We work with a lot of clients that are new to WordPress and/or blogging. So naturally, we teach many of them how to create their first blog post. So we’ve created this step-by-step guide to use as a handy reference. So be sure to bookmark this page.
Step 1: Log in to WordPress
You need three key pieces of information to log in to your WordPress Website:
- The Login URL.
- Your Username.
- Your Password.
If you set up your website, you probably have this information. If you don’t have it, talk to your web designer or hosting company to get access.
A note of caution: Many sites use the default WordPress Login URL which is https://yourdomain.com/wp-admin. We strongly recommend changing this to a custom URL for security reasons (that we’ll share in another post).
Once you get to the URL, you should see something like the following:
When you log in successfully, you’ll see something similar to the below screen:
Step 2: Create a new post.
From your WordPress Dashboard, click on Posts. From there, you can click on either the new post menu item or the new post button (see arrows below).
Step 3: Edit your post
This is the part where it can get confusing based on your editor. For folks new to blogging, we recommend using the classic editor as opposed to the block editor or a custom editor. Themes like Avada and Divi have their own built-in editors while other themes may come with editors such as Elementor, WP Bakery, or Site Origin’s editor. We’ll do separate posts using these editors – we maintain sites that use each of them. But for now, we’ll stick with the editor that we recommend. So you’ll see something like the screenshot below:
Note: To install the classic editor plug-in, just go to the plug-ins section of the menu, click on “add new,” search for Classic Editor, then install and activate it.
You’ll see familiar buttons for changing text, inserting links, and other functions right above the edit window. Hovering over each icon will provide a tooltip that shares what it does. So create your post by typing it in the editor window.
Step 4: Add a Featured Image
It’s important to add a featured image to your posts as it’s used in many areas. A thumbnail of the featured image is displayed in post listings, the RSS feed, and in areas such as “related posts.” This image may even show up in search results.
To add a featured image, just click on “set featured image” in the right column. Simply upload your image and you’re good to go. Now, there are a few things that you should consider when adding a featured image. Here are some tips:
- Use a consistent image size for your featured image. Some common sizes are 500 x 500, 1000 x 5000, and 1200 x 800.
- Use an image related to your post. So if your post is about trends in your industry, you may consider including a graph or chart.
- Avoid free stock photos if possible. If you can, create a custom image to use as your featured image. You can use your favorite image editor or a tool like canva to create a custom image. It’ll help you stand out against the thousands of sites that pull their images from the same few free photo sharing sites.
- Use the Alt Tag. You should get in the habit of doing this with all of the images that you use on your site. It helps with both SEO and accessibility.
Step 5: Add Categories and Tags
Categories and tags are two great ways to organize your posts. Categories are used more commonly than tags. Most sites use categories to define the different topics that they blog about. Some businesses may create a category for each of the products or services. Other businesses may create categories that target a particular client type. More complex sites might use categories as a way to sort content so it can be used in different areas – such as posts tagged as “news” so they can go in a recent news feed.
Tags are similar to categories but not quite as powerful. WordPress has a number of functions and capabilities geared towards categories that aren’t available for tags. We won’t get into that level of detail here so think of tags as a way to drill down deeper. You want to be selective about using categories (we recommend limiting it to about three per post) but you can use as many tags as you want. We use WordPress as a category, but we’ll use the version of WordPress as a tag. If the article is about a WordPress feature, we’ll create a tag for that.
Step 6: Review and Publish!
So you’ve written your post and added your category and featured image. Now you need to review your post. Read through it to catch any spelling or grammar errors (or use a tool like Grammarly). Make sure everything looks good. Once you’re happy with it, hit that “Publish” button.
Congratulations – you’ve just created your first post!
This article will help you create your first post – a very basic post. There’s so much more that you can do such as embedding media, and adding interactive components, and we didn’t even touch the capabilities of some of the third-party editors. We’d love the opportunity to show you the possibilities of what blog posts can do for your business and answer any questions. Please jump on our calendar for a complimentary consultation to learn how you can take your blog to the next level.