You’ve heard over and over again on the show how important it is as an indie author to have an author website. That’s why I have created this incredibly useful, totally free, course showing you exactly how to create an awesome author website!

Note: If you follow the videos through from start to finish everything will work 100%! However, if you choose a different theme for your site, or make other changes, some ‘plugins’ that I outline below might not work. For example if you use Thesis, the MyBookTable plugin won’t work. 

I’ve even got an awesome deal for you:

25% off your hosting. Remember to use the code “RockingDiscount” on checkout.

You should watch this intro video first:

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Nice right? Now, if you want to take a look around the demo site, just click here.

And don’t forget your site can look however you want. With a simple change it could look like this:

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Or even this:

Blog colors 2

Having an author website is one of the most valuable steps you can take for putting your name out there in the indie publishing world. Here are a few things some RSP guests have said:

“If you haven’t uploaded your book yet there are some tools you should set up in advance – you should have a website”Lisa Grace (RSP Episode 3)

“I do say to everybody they should have a website, you should have your domain name … you should have a mailing list sign up” Lindsay Buroker (RSP Episode 9)

“You can’t just rely on you need to have you own website” – Victoria Jeffrey (RSP Episode 10)

“You want to own where people find you, you have your spokes of the wheel, but the middle of the wheel should always be a property that you own, and that is where people find you”

Cege Smith (RSP Episode 11)

If you are ready to get started, the videos, all in order are laid out below:

Part 1 – Purchasing your Domain

In the first part of this course we’ll buy a domain name to use for our site. This costs just $9 for the year, and allows you to have “yourname.com” or “yournameauthor.com”. We buy the domain through InternetBS.net – I use it for RSP and it’s the cheapest around.

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Part 2 – Getting some Hosting

In this second part of the course, you are going to learn how to get hosting for your site, so you can own you presence online. We’re signing up with Hostgator (who I use for RSP) they are super cheap – click here to go to their site.

Remember to use the code “RockingDiscount” on checkout to save 25%!

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Part 3 – Installing WordPress

In this part of the course we’ll look at installing the WordPress system on your newly bought hosting!

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Part 4 – Creating your Sites Pages

In this part of the course I am going to show you how to create the pages for your site, which will add structure to the new WordPress installation!

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Part 5 – Creating the Graphics for Your Site

In this part of the course we’ll look at creating the header image for your site so that it suits your genre and books. We also look at setting an appropriate background image.

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Part 6 – Creating the All-Important Books Page

In this step we look at creating the ‘books’ page for the site. This is one of the most important elements of your new site! Creating it is super easy thanks to the use of a free plug-in!

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Part 7 – Filling Out the Pages with Some Content

In this step we look at giving the WordPress site we have created some content by going through the pages and adding information to them – such as the ‘About the Author’ page and the “Excerpts” page.

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Part 8 – Adding Social Media Buttons and the Contact Form

In this part of the tutorial we look at adding a contact form to your site as well as two types of social media ‘buttons.’ As an indie author, social media will be vital for spreading the word about your books.

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Part 9 – Making the Sidebar Look Awesome

In this part of the course I show you how to make the sidebar in your new website look awesome.

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Part 10 – Creating a Blog Post

This part of the course covers one of those WordPress basics that will serve you for years to come: How to create a blog post. This is a video you can come back to if you ever struggle to create a post (you probably won’t need to, it’s super easy).

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Part 11 – Creating a Newsletter Signup Form

In this final part to the tutorial I show you how to add a newsletter signup form to your site. Which while the last step is perhaps one of the most important elements of your site.

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Bonus step (Part 11 section 2) – Email your Subscribers

In this extra video I show you how to send an email out to your mailing list once you have built it up!

thats all folks

What Next?

Well that about wraps it up. This tutorial took me about 2 weeks of pretty solid work to set up so I’d really love to know what you think of it – just drop a comment below. If you liked it, share it on Facebook, twitter etc. I’d appreciate it :). I hope it’s something that will make your journey into indie publishing just a little easier!

Are you struggling? If you’re one of the first 50 you can use your WordPress support hour. If not, drop a comment below and I’ll sort it out publicly.

If you just want to say ‘hey’ – simon@rockingselfpublishing.com 🙂

And if you skipped to the bottom of this page…

Major indie authors and traditional authors have their own website – a pretty good indicator you should too. If you didn’t get the chance, spend the 8 minutes watching the first video at the top of the page :).

