WordPress multisite is an Achilles’ heel for many WordPress developers, and more so for newbies. Most developers are apprehensive about working with WordPress multisite, not because it’s complex, but because they assume it is complex.
WordPress multisite is not something you need to shy away from, because once you embrace it, you can unlock the true power of WordPress.
So, what is WordPress Multisite?
All of us are aware of the potential of a WordPress single site- its application, ease of setup and customization. A single site can serve multiple purposes. For example, you could set up an e-store, an e-learning website, a company website (like this one), and more.
Let’s consider you own a restaurant. You want a website built for your restaurant. Without a doubt, you can use WordPress to build the website. WordPress allows you to control your website using a single admin panel. You’re restaurant’s doing really well, and you want to now branch out to a different country. The food will be the same, but the currency, the language, a chosen few menu items might differ.
All that’s well. But what happens to your website?
Do you have to create a second WordPress website? What when you branch to another country? Would that mean you’ll have to create a new website every time?
What about managing the sites then? You’ll have different admin panels to manage each website. What if there was a way to manage all of your sites from a single point?
Something that will bunch all your sites together in one place, with a one-click option to switch between sites.
Look no further! WordPress multisite is what you need!
Multisite is a WordPress feature which allows you to create a network of sites using a single WordPress installation. This means, you can have multiple sites, but access all of them using a single admin panel.
Do I have to pay for multisite?
Absolutely not! It’s completely free! Go ahead, explore it just for the kicks, it won’t cost you a dime. A multiple site management system available completely FREE. Pretty cool isn’t it?!
Are there any Advantages of WordPress Multisite?
You’re kidding me right?! I’m giving you a single point to manage several sites and you want more advantages?! 😀
Here are a few more…
- WordPress provides you a ‘Network Activate’ feature. With this feature, you can enable plugins and themes across all sites on your network. This enables the plugin with the same settings across all of your sites. Of course you have the option to activate them individually on each site as well.
- Along with your sites, you can manage users of your different sites from a single point.
- You only need a single server for all your sites. Rather than having several dedicated servers, you can have one dedicated server handling all of your sites. This makes it easier to handle and is a cheaper option as well.
- And of course even though all sites are on a single network, you can customize each site the way you want, to make them completely different from the other.
Now the pivotal question arises….
How do I set up a Multisite environment?
Agreed. The term multisite sounds a bit technical. But the actual process of setting up a multisite environment is a cakewalk, even for those of you who do not have much technical knowledge. The only thing you need to do is follow the below simple steps and *Bam* you have your own multisite.
#1 Step One: Configure WordPress for Multisite
You have to start by adding the below code to your wp-config file. You need to connect to your site using an FTP program, and you should find wp-config.php in your root folder.
/* Multisite */ define( 'WP_ALLOW_MULTISITE', true );
You can add the above code at the end of the file or anywhere you prefer. Remember to save the changes made.
#2 Step Two: Create a Network
The previous step enables the ‘Network Setup’ option in WordPress. When you access your admin panel, you should see the option ‘Network Setup’ in your Tools menu. Click on that option to go to the ‘Create a Network of WordPress Sites’ screen.
Fill in the details asked on that page.
#2 Step Three: Create a Network
Once the required details are filled and saved, WordPress will give you some extra code, which you will need to add in two files:
- wp-config file
- .htaccess file (you should find this in your root folder as well)
(Don’t worry WordPress will tell you where you need to place the code and where you will find each file. Don’t panic)
Save the files and refresh your WordPress dashboard. And there you go! You now have your own WordPress multisite 🙂
Now, from your primary site you’ll be able to create sub-sites on your network. So go forth young padawan! Create your multisite network 😀