Start learning WordPress today, where to start?

It’s been a long time that I have been thinking about the question “if I start learning WordPress today, where would I start from? What are the things that I would learn?”

Well obviously things have changed a lot since the times I was a newbie in WordPress but basic concepts didn’t change much.

Step 1 – Learn WordPress Basics

So if you want to learn WordPress, one of the things that you should learn first is how to use the WordPress dashboard. How to install themes, plugins, or how to manage a WordPress website are the first things to learn.

Actually, for many users this is already enough expertise. A lot of the people that I know in the industry doesn’t go further than this. They become WordPress gurus; they build websites for clients with a lot of functionality thanks to the rich pool of plugins and themes; they manage websites for clients, maintain them, update the software or take care of security or do regular backups etc. So there is already enough opportunities for an aspiring WordPress expert even without getting into coding.

Step 2 – Learn coding for WordPress

On the other hand, you can get into coding or improve your coding skills if you have some basic understanding and become a “real” WordPress developer (I do not mean prior ones are fake, but development refers to code development, that’s why). In that case you will start from HTML and CSS obviously. Later you should add PHP on top of these two. WordPress is written in PHP language so having a good understanding of PHP is fundamentally important. Being very good at PHP is not necessary, but it is definitely helpful if you are fluent in PHP language.

Step 3 – Become good at coding or how long does it take to learn coding for WordPress

Learning these coding skills takes time I would assume you would spend roughly one year in order to be comfortable in coding HTML CSS and PHP. Obviously, this is very subjective, everybody learns at different speed, everybody has a different schedule, but I would argue that if you’re spending at least 2 hours everyday, you can become a decent coder within a year.

Again I would like to underline one thing: coding just like any other intellectual activity is an endless process of improvement and learning. I humbly remind you that any time estimations I make regarding how long it takes is just to give an idea to an aspiring learner to what to expect on average. In no way I mean to say, after a year you’re done, you’re good, you’re a developer. I know dozens of close friends who have given their entire life to improve their coding skills and still continue to learn as of this minute.

Step 4 – Add digital marketing for WordPress

And finally you will have to learn about digital marketing. So you have built your website, you have developed all the necessary code for it and now you need to make people know about your website. First thing to learn is SEO (search engine optimization). SEO is all about making your website visible, accessible and “popular” in the eyes of search engines (well it’s Google for the most of us).

You can also focus on content marketing because at the end of the day a WordPress website is about sharing your content with your target audience. What type of content works, what is your website’s main goal, what’s your message to the world?

Later, you will start to think about social media marketing so that you will be finding ways to integrate your WordPress website with your social media handles: Facebook, Instagram, YouTube.

And finallu, you will be interested in reporting, and data analysis. Google Analytics for example will be a topic of interest, as it can give you interesting insight about your website and your website’s audience.

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