If you have doubts about my tutorial, you have nothing to lose as the hosting has a 45 day money-back guarantee. But, full-disclosure, you can’t get your money back on a domain, so if you are unhappy (you won’t be) you’ll be down $9 and you’ll have a “yourname.com” domain you can still use somewhere else. Whether you continue indie publishing or not, that is still going to be useful.

Anyway, follow the tutorial or not, I’d still love you to tune into my weekly podcast – it would be great to have you!

Thanks again,

Simon

Simon WhistlerHow to Create an Amazing Author Website: Free Video Course
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  • Callie Weylin

    I was just asking people for advice on the reasons for having my own site and this sold it for me (as well as making it sound so much easier). Thank you for your guidance! I bought my domain name… NEXT: to take over the world.

    • SimonRSP

      Hi Callie – you’re welcome. The course should be super easy to follow, but if you get stuck at any point, feel free to either leave a comment here, or drop me an email: simon@rockingselfpublishing.com 🙂

      • Callie Weylin

        Much appreciated – thank you!

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  • This was a great tutorial! It made everything really easy and my website looks pretty good!

    • SimonRSP

      Great to hear Robyn :). If you leave a link to it here, I’d love to see how it turned out!

  • disqus_IEdgLGcTVF

    Hi SImon! You have a nice hovering ad on your site. Are you suing a plugin for that? I found one that works with Mail Chimp but it looks a bit crude.
    Thanks!
    Alyne

    • SimonRSP

      Hi Alyne. It is a sort of plug-in for WordPress. It’s an app called List Builder from appsumo.com.

      I was against have a ‘pop-up’ on the site at first and told myself that if anyone complained in the first week I’d get rid of it. Instead I got a couple of compliments on it!

      It’s been a fantastic tool and has doubled the number of people who are choosing to subscribe to my newsletter! I’m so convinced it’s worthwhile doing I’m shortly going to make a video on how to install it! Probably be up in a couple of days.

      • disqus_IEdgLGcTVF

        fantastic! It looks really good and not pushy. 🙂

  • This is a fantastic tutorial Simon. Thank you so much. I’m still working on getting some stuff sorted on it, but the site is running.

    I was wondering whether you knew anything about Search Engine Optimization? How necessary is it with the website?

    • Also, would you know anything about changing the little browser icon that comes up with the webpage at the top of the screen? (Favicons?) I can’t seem to figure out how to manipulate it even after following the instructions.

      Sorry for the bombardment of questions.

    • SimonRSP

      Hey Erik,

      Really glad that you are finding the tutorial useful!

      I’m not super knowledgeable about SEO, but for RSP I use the Yoast plugin which is great for beginners. Check it out here: https://yoast.com/.

      I’d also recommend having a listen to the interview I did with Kevin Leigh a while back (http://rockingselfpublishing.com/episode-15-value-digital-marketing-kevin-leigh/). Kevin is an SEO expert by day and sheds some light on matter!

      Good luck!

  • Hi – I build wordpress websites professionally and this is a great starting point for beginners. Worth noting that mailchimp doesn’t allow autoresponders for free accounts. You can do these with the free Mailpoet plugin though.

    • SimonRSP

      Yep. I myself use Campaign Monitor (I just wanted to recommend a free option for this tutorial). Autoresponders are a great tool for engaging your audience so Mailpoet sounds awesome. Would you agree that you should not send them out from your own hosting (such as Hostgator which I talk about here) as it can cause problems with deliverability and spam triggers? It seems Mailpoet allows for this, and it’s still free, so that’s neat 🙂

      • Mailpoet is free, so you can try the sending options out. To avoid spam filtering, mailpoet offer 2 discount deals with 3rd parties or, with some tech knowhow, you can use mandrill.com which is a free (up to 12k emails pcm) transactional email system made my mailchimp.

  • Simon, I just completed the 11 steps of the training and am thrilled at what I have learned. I appreciate you producing this in step-by-step format for beginners such as myself. The resources you included in the videos were also helpful and now makes the daunting task of creating my author website less stressful. Thank you again!

    • SimonRSP

      Hi Sandra, you are most welcome. I’m glad that the course was helpful 🙂

  • Serena Simpson

    Simon, thanks for the website course. I followed the steps and now I have a beautiful website. I can’t tell you how much I appreciate it. Come visit if you have the mythical free minute serenasimpsonbooks.com

    • SimonRSP

      Hi Serena, your site looks wonderful, I’m glad that this course was helpful in making it :). Just to let you know that there are a couple of follow up videos on my YouTube channel, one of them will show you how to remove that little slither of green at the top of the page 🙂

  • Serena Simpson

    Thanks I will look for it.

