WordPress: The Missing Manual
The Complete Guide to Building Blogs and Corporate Websites
Publisher: O'Reilly Media
Final Release Date: October 2012
Pages: 558

Whether you’re a budding blogger or web development professional, WordPress is a brilliant tool for creating websites—if you know how to tap its impressive features. This jargon-free Missing Manual shows you how to use WordPress and its themes, plug-ins, and widgets to build just about any website you can imagine, from a classy blog to a basic e-commerce site.

The important stuff you need to know:

  • Create a blog. Get a free WordPress.com account, choose the right theme, and start publishing content.
  • Build a website. Produce a professional-looking business site by customizing a WordPress theme.
  • Add features. Choose from thousands of WordPress widgets and plug-ins to extend your site’s features.
  • Mix in multimedia. Include slideshows, video clips, webcasts, podcasts, and music players.
  • Involve your readers. Let readers leave comments, contribute to your site, and carry on a dialog.
  • Build an audience. Learn search-engine optimization, measure your reader’s favorite pages, and publicize your site.
  • Create a community. Use social media tools such as “Like” and sharing buttons, and provide RSS feeds of your posts.
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oreillyWordPress: The Missing Manual
 
4.6

(based on 7 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (4)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (3)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (0)

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100%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Easy to understand (7)
  • Helpful examples (7)
  • Well-written (6)
  • Accurate (5)
  • Concise (4)

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Novice (7)
    • Intermediate (6)
    • Student (4)

    Reviewed by 7 customers

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    5.0

    It really is a "Complete Guide"

    By TomMc

    from Littleton, CO

    About Me Developer

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Accurate
    • Concise
    • Easy to understand
    • Helpful examples
    • Well-written

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Intermediate
      • Novice

      Comments about oreilly WordPress: The Missing Manual:

      I am a computer programmer and application developer, and I have purchased several of Matthew MacDonald's books over the years. I can honestly say that he always explains all aspects of the subject at hand, in a clear, concise and easy to understand manner regardless of the subject's complexity. I can also say pretty much the same thing about the Missing Manual series of books by O'Reilly.
      In this case I was producing my first ever blog, Sensible Health Choice, and after some research decided that WordPress was the way to go, and then browsed through several of the books and book ratings on using WordPress, and ended up with the MacDonald Missing Manual book. As usual, I wasn't disappointed.
      Although I have produced plenty of websites, this was my first experience at producing a blog, and I needed to learn blogging and WordPress from scratch. MacDonald starts out with basic stuff like should you just use the WordPress.com site for hosting, or host it on some other site such as GoDaddy along with how to get it installed and running there.
      Then he takes you through actually getting the blog built and into installing the plugins you will need. Finally he shows how to get set up to connect up with Facebook, Twitter, etc. for "Attracting a Crowd", which is possibly some of the most important advice in the book. After all, why publish a blog, unless you want someone to read it?
      If you are already familiar with all these technical aspects of WordPress, and you're looking for advice on how to write appealing copy on your blog, there are better books out there on blogging in general, not specific to WordPress.

      (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

       
      4.0

      A very granular division in Chapters

      By Giuseppe Simpatia

      from Florence, Italy

      About Me Sys Admin, System Administrator

      Verified Reviewer

      Pros

      • Accurate
      • Easy to understand
      • Excellent Structure
      • Helpful examples

      Cons

      • Heavy If You Need Less

      Best Uses

      • Handbook On A Daily Basis
      • Intermediate
      • Novice
      • Student

      Comments about oreilly WordPress: The Missing Manual:

      Like many others from "The Missing Manual" series do, this book covers virtually every aspect of the topic, from the very jumpstarting to advanced customization tasks.
      What really caught my attention the first time I opened it, was the extremely granular structure of the Index.
      Later I was definitely impressed by the ability to move from one topic to another with caution and an analytical approach.
      The discussion is divided into 4 main macro Areas, 4 boundary lines the first of which is the starting point, the second one is positioned between chapter third and fourth, the third one between chapter eighth and ninth, and the fourth one between chapter thirteenth and fourteenth.
      In spite of this subdivision, the chapters are consequential, from the beginning to the End.
      I find crucial for a reader to take a look at this organization before purchasing or plunging into reading.
      I try to summarize the Index, leaving out the more specific sections between every chapter.
      ---------------------------
      STARTING OUT WITH WORDPRESS
      1. The WordPress Landscape
      2. Signing Up with WordPress.com
      3. Installing WordPress on Your Web Host
      BUILDING A WORDPRESS BLOG
      4. Creating Posts
      5. Choosing and Polishing Your WordPress Theme
      6. Jazzing Up Your Posts
      7. Adding Pages and Menus
      8. Comments: Letting Your Readers Talk Back
      SUPERCHARGING YOUR BLOG
      9. Getting New Features with Plug-Ins
      10. Adding Picture Galleries, Video, and Music
      11. Collaborating with Multiple Authors
      12. Attracting a Crowd
      FROM BLOG TO WEBSITE
      13. Editing Themes: The Key to Customizing Your Site
      14. Building an Advanced WordPress Site
      ---------------------------

      Its granularity converts this manual into a handbook to refer to on a daily basis when needed.
      The book has over 500 pages ... For this reason, I recommend the electronic version :-)

      Although the author takes nothing for granted and starts from the most basic concepts on which you could feel already prepared, it could be a shame to skip the first few chapters because they contain interesting observations and valuable practical advices.
      Chapters 11th / 12th are of a more general nature, so are also suitable to be applied in different CMS.
      Very useful the final section devoted to the collection of recommended sites or of sites mentioned in the book.

      (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      A Must-Have for WordPress Bloggers

      By Rich

      from Taylor, MI

      About Me Blogger

      Verified Reviewer

      Pros

      • Easy to understand
      • Helpful examples
      • Well-written

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Expert
        • Intermediate
        • Novice

        Comments about oreilly WordPress: The Missing Manual:

        I am reviewing the Mobi e-book version for the Kindle.

        I can't recommend this e-book more highly to anyone with an interest in blogging using WordPress. This book is mainly targeted at users who intend to run the WordPress software on their own web server, but even those (like me!) who use the free WordPress site (http://wordpress.com) can get a lot of useful how-to information out of this e-book.

        In fact, "WordPress: The Missing Manual" can take you step-by-step from signing up for a free WordPress blog to your own customized and professional WordPress site complete with the plug-ins you'll need to monetize your blog. Appendix A contains the crucial how-to you'll need to migrate your existing blog -- and more importantly, your followers -- from WordPress.com to your new custom site. There is plenty of advice along the way about how to set up your blog's layout and how to run your blog professionally.

        If you're only planning on using the free WordPress.com site, this book is still well-worth buying. Blog page administration will be fairly consistent no matter which way you're using WordPress, and I wish I'd had this available to me when I was setting up my own blog site.

        This isn't just the basics, though. Later chapters of the book are directly targeted at the most advanced users and will teach you how to "get under the hood" of how WordPress works and how to make it do what you want it to do.

        There are a few typos scattered here and there throughout, but nothing that will leave you scratching your head and wondering what the author meant. This e-book is well-formatted and renders very well on the Kindle. There were a few issues here and there, such as Table 1-1 that cuts off the right side in portrait view but is fully visible in landscape view. I didn't notice anything that would make the e-book unusable.

        Reviewer's Note: I am a member of the O'Reilly Blogger Review program and received a free copy of the "WordPress: The Missing Manual" which was used to write this review.

        (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        I thought I knew everything

        By pdxsarita

        from Portland, Oregon

        About Me Sys Admin

        Verified Reviewer

        Pros

        • Accurate
        • Concise
        • Easy to understand
        • Helpful examples
        • Well-written

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Intermediate
          • Novice
          • Student

          Comments about oreilly WordPress: The Missing Manual:

          As an experierenced blogger I thought I knew everything there is to know about Wordpress. Boy was a I wrong. Reading Wordpress: The Missing Manual tought me so many things I had no clue even existed.
          This book is a reference material for me that I leave on my desk. I have highlighted many tips and tricks that I plan to do in the future. I'm excited to take my blog to the next level thanks to this manual.

          (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

           
          4.0

          Great Way to Get Started!

