In this lesson, I am going to teach you how to build your own website at Wealthy Affiliate. We will go over the basics of what you need in order to get started on your new website!
If you don't have an account yet, you can sign up.
create a website now
Go to Websites, then Site Builder.
Choose what kind of website you want to build.
Choose on "a free domain."
Type the name of your website. You can change your website name in the future. For now, the extension would be .siterubix.com.
If you are already decided on a domain name and would like to check its availability, go to websites, then "Site Domains."
Type the name of the domain name you want to buy. If it's available, you can add it to your cart.
Type another domain name you have in mind if your chosen domain name is not available.
Add to cart, and buy it.
Domains bought in Wealthy Affiliate "Site Domains" already include privacy protection and SSL certificate. Press continue.
The price you see is already good for one year. The renewal price is the same.
Select "one year" and continue.
Input a contact email address.
Choose your payment method. Complete the payment to register your domain name.
Domains registered in Wealthy Affiliate are almost instantly available after registration. To check, press "build my website."
You'll see a green check here if it is ready to use.
Again, enter the name of your site. Don't worry about it if it's just temporary. You can change it later.
Next, let's choose a theme. This can also be done in an instant. You can change it later.
When choosing a theme, select one with black (or dark grey) readable texts and white background. Also, avoid choosing a super fancy theme - it's going to slow down your website speed loading.
After choosing a theme, press "build my website."
Your website is going to be ready in less than a minute. Take note that if you install a free website in the Wealthy Affiliate server, the website will only be usable for 30 days.
After that, you either upgrade to premium to officially host your website inside or back up your work to host somewhere else.
Try Wealthy Affiliate Premium for $19*
*instead of $49 on your first month. Cancel anytime.
Now you have a free WordPress website hosted inside the Wealthy Affiliate platform.
You'll see the WordPress login details from the dashboard.
If you are hosted in Wealthy Affiliate, you don't need to install the following (WordPress plugins) because they are already built in place:
- Spam Blocker
- Caching/Website Speed Plugin
- Website Security
- Website Backup
You will experience spam comments as you progress and I do not want you to waste time cleaning up the spam comments.
If your site is NOT hosted in Wealthy Affiliate, you can go to wordpress.org to see which plugin is trusted by most people. Make sure it is a well-maintained plugin. You can verify it by going to the plugin details and see if it has been updated lately.
The most famous plugin for blocking spam comments is called "Akismet." You don't need to install it if you are hosted in Wealthy Affiliate.
In your Wealthy Affiliate account, go to your website in Websites > View Details,
scroll down and you'll see that the SPAM blocker is switched on by default.
Caching Plugin (For Website Speed)
As mentioned above, you can get rid of your caching plugin if you are hosted in Wealthy Affiliate as "Site Speed" is already built-in.
Log in to your Wealthy Affiliate account and turn the speed on from "Accelerated" to "Extreme." That will do the job.
That will also eliminate the need to install a caching plugin or a WordPress plugin that makes websites faster.
Some of the famous caching plugins are "W3 Total Cache " and "WP Fastest Cache." Again, you need not install them since Wealthy Affiliate's caching is built-in.
There are lots of horror stories when it comes to different hosting platforms and even WordPress themes. The scariest story you will ever have to read is getting hacked because of bad hosting, or due to themes that are outdated.
To ensure that your site is safe and you don't get hacked, make sure that you install a website "security" in place.
The most famous plugin for security is called "Wordfence." If you are NOT hosted in Wealthy Affiliate, you can install Wordfence for free (with few limitations).
You WON'T need to install a website security plugin with Wealthy Affiliate because it is built-in.
Make Sure That Your Website SSL Is Activated
What is SSL?
SSL stands for "Secure Socket Layer" and it is the best security option that you can have on your website. It encrypts data, so even if someone hacks into your site or tampers with files, they will not be able to read any of them because SSL has encrypted all of the text.
The only way people would be able to steal information from a site with SSL is by logging onto their server as an administrator (which takes time). This means that most hackers are unable to break in into a Wealthy Affiliate powered hosting account at all!
How Do I Activate My SSL?
Upon purchasing your domain name from Wealthy Affiliate's Site Domains, you'll notice that the padlock beside your URL/website name is already activated.
You'll also see it from Websites > Website Details. Scroll down and you'll see SSL is switched on by default. The Site Support will automatically renew it for you for free so you don't have to worry about it.
If the license is expired, or the website do not have an SSL certificate, your website will display a "not secure" notice in the browser.
