WordPress Certification : complete guide
If you want to be a WordPress developer, you don’t need a WordPress certification. But, there are numerous benefits of getting certified in WordPress.
I wrote this detailed guide to tell you how you can use WordPress (Step by step guide). So, you can now dive deep easily into WordPress certification and courses.
Plus, by the end of this article, I will give you a complete list of courses/certifications that can make you stand out from the competition.
Let’s get into the details now.
Is there an Official WordPress Certification?
There isn’t such a thing as an official WordPress certification. WordPress is open-source software; anyone can contribute to it. Anyone can use and learn it.
WordPress Foundation owns WordPress. It doesn’t offer any official certification. However, there are third-party certifications that can prove to be a good addition to your resume.
If you want the list of courses/certifications in WordPress, jump to the end of the article.
When is Getting a WordPress Certification Important?
It’s safe to assume that if you want to apply to a job opening at a large tech company, a WordPress certification would be almost necessary.
As there is no official WordPress certification out there, the more reputable the company you get a certification from, the better your chances to get hired.
So, if you are going to apply to a large tech company for a WordPress job, it’s a good idea to juice up your resume with WordPress certifications from big names.
That said, you do not need a WordPress certification to be a legitimate developer. Your skill will speak for itself.
Businesses or companies do not require certificates; someone worth his salt is always going to be an asset to a company whether he or she has a certificate or not.
However, it is also true that getting a WordPress certification from a good company is a good way to make yourself stand out from the crowd.
What are the Benefits of Getting WordPress Certification?
While you don’t need to get certified as a WordPress developer, there are certain benefits that can help you stand apart from other developers. These are:
- Meeting a job requirement
- Improving your resume and profile
- Additional skill learning
- Appearing legitimate as a new developer
Do You Need a WordPress Certification to be a Professional Developer?
No, you don’t need a WordPress certification to be a professional developer. However, it would be a plus if you can add a certification from a reputable institute to your resume.
As no one controls who uses WordPress, you are not required to have a professional certificate to get hired or work on your own WordPress projects.
What is WordPress, and Why Use it?
WordPress is a content management system (CMS), and the most popular one out there. A content management system lets you create, manage, and modify your website’s content.
WordPress is an open-source software that anyone can use to create beautiful, user-friendly blogs and websites.
In fact, 40% of the internet’s websites are built on WordPress. That converts more than the third of the total websites out there.
Plus, it doesn’t require you to be an expert at programming. So, if you want to create your own websites without getting into the technical aspects, WordPress is the way to go.
WordPress is certainly the easiest way to create user-friendly websites. And, thanks to its flexibility, the possibilities with WordPress are virtually unlimited.
WordPress allows you to create any type of website, including:
- Business websites
- Educational websites
- E-commerce stores
- Membership sites
- And more
Difference Between WordPress.com and WordPress.org
WordPress.org is a free platform where you can host your own websites. It’s a flexible platform that allows you to customize your websites and attach URLs of your choice.
Whereas, WordPress.com is a paid software. Websites created with this version have “WordPress.com” at the end of their URLs.
WordPress.org gives you greater freedom in terms of website customization as well. Plus, you can use different plugins to add different functionalities to your websites.
So, if you want to create your own website and want to be able to have complete control over its content, WordPress.org is the right platform for you.
Why Should You Use WordPress?
Being the most popular content management system, WordPress has a huge user-base and community (Support system).
Although it’s very easy to manage, whenever you feel overwhelmed by an issue, you can reach out to the people that must have already faced that issue.
WordPress is quite easy to learn for the same reason. You’ll find a lot of free tutorials and courses that will help you make your first website.
Plus, it’s free to use. So, in addition to being reliable, it doesn’t require any investment from you, unlike its competitors like WIX and Squarespace.
However, you’ll have to invest in a hosting service and buy your own domain name.
With WordPress, not only can you change the appearance of your website, but you can also add a lot of functionality to it.
WordPress has a generous repository of themes and plugins that you can use to customize your website’s design and add functionality to it, respectively.
How to Use WordPress (Step by Step Guide)
Let’s see how you can create and manage your websites in the WordPress dashboard.
First, you’ll have to install WordPress.
Thankfully, hosting companies like Bluehost let you install WordPress with one click right within their panel.
You just have to sign up with the hosting provider, go to their Cpanel, and install WordPress. You’ll then have to set a username and password.
Alternatively, you can download WordPress and upload the file to your hosting provider’s File Manager.
But, you won’t need to go through with the manual method, as all good hosting provides offer one-click WordPress install.
After installing WordPress, go to www.yourwebsitename.com/wp-admin. Or www.yourwebsitename.com/login
You will see the following page.
Enter the username/email and password you set in your hosting’s Cpanel.
After logging in, you’ll be redirected to the WordPress dashboard.
There are essentially 3 parts of a WordPress dashboard.
- The left column is where all the magic happens.
