Whether you have been blogging for a while on another platform or are starting from scratch, starting out with WordPress can be intimidating. It seems very technical and there are so many options and it all seems bit scary, really.
I’m here to tell you it doesn’t have to be. Honest, it doesn’t!
To prove it, I’m here today to teach you the very basics of how to create a blog post using WordPress, step-by-step.
HOW TO CREATE A BLOG POST
1. Log in to your WordPress admin.
2. In the left-hand sidebar locate and click on Posts > Add New.
3. A new page will open. On that new page add your post title in the Post Title section.
4. The large box below is where you add all your content for your blog post.
5. To format your text, use the formatting tools at the top of the content box. If you don’t have all the options, click the icon at number 6.
7. To add a link, highlight/select the text you want to appear as a link then click the chain link icon at the top of the content area. A new window will pop up where you can type in or paste the full URL for the link. Make sure you always have the http:// at the beginning. Ignore the “tile” box. Tick the “Open Link in New Window” option as this means people aren’t directed away from your blog. When you are done, click “add link”.
8. To add an image, click the “add media” button. A new window will open. You can simply click on an image that has already been uploaded, or click the “upload” tab at the top to upload a new image from your computer.
9. Take a look at the image options that appear when you have clicked on an image. Here you can add a comment, alt text (great for SEO – see this post for more info), choose the alignment, where to link the image if you want it to links somewhere, and what size the image is displayed at. See this post for how to properly prepare your images for your blog.
10. When the image(s) you want are selected, click the “insert into post” button at the bottom of the window and the image will be added to your post where your cursor was last placed.
11. To move an image, click on the image and drag it to where you would like it to appear. If you want the image to be justified left, right or centre, click on the image and then choose the desired justification just as you would with text with the paragraph options above the content box.
12. To edit an image, click on the image and then click on the little pencil icon. A new window with all the image options will appear. Once you have made the changes you desire, click the “update” button at the bottom of the window.
13. To create an image gallery, click on “add media”. When the new window opens, click on “create gallery” on the left-hand side. Then either select or upload the images you want to be included in the gallery. Click “create new gallery”. A new page will appear. Go through and add the captions to your images, or leave blank if you don’t want captions. Drag the images into the order you want them to appear. Then on the right-hand side choose the settings you desire for number of columns and type of gallery. Then click “insert gallery”. The gallery will then appear in your post where your cursor was last placed. I use the WP Canvas Gallery Plugin to allow for more gallery options, so your options may be different
14. To edit an image gallery, click on the gallery in your blog post and click on the pencil icon. Make the changes you require and then click “update gallery”.
15. To delete an image or gallery, click on the image or gallery you want to delete and either click the little X icon, or simply hit the delete key on your keyboard.
16. Once you have finished creating the text and images for the content of your blog post, scroll down the page to the WordPress SEO by Yoast section. This plugin needs to be install before this section will appear. In the Focus Keyword section enter the main phrase that you think people might use to search for the content of this post. The plugin will then tell you where you are missing these keywords in your blog post. Add the keywords into the sections you need to. The SEO Title is the title that will come up for your post when someone does a search in any search engine like Google. The Meta Description is the little preview description that appears under this title. Rewrite these if you need to so that the keywords are used and it is inciting for readers to click though. When finished double check you have used the keywords in all areas. Sometimes the Post Title won’t recognise the keywords until the post is published. Feel free to investigate the other options on the tabs of this little section.
17. Scroll back to the top of the page and look in the right hand sidebar. This is where you can make lots of changes to the settings of your post.
a. Status. This will let you know if your post is still a draft (never published), has been published and when. If you ever want a published post to not appear in your blog feed anymore, but don’t want to delete it, come here and change the status back to draft, then click update.
b. Visibility. You shouldn’t really ever have a need to do anything with the settings here.
c. Publish. This is where you can choose to either publish your post immediately, or to schedule it to publish at a later time. To schedule a post, click “edit”, fill in the details for when you would like the post to be published and then click “ok”.
d. Publicise. Here you can choose where your blog post will be publicised once it is published. Click “Edit” to check and change the options and description/caption for each post. This post only appears if you have set up Publicise through the JetPack plugin. To check go to Jetpack > Settings.
18. Scroll down to Featured Image and add an image that best represents the blog post visually. This is used by social media, search engines and sometimes your blog layout as a main image for the blog post, so always make sure you add a featured image.
19. Next, scroll down to the Categories section and choose the appropriate category(ies) for this post. You can also add a new category by clicking “+ add new category”. Keep categories to a minimum.
20. Tags are next. This is where you can add lots of tags, separated by commas, that are associated with this blog post. Think of phrases and terms that people might use when searching the internet for content that this relates to. When creating new blog posts with the same tags as previous blog posts, make sure you use the same spelling, and letter case as previously. This will keep your tag section tidy and ensures you don’t have 5 tags that are really just the same thing. See this post for more on Tags and Categories.
21. If you have more than one User set up for your blog, you can choose to allocate the Author of the blog post to any of your Users in the Author box.
22. When all the sections are filled in and all your content added you can preview how your post will look by clicking “preview” at the top right of the right sidebar.
23. If you are happy with everything you can then either save your post as a draft to work on later by clicking “save draft” (23a) at the top of the right sidebar, schedule the post to be published at another time (see 17c and 23b on image), or simply go ahead and click “publish” (23c) for your post to appear on your blog immediately.
24. To edit a post, whether it is a draft or published post, go to Posts > All Posts in the left sidebar. Choose the post you would like to edit and click “edit”. Make your changes and then click “update”.
See, it’s really not scary, you just need to know what the different sections mean, and I hope this post has helped with that.
Feel free to ask any questions you may have in the comments below.