Starting a website from scratch is not difficult it’s a very easy task to do, even for beginners. You don’t need to know web development or have any coding skills.
We’ve built hundreds of websites for our clients, and in this guide, you’ll learn how to start a website from the beginning, step-by-step.
By the end of this tutorial, you’ll have a beautiful and professional website on your own domain. The whole process will take less than 30 minutes to complete, and all steps are included in this tutorial.
How to Start a Website
- Sign up for web hosting
- Install WordPress
- Add a website theme
- Register a new domain name
- Customize your website design and layout
- Customize your homepage
- Add a contact form
- Add content for essential pages
- Add your logo
- Get website traffic
1. Sign up for web hosting
The first step to creating a website is to sign up for web hosting. Web hosting gives you the tools to set up a website and make it available on the Internet.
While you can choose any company to host your website, in this tutorial, we will use our personal favorite, Hostinger. It’s one of the most affordable and reliable companies and has great offers with huge discounts and freebies for beginners.
Click this link to visit Hostinger to claim your special offer (7% Off all hosting plans), and then click the START NOW button.
On the next screen, select your preferred hosting plan. My recommendation is to choose the 48 MONTHS plan and save more than $400 on hosting and get a free domain. With the 48 Months plan, you get premium hosting for as little as $2.78 per month!
As your website grows and you’ll need more space and computer power, you can easily upgrade to a more powerful plan from your hosting account.
Next, scroll down and enter your email address to create a new account.
Then choose your payment method and complete the checkout process. Notice that your discount (Coupon Code RELIABLESOFT) has already been applied to your cart.
The next step is to specify a password for your new hosting account. Enter your preferred password in both fields and click CONFIRM.
Click the Start Now button.
Select “I’m creating it for myself”.
Select “I’m building it myself.”
Select “Blog” from the list of website types.
Select “Yes please”.
Select the “Create a new website” option.
2. Install WordPress
The next step is to install WordPress.
To set up your website to use WordPress, all you have to do is to click on “Select WordPress.”
On the next screen, you can specify your “Administrator email” and “Administrator Password”. These are the details you’ll use to login to your WordPress website so make sure that you keep the in a safe place.
When ready, click the CONTINUE button.
3. Add a website theme
The next step is to select a theme for your website. A theme defines the layout, colors, and look N feel of your site.
Don’t worry, changing a website theme is very easy, so if you change your mind, you can switch it later.
For now, click the PERSONAL PORTFOLIO theme and finalize the process.
4. Register a new domain name
The next step is to specify the domain name for your website. In simple terms, a domain name is how you want your website to be known online. It’s the unique internet address of your site.
If you already own a domain name: Select “Use an Existing Domain.”
If you don’t own a domain name: Select “Buy a Domain.” and go through the domain registration wizard.
What is a domain name?
This is the name you have to type on Google or directly to the browser search bar to visit a website. Every website on the Internet has a unique domain name.
The domain name has two parts. The first part is the name of the website, and the second part is the extension.
Together they form the domain name.
www. mydomainname . extension
Tips on selecting a good domain name
- Think of a catchy name, something that people will remember.
- Maximum of two short words without spaces.
- Choose a known extension like a .com or .net.
- It should be the same as your brand name (if you plan on creating a business website).
- Avoid having underscores (_) in the name
How to register a domain name?
You can register a domain name through a domain registrar or your hosting company. Once you register a domain, you own it as long as you pay the yearly fee.
The normal cost is around $15 per year, but if you follow the instructions in this tutorial, you’ll get a free domain registration for one year!
When a domain expires and the owner does not renew, it becomes available to the market.
Click FINISH SETUP.
That’s it. In a few minutes, your new WordPress website will be ready. Continue with the next steps to see how to customize and view your new website.
Click EDIT WEBSITE to view the WordPress Dashboard.
5. Customize your website design and layout
By default, your new website will look similar to this:
This is how the default WordPress website looks for our selected theme.
Let’s see how easy it is to customize the design of this website.
Since we already selected a theme, we’ll go directly to the theme options to customize our website. Select ASTRA OPTIONS from the left menu.
This is the place to change the colors of your website, add your own logo, change the layout of the different pages, and perform many other functions.
Instead of trying to build a website from scratch, you’ll use the ‘Importer Plugin’ to import the layout and content of a pre-built website.
This is easier than starting a website from zero.
Click on the INSTALL IMPORTER PLUGIN.
Once the plugin is installed, you’ll be asked to select a Page Builder.
For this example, we’ll use GUTENBERG, the page builder that comes for free with WordPress (the WordPress team created it).
Select GUTENBERG as the page builder.
You’ll be presented with several layouts. You can choose anyone you like depending on the type of website you want to create.
Click the IMPORT COMPLETE SITE.
You’ll be shown a popup with some options. Make sure that you select the options as shown below and click the IMPORT button.
In a few minutes, the process will be completed. Click the VIEW SITE.
You’ll notice that your website shows the right colors, but the homepage does not look how it is supposed to look. No worries, we’ll fix this in a minute.
Go back to the WordPress admin and select SETTINGS > READING from the left menu.