SSL certificate is already included in the price you paid for. All you have to do is to make sure that it's switched on (it is by default).
Daily Website Backup
With Wealthy Affiliate hosting, you don't need to install a plugin for your website's backup. You'll see from your account in Site Manager that daily backups are automatically done for you.
If you accidentally break your website today for any reason, you can restore a backup. Just send Site Support a message and they will do it for you in a matter of minutes.
I have used this in the past when I was a newbie, I always break my website. Without an automatic backup, you're screwed.
The best part of Wealthy Affiliate hosting is that daily backup is free. Daily website backups are also automatically done without you realizing it and restoring a site has never been easier.
If your site is not hosted in Wealthy Affiliate, go to wordpress.org > Plugins > WordPress backup.
Make sure that you choose a plugin that is compatible with your server (best to consult your site support for this before installing).
The Site Feedback platform is useful if you want "user testers" on your site. Members of the Wealthy Affiliate community can give your site some feedback as you progress so that you build it with a good user experience in place.
User Experience is a ranking factor. By asking for website feedback and implementing them, you help improve your site's rankings.
In addition to giving constructive criticism, members also leave suggestions for improvement.
To access the Site Feedback platform, go to Websites > Site Feedback.
You have to offer 2 feedbacks, in exchange for one.
Website engagement is another factor for ranking. Wealthy Affiliate has a platform for commenting on each others' posts.
To access Website Comments, go to Websites > Site Comments. This will take you directly into the website comments platform.
The Site Comments is a platform for all members to engage with one another. Users can leave questions or opinions on other sites' posts, in exchange for other users' comments. Members who offer two comments receive one comment back.
This promotes engagement and helps your site rank better as well.
You'll notice that I have a $9 total earnings from Site Comments. That's because when you comment to people's sites, your 51st comment gives you the eligibility to earn.
I get $0.50 for every other comment I leave. It's a nice little side income you can use to pay for your domain registration or even membership renewals (you have to save it and let it accumulate). You can also cash it out thru Paypal.
If you are not hosted in Wealthy Affiliate, you can join Facebook groups that help each other with comments. They would normally have a thread for commenting on each other's blogs.
If you want the comments to just happen naturally, it's also all good. Just note that an active site (a good amount of engagement) is better than a "dead" site.
Accessing the page speed of your newbie website can be done inside your Wealthy Affiliate dashboard or you can type "Google Pagespeed Insights" on Google.
To check the speed of the empty website, enter the URL and press "Analyze."
The purpose of this is to check if your chosen WordPress theme is good to go or is it too heavy and will slow down your site speed.
As you can see here, the theme is good to go.
If you need to change a theme, go to your WordPress dashboard. Select "Appearance," then "Customize." Press "Change."
Upload a theme you have or select wordpress.org themes to choose a free one. Install and Preview. Activate. Test the speed.
Again, choose only a theme if it's not heavy. Avoid fancy animation, large images embedded in the background, and all that glitters. Choose a theme. Activate and publish.
If your website is already existing for quite some time, you can instead use gtmetrix.com to check your page speed.
Since Wealthy Affiliate comes with a built-in caching plugin, you should be able to quickly find a clean theme that loads fast.
If your hosting provider's speed is enhanced by a WordPress plugin, check for that specific plugin's name.
For example, the "Breeze " plugin is recommended for websites in Cloudways server. Your caching plugin should be compatible with your server.
It is best to consult your hosting provider before installing a WordPress caching plugin to speed up your site.
To speed up finding a fast theme, make sure that caching is enabled in your website.
Delete Pre-Installed Plugins
At this stage, you should have zero plugins in place. We will install them one by one in the next lessons.
Before you install anything, you have to be aware of what they are for, so in the future, if one plugin underperforms or conflicts with another one, and you need to choose between two plugins, you will know what to keep and what to give up (and replace it with).
To remove the pre-installed plugins, log in to your WordPress dashboard. Go to Plugins > Installed Plugins.
Tick on the pre-installed plugins, and select "Delete " from the dropdown options.
Press "Apply " to delete them.
Too many plugins can slow down your site, therefore, you should be selective.
We are deleting them for now not because we don't need them, but because we want to understand what they are for before installing them.
It can be a little bit overwhelming when you are just starting out with your own website. You might not know what to do first or where to start when building your site.
There is so much information out there, and it can be hard to know which advice is helpful and which advice isn't.
I am here to help! We are here to help. Join the Wealthy Affiliate community!
Check out Wealthy Affiliate!