Recommended WordPress Resources for Beginners

Here is a handpicked list of products and services to take your WordPress website to the next level. We may receive a small commission if you buy products we recommend, but we only recommend products and services we’ve used and can vouch for the integrity, support, and ‘best of class’ quality of these WordPress resources.

Managed WordPress Hosting Companies

You’ve got better things to do than keeping your WordPress site up to date, backed up, and secure! The hosting companies we recommend below specialize in hosting WordPress sites, and offer services you simply can’t get from regular web hosts.

We only recommend Managed WordPress hosts who provide all of these features:

  • Automatic WordPress updates, ensuring your site is always up to date.
  • Automatic nightly backups for peace of mind.
  • 24/7 security monitoring for malware or attempts to hack your site.
  • Staging servers so you can make changes to your site offline.
  • Server stacks that are specifically optimized for fast-loading WordPress sites.
  • Stellar support from people who know WordPress inside and out—not just reading from a book of scripts.

You might also read: “Which WordPress host is best for me?”

  • GoDaddy — Do you run a small business website on a budget? GoDaddy offers simple, hassle-free, managed WordPress hosting with 24/7 phone support. Get started quickly with pre-built website themes, starting at just $8.99/mo.
  • EasyWP — Looking for the easiest, least expensive managed WordPress host? EasyWP can have you up and running in less than two minutes. It’s by far the easiest managed WordPress hosting we’ve seen — and it starts at just $1/month! But this is not just cheap WordPress hosting. It’s blazing fast and reliable, because it was created by Namecheap, one of the most trusted domain name registrars in the world. New to WordPress? Start with EasyWP. Click here to watch us create a brand new WordPress website in just 90 seconds with EasyWP.
  • Liquid Web — Do you make money with your website? Liquid Web is for people whose website is their business. They provide enterprise-level features at mid-market prices. If you use your website to make money, Liquid Web is your best choice. It’s specifically designed for business owners, agencies, and freelancers who run ‘mission critical’ sites. And they offer some innovative features you can’t get from any other WordPress host. Click to read: why we trust Liquid Web to host this site!
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  • WP Engine — Our friends at WP Engine are evolving beyond generic WordPress hosting to provide personalization features to help you better connect with your audience. Their award-winning support is second to none, and they offer powerful tools for beginners and developers alike, which is why WP Engine is one of the most popular WordPress hosts for ‘mission critical’ sites. NEW! Now, WP Engine customers get 35+ premium Genesis and StudioPress WordPress themes for FREE!
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  • Pressable — Reliable managed WordPress hosting for businesses and developers who expect more — more performance, more security, and more support from experts who are passionate about WordPress. Their mission is to simplify the publishing process on the Internet.
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  • iThemes Hosting — Finally. Affordable managed WordPress hosting that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg — from a company you know and trust! iThemes has been a trusted name in the WordPress space for 10 years. Now, they’re offering managed WordPress hosting at a price point anyone can afford.
  • SiteGround — Are you a developer who wants affordable tools? SiteGround offers a full suite of developer tools for just $14.95/month.
  • Kinsta — The first managed WordPress host to be exclusively powered by Google Cloud Platform, featuring 18+ data center locations around the globe and a blazing fast premium-tier network. Perfect for sites of any size, small or large.

Managed WooCommerce Hosting

Do you run an eCommerce website powered by WooCommerce? If so, you owe it to yourself to check out Liquid Web. They’re the first hosting company to provide purpose-built managed WooCommerce hosting!

  • Managed WooCommerce Hosting from Liquid Web — Starting at just $28/mo. Purpose-built, fully-managed WooCommerce hosting with a friendly support team available 24/7 to help you get your eCommerce store up and running. High performance under heavy traffic. Dynamic resizing with zero downtime for those periods of higher traffic. Built-in performance tests. Actionable analytics to help you improve sales. Abandoned cart recovery. Plus, free white-glove migration to ensure minimal downtime as well as performance testing and improvements right from the beginning!

