Everything You Need to Run a WordPress Blog

Of the major blogging platforms, WordPress has the most resources available to its community. WordPress users have access to thousands of themes, plugins, articles and tutorials that make it the most customizable and flexible option for bloggers. Because there are so many resources out there it is sometimes hard to know what is available and where to find it. Hopefully through this article you will find some new resources that will help you to make your WordPress blog more effective.

Themes

If you have been using WordPress for any length of time you are no doubt familiar with the use of themes (essentially templates that control the look and layout of the blog). There are literally thousands of free themes that you can download for use on your personal or commercial blog. Additionally, you can customize a theme or create your own (or hire someone else to do it for you).

The best places to find themes are:

Plugins

The WordPress system installs with all of the essential functionalities, but plugins are also available that will help you to improve your blog in just about any way you can imagine. Like themes, most plugins are developed by individuals or companies (not by WordPress) and there is a wide range of support and documentation. Most plugins require only a simple download.

Plugins can help you to stop spam comments, monetize your blog and RSS feed, improve your internal linking, allow for ease of use with social media sites, and much more (see our list of favorite plugins to find some of the best).

There are a few directories that are available to help you find the plugins that you are looking for:

If you can’t find an existing plugin that accomplishes what you need, you can leave a message at the WordPress forums and many times a developer will be willing to create one.


SEO Resources

Search Engine Optimization is a concern for most bloggers. While WordPress has been created to be search engine-friendly , there are still some ways for users to enhance several aspects of SEO (see our articles SEO Basics for Blogs and New WordPress Blogs: 12 Steps to Set Up for Success).

The following articles and resources will help you to get the most from search engines with your blog:

Resources for Creating of Customizing a Theme

Even with all of the great themes that are available, most WordPress users would like to make at least some minor changes to the theme. Other, more adventurous, users may be interested in developing their own theme from scratch. Whatever your goal is, there are others who have already been there and documented the process.

The following resources will help you with creating or customizing a theme:

Blogs that Focus on WordPress

One of the best ways to stay up-to-date with WordPress and to enable continual learning is to subscribe to blogs that focus on WordPress-related content. Our choices include:

Other WordPress Resources

Looking for hosting? WPEngine offers secure managed WordPress hosting. You’ll get expert WordPress support, automatic backups, and caching for fast page loads.

12 Responses

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  • Small Potato, July 9, 2007

    Thank you for plugging my WordPress theme tutorial series :).

  • Vandelay Design, July 9, 2007

    No problem. Thanks for the resource and for visiting.

  • Gaje Master, August 4, 2007

    Looks like you got a lot of great tips on here. I really enjoyed the post that I have reading.

  • Trollivier, September 10, 2007

    Excellent ! I definitely need to keep that page in my bookmarks.

  • pharmacy, October 10, 2007

    It is nice article! Thanks, good info!

  • Dominico Hastings, January 7, 2008

    I don’t know but I tend to prefer blogger over wordpress. Gives it a bit more SEO juice.

  • Philadelphia, May 21, 2008

    Eat a third and drink a third and leave the remaining third of your stomach empty. Then, when you get angry, there will be sufficient room for your rage.

  • Mahesh, August 18, 2008

    Excellent Post….
    I am damn perfect in wordpress blog customization..

    Keep posting……

  • Web Site Design and SEO, September 9, 2008

    certainly the best post i have stumbled so far. The list is complete with everything you need. Thanks a lot for sharing.

  • seo tips, April 4, 2009

    Yes,WordPress is really a great tool. The best thing of wordpress is free. A good collection of plugins and themes.

  • paul, September 13, 2009

    Related, and interesting, is the upcoming free seo software from friiso.com

  • bodasactra, April 6, 2010

    Very interesting article as always. For me, WordPress is a big and clunky PHP page generator. I prefer working with web standard XHTML pages combined with PHP generated pages. A good way to appease the SEO gods and have dynamic content features.