  • Peter Howells

    I came here from your interview with Joanne Penn. This is a very useful video course.

    • SimonRSP

      Thanks Peter 🙂

  • Thanks so much for this! Love your podcast, and I’m so glad I found this tutorial. My site was very dreary, with just the 2013 theme and no plug ins. I’m much happier now! http://www.btolsen.com

    • SimonRSP

      Thanks Brian, glad you found the course and podcast useful :). Site looks great, love the top graphic (and the book cover)!

  • Melissa Turner Kirk

    I loved the tutorial…was a great help to tech challenged me. I have one problem I was hoping you could help with though. When I put a book in the sidebar and follow your instructions – it wont link to the book page. I think it did at first and noticed this after I removed the fade from the side bar. It takes me to a “This webpage is not available” with a The server at http can’t be found, because the DNS lookup failed. Like I said Im tech challenged…any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks

    • SimonRSP

      Hi Melissa. Hmm, I don’t know the answer to this off the bat. Could you please give me a link to your site? I’ll look into it!

      • Melissa Turner Kirk
        • SimonRSP

          Okay, I’m struggling to see where this is going wrong, but maybe try this:

          When editing the sidebar and you create the link to the book, editing the link so that if it doesn’t have “http://” in front of it, add it and save. And if it does have “http://” in front of it, delete it and save.

          If that doesn’t work we’ll try something else 🙂

          • Melissa Turner Kirk

            Yay!! It worked. It’s the simplest things that trip me up. :/ Now to make it look great and finish up….and get the word out there of course. Thank you so much for your help. I listened to another podcast of yours last night that was very helpful. I’m passing the word on and staying tuned in. Have a great day!

          • SimonRSP

            Excellent! You’re very welcome.

  • plainlyspoken

    Okay, Simon. You have made this so easy that I have NO choice but to set up a website (again). I had one before, but had so many problems with it (and it looked really bad, especially on mobile applications) that I didn’t renew it. I am going to give the Hostgator site a try. Thanks for this!

    • SimonRSP

      Awesome, that was my aim :D. Let me know how it goes by posting a link to it here 🙂

  • Steph

    Thanks, Simon for providing such a rocking tutorial! My site is up and running, and this is the fruit of my labor: http://www.straysiders.com I will be revisiting the tutorial when I get my book published, to get the “books” page working!

    • SimonRSP

      You’re welcome Steph. Nice site!

  • Melissa Turner Kirk

    Hi again. I’m setting up another web page and following the tutorial. I can’t find the link for the tutorial to remove the fade effect…..

    • SimonRSP

      Hey Melissa, ah, this is a link to the video:

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zH609q-NxpM

      • Melissa Turner Kirk

        Done! Thanks so much! Have a great day.

    • matowe

      I’ve taken a screenprint but it won’t paste into the reply box. It’s the bit at the end of the add book page where seo title and meta description are requested in 70 and 156 characters respectively. thanks for trying to help.

  • matowe

    Hi Simon

    Some great tips. Can you explain what needs to go in the SEO and meta boxes at the bottom of the books setup. Thanks. My web page at http://www.matt-owens-rees.com is really getting there now.

    • SimonRSP

      Hi, can you attach a screenshot of the bit you mean here? That’ll help me 🙂

      • matowe

        IT III

      • matowe

        Hi simon. I’ve taken a screenprint but it won’t paste into the reply box. It’s the bit at the end of the add book page where seo title and meta description are requested in 70 and 156 characters respectively. thanks for trying to help.

        • SimonRSP

          Quite honestly, I’m not sure! I’ve never been too hot on SEO (I know I should be). If this is for the MyBookTable plugin, I’d check out the WordPress plugin page here: https://wordpress.org/plugins/mybooktable/. They might have the information you are looking for. Sorry I can’t be of more help 🙁

  • matowe

    I’ve highlighted style.css on the right. where do I type in apacity to change from 0.9 to1

    thanks again

    • SimonRSP

      What are you trying to do here specifically?