Premium WordPress Themes

Don’t get stuck with a poorly-coded theme and no support! WP101 recommends these talented, highly-reputable WordPress theme companies…

  • StudioPress — StudioPress is widely regarded as the ‘grandfather’ of premium WordPress themes. They were one of the first WordPress theme companies! Since 2010, StudioPress has created some of the fastest, most secure, and most SEO-friendly WordPress themes. Every theme is built on the Genesis Framework, so you’ll be able to easily switch themes down the road. In fact, this site is powered by a StudioPress theme!
  • Elegant Themes88 beautiful, premium WordPress themes for only $89, including Divi — the popular page builder theme that powers more than 500,000 websites!
  • Astra — Looking for a WordPress theme that’s incredibly fast and customizable? Meet Astra! It’s powered by the WordPress Customizer, SEO-friendly, and compatible with LifterLMS, Elementor, Beaver Builder, and other major page builders. At less than 50 KB, Astra is one of the fastest WordPress themes on the market. It loads in less than a half second! That’s because it requires less than 50 KB of resources, where most other WordPress themes require at least 300 KB. Best of all, Astra is FREE!
  • Jetpack Professional — All Jetpack users get free access to more than 100 professional themes. But their Professional Plan includes access to an additional 200+ premium WordPress themes!

Is your site slow to load? Speed up your WordPress site in 3 minutes!

Did you know that 53% of website visitors will leave your site if it doesn’t load within three seconds? Page speed is also an important factor in search engine rankings. If your site is slow, it’ll rank lower… and that means fewer visitors to your site. That’s why we recommend WP Rocket. It’s the easiest way to make your WordPress site load faster… with just a few clicks. And unlike other plugins, you don’t need to be a rocket scientist to get up and running. In fact, you can set up WP Rocket in less than 3 minutes!

  • WP Rocket — Instantly speed up your website with the WP Rocket caching plugin for WordPress.

WordPress Customizations, Maintenance, and Support

Need help fixing your WordPress site, or keeping it up to date? These folks can help!

  • Codeable — Need a minor customization? Get help from 200+ WordPress experts in 10 minutes or less!
  • WebTegrity — Friendly hosting and maintenance services for your WordPress site.
  • WP Site Care — Friendly WordPress support services from $79 per month.
  • Maintainn — Security, backups, updates, and customizations starting at just $49/month.
  • SucuriHacked? These guys can help! Web monitoring and malware clean up service.

Custom WordPress Website Design

Need a custom WordPress theme or bespoke design for your small business website? If you don’t want to use a cookie-cutter, off-the-shelf WordPress theme, these folks can help!

  • FreshySites — Since 2011, the talented WordPress designers at FreshySites have built more than 1,350 custom WordPress and WooCommerce websites. So it’s no wonder they’re the #1 rated WordPress website design company in the world. WordPress website design packages start at just $749!

Learn HTML, CSS, and PHP Basics

You don’t need to know HTML and CSS to use WordPress. But eventually, you may run into situations where it comes in handy. You may want to change fonts or colors used in your site. Or you may want to add a custom link to a text widget. That’s where HTML and CSS come in handy. And these are the best courses for learning those basics.

  • Intro to HTML and CSS — Treehouse is the easiest, most beginner-friendly place to learn the basics of HTML and CSS.
  • PHP: A Primer — Do you already know HTML and CSS and want to start developing for WordPress? This ebook will give you a solid introduction to PHP so you can start creating WordPress themes and plugins!

SEO: Get your site listed in Google!

Baffled by SEO? Tired of publishing your content to the sound of crickets? If you want your content to appear at the top of the first page in Google search results, you need to learn to think like Google. These SEO courses will help you do just that!

Add Custom Forms to Your Site with These Plugins

One of the missing features in WordPress (in our opinion) is an easy way to create custom forms. Every website should at least have a contact form! Thankfully, these companies have stepped up to the plate and filled this much-needed void:

  • Ninja Forms — Probably the easiest, most flexible, and powerful form builder plugin for WordPress. Oh, and it’s FREE!
    New Course for Ninja Forms!

    We partnered with the Ninja Forms team to create a brand new, 18-part course for their popular form builder plugin. Learn how to use Ninja Forms to create just about any type of custom form you can imagine, from simple contact forms to event registrations, file uploads, payments, and more!

