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In this easy-to-follow step-by-step guide I’m going to walk you through the process of setting up a WordPress website.

Step 1: Visit the Cloudways website

Visit the Cloudways website and click on the ‘START FREE’ or ‘GET STARTED FREE’ button.

Screenshot of cloudways.com home page.

Step 2: Sign up for a free trial

Complete the signup screen and click on the ‘START FREE’ button.

Screenshot of cloudways.com free trial registration page.

Step 3: Check your email

You now need to go to your email and find the activation email from Cloudways. Click on the Activate Account button.

Screenshot of cloudways.com account activation email link.

Step 4: Launch your free trial server

You can now add names for your app, server and project if you want to. These are really meant for users who are running multiple sites or servers (and they’re easy to change later) so you can leave them at the defaults.

The next three choices you have to make relate to the server on which you’re going to host your WordPress site. The choices look rather daunting, but don’t worry – they’re really not (and Cloudways make it very easy to change things if you want to later)!

The server I’d recommend depends on what you’re trying to do. Specifically whether you’re just trying to learn WordPress and/or are building a test site, or building a site that you intend to publish live within the next month or so.

Trying to learn WordPress and/or are building a test site

  • Choose Digital Ocean
  • Set the server size to 1GB
  • Choose the nearest available location to where you are

Building a site that you intend to publish live within the next month or so

  • Choose Vultr
  • Choose “High Frequency” from the dropdown (rather than “Standard” which is the default)
  • Set the server size to 1GB
  • Choose the nearest location to where you expect your website visitors to be
  • Note: If the nearest location to where you expect your website visitors to be isn’t available then I’d recommend you follow the instructions for someone trying to learn WordPress and/or building a test site but choose the nearest location to where you expect your website visitors to be (rather than where you are). You can change it when the location becomes available on Vultr and you’ll save a bit of money in the meantime.

Click on the ‘LAUNCH NOW’ button.

Screenshot of cloudways.com server launch page.

Step 5: Wait (you’ve probably got time to make a coffee) and then switch to the applications screen

In my experience it normally takes 7 or 8 minutes for the server setup process to complete.

Once it does, move the yellow slider at the top from ‘SERVERS’ to ‘APPLICATIONS’.

Screenshot of cloudways.com servers page.

Step 6: Select your application

Click on ‘Your Application’.

Screenshot of cloudways.com applications page.

Step 7: Make a note of your WordPress login details and launch WordPress

Make a note of your username and password.

Launch WordPress.

Screenshot of cloudways.com application access details page.

Step 8: Login to WordPress

Enter your username and password and click on the Log In button.

Screenshot of WordPress login screen.

That’s it – you’ve set up a WordPress website!

Screenshot of WordPress administration screen.

What next?

If you’re looking for advice about choosing a domain name for your website then you might want to read my article about the things you should consider when choosing a domain name.

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