You can create new pages, new posts (articles), add media, manage comments, customize your website’s design, add plugins, and more.
- The top bar gives you quick access to a few important features. For instance, you can view your website by hovering over and clicking your website’s name.
- The third part of the dashboard is the main working area.
We will discuss every aspect of the WordPress dashboard now.
Let’s first see what “Screen options” means in the WordPress dashboard.
Screen options give you the flexibility to choose what you want WordPress to show in the working area.
For instance, the “Welcome” box contains some important links that you can also access from the left panel. So, if you don’t need it, You have the choice to remove it.
Similarly, “WordPress Site Health” is an element that updates regularly and shows your site’s health.
The “At a glance” element tells you the number of posts, pages, comments, and which theme you are running.
And, if you want to write something quickly, you can use the “Quick draft” option.
This is quite helpful if you want to quickly jot down your thoughts so that you can turn it into a full post later.
The next element is “WordPress Events and News”.
This is especially helpful if you are interested to know about WordPress, get in touch with the community, and keep yourself updated on the latest developments about the platform.
Finally, “Activity” lists down any recent activity happening on your site. These include post comments and recently published posts.
And, if you want your dashboard clean, you can uncheck all the screen options.
Moreover, you can visit your website from the dashboard by hovering over your website name in the top left corner.
A drop-down menu with the “visit site” option appears. Clicking on that takes you to the front-end of your website.
In addition to that, WordPress keeps on updating automatically and regularly. You can check the status by clicking on “Updates” in the left panel.
What is the difference between Posts and Pages in WordPress?
Let’s uncover misconceptions about posts and pages in WordPress.
Pages and posts are both content types on your WordPress site.
A page is static, while posts are social. Let’s look at them separately.
What are Posts in WordPress?
WordPress posts are blog content that you can divide into different categories.
And, if you only want to use WordPress as a blog, most of the time, you’ll be working with “posts”.
WordPress allows you to share your posts with your social media audience using social share plugins.
Let’s see how a post would look like when you start editing/writing it in Gutenberg block editor.
On the right panel, you can edit different settings of a post.
For instance, “Status and visibility” tells you if your post is live or not, the date of publication, and the format of the post. You can make the post stick as well (be at the top of all the posts).
Moreover, you can set the permalink of your post. Permalink is the URL of that post. It’s a good idea to keep the permalink the same as the post title to let search engines find and rank it.
In addition, the settings panel at the right allows you to add the specific post into a category. You’ll only see a list of categories if you have created them.
You can also add tags to your posts (articles). Tags are a great way to tell the search engines what your content is about.
What’s more, you can set a featured image of your blog post. Featured images of your blog posts show up on the page where you list your blogs.
Moreover, the excerpt of a blog post is a summary of the whole content, aimed at providing the gist of your blog. I would recommend using this feature as it’s good for your blog’s SEO.
Lastly, you can also allow/disallow comments on your posts.
Pingbacks and trackbacks are for sending notifications to articles/pages that you have linked to in your article.
It’s a great feature as there is a chance those blog owners may end up giving your article a backlink (a major search engine optimization factor).
What are Pages in WordPress
You can create as many pages as you want. But, keep the most important pages in front of your visitors in the shape of a menu at the top.
Let’s see a sample page.
Sample page settings are almost the same as we saw in posts.
The only difference is that you can set “Page attributes”. A “Parent page” under the “Page Attributes” section is a top-level page under which this page (sample page) falls.
You can also change the position of the page by setting the “order” under the “Page Attributes” module. For instance, if you want your “Home” page to appear at the top, set its “order” to 1.
Changing the Appearance of a Website
While every theme will offer different customization features, you can add site identity (logo, name, menu) in almost every theme.
We’ll go to “Customize” to see what we can do with WordPress pre-installed theme.
“Site identity” allows you to add your logo, name, tagline, and the site icon.
“Colors and dark mode”, as the name suggests, allows you to change the background color and set dark mode if you want.
You can upload a background image, edit menus, add/reorder widgets, and adjust homepage and excerpt settings from this panel.
One of the most impressive features of WordPress is the ability it gives you to add custom CSS to websites.
With the “Additional CSS” feature, creativity would be the only limit.
Alternatively, you can go to “Appearance” > “Theme editor” to customize a WordPress theme.
But, the editing feature is only for those who know the coding languages well. Otherwise, avoid making any changes to the theme code.
Installing WordPress Plugins
Plugins add functionality to your WordPress site.
You can either “Upload Plugin” (upload a file), or you can search WordPress plugin’s repository to find, install, and activate any required plugin.
“Plugin Editor” allows you to customize any plugin’s code, changing its functionality. However, if you don’t know how to code, steer away from that option.
Controlling User Permissions
In addition, the “User” option allows you to add users and edit their privileges.
It’s a good idea to fill out the “Profile” part of “users” as it helps build trust with the audience.
Importing and Exporting Data in WordPress
Moreover, the “Import” and “Export” features are practical when you want to transfer data from a WordPress website to another.