          By Jessica Renee

          from Bowling Green, KY

          About Me Maker

          Verified Reviewer

          Pros

          • Accurate
          • Concise
          • Easy to understand
          • Helpful examples
          • Well-written

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Novice
            • Student

            Comments about oreilly WordPress: The Missing Manual:

            I started on Blogger back in 2009. I soon realized that many of my blogger friends were suggesting that I switch to Wordpress. I tried but it was just SO different from any of the HTML/CSS add on widgets and such that I learned for Blogger.

            I was stuck. I didn't know what to do, which way to go, or how to get started! The wordpress online manual that "suggests" how to get started was just a bunch of mumbo jumbo that didn't help, it was like reading an encyclopedia from beginning to end. I felt more numb and lost AFTER reading it then before I began.

            The Wordpress: The Missing Manual helps break down all the hard to figure out "add-ons' and "inserts" so that a beginner could understand HOW to work Wordpress properly without having to pull their hair out!

            This book breaks down how to get started, how to make a post with Wordpress, THEN customizing your add ons and plug ins as well as working with your existing tools.

            The best part of the book for me was the adding audio/visual elements. It was nice to see it explained in a way that I could see how the big picture from beginning to end works, so I wasn't so in the dark about it.

            It's so much better than just trying to figure out what's going on just from the online documents that give you. They were more frustrating for me than helpful. It was jibberish, especially to someone used to Blogger where you can tweak/edit your own HTML and change just about anything you want from your HTML/Edit Layout page!

            The only thing that I can complain about is this book jumps around a bit. I would have rather seen how ONE site was built from the beginning to the end. This shows a number of different websites that have been built.. but for me to FULLY comprehend something I have to see from the very first to the end..

            This is easily the best way to make the switch without all the hassle and problems of jumping right in without any help! I would definitely recommend this book to someone looking for help!

             
            4.0

            Like so much, I now have the ebook too.

            By Steve

            from South Florida USA

            Verified Reviewer

            Pros

            • Easy to understand
            • Helpful examples
            • Well-written

            Cons

              Best Uses

              • Expert
              • Intermediate
              • Novice

              Comments about oreilly WordPress: The Missing Manual:

              I received this from the O'Reilly User Groups program for the Boca Raton Computer Society and as I have started blogs at Wordpress.com and at Wordpress.org, I went through it myself.

              I learned about a lot of things for both platforms, which I had not previously considered.

              Prior to reading this, I would explore the great help sections of WordPress itself, for things to enhance my sites. Now I can easily refer back to this missing manual and find things that I have marked to be done later.

              This is one of the most useful non-fiction works I have ever read.

              The missing manual series, is great!

              I recommend this to all WordPress bloggers, who want to have the best blog possible.

              ***
              I now have the ebook too, so I can readily access when needed away from home.

              (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              The 'Bible' of Wordpress

              By Pasan Wijesinghe

              from Sri Lanka

              About Me Designer

              Verified Reviewer

              Pros

              • Accurate
              • Concise
              • Easy to understand
              • Helpful examples
              • Well-written

              Cons

              • Too basic

              Best Uses

              • Intermediate
              • Novice
              • Student

              Comments about oreilly WordPress: The Missing Manual:

              This is a complete guide on Wordpress. Maybe you are a writer with very little web development skills who need to begin your own blog. Maybe you are a web developer who need to explore the powerful content management system provided by Wordpress, so you can give a better service to your customers. In both cases, this is the write book to you.

              The most important feature of this book is its completeness. It includes

              An introduction about Wordpress, whether to use self hosting or free hosting
              How to publish posts, customize the themes, menus and etc
              What to do with plug-ins
              Using media such as images, videos, audio
              How many authors can work on a single blog
              Some advices on attracting and keeping your readers
              An appendix on migrating from a Wordpress.com site to a self hosted site
              Many tips and advices which are immensely valuable

              The author shares his views and suggestions on what is best for many situations. This is a huge advantage for a reader. For example he advices on most effective and economical buying options for the reader, in situations like upgrading to premium features, using video hosting and etc.

              The book may appear too fundamental for someone who is a bit experienced. However I strongly encourage them to skip the boring parts and continue reading. You are sure to find many things you didn't know.

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