Hello, I am a total newbie to this site and in desperate need of some help from those who are knowledgeable, so here it goes! (And I apologize in advance if I have posted to the wrong board).
Basically, I am an actor and have my own personal site. My friend is currently hosting it on one of his servers for me. Not knowing much of anything when I first got it, he installed Wordpress and I have since been using templates to make my site.
However, it looks a little unprofessional and I want to get away from the bloggish templates and Wordpress altogether. Everyone I know says “Oh, get Dreamweaver…it takes awhile to learn but then you can make all your own stuff, etc.”
However, seeing as I am not directly hosting my site and currently working through Wordpress, how would I go about doing that? What other options or recommendations do you have and steps to do so? I do have control of the main panel in Wordpress. And I really want to change it soon - can’t stand looking at the template and clunkiness of the site!!
(For reference I’m looking for a very clean appearance: a main page with a few top links to resume, photos, uploaded videos, contact info, and that’s about it).
Thank you in advance for your help!!
The problem isn’t wordpress, but rather how you’re using it.
I do a lot of wordpress themeing; you can really make the site look like whatever you want it to look like, if you know how to create a website. I do a lot of work for folks where they send me a picture of what they want the site to look like and I create a custom theme for them.
The tough nut is that most folks don’t know how to create a site in general, so they have to kludge through and have to make do with whatever is already there because they aren’t familiar with making the kinds of changes to the site that are required to get what they want.
My advice?: either hire someone to make what you want or buy a theme that looks like what you have in your head.
For a couple of hundred bucks, you can get someone who know what they are doing. You won’t have to learn a bunch of stuff you may never use again, and you can be pretty sure of getting a good result.
For less than a hundred bucks, you have access to thousands of themes. You can install them through your control panel quite easily, and if they are well designed then you should have little trouble getting them setup. A good theme will also come with some pretty specific instructions on how to setup each area of the site.
You can really make a wordpress page look however you want, it’s just the back-end cms, the theme of the site is a different story.
(An example of a corporate wordpress page I made that doesn’t look bloggy at all is futuresteel.com )
I agree with the last post unless you’re willing to put a lot of time and effort into learning how to code html, css, and likely php.
If you just want something with style that looks good (but google hates) then you might be able to get away with a flash site builder which will generate a site for you after you enter the info.
For 50 bucks or so a year though you should really get your own web hosting. Then you’ll just have to go into the account where you registered the url and change it’s ‘dns records’ (2 server addresses normally) to point to wherever you new host is.
Try searching for premium wordpress templates. You can get some pretty amazing ones out there for $50 or so and then make little customizations to it yourself if you wish.
Find someone who will do this for you.
I agree with the advice so far. I would suggest that if you think you might be interested in programming your own non-Wordpress site, get the Sitepoint book, How to Program Your Website the Right Way. You don’t to buy Dreamweaver to do this, and you can get your feet wet and see if you really want to code your own site. The last I heard Dreamweaver was about $400. Best of Luck.
PS It doesn’t sound like you are using much of your friend’s server space with what you have now, so I don’t know if you need to rush out to get your own hosting package.
I agree with pretty much everything in the posts above. Dreamweaver is IMO a step backwards and will be costly and time consuming anyway because it isn’t free and it has a learning curve.
My advice is to hire a graphic/web designer that specializes in WordPress. Don’t hire someone who dabbles in it, you need an expert who has a passion for the platform. They’ll get it done faster and they’ll know how to wrap their design around the system. I’m not a WordPress guru myself but I believe WordPress is one of the best CMS platforms available and in the right hands, it can be made to look any way you want it too.