9 Ways To Beat the WordPress Learning Curve

wordpress-2Beating the WordPress Learning Curve

I was recently in a conversation with someone who got really frustrated with WordPress and was ready to throw in the towel and try and find something else.

They weren’t a web or coding guru, and just wanted to get their site right. Haven’t we all been there at one time? But they were overlooking some essentials that any website owner is going to need so we’re going to address that here.

If you’re going to have a website you’re going to have to invest the time and energy to be able to make use of it. That means you need to have some baseline skills, or otherwise you’re going to end up frustrated and giving up on your goal and we can’t have that.

Actually, there is an alternative, but it’s out of the reach of a lot of people. And that would mean hiring a full-time webmaster to manage your site for you, but even then, you still need to have a basic understanding of how things work.

What Do You Need to Know?

If you’re going to be a webite owner, you need to have a couple things on straight. You need to know the basics regarding HTML, and have at least a basic idea about how CSS works if you’re going to want things customized. That’s just the honest truth. You do yourself an immense favor when you know how these things work for times when you want to want to make basic tweaks or changes.

There really is no such thing that’s just plug and play for a website that I’ve ever seen that is worth anything. Stuff like Godaddy’s website tonight, and other website builder programs produce amateurish, very low-quality, non-optimized, ugly websites that look as cheap as they are. They scream “I didn’t have the time, patience or budget to do something better.” Stuff like that takes you in the opposite direction of where you’re trying to go and causes more problems instead of solving them.

If you take the time to work through the different pieces in WordPress you’ll be astonished about what you can do. There are millions of small sites running WordPress. There are also universities and large public organizations that scale WordPress to do things that would make your head spin. In short, you’re not helping yourself by blaming the tool for not being easy to learn, or easy to work with.

So you need to get yourself up to speed on how to work with your WordPress site. There are several blogs that I would recommend to help you learn the ropes on the kind of website 101 stuff.

Learning WordPress

  • WPbeginner.com – great resource for getting off the ground
  • john.do – formerly, tentblogger, John Saddington is one of my favorite people on the internet. His site is full of all KINDS of great stuff that’s easy to follow.
  • copyblogger.com – The copyblogger team has got tons of great resources to help you learn how to build your content, blog, etc. and they’re also the company behind the Studiopress theme which is among the best IMO.
  • My blog – I’ll also humbly offer some of my content which is now here. I’ve done a lot of stuff on getting your website started.

Learning HTML & CSS

When I first learned HTML several years ago I spent a lot of time on the W3C site. That’s a great one and there are several more.

  • W3C – World Wide Web Consortium – this is the source for everything web.
  • W3 Schools – probably one of the best reference sites on web coding, if not the best. I use it as a reference all the time
  • Codecademy – Outstanding, free tutorial-style site that walks you through learning how to code. It’s one of the sites I use all the time to keep my skills sharp
  • CSS Tricks – You’ll learn a ton by spending some time here. Chris Coyier has created an amazing site with lots of great info.
  • Code School – This one isn’t free, but there is a lot of great stuff here, and I’ve used it to learn some specific things I needed to get up to speed on.

I’ve worked with several of my clients to move away from site-builder type platforms and they’re always relieved to get away from those platforms, but it’s almost always a huge chunk of work to make that happen.

Having a website necessitates a certain skill set or the necessary budget to pay someone with that skill set to do it for you. Someone who doesn’t know how to drive a car, who gets in to one thinking driving is simple and then wrecks it, cannot legitimately blame the car. It’s really not too much different with a website.

It’s not easy to hear because large companies run commercials about “having a professional website in 10 minutes!” or “no coding or technical knowledge required” which just isn’t true and people end up disillusioned and frustrated when things don’t turn out the way the expected.

You also don’t need to be an expert. If you’ve got a decent understanding of the basics you should be good to go. Thanks to the awesomeness that is WordPress you should be able to build an awesome site if you have the basics grasped.

Do yourself a favor and stay the course and dig in and get up to speed on the basics. You’ll be glad you did.

image by Huasonic

See Also:

Is ClickFunnels safe?


"New platforms are sometimes met with skepticism, and ClickFunnels is no different. But ClickFunnels is an established platform that’s been around for years now, and thousands of online businesses are using it to power their online business. There are several competitors who’ve shown up over the last couple years who are desperately trying to take […]"

Keep Reading...

Question 2. Do you need people to be able to log in and create user profiles on your website?


"Following closely on the idea of content management systems is user management within content management systems. Why would users need to be able to log in to your website? You see this feature a lot when some kind of content asset is kept behind a wall that prevents access except for registered users. Newspapers and […]"

Keep Reading...

How To Choose A Web Host


"Great web hosting comes down to four things: great support, great performance, great security and scalability. Now that you have chosen your new domain name, it’s time to talk about hosting your website. But you may be wondering: “what is web hosting?” Think about it this way. Your domain name is the equivalent of your […]"

Keep Reading...

Ongoing Maintenance and Upkeep Costs


"When it comes to building your own website there are a few basics that are common to all websites that require regular upkeep and maintenance. Domain name registration Costs Your domain name serves as your address on the web. It’s similar to your physical address. You give your mom your address to send you a […]"

Keep Reading...

Creating Pages With WordPress | How To Make A WordPress Blog Step-by-Step 2020


"How To Create Static Pages With WordPress Welcome to the Mastering Essentials of WordPress series where we’re walking through the various features and functions of your new self-hosted WordPress site so that you are fully up to speed on everything you need to do and every tool that you have at your disposal to make […]"

Keep Reading...

What is ClickFunnels? Everything You Need To Know – Updated for 2022


"What is ClickFunnels exactly? How does ClickFunnels work? Is ClickFunnels a scam? How much does ClickFunnels cost? These are questions that I get all the time from my clients – and all of them are fair. So, what is ClickFunnels? ClickFunnels is a web-based website building platform designed specifically for building online sales funnels. It’s […]"

Keep Reading...

How to figure out your “who”


"Knowing who you’re writing for is crucial when you’re going to start a blog. And this part should be easy at this point if you’ve been following along with this series. You know what you want to blog about and you know what your voice and approach is going to be. So now, the people […]"

Keep Reading...

Do I need any special software to start a blog?


"To start a blog you only need a few things: A solid internet connection A decent computer or laptop A blogging software platform – self-hosted WordPress is recommended A writing tool There isn’t a lot you need to start a blog, but there are a few essentials. It should go without saying that you’ve got […]"

Keep Reading...

How To Generate Leads For Interior Design in 2021


"How can you generate leads for your interior design business? Lead generation is the life-blood of any sustainable business. And having a solid, reliable, and proven plan is essential to the process. So if you’re looking for the answer to the question “how to generate leads for interior design”, then you’re in the right place. […]"

Keep Reading...

How To Use Gutenberg Blocks?


"It’s not hard to figure out how to use Gutenberg blocks. It may seem that way at first, but figuring it out is actually pretty intuitive. The problem is it looks daunting if you’ve not seen the new Gutenberg editor before. And that can slow you down. And admittedly, there are a LOT of different […]"

Keep Reading...