How to Install WordPress

WordPresss Logo

If you know HTML, CSS, and JavaScript, you can make a website from scratch. But most people don’t know any coding. If you want to make a website without having to code, you use a Content Management System (CMS). There are dozens to choose from, but we are going to use one called WordPress. WordPress is used on 27% of all websites on the internet, and for websites that use a CMS, 76% use WordPress. It is open source software, which means no company owns it, and it doesn’t make anyone any money. It is supported by a non-profit, and a huge, world-wide group of programmers. Governments large and small, universities, and businesses all use WordPress, so we will too.

Install WordPress on your Hosting Account

Once you’ve purchased hosting, check your email for a welcome email. In the email will be a link for your cPanel.

cPanel is your hosting control panel. It’s full of buttons and knobs that allow you to customize how your hosting works. There isn’t much in cPanel that you will want to change, but you can use it to make yourself a new email address.

cPanel is not how you will make your website. It’s only purpose for you is to install WordPress. If all goes well, you will never have to come back to cPanel ever again.

This is a tricky part. Take your time, read what’s on the screen, take a break if you need to. In fact, a cup of chamomile tea might be a good idea. If you get stuck, or something weird happens, call KnownHost support at 866-332-9894. They are professional, kind, and they know websites in and out. There is no cost for their support.

Step 1: Log into cPanel

Log in to cPanel using the welcome email in your inbox.

The cPanel Dashboard of your hosting account
Once you’ve logged in, you’ll see the cPanel dashboard

Step 2: Find the WordPress Automatic Installer

After logging in to cPanel, scroll down to section Softaculous Apps Installer. In the sub-section Scripts, one of the options should be WordPress. Click it.

Clicking on WordPress in The cPanel Dashboard to activate wordpress

Then on the next page, click the Install Now button.

install wordpress Click on Install Now in the Softaculous Apps Installer

Step 3: Fill in many boxes

There are a lot of boxes to fill in. Don’t panic! Let’s do it together:

steps to install wordpress

Boxes to Fill In Interpretation
Choose Protocol You want the one with the s: choose https://
Choose Domain Type in your domain name you bought earlier:
In Directory Leave empty.
Site Name Up to you. What is the title of your website. You could use your name, or your organization’s name, or anything you want.
Site Description It’s like a slogan, and totally up to you. When people search for your website, this text will come up, along with the title. You can just leave it blank, but either way, remove “My WordPress Blog”.
Enable Multisite (WPMU) Nope.
Admin Username The Administrator information is your login for your website. You will use this anytime you want to make changes to your website. The username can be anything you’d like, usually just your first name.
Admin Password Put in a strong password. Remember it.
Admin Email Used in case you forget your password. This will not send you any spam.
Choose Language I like English.
Select Plugins Skip this. You can do it when your website is set up.
Limit Login Attempts (Loginizer) A good idea, but not required. If a hacker tries to guess your password over and over again, they will get temporarily blocked. But it also means if you try to guess your passwords over and over again, you will be temporarily blocked. Then you have to try again a few minutes later.
Advanced Options Nothing to see here. Move along.
Select Theme Optional. We will cover themes in the next chapter, but if you like the way one of these looks you can click on it to use it on your website. You can easily change it later.

At the bottom of the page, click the Install button. Don’t worry about that email field below it, it will just email you when the website is finished installing.

click the install wordpress button

On the next page, a progress bar will slowly fill up. Your website is cooking, and will be ready soon! This process should take 20 seconds, but could take up to five minutes.

If it worked, you should see the success page. If you see an error, call KnownHost support at 866-332-9894.

confirmation page that you installed wordpress

See that link labeled Administrative URL? Give that a click. That URL is your special backdoor for accessing your website.

Step 4: Log In to WordPress

Once the website has been installed, you can then log into your website. Use the Admin Username and Admin Password from the previous step.

wordpress login screen

You are now in WordPress! If you want to see what your website looks like, click on the little house icon in the upper-left hand corner. That’s your website! You can look at your website and see it like visitor to your website will see it, but you (and only you) have access to the WordPress “admin screen” as well. That’s the page with the black bar with a bunch of options on the left side. This admin screen of your website is where you will create content and customize your website. Your website is now live on the internet, which means anyone can see it. But don’t worry, no one will, not yet.

A new website isn’t known by Google or other search engines. It will take weeks or even months for Google to notice your website exists, and even then, they won’t care much until you start following good SEO practice, and get people to visit your website from social media. A great saying summarizes this situation perfectly: making a new website is like putting up a banner in your basement. No one will see it. So, let’s turn it into something that will amaze Google!

Next Chapter: How to Use WordPress