Ever since I discovered WordPress, more than six years ago now, I’ve been a fan. Recently, I’ve been spreading the love to people I know who want an easy, quick way to create a website.
That got me thinking about the resources you need if you are starting your WordPress site from scratch or just want to get informed about what WordPress can do. Here’s part 1 of my mega-list of useful WordPress resources. Add yours if you think I’ve missed anything.
Resources from WordPress.org
The best place to start is with WordPress.org itself (after all, they are the experts, right? ) Here are some of the resources you will find there:
- WordPress Codex – This humongous wiki has everything you need to know about WordPress, including getting started tutorials. There are also resources for WordPress developers and theme and plugin developers.
- WordPress Forums – part of the Codex, this section is where you go to find answers about WordPress features. One thing to note is that in my experience the forum info is biased towards the WordPress.com sites but if you are using self-hosted WordPress you will still find it useful.
- WordPress Themes Directory – this is a good starting point if you want a design for your WordPress site. It features both free and commercial themes and you can use the tag and filter interface (the same one that’s in the WordPress dashboard) to refine your choices. Check out the most popular WordPress themes in the directory here.
- WordPress Plugins – this is a mega list of plugins (more than 22,000 at the time of writing). Plugins add additional functionality to your WordPress site, whether you want to tweak images, add social media buttons or more. You can also search plugins from the WordPress administrative dashboard.
- WordPress Mobile Apps – want to blog from your smartphone? Then you will need these apps, also available from your favorite app store. There are apps available for iPhone and Android, as well as other platforms.
WordPress Tutorial Sites
If you’re just getting started with WordPress, then you need some guidance on what to do. Here are some of the best sites around offering WordPress tutorials and tips:
- WPMU – run by a team of expert bloggers, educators and marketers, this site is a one-stop source for tips, plugins, themes (free & premium), news and tutorials about WordPress. It’s always worth a look.
- WP Beginner – the name says it all. This blog aimed at WordPress newbies is chock full of basics including getting started in minutes, how to choose and tweak your theme, how to handle typical beginnersí hiccups and much more.
- ManageWP – if you manage multiple WordPress sites, ManageWP will give you resources and shortcuts for how to do so efficiently, and maximize the power of WordPress to your advantage. If you’re on-the-go, thereís ManageWP for iPhone, too!
- Hongkiat – from design inspiration to practical how-tos, you’ll find solutions and suggestions for how to supercharge your WordPress site.
- Noupe – a site targeted to designers and developers, with a special category dedicated just to WordPress. This helps you make the most of this user-friendly content management system.
- Nettuts – WordPress – the well known web tutorial site has a category dedicated to WordPress with videos, articles, tips and tutorials targeted to web developers and designers. Even if you’re not a developer or designer you can find useful help here.
- Smashing Magazine – intermediate-level tutorials and articles focusing on how to develop well-designed websites with clean code. It’s got a great collection of free themes, too!
To get the right look for your WordPress site, you need the right theme. Here are some popular themes and theme resources.
Popular Premium Themes and Tutorials
There are dozens of premium WordPress theme designers, but here are some of the most popular.
- WooThemes has a great selection of free and paid themes and is also known for the WooCommerce’s e-commerce framework and plugin. Get help with WooThemes with these tutorials.
- Brian Gardner’s StudioPress produces the Genesis theme framework, with a wide selection of child themes for every type of blog or business. Get help with Genesis with these video tutorials.
- Chris Pearson’s DIYThemes is known for the SEO-friendly Thesis theme framework. A wide range of designers produce child themes for Thesis. Get help with Thesis with these tutorials.
- Headway Themes features a drag and drop interface that some people may find easier than messing around with code. Get help with Headway with these tutorials.
- Catalyst allows you to control your theme design by selecting pre-prepared elements ñ and change the skins too! Get help with Catalyst with these tutorials.
- There are many other premium theme sites, including DesignerThemes and Lubith, if you don’t like the choice above. WeblogsToolsCollection also publishes regular lists of new and updated themes.