So... you've signed up for hosting with A Small Orange and you wanna get going with your new (or existing) WordPress website—but you just don't know where to start. Or maybe you haven't started the process at all but are gearing up for it. Stop frettin'! We'll walk you through it. And as always, if you have any questions, you can always pop into a live chat or give one of our Support agents a ring to help you out.
Step 1 The Basics
Let's start with an overview. The process works like this...
You buy a top level domain from a registrar (you may already have one you just want to transfer over)
You buy hosting, from us or someone else
You make a website for your domain with your new hosting account OR you transfer your existing domain and website files over to move it to your new hosting account; we cover how to do this in Step 2 below
In this case, and for the sake of this tutorial, we're talking about WordPress websites.
Note: here are some tips for getting your move on and leaving your old host for the awesomeness of ASO.
You wait for propagation, sweet sweet propagation (if you're having issues getting your DNS to propagate, even after the recommended time period, get in touch so we can assist!)
You start fleshing out your site on A Small Orange, using a few tools to keep things ship-shape:
cPanel - a backend dashboard that helps you manage your site, it's users and much, much more
Customer Area - the dashboard where you manage your hosting account, domains, billing and more, and where you can quickly access Support; you'll receive your login details and more info in your Welcome email when you sign up
Webmail - where you access your domain's email service, so you can get email at 'email@example.com' (where 'yourname' is your name or 'admin' or 'info' or similar, and 'yoururl' is the actual URL of your domain)
WHM - some accounts get Web Host Manager access, which allows admin access on the backend of cPanel, often for Resellers
Note: here is a little guide about important URLs you should know/keep handy.
Step 2 Get Your Website Up
Brand New WordPress Site
If you don't yet have a website up and are looking into utilizing WordPress, there is a very simple application available in cPanel that you can use to install WordPress and get started.
If you already have your hosting account set up, you can install WordPress with Softaculous, right from within your cPanel dashboard. Then you might want to log into WordPress and install a WordPress theme (this is what gives your WordPress blog it's visual framework or look and feel).
If you want to have multiple users on your account, and control what kind of access they have, you can create separate users. And you'll definitely need to know how to manage plugins, as these are the 'apps' or configurable features of your website—allowing you flexibility on your sidebar, ability to function as an e-commerce site, show your photos in a cloud or gallery and tons more. Plugins help you customize your site to look and operate the way you envision.
After getting your WordPress site set up, it is HIGHLY advisable to go ahead and backup your cPanel before proceeding. It's all fresh and clean at this stage, so it's a good time to have a copy.
Check out the rest of our WordPress articles for more info on creating new blog pages and posts, managing your widgets and more.
Move Your Existing Site Over
You may already have a WordPress website up and rocking, and that's totally fine. We can help you get that site over to your new hosting account here at A Small Orange. Check out our 'Moving Your WordPress Site to A Small Orange' article to get going. If you have any questions about or issues with that process, let us know.
After getting your WordPress site set up, it is HIGHLY advisable to go ahead and backup your cPanel before proceeding. That way, you can always revert back to your newly migrated version if things go awry.
Check out the rest of our WordPress articles for more info on managing your WordPress site.
Step 3 Set Up Other General Website-y Things
Have an email account tied to your domain yet? You can use cPanel to set up your 'firstname.lastname@example.org' email address and quickly access your email through cPanel OR through Webmail. We can even walk you through transferring your existing email account over to your new plan here at ASO.
If you're running a business, or selling items on your website, you may need an SSL certificate for your site. You can contact our Support department to get the ball rolling, and then install the SSL on your own.
If you already have an SSL certificate that you purchased elsewhere, that's okay too.... we can help you transfer your SSL over to your A Small Orange account.
Step 4 Get Help with Issues
And the last step is to GET HELP if you need it! Getting your own website up on the internet can seem like a daunting process at first, but it's actually fairly simple... and we're here to assist however we can.