Chapter 1. Meet Cute
My domain and I met at my work sometime in the middle of a cold, wintry February. We got along well at the beginning with the help of my coworkers, I had always wanted a personal website and portfolio. I followed each of the first steps. You don’t want to move too fast because careful thoughts make all relationships work better.
- Choose a name: we want a name with personalities, not too wordy, and easy to remember with the appropriate top-level domain (“dot” something: .com, .us, .info, .net)
- Mine is juniecao.com (Junie = cute version of June, my American name and “.com” is typically popular).
- You can ask your friends and family about potential domains to know if it is for you. It is important that your loved ones like it before you get into serious dating.
- Next, you’ll want to make sure that domain is not “taken” by anyone else — that it’s yours and yours only. My legal name domain, trancao.com, is already taken, so I decided to not become the third person in that relationship and instead go with juniecao.com
- Register your domain
- I purchased it from Reclaimhosting.com for $30/year, which is a very good deal for personal domain comparing to other options.
- Choose what type of “date” you want to go on:
- WordPress is my top choice because it is popular and user-friendly, and serves my need for a professional portfolio and blog.
- You can decide to use yours for a forum type, analytical site, or build your own code for it (HTML and CSS).
Chapter 2. The Look
I spent a couple hours (or days) choosing my theme. I am very particular about how certain things look: I wanted it to be simple, not too decorative, but able to look good for a special occasion. I wanted it to be interactive, full of surprise and talents. I decided to choose Sydney, which is usually used by small businesses and has many functions and massive customizability. To use your theme to its best ability:
- If you don’t know how a theme will look on your site, then try it on.
- Look at the theme demo: Appearance > hover over the theme > click Live Demo
- Read Theme Details.
- After choosing the theme > Activate. You should read the official documents about the theme: Appearance > Get Started with <your theme> or look for your theme info under Appearance (might not be applicable to all themes).
- And Google it, like: <theme name> + theme + WordPress. Be open to websites as well as video tutorials; some of them are very detailed and informative.
Chapter 3. The Ex
Then, I wanted to move my portfolio from wordpress.com to my domain’s WordPress. Here’s how I did it:
- Export wordpress.com:
- Setting > Site Tools > Export
- You can choose to Export all or just certain contents.
- You will download a .xml file
- Import into WordPress on the domain:
- Tools > Import > upload your .xml file.
But it looked like my new site was not fond of my ex-content: I could not import all of my media and some contents over. So, I contacted Reclaim Hosting (my domain hosting site) and got help with it. My experience with their support service was very timely and efficient. They eventually put it together and saved me a breakup.
Like any relationship, it takes work and along the road, there will be learning experiences. It’s a journey of continual development, so strap in for the long haul.