  • matowe

    Hi Simon

    I’m trying to get rid of the shading as explained in your video. I go to dashboard, appearance, editor, click on right sidebar on style.css, do ctrl F, that brings up text on the page. but unless i’m missing something i can’t see whee i type in “apacity” to cahnfe from 0.9 to 1. The screenshot is not too clear on my computer. I’ve got the best part of my webpage at http://www.matt-owens-rees.com up and running thanks to your tutorial but am stuck on a few final points like this one.

    • SimonRSP

      Ah, I see the problem, you need to be searching for “opacity” not “apacity” 🙂

      If you switch the video quality settings in YouTube up to HD (720) and go full screen you should be able to see everything.

      Hope that helps, and if it doesn’t drop me another message and I’ll see what I can do!

      • matowe

        Yes. It certainly helped to have the screen on HD, It made it easier to follow your commentary. I’ve got the site pretty much there but I’m stuck on the sidebar. One book is uploaded okay but two others have text as well as the book cover uploaded. Can’t see what I’ve done wrongly. I’ve taken a screen print but it won’t upload onto this reply box. http://www.matt-owens-rees.com

        • SimonRSP

          Pop the screenshot up on a site like Imgur, and link me over to it so I can take a look ).

          • Matt Owens Rees

            Done that. Did it help?

          • SimonRSP

            You’ll need to link me over to it…

          • Matt Owens Rees

            Not sure how I put you on the link. But did you get my email with the same information. The Homepage at http://www.matt-owens-rees.com is effectively a screenshot. The link to the third book on the sidebar works fine. The other two don’t link and as you can see the text is also there. I’ve checked through your tutorial and can’t see how I’ve gone wrong and as I say t works for the first book. Hope you can help..

          • SimonRSP

            Yep, I did, but it still didn’t contain a link to the image, although I did show you how to send me that link.

            I don’t understand what the problem is, the images seem to link over just like the third book. I also don’t know what you mean about the text being there, I just see images on the homepage.

            I’m not sure where you have gone wrong, but perhaps try starting this part of the tutorial over, as it’s not a problem I’ve come across myself, or have been told about by others who have followed the guides.

          • Matt Owens Rees

            I’ve taken out the text boxes so that the sidebar disappears and put them back in a different way. Previously, the picture appeared but would not link. And apart from the third book the text appeared above the image. I’ve written a short note on my home page http://www.matt-owens-rees.com Thanks for the help and hope the flu has gone.

          • Matt Owens Rees

            I think you were looking at the home page AFTER I dismembered the Sidebar and started a different way. The previous screenshot showed the books weren’t linking and there was text appearing. Anyway sorted now. Thanks for trying to help. Hope the flu has disappeared.

        • Matt Owens Rees

          Any ideas on getting rid of that text?

  • Awesome resource Simon. I started making an author website template as an example but will do some videos like this soon. Or just link to yours. 🙂

    • SimonRSP

      Thanks Derek. I think having something like this with a specific template for authors would be incredibly valuable. I dug around for a while to find a template that would work for authors, but having something custom would be great.

  • Matt Owens Rees

    The SEO and Meta widgets are well worth keeping in the Sidebar. I sold three books yesterday on a site on which I normally sell hardly anything. Keeping the last few posts is also quite useful

  • Matt Owens Rees

    It may be a good idea to tick the “Automatically Add” box in the Create Menu screen as well as the Primary Menu box – part 4 of the tutorial – so that authors or others can add new pages to the Sidebar. Trying to add pages with the box being unticked won’t result in it appearing on the sidebar. I found it useful to have an extra page. Others may not of course. http://www.matt-owens-rees.com I hope to have my site fully operational by 1 March

  • Matt Owens Rees

    I don’t have any affiliate programs but noticed there was a “Disclosure of Material Connection” comment at the end of each Book page. If you are not in an affiliate scheme and are getting this message, go to My Book Table and tick the Hide box in settings. Hope this helps fellow authors.

  • Matt Owens Rees

    Hi Simon. I’ve got the social media buttons on the sidebar working okay but using social media feather and following the tutorial they don’t appear on the pages. This is what I have ticked in settings (most as per the default, I have only ticked those shown in the tutorial): shortcuts in widgets, display sharing buttons, show buttons position after post, share posts types – post, display follow buttons, follow buttons after post, follow post type-post, separator markup , regular icon skin, 32*32, single, spacing 5, buttons in container – none, button type – basic, facebook service show, twitter service show. I’ve also tried deleting and re installing. Hope you can help. Site is looking good. Thanks. http://www.matt-owens-rees.com

    • SimonRSP

      I’m not sure. Sounds like it could be an issue with Social Media Feather, try reaching out to their support.

