WordPress has become the most popular CMS (Content Management System) around. At this point, it powers just over 40% of all the websites on the Internet. There is good money to be made if you learn how to become a WordPress developer.
There are a number of reasons why WordPress has become so popular. From its ease of use to the ability to accomplish almost anything with the right theme and selections of plugins, all of this works together to continue to drive overall popularity.
WordPress development is also very popular. If you know how to develop for WordPress, then chances are you can take that skill and turn it into a nice living.
In this article, I am going to go over some simple steps to take so that you can learn how to become a WordPress developer.
What is a WordPress Developer?
WordPress website design and WordPress development should not be confused. While you can do both, they are actually a little different. Simply put, a WordPress developer is someone who specializes in the ecosystem and infrastructure of WordPress.
A WordPress specialist like this works not only to build, manage, and design websites but also to develop themes and plugins and get more involved within the WordPress core. Developing and building new items is their main thing.
However, so we don’t limit what WordPress developers do, they are also involved with quite a few other aspects of development. Some of these include:
- Migrating Sites
As you can see, there are a lot of different WordPress developer jobs out there and things to get involved with once you have honed your skills.
Let’s take a look at the steps you need to take to become a WordPress developer.
Become a WordPress Developer
Step 1: Learn All About Coding
So, there is often confusion about code and WordPress. Most people think that it is a popular CMS because you can build and design websites without having to learn how to code. This assumption is correct.
Since WordPress is built on PHP, it will be very important to learn this code well. Knowing the basics of the others will also help. Remember, the more you learn, the better WordPress expert you will be.
Step 2: Read Up and Learn WordPress Anywhere You Can
So, there is a lot to learn when it comes to the ins and outs of WordPress. When you start learning all the coding language, you still want to get familiar with all the other aspects of it as well.
There are several resources online that you can use to learn more about WordPress. You will find all sorts of tutorials as well, as they are posted everywhere. Becoming a part of different communities will help with the process.
Some other WordPress related resources to consider include:
WordPress Codex: This is the official online manual written by WordPress developers. It covers everything imaginable. From basic site-building to complex WordPress situations. If you want to learn everything about this CMS platform, then this is where to go.
Envato WordPress Tutorials: Yes, there are dozens of places, blogs, podcasts, and learning platforms that offer different types of WordPress tutorials. However, the Envato Marketplace offers a wide variety of them, they cover everything, and they are fairly priced.
WordPress Developer Resources: WordPress has an entire part of its site dedicated to developers. Here, you can access code references, APIs, the Gutenberg editor, and tons of other developer-related tools that will help you on your journey.
Step 3: Choose an Area to Focus On
As I mentioned above, WordPress has a lot of different areas that you can get into. Now, even with all those areas of expertise available for WordPress developers, we can still break it down into three main categories. These include:
- Core Development
- Theme Development
- Plugin Development
It isn’t difficult to figure out what you would be working on most if you chose one of the above. Going into the Core development would mean you are working on the main core, editing, building, and more.
Theme development means that you would choose to specialize in developing unique WordPress themes to sell to others for them to use to build sites.
Plugin development means you would specialize in developing all the different types of plugins that go into making WordPress sites what they are.
You can work on any and all areas of WordPress development that you want. However, focusing on one in particular may get you further.
Step 4: Become Active in the WordPress Community
As you might imagine, the WordPress community is huge. There are all sorts of ways to access it as well. You can hit message boards, blogs, forums, and even join communities in software programs like Slack.
It is important to get out there and become involved, as the more you have access to, the more you will be able to learn in the long run.
There are millions of people using WordPress and involved in all sorts of WordPress-related things. Becoming involved in all this not only gets your name out there but also allows you to learn and see what everyone else is doing and talking about.
In fact, you can use something like Meetup to find WordPress events in your local area.
Step 5: Build a Portfolio
Last, but definitely not least, you want to start to build a portfolio. Portfolios are always key for anyone who does visual work like development or graphic design. These allow you to show everyone what kind of work you do, what jobs you have done, and the types of finished products you create.
Your portfolio can include projects, skills, development service information, personal information, and anything else you might think is relevant to potential customers. You can also display your portfolio on a site or use it for scooping up other jobs on freelance sites like UpWork.
Learning how to become a WordPress developer may seem out of reach at first. That being said, if you have a path and know the steps to take, then the journey is not as difficult as originally thought.
There are a lot of different things to learn on your journey to becoming a WordPress developer. Take your time, immerse yourself in everything, and learn as much as you can from people who are already developers.
Before you know it, you will be developing WordPress themes and plugins for others to use and enjoy.
Good luck on your journey.