WordPress Plugins

One of the best features of WordPress is that there are many plugins available from a central location. Yes. You can write your own custom plugins if you choose, but most bloggers are not interested in learning how to write a WordPress plugin for a common feature.

To install plugins for WordPress, you will need admin access to your WordPress blog. Once you log in using an admin account, go your dashboard. The dashboard menu has a Plugins link. Click it.

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Addon Domains with cPanel

Many blogging and website plans allow for users to have multiple websites, each with a unique domain name. For example, the Power Website Hosting and Ultimate Website Hosting at Gene Davis Software allow for more than one website and each can have a different domain.

(Note: The Power Blogging and Ultimate Blogging plans at Gene Davis Software don’t require the user to know how to use cPanel. Support will take care of this configuration for the user.)

These instructions will apply to most modern cPanel-managed websites that support multiple domains.

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Content Management System (CMS)

Content Management Systems allow people to easily add documents, images and other digital content to websites.

If you’ve never heard of a CMS, also know as a Content Management System, you’re not alone. Content Management Systems are a relatively new tool even in terms of the Internet. Old time Internet users used HTML or Flash to share hobbies, family photos, and business information. Now, the majority of information created by people on the web is created using WordPress or other content management systems.

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Creating Normal Websites with WordPress

Most people and businesses don’t realize that WordPress is for websites, too. Obviously WordPress is popular among bloggers, because it has an easy interface for creating and posting new blogs. However, that same interface creates web pages and regular websites with the same ease.

By default, WordPress shows blog posts on the front page. Many business, for example, want a blog, but not as the front page. The trick for business and individuals that want to have WordPress for their website is figuring out how to get a normal web page as their front page in WordPress.

Here’s the trick to using WordPress to create a normal website.

1. Go to your WordPress Dashboard and navigate to Appearance.

2. Under Appearance, you will see Customize. Select Customize.

WordPress Customize
Dashboard -> Appearance -> Customize

3. Now select “A static page” and choose a front page from the drop down list of your published pages.

WordPress Customizing
Select Static Front Page

 

 

4. Don’t forget to click the Save & Publish button on this page.

Static Front Page
Make a website home page using a WordPress home page

One important note. You can’t choose a static page as your WordPress front page until you have actually published at least one page. So, don’t forget to create your new home page.

Where to Blog

Many free and subscription blogging options exist. Free works for first time bloggers, and is a great way to get your feet wet. Yes, you get what you pay for even in the world of blogging, but that doesn’t mean that learning to blog can’t happen on a free blogging host.

Obviously, I have to recommend checking my blogging solutions when you look for a service to host a blog. But, if you are looking for free for now, try looking into these providers. Then, when you outgrow them, you can look into a more powerful blogging platform.

wordpress.com

WordPress is the most popular free blogging platform on the market. WordPress’s site, wordpress.com, is a popular place to start a free blog. It’s great for the first time blogger to get a feel for how WordPress works.

blogger.com

Nothing comes close to WordPress in the popularity stats, but Blogger ranks high among the runner ups. Blogger is owned and maintained by Google. This gives a lot of peace of mind to bloggers knowing a big name like Google is behind their blog. Others complain that Google sidelines blogger.com in favor of other social media projects. But hey, … it’s free.

joomla.com

Joomla! is a popular alternative to Blogger and WordPress. They include a ‘!’ in their name, probably just to annoy the grammar police. Many surveys place it at number two on the most used blogging platform list, but other surveys claim Joomla! is a third or fourth place. Either way, you can get a free Joomla! blog up and running over at their site in just minutes.

Drupal

Drupal comes with a blog module, these days. Drupal is more a website-building software, but they couldn’t ignore the popularity of blogging. Drupal does not seem to have a free blogging option at their site. There are a few hosts that offer a free blogging experience with Drupal. However, many diehard bloggers turn their noses up at Drupal, because its primary focus is not on blog building.

Welcome Bloggers!

I know it sounds like a restroom wall, but … If you’re looking for a good blog, check out Gene Davis Software’s blogging solutions. Gene Davis Software provides preinstalled WordPress blogs, and helpful support to get things up and running quickly. Also, the hosted blogs at Gene Davis Software use HTTPS to improve your readers’ privacy and improve your blog’s Google ranking.

How to Start Blogs is hosted by Gene Davis Software, just for the sake of full disclosure.