      • Matthew Earl

        I had the same problem while setting up my own site this evening. It seems that “Allow trackbacks and pingbacks on this page” under Pages>”page”>Discussion, allowed the buttons to show up. I don’t know if that is what actually fixed it, but it seemed to for me.
        Thanks for the guide! Building my platform before publishing my first book, only a short thing of 100 haikus, but it’s fun nonetheless.

        • SimonRSP

          Sure thing Matthew, glad to hear that you got the problem sorted 🙂

  • Deborah Rogers

    I can’t wait to try this out. I currently only have a wordpress blog and keep meaning to create a website. Thanks so much for pulling this all together, Simon. It’s great stuff for technophobes like me.

    • SimonRSP

      Thanks Deborah! It should be easy to follow for anyone, but if you run into any hiccups, just let me know here, I’m happy to help when I can 🙂

  • Deborah A Rogers

    Do you know if there’s a way or a plugin to remove the date stamps on wordpress?

  • J. R. Bournville

    I’m finding this guide really helpful, I’ve only gone as far as step 6 so far but I think it’s great. Thank you for putting it out there! One thing that’s getting on my nerves is the inanely grinning Alligator favicon. I can’t find an easy way to get rid of it. Any ideas?

  • Deborah A Rogers

    Hi Simon, I have been doing your course today and I’m up to tut 3. I have followed everything by the book but now I’m 7 mins into part three and when I type in my new webname deborahrogersauthor.com it does not bring up wordpress but instead takes me to the “Host gator getting started page” when I should be seeing the new wordpress website – what on earth is happening?

    • SimonRSP

      Hi Deborah, just checking out your site now, and everything seems to be working fine. Did you manage to fix the problem?

      • Deborah Rogers

        thanks so much for replying, Simon. Yes I did. But I have accidentally deleted my home
        page in the mean time (I know, I’m an idiot), do you know how I can get it back? It’s
        not in the trash.

        • SimonRSP

          Yikes. That kinda depends, if it is really missing from the WordPress install altogether, you can contact Hostgator support and they might have a backup of your site from before the deletion, but that would roll everything back. Honestly, it could well be easier to start it again 🙁

  • Deborah A Rogers

    Simon, I’ve done it! I just want to say how much I appreciate your help because now I have my very own website – http://www.deborahrogersauthor.com Yes, there were a few little drama’s here and there, but I worked my way through your videos and did it. Two useful plugins I discovered along the way are:
    1. Easy Google fonts – this is useful if you don’t want to go down the design your own header route. I simply uploaded an image then played around with the fonts using this plugin
    2. WP Date and Meta remover – this automatically removes any date stamp to make the website look more like a website and less like a blog.

    My last piece of advice is NEVER delete your home page.
    Cheers Simon!

    • SimonRSP

      Congrats Deborah – I’m so glad to hear you go past the accidental homepage deletion! Solid advice there.

      And thanks for the link to “WP Date and Meta remover” I was actually just looking for something that did that the other day, but couldn’t find anything. Great stuff!

  • Tam May

    I also posted a thank you on the YouTube site, but I wanted to thank you here as well. I’m looking to build my author website and I found a lot of tutorials on YouTube about building a website but most focus on businesses that aren’t specific to authors. The plugins and widgets you recommend specifically for authors are fabulous and I took notes on all of it :-). Thank you so much for taking the time to make this for those of us who are pretty clueless about building websites, much less author websites. I started out with “Build my own author website? What the heck am I thinking???” and have now graduated to “Oh, OK, that’s not so bad – I think I can do this :-)”. Tam

    • SimonRSP

      Thanks Tam, it’s totally possible, and if you need any help at any point, just post back here and I’m happy to help out 🙂

  • Manon Lavoie

    Hi Simon! I have just completed Session 6 and you mentioned that your Facebook like button works okay. Now, I am using a different version than what you used in the tutorial and in my version, there is no Facebook Like button. Is that a plugin? If so, which one?
    Also, I noticed that all your pages have a ‘Leave Comment’ at the bottom. I do not have that either. How can I add that to my pages?

    Thanks for the tutorials. They are absolutely marvelous and that’s exactly what I needed! Now, I see myself spending my money on something else than web design and all that because of you! Thank you!!