Configure the HOMEPAGE and POSTS PAGE dropdowns as shown below, and click the SAVE CHANGES button.
Viola! Your new website is ready, and it looks beautiful! Well Done!
Now, open a new tab and type in your domain name. Your website should look like this:
Click the menu options (About me, Blog, Contact) to see how the pages look.
When you’re ready, continue with the rest steps to see how easy is to change your homepage and the content of the pages.
6. Customize your homepage
To change the content, colors, or images of your homepage, follow the instructions below.
While viewing your homepage in a browser, click the EDIT PAGE button from the top bar menu. This will open the homepage in EDIT mode.
As you can see, the page is separated into several sections. Click with the mouse to select and edit a section.
Let’s see how to change the homepage slogan to “Welcome to my awesome website.”
Click anywhere in the surrounding box, delete the existing sentence, and add your preferred wording.
To SAVE your changes, click the UPDATE button. That’s it, it’s that simple!
You can follow the same steps to change anything you see on the homepage.
You can even remove a section by selecting it, clicking on the three dots menu, and then choosing REMOVE BLOCK from the menu.
6. Add a contact form
The CONTACT us option is available in the main menu but not yet activated. To create a contact page, we first need to create a contact form. To do this, we will use a WordPress plugin.
A plugin is a piece of software that adds extra functionality to WordPress. There are hundreds of free and paid plugins you can use. You can find these by clicking the PLUGINS option from the left menu.
Here are the steps to follow:
- Click WP FORMS from the left menu.
- Click ALL FORMS
- Click ADD NEW
Enter a name for your form and select the SIMPLE CONTACT FORM option.
A nice form is created for you and now it needs to be added to a page.
Click the EMBED button (top right corner) and copy the form shortcode as shown below.
So far, we have created a new form, now, we need to create a contact page, add our shortcode, and configure the main menu to show the page.
Click the X button (top right corner) to close the form builder and select PAGES > ALL PAGES from the left menu.
Click the ADD NEW button to create a new page.
Add a title for the page and paste the shortcode copied from the previous step.
Your page should look like this in edit mode:
Click the PUBLISH button (top right corner).
You can also click VIEW PAGE to see how your contact page looks.
The last step is to add the contact page to the menu.
- Click the WORDPRESS ICON (top left corner) to go back to the WordPress admin.
- Click the CUSTOMIZE button from the Topbar menu.
- Select HEADER > PRIMARY MENU.
In the ‘Button Link’ type ‘/contact’ (the name of our contact page) and click PUBLISH.
That’s it; you’ve just added a contact form to your brand-new website! Go ahead and test it by clicking CONTACT from the main menu.
8. Add content for essential pages
Besides a great homepage, a good website must have some other important pages. In particular:
- About page
- Blog main page
Let’s see step-by-step how to add these pages to your website.
As you can see, our website already has an About page. You can find it by clicking the ABOUT ME option from the main menu.
Editing the contents of this page is the same as before. Click the EDIT button from the top bar menu, make the necessary changes using the block editor and UPDATE the page.
Make sure that the About page tells your story. Explain who you are, what you do, and how your website can help your visitors.
- Click PAGES > ALL PAGES from the left menu.
- Change the contents of the page and click PUBLISH.
The process of editing a page is the same for all pages.
A blog page shows a list of your latest blog posts. All WordPress themes have a blog main page by default.
You can click BLOG from the main menu and see how your blog page looks. When you publish a new blog post, it will automatically appear there.
9. Add your logo
To complete your website setup, you need to upload your own logo. Your logo should be something unique and representative of your brand.
Changing your logo is easy. Follow the steps below:
Click the CUSTOMIZE button from the top bar menu.
From the left menu, select HEADER and then SITE IDENTITY.
Click the CHANGE LOGO button.
You’ll be prompted to select an image from your computer.
For the best results, ensure your logo is according to the suggested image dimensions.
To SAVE your changes, click the blue PUBLISH button located on top.
10. Get website traffic
You should proud of yourself, you just learned how to create a website from scratch that looks beautiful and professional!
The next step for you is to learn SEO and Digital marketing. To build a successful website that will get traffic and generate money for you, you need to learn SEO and then master other digital marketing techniques.
Alex Chris says
Do you have problems creating your first website? Let me know in the comments below.
Is the Pet Care template available somewhere or is it only available with Bluehost?
Alex Chris says
It’s available in the WordPress repository. It’s not only with bluehost.
Mark Baker says
Thank you. You have the unique ability to articulate things in an easy to digest and simple manner. Reliablesoft rocks!
Alex Chris says
Thanks a lot for your comment. Good luck with your new website!
It’s easy to understand and implement. I’ll try and follow your step!
Thank you for sharing.
Alex Chris says
Thanks lot. Glad I could help you create a new website.
All the information is really informative and easy to implement step – by – step for Website Design.
Thanks for sharing the article.
Alex Chris says
Thanks for your comment. Glad I could help!
Ahmad Sultan says
Well written, your tips for how to start a website are really great. You put a lot of information for the beginners. I enjoyed reading this wonderful article.
Alex Chris says
Thanks a lot!