Be honest, as hard as you may try, it’s impossible to live without the Internet. And if you’re someone who loves all things on the Web, learning how to build websites, specifically WordPress sites, is important. If you’re looking to become a WordPress developer but aren’t sure how to get started, you’ll want to continue reading.
What Is WordPress?
WordPress is a program that lets you build custom websites to your own specifications. You can use it free of charge, albeit with certain limitations. Those who wish to utilize all of the application’s features, though, may wish to opt for a paid subscription.
WordPress is known for being user-friendly. Despite that, however, not everyone has the time or ability to learn to use it. Learning to navigate the program and its numerous plugins takes time, patience, and an intense desire to learn.
How to Learn the WordPress Basics
When you’re ready to turn your passion for building WordPress sites into a career, there are a few ways you can go about it.
First, you should know that there are plenty of free resources online to help you learn the basics. WordPress also offers many how-to blogs and resources that can help you learn how the platform works. If you already have a basic understanding of how it operates, that might be all you need to sharpen your skills. However, if you’re new or looking to completely change careers, you can consider returning to school.
Earning a degree in web development gives you the insights and skills you need to land your dream job. If you’re worried that you don’t have enough to cover the cost of tuition, you may consider taking advantage of private student loans.
Determine Your Skill Set
How quickly you become a developer will depend on your current skill set. If you don’t have experience with the platform and don’t even know the basics of coding, you need to learn HyperText Markup Language (HTML) and Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) first. Only once you’ve mastered those skills can you start learning more advanced languages like Java and Python. It’s important to note that you also need to learn PHP, the primary programming language used on WordPress. When you feel comfortable with basic coding languages, you can then move on to more advanced ones. Ultimately, the goal is to create plugins and original themes.
Expand Your Network
In addition to learning new skills, you also need to network with like-minded people. WordPress development is a huge sector in the tech world, so the more people you know, the better your chances of learning more and possibly landing a job. Look for both online and in-person work opportunities or simply talk with other professionals. Most would be more than happy to share insider tips on what it takes to become a great developer. They might even share some secrets on how they got hired as well.
Build Your Portfolio
Even though it might seem counterproductive, you should start a portfolio from day one. Potential employers want to see how far you’ve come, so only showing them your best work won’t demonstrate all the hard work you’ve put in thus far.
What Does a WordPress Developer Do?
A WordPress developer’s responsibilities include designing, implementing, and managing websites built with the platform. They work on both the front- and back-end. As such, they take care of everything, including the plugins and security updates.
WordPress developers also design a site’s architecture, ensuring it is aesthetically pleasing and user-friendly. They also train website users on uploading content and other tasks required of their jobs. They troubleshoot and resolve problems for both clients and coworkers as well.
Any company that has a website or blog built on the platform employs WordPress developers. That said, WordPress developers aren’t limited to working for graphic design, marketing, and design firms.
WordPress developers’ responsibilities done daily include the following:
- Design, implement, and manage WordPress websites
- Collaborate with the members of creative teams
- Manage front- and back-end site development
- Create WordPress plugins and themes
- Maintain well-documented, reusable, and transferrable code
- Troubleshoot and resolve website problems for clients and coworkers
- Stay abreast of new developments in software, trends, and practices
What Are the Common WordPress Developer Skills?
And since WordPress is used by most commercial establishments, developers should have some business experience, too. They should be familiar with e-commerce marketing and even digital security. They will be working with many departments throughout an organization and so should know about functions like:
- Sales and marketing
- Search engine optimization (SEO) optimization
- Mobile development
- Digital security
As with any job, the following are required WordPress developer skills:
- Sound business logic
- Willingness to learn
- Sense of teamwork
- Openness to feedback
- Knowing their limitations
How Much Is the Average WordPress Developer Salary?
WordPress developers based in the U.S. earn an average salary of US$72,500 a year. Those who are just starting out can get US$57,500 annually. Over time, when they’ve gained more experience, built more sites, and honed their skills, they can make up to US$105,000 a year.
Given the number of WordPress websites in 2021, which stands at 455 million, developers and wanna-bes have no cause to worry about being unemployed.
Becoming a WordPress developer takes time and effort, not to mention money, but isn’t impossible. Like any tech job, you’ll need to start with the basics and continue learning in tune with developments.