Lastly, the panel’s “settings” option lets you set the permalinks for posts, control user permissions, monitor comments, adjust media file sizes, and more.
This was a complete walk-through of the WordPress dashboard. You can now dive deep into WordPress by taking the below courses if you want.
What is the Best WordPress Certification?
While there aren’t any official courses by WordPress Foundation itself, there are great third-party courses that can help you kick start your career as a WordPress developer.
WP Training Courses
WP Training Courses has over a decade of experience, so you’ll be in safe hands as a learner.
The company has worked with NASA, DELL, and even Microsoft. So, there shouldn’t be a problem with credibility.
With WP Training Courses, you will get 1 on 1 lessons. Your trainer will teach you how you can build websites with WordPress from scratch.
You’ll be taking their classes with a remote desktop, so you can communicate with your trainer effectively.
You can also get weekend classes if you are busy on weekdays. The company offers 3 certifications.
- WordPress Manager
- WordPress Administrator
- WordPress Front-end Developer
The WordPress Manager certification is for you if you want to learn how to manage, secure, and modify a WordPress site from the dashboard.
Not only will you learn WordPress itself, but the course will equip you with WordPress search engine optimization skills as well.
The second certification from the company is the WordPress Administrator.
The WordPress Administrator certification is a little more advanced. It includes:
- The fundamentals of WordPress
- How you can customize a website using CSS and child themes
- Changing page structure with custom HTML and PHP
- How to keep a WordPress website secure and updated
- And advanced SEO techniques to rank WordPress websites in search engines like Google
The last and in-depth certification training by WP Training Courses is the WordPress Front-end Developer.
This course is ideal for you if you are serious about taking WordPress development as a long-term career.
After taking this certification course, you’ll know:
- WordPress fundamentals
- Security and maintenance of websites
- Database installation
- Site migration
- Customizing WordPress websites with CSS and child themes
- WordPress security
- How to rank WordPress websites in search engines (Advanced SEO)
- Social media
- Theme development (Advanced)
- And more
WPacademy is another reputable training institute that offers WordPress skills with certification.
Unlike “WordPress Training Courses”, WPacademy demands a one-time payment of $147, and you get access to all their online courses for a lifetime.
Their WordPress courses include:
- Make a website in WordPress
- Design layouts faster
- WordPress success course
- Build your first online shop
New Skills Academy
New Skills Academy is another reputable training institute that offers a personalized certificate on completing their course.
It’s an in-depth course, so you’ll learn everything about WordPress and will be able to create and manage your WordPress websites.
What you’ll learn from this course?
- Installing WordPress locally on your computer
- Getting used to the WordPress dashboard
- Pages and posts creation
- Installing and customizing themes
- Managing user comments
- Installing plugins
CancanIT is for those who have WordPress knowledge and just want to get certified. The company doesn’t offer a course. YOU just take an exam.
A personalized certificate will be generated as you pass the exam. You can take the exam as many times as you want.
The CancanIT WordPress certification covers:
- CMS basics and installation
- Theme customization and development
- Multisite setup
- Plugin development
- Performance and speed
Get Certified on Freelance Platforms
If you are a freelancer and want to showcase your skills on freelance platforms, you can get their skill badge for free.
Freelance platforms like Upwork, Freelancer, and Fiverr let you earn a free WordPress badge by taking a small test.
If you know WordPress, you can directly take the tests. Earning a batch can help you get clients as they create a sense of legitimacy.
YOAST SEO for WordPress
Search engine optimization of WordPress websites is a skill that can get you great gigs. As long as search engines like Google are there, SEO will remain to be a high-demanding skill.
Plus, YOAST is a highly reputable company in this domain. Getting a WordPress certification with YOAST will not only boost your skillset but will also add value to your resume.
Suppose you are a beginner in WordPress, this one’s ideal for you. WordPress 101 offers a lot of lessons on the WordPress CMS. In addition, you’ll also be learning WooCommerce, Ninja Forms, and Jetpack.
Even if you are not a beginner, the certificates offered by the company will make your resume stand out in the competition.
Free Templatemonster WordPress Certification
If you want to kick start your WordPress career with a professional certification without investing any money, this one is for you.
The company also offers WordPress SEO certification, so you can add a couple of free WordPress certification to your resume.
WordPress is an open-source platform; anyone can use it. More than 75 million websites on the internet are built on WordPress.
So, if you want to be a web developer, learning WordPress will maximize your chances of getting hired.
There isn’t such a thing as an official WordPress certification. WordPress Foundation doesn’t offer any official certification.
On the other hand, there are third-party certifications that can prove to be a good addition to your resume.
WordPress certification isn’t necessary to become a professional WordPress developer.
However, if you want to stand out among your competition, getting a WordPress certification from a reputable company would be a good idea.
Especially if you want to work with an agency or a large tech company, but the more important thing is to develop the skills, which are not dependent on a certificate.