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How to build the association’s website in WordPress

If you want to make a professional, customizable website for your association, WordPress is the program for you.

In recent years, WordPress has evolved from being a pure tool for bloggers to becoming a complete publishing system suitable for both large and small companies, newspapers and associations. WordPress is used, for example, by Time Magazine, LO newspaper and Filippa K – to name a few.

One of the big advantages is, of course, that it is completely free to download, use and customize. It allows you to make a professional website with small, simple means and a little patience.

Another advantage of WordPress is the design. In 2005, WordPress started managing themes and today, with a few simple button presses, you can quickly change the look of the entire website. New themes are available on the internet where most are free to download. If you don’t find a theme that suits you, you can design one yourself.

Several improvements
WordPress has gone through a series of development stages. The latest version is called 3.0.1 and contains several improvements compared to previous versions. The menu management is much simpler and you can customize the menu by ticking the pages to be displayed.

WordPress has many great features in the standard version, but online you can also find tons of add-ons that you can use to expand your website and add more features. This could, for example, involve creating your own forums, search engine optimization or connections to Facebook.

In this school we go through what you need to build your own WordPress site, how to design your site and how to fill it with content.

STEP BY STEP: INSTALL WORDPRESS

1. Choose the right web host
Since you are going to install WordPress, there are mainly two things that you should check – the web host should support php and you should be able to create a Mysql database. Several web hosts use “one click installers” that allow you to install WordPress directly on your web host. Once you have decided on the web host, create your Mysql database and note down the name of it, the name of the database user, the password and the address of the database. The address to the database often has the form database name.mysql.webhotellname.se. Also note the ftp address of your web host and the folder where you should put all the WordPress files in step 4.

2. Download and unzip
On en.wordpress.org you will find the latest version of WordPress in Swedish. Download it to your computer and unzip the file to a suitable location (so you can easily find it in your ftp program). You can also find the program on Månaden’s CD.

3. Make changes to the config file
Open the unzipped folder and open the wp-configsample file with a text editor (eg Notepad). Now you should enter the information (that you wrote down in step 1) in the text document where it says enter_databaseuser… Then save the file as wp-config.php in the same folder where you now have all your WordPress files. Be sure to save the file as a php file and not a txt file. Delete the file wp-configsample.

4. Upload the files to your web host
Use an ftp program (for example Filezilla, available for download at pcforalla.se/programbanken) to upload the files to your hosting. You must upload all the files that are in your unpacked WordPress folder and of course it is important that the file wp-config are included (with the correct information). Put the files in the root folder of your web host (you will be told what that folder is called by your web host).

5. Install WordPress
Now it’s time to install WordPress. Surf to www.din-sidas-url.se/wp-admin/install.php (where you replace your-page-url against the domain you have yourself). In the form, you fill in information about your website, a password and your e-mail address. That’s it – the installation is complete and you have now created your first website with WordPress. Congratulations!

THIS IS WHAT INSTALLED WORDPRESS LOOKS LIKE

1. IN Right now– panel gives you a quick overview of how many posts, comments, pages and more you have on your website.
2. Posts. Here you create (and edit) posts, categories and labels.
3. During Media you will find the library where you save all your pictures, movies and other media files.
4. Pages is what it sounds like – this is where you create and edit pages.
5. Under the panel Appearance manage themes, widgets (which appear in your side menu). Here you can also edit css code and php code.
6. Addition. Here you manage plugins that add functionality to your WordPress site.
7. If you are several people who will publish information on the site, create accounts for them below User. You can choose different roles depending on which rights each user should have.
8. During Settings do you change link structure, if you want a static start page and much more.
9. Quick press is an invaluable feature that allows you to quickly write a post and publish it.
10. Incoming links shows information from Google Blog Search if any other blog links to site.

TIME TO GIVE YOUR WEBSITE SHAPE AND COLOR!
WordPress uses themes that determine the appearance of your website. This means that with just a few button presses you can completely change the way your site looks.

WordPress 3.0.1 is installed with a theme called Twenty Ten 1.1. It is a standard theme with a header and two columns. In the default theme, you can replace the image in the header and change the background color (or upload an image as a background). If you
is satisfied with it, you can sit back.

For our association, however, we have chosen to download a theme.
The one we have chosen is called “Constructor” and is free. Many of the themes that are available for free can be customized to varying degrees. With our theme. “Constructor” allows you to easily change the background color (or image), change the font, add slideshows, add a logo and much more. We are making the following changes:

1. Under the tab Appearance we click on themes and then Install themes. That’s what we’re looking for Constructor and choose to install it. You can also download the theme from www.wordpress.org and then upload it to the folder wp-content/themes with your ftp program. For the theme to work, you need to activate it below Manage themes.