  • Jan

    Hi Simon
    Thanks for this great advice, so freely given.
    I came her for some clear instructions on the hosting and setting up end of the process, after seeing some other tutorials that were scarily complicated. I did notice that the others got into security issues, which might be a topic if ever you wanted to make #12.
    These 11+ are wonderful and really helpful to authors, and others.
    Thx
    Jan

    • SimonRSP

      Hi Jan, great suggestion, but I would keep things simply, by using the free plugin for WordPress called “Word Fence” – it’s an excellent security plugin.

      • Jan

        Good to know, Simon. I’ll try it.

  • Pip

    Hi Simon, So grateful for the free course. Brilliant! Just one query – when you put the website address into the browser it comes up as pjskinner/wordpress_0 How do I get rid of the wordpress_0 bit as I dont want it to show? Is there anyway to hide this? Thank you and really appreciate the clarity of your instructions. Im not a technogeek and I was drowning in a sea of gobblegook before I found your course.

    • SimonRSP

      Hey Pip, happy to help. I’m not sure exactly what you mean though — could you post a screenshot of the problem? 🙂 Thanks.

      • Pip

        Its OK, it was something to do with moving the index and htp access files to the root directory that I still don’t understand. My domain host took pity on me and fixed it. Now have great website and soon will be doing free book and advertising like mad. Thanks again

  • Pip

    Hi Simon, I want to install the Kingsumo plugin on my WordPress website but I have searched the Add New on WordPress plugins and it is not there. I went to the Kingsumo site but it doesnt have details about how you plugin to wordpress there only how to buy the plugin. If I buy the plugin from kingsumo does it automatically plugin to WordPress somehow or am I missing something? Thanks

    • SimonRSP

      Hi Pip, are you sure you are wanting to install KingSumo? That’s the plugin that you can use to run giveaways and competitions (I’ve not used this myself, but have heard good things). Or perhaps you are thinking about AppSumo Listbuilder, which is the app that you can use to build your mailing list?

  • Mike Markel

    Thank you for the very clear tutorials, Simon. I have one question. I successfully changed the background color of my site. Now, when I go to Appearance/Background, the option to change the color appears to be missing. (I can still upload and modify background images, but not colors.) Am I doing something wrong?

    • SimonRSP

      Hey Mike – can you grab a screenshot for me of where you are not seeing the color change option? That’ll help me figure things out 🙂

  • Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!
    This tutorial was EXACTLY what I didn’t know I was searching for while trying to set up my author web page (www.BrandtTrebor.com).

    • SimonRSP

      Thanks Rob :). Site looks great!

  • Matthew Earl

    Hey Simon, question for you.
    I have the website done, but the sidebar fade is stumping me. I followed someone else’s tutorial, now the sidebar books are faded on “home” and “newsletter” yet are now solid on the other pages. I can’t seem to find the tutorial you mention in video 9 either. Thanks!

    • Matthew Earl

      Fixed now… Don’t know why. I was fixed after ‘updating’ a page with new information, so maybe that was it. Ah well. Anyways, thanks again for the tutorial! Polishing up the website to actually have most of the correct info instead of just filler from the tutorial. Mostly just have to write my “About the Author” page! (And finish my book and actually get it up on the internet! 🙂
      http://mjebooks.com

      • SimonRSP

        Great stuff Matthew, the site looks great. Glad that you solved the sidebar problem, the video showing how is actually here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zH609q-NxpM. Just in case it’s still of any use 🙂

  • Amy Denim

    Just recommended this to the How to Write a Business Plan class I’m teaching. So many of my newbie students are worried about how they can get a good looking website without spending a truckload of money. This is so useful. Thanks!

    • SimonRSP

      Thanks for recommending the course Amy 🙂

  • Amy Cooke

    Hi Simon, Thanks for the great videos! I see the last comment was a year ago so I guess things have changed. The plugin “MyBookTable” that you recommended now says it will put it’s own affiliate code in for Amazon and Barnes & Noble books unless you pay them a fee to upgrade! (Then to pay the fee you get an Error 404 page although in one review someone said it costs $50!!). Do you know of a current plugin that’s better?