    View Course Details

  • WPForms — Hands-down, the easiest, most beginner-friendly WordPress contact form plugin on the market!
  • Gravity Forms — The most full-featured plugin for creating custom forms in WordPress.

The Three Easiest Ways to Backup Your WordPress Site

  • BackupBuddy — One of the most popular choices for backing up (or moving) your WordPress site.
  • BlogVault — One of the most reliable WordPress backup, staging, and migration plugins, trusted by over 5 million websites!
  • VaultPress — Backup and security monitoring for your WordPress site from the makers of WordPress.com

BlogVault is one of the most reliable WordPress backup, staging & migration solution. It is trusted by over 5,00,000+ websites

Convert Your Website Visitors into Customers

Lead generation software converts abandoning visitors into subscribers!

  • HubSpot – HubSpot’s WordPress plugin allows all HubSpot customers to integrate their HubSpot tools with their WordPress blog or website. Use the free form builder to generate more leads. Get in-depth analytics about which pages and traffic sources convert the best so you know what’s working and what isn’t. Learn more →
  • OptinMonster – The best lead generation software for site owners with dynamic marketing tools and Exit Intent® technology.

Build a Membership Site Just Like This One

Over the years, I’ve had the opportunity to experiment with just about every membership plugin out there! Here are the ones I recommend…

  • LifterLMSHere’s why we chose LifterLMS to power this site. We feel it’s the best LMS plugin for building an online learning site just like this one.
  • LearnDash — One of the most popular and trusted WordPress LMS plugins, LearnDash powers online courses for Fortune 500 companies, major universities, training organizations, and entrepreneurs worldwide.
  • MemberPress — One of the easiest membership plugins to set up, with robust options.
  • PrivateContent – The simplest way to protect content for logged-in users.
  • Restrict Content Pro — Simply protects your content for paying members.

Simple eCommerce for WordPress. Sell anything!

  • WooCommerce — With more than 50 million downloads, WooCommerce is easily the most popular eCommerce platform for building an online store. No other eCommerce platform allows you to start for free and then grow your store as your business grows. More importantly, WooCommerce doesn’t charge you a portion of your profits as your business grows. With hundreds of plugins and add-ons, WooCommerce makes it a breeze to sell products or services from your WordPress website!
  • Checkout for WooCommerce — Finally, an awesome checkout experience for WooCommerce! Replaces the clunky, default WooCommerce checkout page with a beautiful, responsive, and conversion-focused design. Works with every theme!
  • WP eCommerce — The original WordPress e-commerce plugin!
  • Easy Digital Downloads — The easiest way to sell digital downloads through WordPress – for FREE!
  • AffiliateWP — The easiest way to create and manage a full-featured affiliate program on your WordPress site.

Easy Video Hosting

Need to Add an Events Calendar to Your WordPress Site?

New Events Calendar Course!

Learn how to add an event calendar to your WordPress website with this easy, step-by-step course by Brian Hogg. Create and promote events, accept RSVPs, sell tickets and more!

View Course Details

  • Event Espresso — A very popular event registration and ticketing plugin that enables you to turn your existing WordPress website into a full-featured event management platform and start generating revenue.
  • Events Calendar Pro — A solid, feature-rich calendar and events management suite with tons of add-ons to scale your calendar from soup to nuts.
  • Sugar Event Calendar — A sweet, simple WordPress event calendar plugin. Most event calendar plugins are overly complex and bloated. Sugar Event Calendar is designed to be simple, light weight, and provide just the major features you need for event management.

Translate Your Site into Other Languages

  • Weglot — Make your website multilingual in 100+ languages and reach a wider audience with Weglot. Weglot automatically works with all WordPress themes and plugins, and offers machine translations with the option for human editing for an incredibly efficient translation workflow.

Other Resources

  • Post Status — The top site for insider news and information for WordPress professionals.
  • WP Tavern — Hands-down, the longest-running WordPress news site.

Note: We participate in affiliate programs with many of the companies listed above because we believe in them. We may receive a small commission when products are purchased through the links on this website. You can rest assured that we only recommend products we’ve used ourselves and where we have a personal relationship with the developer(s).


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