Hosting my WordPress Site Using the Divi Theme
As the name suggests, the Divi theme is designed for creating websites with WordPress. But, beyond the basics, the theme provides several extras that can boost your website’s performance and make it more user-friendly.
Let’s take a quick tour of these features, shall we?
Fully Responsive Design
The Divi theme is completely adjustable. So if you have a screen that is not at all close to the traditional 960 pixels wide, you can rest assured that the theme will look great and adjust automatically.
To demonstrate, I’ll use a 15″ laptop screen and compare the results with a traditional desktop monitor. For the traditional desktop user, the experience will be pretty much the same as usual.
What you’ll see here is a very basic WordPress installation with the Divi theme. It has a two column homepage with the left column being the cover image and the right column being filled with content.
The result is a fully functional WordPress website that looks great on every device.
Optimized For speed
Another great thing about Divi is that it was built with speed in mind. When you install the WordPress platform, you’ll notice that loading pages is lightning fast thanks to the optimizations performed by the theme’s developers. It almost feels like using a different content management system. (Yes, I know, we should be praising WordPress and not the theme.)
For example, the homepage of the website displays a whopping 2 articles in a row. Normally, a two column format with featured images in the left column and the rest of the content in the right column would mean that a visitor has to wait at least half a second to view the next article.
With the Divi theme, the load time for an article is less than half of what it would be using a regular WordPress installation. So if you’re interested in getting more traffic, you can speed up your blog by at least 30% just by switching to the Divi theme.
Clean And minimal
As you’ve probably guessed, the theme’s developers are pretty good at using minimalism in their designs. For example, the header and the footer of the site are basically empty. This not only saves a ton of space, but it also makes the page much more streamlined. (Plus, you can always add more content later on with ease.)
The result is that your visitor’s experience is much more streamlined. They won’t have to spend as much time figuring out where they are on your site and what’s going on. (Not to mention how much time they’ll save not having to hunt for a phone number or email address to contact you.)
Another great thing about minimalism is that it makes the site design look more unified. If you compare the header and footer on my site with those of a traditional WordPress installation, you’ll see that they use the same colors, fonts, and images. (Except for the small division stripe at the top of the footer.) So instead of having two separate design projects, you now have one that is much more cohesive.
Last but not least, let’s discuss the SEO (search engine optimization) features of the Divi theme. (Yes, SEO is a big deal these days and something that every website needs to consider.)
The SEO ready nature of the Divi theme is mostly due to its flexible layout. Normally, I’d advise you to avoid using a flexible width layout for a website because search engines don’t always love them. But, in this case, it would be perfect.
Now when it comes to SEO and WordPress, you normally need to keep a number of things in mind. (1) Ensure that your content is easy to understand for both humans and search engines. (2) Keywords should be placed in a variety of ways throughout your content, (3) Your site should be mobile-friendly, and of course, (4) It should perform well regardless of whether you’re using a desktop or a mobile device.
With the Divi theme, you don’t need to worry about any of this because everything is taken care of. To make sure that your content is easily discoverable by search engines, the theme provides several useful tools. (1) It’s got a handy SEO dashboard where you can see all the essential statistics, (2) It’s got a keyword research tool that will help you discover keywords that are relevant to your content, and (3) Finally, the theme supports various SEO plugins that can make your content even more discoverable.
To give you an example, I’ll use one of the SEO plugins provided by the theme, entitled Short-Links. (You can get this plugin from the dashboard.)
First, you’ll need to enter your website’s URL into the box at the top of the interface. (This is the address that humans will see when they visit your site.)
Then, click on the button to see the details of the plugin.
You can see here that the plugin is currently set to optimize for the keywords “fast company that handles bitcoin payments,”
Which is a pretty good fit for my site! If this is the kind of content that you write about, then this plugin will do exactly what you’re looking for.
So, now you know everything you need to know about hosting your WordPress site using the Divi theme. (Well, almost everything. I’m still missing out on why you’d want to do this.)
But, as I mentioned before, for the sake of this tutorial, we’re going to stay with the basics and create a very basic WordPress installation using the Divi theme.
Setting up the WordPress blog
As I mentioned earlier, the Divi theme was primarily designed for use with the WordPress content management system. So let’s dive into the specifics of how to set it up.
First of all, you’ll need to create a new site. For the sake of this tutorial, let’s call it blog. (
- Why not? It’s simple, and it has a nice ring to it. I know, it’s a little lame, but bear with me.
- While you’re at it, you might as well use a custom domain. (Yes, I know, you can use subdomains, but let’s keep things simple for this example.)
- Click on the blue Create New button at the top of the screen to get started.
Give the site a memorable name and select a custom URL from the dropdown menu. (
- Again, I know. But for the sake of this tutorial, we’ll stay with these boring defaults.
- Unless you have a really good reason not to, I’d avoid putting too many spaces or special characters in the name. (Yes, I know, it’s not that difficult to figure out what domain you want to use. But it’s simpler just to use the defaults, and you can always add another word to the end of the domain name later on if you want to use a different one.
Now that we have a site created, let’s move onto the next step, which is to login to our blogging dashboard. (
- By default, WordPress installs have a dashboard user account called ‘admin’ with the password ‘admin’ (without the quotes). So, if you use those credentials to log in, you’ll be able to access the dashboard.
- If you click on the gear icon located at the top right corner of the screen, you’ll see a dropdown menu. From there, you can select either Blogger or WordPress to log in to your dashboard.
- If you choose Blogger, you’ll be taken to the Blogger website. (You can click on the link in the top menu to log in.)
- If you choose WordPress, you’ll be taken to your WordPress dashboard, where you can enter your new blog’s general information. (You’ll also see the option to install the Divi theme here.)