Step 2: Install WordPress and Choose a Theme

Now that you have signed up for your web hosting account, you will have to start building your first website.  Now, more than ever, is the time to just start and experiment.

First thing you will have to log in to your Bluehost control panel (C Panel), scroll to near the the bottom, and choose WordPress.  This is where you will install the WordPress script on your site.
Once I figure out screencasting, I’ll make a video for you that is slow and with a lot of detail.  Until then, you should see Pat Flynn’s video on Youtube.  He flies though the steps really fast, but that was the point of the video – to set everything up in 4 minutes.
Don’t forget to check the advanced options while in the setup area – change the administrator’s username away from the default “admin”.


Change the default WordPress theme

To instantly give you website a bit of a customized look, the first thing you should do is change your WordPress theme from the default.  Once logged into the dashboard, click “Appearance” and then “Themes” then choose to “Install Themes”.  Here you can browse those that are currently featured or the newest.
The first theme that I used with this website is the EvoLve theme, which I am finding to be very attractive, intuitive, and customizable – for a free theme.
However, there are many more available and some themes are better suited to different website topics.
I will share with you how I am modifying and adapting the EvoLve theme to allow me to delay spending money on a premium theme.  I really want to study the advantages of using WooThemes or Thesis.  But it is inevitable that I will end up with one of these.


Don’t search Google for free WordPress themes

You get what you pay for.
Though you will not have a problem with the free themes available through the WordPress dashboard, please resist the urge to download free themes from a search engine.  Many contain malicious script that will add invisible code to your website.  I will include a reference to this story once I find it, however the results of a study found that the vast majority of free WordPress themes downloaded from Google contained unwanted scripts.

There is a plugin that you can use to check the authenticity of a theme and scan it to ensure that it does not contain malacious or unwanted code.
I haven’t had any reason to check it out for myself .  This plugin is called TAC – Theme Authenticity Checker and is available as a download through the dashboard.
You will learn more about plugins in Step 3:Install WordPress Plugins


Premium Themes

WooThemesWhen you are just getting started, you probably won’t need to have more functionality than that you can find with a free theme.
But if you do want to explore some of the many fantastic premium themes available, you have to try WooThemes

The other popular theme is Thesis and I am evaluating it and seriously considering using it when I have hit the limitations of the free them that I am using to build this site.  Once I have completed the 5th step, selecting a niche, I will probably use Thesis as the platform to build first virtual business on.


Go on to Step 3:Install WordPress Plugins

Go back to Step 1: Sign up for a hosting account