Why do you need to know how to customize WordPress?
When you look at websites across the internet they all appear to be very different. Every site, every blog, every ecommerce platform has its own look and identity that their users recognize. You want to be able to do the exact same with your site when you create it in WordPress and due to the flexibility of the system you can very simply. When you first create your WordPress site it will be setup with the default theme of twenty fifteen and a few other default settings.
If you don’t know how to set up WordPress, these tips will help you out.
However you can quickly and easily change the whole look and feel of your site:
Changing the theme of your site
The WordPress theme is the template that your site is based on and it will control everything from the size of the header, the width of the page, where your side bars are located and even if there is a footer etc. This is just the tip of the iceberg however as they can also be customized with regards to what is displayed in your menus, the colors used, and even background images and even background videos as well as so much more. Themes are often designed around specific types of sites such as an ecommerce site or a simple blog. To search for a new theme to use for your site you can do so from your dashboard. Just log into your site through the wp-admin link that you have and you can start work on your theme:
First of all., look for “Appearance” section on the left hand menu and then select “Themes” and this will open the page showing all the available themes for your website.
The active theme is usually the first icon that you will see and you will see “Customize” in the bottom right of the preview. By clicking this you can go into the customization pages of this specific theme. WordPress theme customization is different for each theme as each has different things to offer.
If you hover over any other available theme you will see that you can click for “theme details” and also check such additional functions as “Activate” and “Live Preview”.
“Live Preview” will allow you to see exactly how your site will look when you activate that specific theme for your site using all of the current settings that you have.
If none of the themes that you have available look right for your site then you can look through the many other themes that are available by selecting “Add New”. This will open a page where you can view available themes based on “Featured”, “Popular”, “latest”, “Favorites” and the “Feature Filter”.
Selecting “Feature Filter” allows you to define what you are looking for with regards to “Color”, “Layout”, “Features” and “Subject” allowing you to narrow down the specific theme that you are looking for.
The theme page will allow you to view previews of the available themes and their details and functions as well as to actually download them for use on your website.
Plugins for WordPress
When learning how to customize WordPress you will need to understand about plugins. While themes will provide you with a specific look and functionality for your site they will not necessarily provide you with everything that you want and need. Plugins are like additional blocks of code that have specific functions that you can add to your site. when building a website with WordPress these plugins can offer you with help for all sorts of things such as:
- Displaying contact forms with customizable fields
- Providing floating social media buttons that follow as you scroll down the page
- Improving photo galleries and video playback
- Backing up your site on a regular basis
- Protecting you from spam
- Providing you with different layouts for your comments
- Controlling where advertisements should be placed
- Giving you access to Amazon sales and other affiliates
The list is in fact endless. The chances are if you think that your site needs it at some point someone else would have thought the same and will have created a plugin to do it. In a similar way to selecting your theme you can search for your plugins to customize your site by selecting “Plugins” from your WordPress dashboard. These are just a few of the ways that you can learn how to customize WordPress and you should explore the dashboard and your individual theme and plugin settings to see just how much you can change and improve your site.