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Wordpress website design for 100% novice/beginner

  1. I am considering downloading WordPress to build a website for my small business, but I have never created a website before and know very little on what to do. I am looking for a design tool that will basically let me build a website easily as if I was desktop publishing. No code for me - I just don't get it! I own my domain name and have set up hosting with another provider. I would like to know if using WordPress to build my site is something a complete novice can work through on their own, or should I not bother wasting my time?

  2. Sandra
    here's my two-cents w/o knowing as much as I'd like to about your situation;
    so you have a domain name and hosting; later you could use WordPress.ORG there; but that is definitely a topic for later, probably much later;
    for now...
    you might set up a site with WordPress.COM (you and I are on WordPress.com right now); it's free, the site sets up in 5 min;
    I wouldn't call it "easy" but it's no more difficult than using desktop publishing; plus there is a ton of support - like this forum - and many easy to understand articles at en.support.wordpress.com
    ...and no need to code; you aren't the only one who doesn't get coding!
    the signup page is at https://signup.wordpress.com/signup/
    good luck!

  3. Bobbol,
    I considered WordPress.com. I understand that it's possible to map an existing domain to my wordpress.com website. Is this what you do? If so, is it reliable and OK? I realize there is a charge for this, so it might be better to have wordpress.com host my site. But - can I switch my hosts? Is it just a matter of cancelling with my other host and moving my domain over to wordpress.com?
    Thanks for your advice and I'm happy to hear I'm not the only one who gets confused with the whole coding thing.

  4. Please read this comparison for the sake of clarity
    http://support.wordpress.com/com-vs-org/

  5. thanks timethief!

    Sandra, I'd also read http://en.support.wordpress.com/moving-a-blog/ because an option for you might be to start with .com, get comfortable with WordPress, then move to .org
    good luck!

  6. To be clear, web design is not an undertaking for beginners. But there are plenty of out of the box themes here that you can use easily. In my opinion the #1 mistake beginners make is farting around with design instead of getting to blogging. Pick a theme you can live with, get blogging, and learn over the course of teh year how to edit CSS etc if you really want to tinker with design.

  7. And I'd add, from experience, that no website is ever finished nor will any site be perfect. Or at least not "perfect" for very long.

    There are always new and "better" ideas for design and new themes, new information to add or to amend or to delete from any site; you learn new skills to make it better by working on it.

    Keep an open mind, remember "nothing ventured: nothing gained" and just jump in! Start at the beginning then move one from there.

    (Oy: I sound like my mother with those clich├ęs but there is some wisdom in them.)

  8. Thank you to everyone for your comments and advice. I think WordPress.com is the way for me to go right now. The website I am looking to create is informational only (text and photos) + do blogging, and it sounds like working with one of the themes is the best way to go for me. I have a couple of more questions and really want to get some insight on peoples experiences:
    1. Is mapping my domain and getting my email once I've changed the name servers as simple as what I've read on the WordPress.com/support site?
    2. How customizable are themes if the Custom Design option is purchased? Is pretty much every element customizable, or just some things?
    Look forward to hearing your responses. Thanks again.

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