2. Constructor is available in five different basic versions and we choose
what is called Orange. We start by replacing the text in the header with an image with a logo. Under the tab images we upload
PC for Everyone logo with a red background that header image. Then we go to the tab header and ticks the box Hide title by CSS so that the title text does not overlap the logo. We also make an image for the footer that we upload as footer image.

3. Under the tab header we set the height of the head to 120 pixels.

4. Under the tab colors we change the color of the headers to black and set the set surface of our website to not be transparent. Here we also change the background color to a light gray color.

Below you see the Constructor before and after our changes.


Picture mode. Here you can control where the background image should end up.




Makeover. The image on the left shows how the site looks with the theme that WordPress is installed with. The image on the right shows how our site looks after we’ve switched to a theme called Constructor and added a logo and changed colors.

FIND THE RIGHT BETWEEN THEMES:
HERE ARE 5 FREE FAVORITES


Autofocus for professionals and amateurs
Autofocus is a theme for you who have, or want to have, a photo blog. The posts/pictures are published nicely as a collage. allancole.com/themes


Newspaper theme
Do you want to start your own web magazine? A nice web theme is called
Beauty style. korta.nu/beautystyle
More themes: newwpthemes.com


Start a webshop?
With the help of a plug-in program, you get a complete store. The Crafty Cart theme fits. korta.nu/Crafty More themes: www.billionstudio.com


Theme music
Music DJ (korta.nu/Musicdj) is the name of this theme designed for you who blog about music. More themes here: wordpressthemesbase.com


For the professional blogger
Mystique is a very popular theme aimed at the professional blogger who also uses Twitter and wants to connect it with the blog. wp.digitalnature.eu/mystique


Make your own theme
There are several different ways to go about making your own WordPress theme. Several of them require some knowledge of coding, but of course there are shortcuts. One such shortcut is called Artisteer and is a program that you buy for 50 dollars (about 360 kroner).

With Artisteer you create your own theme and put your own stamp on everything from the menu to the background and footer. The program is easy to use and when you’re done, you export the entire package, upload it to your web host and activate via the admin panel. Clear!
www.artisteer.com

GRADUALLY:
THIS IS HOW YOU FILL THE SITE WITH CONTENT

Once you’re happy with the look of your website, it’s time to start filling it with content. You probably have thoughts about how many pages you should have on your site, so starting with the structure is a good idea. In our case, we will have four fixed pages of information, a static start page and a separate page for our blog posts.

1. Create new pages
We start by creating pages under the panel Pages and Create new. The text editor in WordPress is similar to Word and you can make the text bold or italic, create bulleted lists and so on.

2. Insert an image
Above the editor are small buttons that you use when you want to insert an image into the content (you can also add video and audio). If you click on the left button, you will get a dialog box where you can choose to upload an image from your hard drive. Then choose if you want a certain size of the image, if it should be placed on the left, right or center and then click Insert.

3. Select pages for the blog and home page
As the start page of our website, we want a static page. We set that below Reading settings in the panel Settings. There we also choose which page we want our blog posts on. In our case, we have created an empty page called just Blog which we choose as the post page. As a start page, we have created a page called Welcome to the PC association for All. Since all pages are displayed in our menu, we need to go into the theme’s panel and manually remove that page from the menu. We do that below Header and type in the page ID (which in this case is 17) in the box Exclude. You can see which ID your page has in the address bar of your browser.

4. Create blog posts and labels
Creating a blog post is as easy as creating a page. Under the panel Posts do you choose Create new and then you write your blog post directly in the editor. The posts can also be marked with labels and categories that make it easier for your visitors to find what they are interested in. On our site, we create a handful of different labels that we display in a so-called Label cloud in the right column on the home page.

5. Publish on vacation!
A very good feature of WordPress (but also found in many other publishing systems) is that you can time your posts or pages.

When you’re done with your post, instead of choosing Publish on the far right, you can choose which date you want the post to appear on.

BUILD OUT WITH ADD-ONS
If you want to expand the functions of your WordPress website, there are a myriad of extensions (so-called plug-ins) to download. You manage the extensions easily via the admin panel, where you can also install new ones.

The supplements vary greatly in both function and size. There are those that turn your entire blog into a complete online store and then there are those that only have the function of adding a Likebutton from Facebook under your posts.

You can find all add-ons at wordpress.org/extend/plugins.

LEARN MORE
There is plenty of information on the internet where you can learn more about WordPress. Two good sites to start with are:
en.wordpress.org
wp-support.se

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