While I offer WordPress website maintenance and support plans for clients that include time to upload blog posts, sometimes my clients want a little more control and access to add blog posts on their own. That’s awesome! Here is a step-by-step guide on how to add a blog post to your WordPress website, using the Divi theme.
Log into your WordPress dashboard
You will need a login and password for this. Just ask your developer or website manager if you don’t have one!
Create a new post
On the left sidebar, you’ll see a tab that says Posts. Hover over that and click the Add New Post option.
Add a post title
At the top of the post, you will see an area labeled Add Title. This is where you’ll add your post’s title. Try to make this descriptive but succinct. I like to stay near 50-60 characters.
Add your post content
This is the meat of your post. My website uses the Divi theme (as do a majority of my client’s websites), but I do not use Divi to create blog posts. Should you ever navigate away from the Divi theme, I like the text to be as raw as possible, and, while Divi is fantastic for layout out pages on your WordPress website, it does include some shortcodes that will be pretty ugly if blog posts are ever exported. To add your post content, click on the Use Default Editor button, as shown in the screenshot below.
To add content, you can either copy/paste from an outside source, or you can type directly into the editor. In the section that says Type / to choose a block, go ahead and click into that section to start typing or pasting content. It’s important to note that content pasted from outside sources often keeps the formatting of that source. I like to start clean and paste the text without formatting.
Format your text
With WordPress, your already-established fonts, sizes and colors will be automatically applied to your new post. What you will want to change is your headings on the post. This helps with SEO and allows readers to scan the post a bit easier. To change the heading of a certain line of text, select the content then a toolbar will appear. Click on the little paragraph symbol on the far left, then select Heading. This will change your text to a larger heading with an H2 tag.
Adding other layout elements
The WordPress native editor makes it easy to format and add images to your post. If you want to add a large image between two sections, click into the area after the text where you’d like to add your image and click the Enter button on your keyboard. This will take you to a new line and give you the option to add an image, among many other modules, by clicking the black + button on the right of the screen. From the dialog box that pops up, you can browse or search the modules you’re looking for. In this instance, we’ll add an image.
Adding an image to your blog post
By following the instructions above, you’ll get to the dialog box where you can add other elements. From the search, type “image” then click on it when it shows. This will add an image module to your post. From here, you will add your image by clicking on the Upload button. There are a couple of important things to keep in mind when adding an image:
- Make sure your image is sized appropriately for web. As a rule of thumb, I like to keep images to less than 200kb in weight and a max of 1800px wide and 72dpi. There are many free tools out there to help resize images for web, like imageresizer.com.
- Once your image is added, it’s important to add alternative text (alt text) to the image. Upon selecting the image and uploading, you’ll see a toolbar on the right with a field for you to add alternative text. In this field, describe the image as best you can. This helps with accessibility and SEO.
Add a category
Categories are a great way to organize your posts. To assign a category to your post, click on the Post tab on the right sidebar, then scroll down to the Categories section. You’ll see in my example below that I already have categories built into my blog. You may want or need to create a new category though. You can do that by clicking the Add New Category text. You can assign an existing category by checking the box next to the desired category. I like to have at least one category per blog post.
Add a featured image
Once you have your content and category nailed down, it’s time to wrap the post up. The featured image is automatically shown at the top of every blog post and it’s also shown as the blog thumbnail throughout the website, wherever the post is featured. You want to make sure this image is eye-catching and fits well with the post’s content. To add the featured image, click on the Post tab on the right sidebar, then scroll down to the Featured Image section. Click on the grey Set Featured Image box. This will open a dialog box to select and upload a featured image. As I described regarding images above, it’s important to make sure images are optimized for web before uploading.
Publishing your post
Now that you have all your key elements added to your post, you’re ready to publish! Publishing your post is as simple as clicking the Publish button at the top of your post. Once you’ve published, you can view your post live on your website and continue to make updates as you need.