    • SimonRSP

      Yep – things changed with MyBookTable a while back, but I think they were always swapping in their affiliate links (hence why it was free). Strange that you get a 404, I didn’t come across this myself, but worth reaching out to their support if you do want to purchase it. I don’t know of a decent alternative, other than creating the pages yourself, but if someone does, please chime in and I can make it the new recommended plugin to use 🙂

      • Amy Cooke

        Thanks for your reply! I did find another plugin called “Totally Booked” but the page and pop-up it created were bulky and ugly (in my opinion), so after a lot of wasted time, I decided it was better just to paste a picture of my book into the Books page, hyperlink it to the sales page, and write a description under it myself. I’d be interested too if anyone finds another free plugin that does a good job though. I was surprised to only find those two. Oh, I also tried to create an Amazon widget instead, and Amazon discontinued widgets as of yesterday, lol (that’s the kind of luck I have)!

        • Amy Cooke

          Update: I found a free plugin that seems to be GREAT although I’m only halfway through the documentation (Yes, it came with a well-written User Manual!)! It’s called Mooberry Dreams Book Manager. I tried it at first without reading any of the instructions too and it made a beautiful-looking page! I can’t wait to see how it looks once I actually know what I’m doing ha ha!

          • SimonRSP

            Excellent Amy, please keep me posted, and let me know how it works out 🙂

  • Louise S Willis

    Help! I’ve been following along with your video tutorial, which is awesome, but I am having difficulties. I’m up to setting up the contact page, which worked fine, EXCEPT, no matter what I do, it will not submit to my email address. It says it has submitted, but never shows up in my email. The email is working fine as I and others have sent emails to it from other sources. Just won’t show up from the contact form. Any suggestions?? Thanks

    • SimonRSP

      Hi Louise. Okay, unfortunately this can sometimes happen, it usually has something to do with the host company of the website (at least according to my digging on the WordPress support forums). It should work with the Hostgator hosting that I recommend in the tutorial, but if it’s not there are a few other options when it comes to contact forms. When searching for a contact plugin, try “Ninja Forms” or “Fast Secure Contact Form” – these are both popular alternatives. Once installed, please test them to make sure they work :).

      • Louise S Willis

        Hi Simon, Thanks for the quick reply. I actually got together with a friend of mine who did this tutorial and recommended it to me and he helped me get it to work. So it must have been something I was doing wrong! Sorry for bothering you. I am so enjoying this course. I have never, ever done anything like this before and I am learning so much. However, I do hope you never take this tutorial down. If you do, I will be absolutely lost. I have only #11 to go and am having a blast (except for a few hair-pulling frustrating episodes ;( Thanks again! Louise
        If you would like to check out my web page, I’d be honored: lsgoulet.com

        • SimonRSP

          Excellent, glad to hear that it worked out :). No bother, that’s what the comments section is for :). I checked out your website, and it looks good!

          • Louise S Willis

            Thanks so much for everything!

  • Peecho

    Did you know you can sell your books/ magazines straight from your own (WordPress website) with the Peecho WordPress plugin without any cost? http://wpthemeroundups.com/peecho-wordpress-plugin/

  • Luca Thrace

    Easy and informative, Simon. Thank you for making this tutorial. Some of the instructions and images differ slightly from the latest version of WordPress, but not so much that they’re difficult to follow. I had some confusion with the Contact Form and my computer-guru husband was able to guide me back on track.

    The only problem I have is with the sidebar — I can only get it to work on my home page. Do you have any tips for how to correct this? I’d love to have the email sign-up option on every page of my website at LucaThrace.com!

    I’ve shared your link with a budding author friend as well as on my Facebook author page. I’ll happily recommend RSP to anyone who wants to build their first website!

    • SimonRSP

      Hi Luca, thanks, that is good to hear. When you are creating (or editing an existing) page, there should be some options on the right hand side that will allow you to choose what sort of page you have. Choose the option that says “with sidebar”. Let me know whether or not that solves the problem.

      • Luca Thrace

        So simple! Thanks, Simon. That solved it.

  • This is the first wordpress tutorial I have watched that has made sense to me. I’m thankful for the instruction and I feel confident that I can do this. Thank you Simon!

  • Louise Goulet Willis

    I have been using this website for a while now and I really am having fun. One thing I cannot figure out is what is the RSS feed to that front page blog, so I can put it on my amazon author page. Would you be able to help me with this? Thanks in advance.

  • Tracy Krauss

    This video course ROCKED. (Pun intended) Although I knew much of the content already, following you step by step showed me some thigns I had missed or had been struggling with. Good show!

  • Marie-Claire Allington

    Thank you Simon – 18 months since I first used this to set up the web sites I have been tweaking them with it adding badges and links and having a tidy up from where I left off so this has been just as useful again 🙂 Thank You Marie-Claire