Install WordPress via FTP
Edit the wp-config.php file
Create a Child Theme
Distinguish post types, pages templates, hooks, filters. You don’t have to know how to develop them, but you need to know that they exist, that they can be used and how.
Install WP locally, do some version control.
Copy and paste judiciously teased PHP snippets 😎
What I do
I deal with front-end , but I can write the PHP necessary to add a series of basic features that could be useful to my customers. I don’t call myself a front-end developer because I do so many more and less. I make sites.
Sometimes I make advanced customizations of other themes (by advanced I mean that the graphics are completely changed, part of the structure and modules necessary for the client’s activity are added. Example The magic flute , started from here , or Chapeau Events , started from here ) sometimes I create ad hoc themes .
I only use the Genesis framework : specialization has made me fast, expert and competitive.
Here are the things I know and my tips for learning my freelance job.
The technical things
Understanding how the internet works
Understanding of the structure of WordPress and its functioning
PHP (to taste)
Version control (to taste)
Continuous updating on themes of design, code, web performance, accessibility, usability (in quantity varies according to the moment)
Being a freelancer who creates sites does not mean just knowing the technical aspects of the matter: if you want to do just that, look for a nice junior dev position as an employee and start from there. Not everyone is suitable for freelancing and in my opinion in some companies, from a technical point of view, you can grow much more than with self-made continuous training.
The most important feature to have, as a freelance website creator, is the ability to understand customer problems and think about solutions . Especially if you work alone, this is more important than being on the axis of PHP. You will take care of the whole project, so you must be clear what the potential that WordPress offers to help your customers. Even choosing a theme to adapt to your client’s needs requires that you understand them thoroughly and that you know how to propose the right solution, not a “beautiful, with all those special effects” theme .
You will need to update yourself on design and development trends : do not become experts, but know what we are talking about right now. You can’t fall for it if someone talks to you about AMP. You may not know in practice how it is done, but you must know that it is something that exists. Know enough about web performance and accessibility to avoid messing around. The badasses are also made by the grown-ups, we will improve immediately.
Think about how to promote your work : with SEO, with a blog, with social networks, with contributing to open source. It doesn’t matter, find a way and make people know what kind of service you offer, be honest when you describe it.