This guide will help you make a WordPress website for as little as $500. I was hoping you wouldn’t believe me; the website you are reading uses the same tools mentioned in the article. These are also the tools I choose when making client websites. Why am I sharing this with you? Well, because I want everyone to have the ability to create a business website without the excuse that I can’t afford it.
Tools you will need to build your website:
- Kinsta for hosting $30 per Month
- Astra themes as your WordPress theme $49 to $249 per year (I recommend the $249 for all the added features)
- ElementorPro as your builder $49 per year
How to make a website that is fast on WordPress?
The secret to a fast WordPress website in order of importance:
- A fast hosting provider
- WordPress theme that is well optimized for speed and SEO
- Limited amount of plugins
You may say that is too easy, well, and the reality is that it is. With the tools I will mention below, you will be up and running with a new website in as little as two weeks.
Best and Fastest WordPress Hosting Provider
I have worked with most major hosting providers out there. When I started my website building career, I used HostGator, GoDaddy, InMotion Hosting, Bluehost, WP Engine, etc.…
They were not bad, and they are very affordable, especially if you buy their shared hosting plan. The only issue is that once your website grows, you start noticing slowdowns. The slowdown occurs when hosting a WordPress website that has a lot of code due to third-party plugins.
Most providers now have WordPress-specific packages optimized to run your website faster, but I have never had a fantastic experience with these packages either.
About two years ago, I discovered Kinsta, a premium WordPress-specific hosting provider that blew my mind.
It’s common knowledge that WordPress websites are slower than HTML/CSS custom-coded sites. Although with Kinsta, you wouldn’t know you are running a WordPress website. They use the premium tier of Google’s C2 machines, which translates to super-fast websites.
They also offer you a variety of tools to make your website run at ultimate performance.
Tools Kinsta includes with all hosting packages:
- Cloudflare Enterprise
- In basic terms you get a fast and secure website as you have and enterprise level firewall and DDoS Protection as well as a super fast CDN.
- Free SSL
- You get a free SSL to make sure your website is secure. This is what gives you the lock at the top of a browser. (Trust me it’s a good thing)
- Cloudflare Enterprise
- In basic terms, you get a fast and secure website as you have an enterprise-level firewall and DDoS Protection as well as a super-fast CDN.
- Free SSL
- You get a free SSL to make sure your website is secure. SSL certificate is what gives you the lock at the top of a browser. (Trust me, it’s a good thing)
- You can run the latest PHP version.
- Free site migrations
- Free website backups
- As your website grows, their server scales with you.
- They also fix your website if it gets hacked.
- Premium DNS service by Amazon Route53 (another great thing)
- One-click staging site so that you can test new features outside of your live website.
- Best of all, you get fast customer support when you need it.
The best part of everything is that their plans start at $30 a month. Which is on the more expensive side of hosts but trust me, it is money well spent.
Best WordPress Theme
What is the best WordPress theme? A question I get a lot. I tried Avada, Bethemes, Headway (throwback), The7, Bethemes, Divi aka Elegant Themes, Studiopress Genesis theme, among many more. I have yet to find a better one than Astra Themes.
The reason is that it is a fast, well-optimized, customizable theme that pairs well with my website builder of choice, Elementor. They offer a free version but pay for the pro version as it’s well worth it.
It starts at $47 a month, but I love their Schema Pro, Convert Pro, and Ultimate Addon plugins that come in the Growth Bundle for $199 per year.
If you pair this theme with Elementor builder, then you can make the website of your dreams with zero coding skills. Not only will your website look nice, but the back-end infrastructure would be well optimized for you to rank well in search engines.
They also offer prebuilt websites that are getting better but are nowhere near a prebuilt website you can get through a theme like Bethemes.
Although I’m not too fond of templates, I don’t mind making my sites unique.
Why I like Astra Themes:
- No jQuery that can cause render-blocking issues when loading a website. This means your website can load fast, which Google likes.
- The theme itself is 50 KB which is good. The lower the number, the better.
- The default theme loads in under 0.5 seconds. Now, adding a theme builder will slow it down a bit more, but currently, this site loads in under 1 second even with elementor installed, which is my theme builder.
- No matter your theme builder or tool you want to use, the Astra theme more than likely has a full & seamless integration.
Best WordPress Website Builder
What is the best WordPress Website builder? This is the second most common question I get, and I never even think about it now; and as you might have guessed by now, I like Elementor Pro.
Now I have tried everything else out there, but I have not yet found a website builder that offers all the functionalities that Elementor offers. There’s a slight learning curve, but I can have you build a website and sell your website designs with two weeks of training with me. That’s a joke, but why not make selling websites your small business if you are serious.
A downfall of page builders is that they add a lot of extra code to your website, although with a fast host and a great theme, you should still have a fast site that your customers and search engines love.
Elementor is not the smallest in code. I believe Oxygen Builder takes that prize, but it does fall in the middle in size compared to the popular web builders.
Why I like Elementor Pro:
- Compatible with many themes
- Easy to use and a low learning curve
- It provides you the flexibility to create any website you want
- Easy to optimize your desktop, tablet, and mobile views
- Code has less bloat than most other web builders
- Easy to create templates and re-use them throughout your website
Why should I trust you?
I have been building WordPress websites since 2012. I have tried every tool out there to try and make my life easy. Finally, I am at a point where I can design any website I want without sacrificing speed and user experience.
It took me countless hours of research and thousands of dollars buying the latest and greatest tool to select the tools in this article.
Now I am not saying there’s nothing better out there. Technology is quickly changing, but I have not found anything better for myself and my customers.
If you have any questions about anything, I mentioned email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I would be happy to answer any of your questions.