, we will be able to give the structure of the menu, specify which pages we want to go on the menu, and also specify text for each menu item.
- You will see Menu Structure on the right side, as you can see in the image above. The pages that we have added earlier are visible on the Left side. Now, to add any page to the menu, just select the page from left side, and then click on “Add to Menu”. This will add all the selected pages to the Menu. If you want to add more pages, you can repeat the process.
While adding pages to the Menu, don’t worry about the order of the items in the Menu, we can fix it once all the pages that we want have been added to the Menu.
- Once all the pages have been added, you can start arranging them. For that, just click on any menu item, and then drag it to move up or down. You can place any item anywhere you want in the menu.
- One more thing you can do now is to rename the items in the menu. By default, all the items would have the same name as the name of the corresponding page. Instead, you can change it to any name you want. For this, just click on small arrow next to any Menu item. This will expand that menu item.
You will see a text box which has the name of that menu item. You can change the name to anything you want. For example, you might have given page name as “About”, but you can give its menu text as “About Us”.
- Once you are done with setting up your menu, just click on the “Save Menu” button. This will save the menu and you will be able to see that on your website.
So, now, your website is all done. You can browse your website at the domain name that you purchased, and you will be able to see your complete website, with all the pages that you added.
And remember, if you ever want to change anything, or add new page, or edit existing pages, then just go back to WordPress and make the required edits.
So, this is how you can get a Free Domain name with hosting. And then use that to setup your website. As I had promised in the beginning, we didn’t have to write even a single line of code, and the entire website is up and running. This is the power of WordPress.
Do note that there are some other settings also of WordPress that I recommend tweaking. You can see details of them here.