Creating a wedding website is becoming a popular way for couples to share information about their big day with guests. However, if you and your future spouse aren’t particularly tech-savvy, figuring out how to put together an entire website might feel like a daunting task.
That’s where WordPress comes in. This widely-used platform’s theme and plugin systems make it easy to quickly and easily design and customize your wedding site. When you’re finished, your guests will be able use your site to RSVP to the main event, check your gift registry, view photos, and more.
In this post, we’ll discuss some of the benefits of setting up a website for your wedding. Then we’ll share a step-by-step guide on how to create one that’s useable for both WordPress beginners and seasoned users. Let’s get started!
The Rise of Wedding Websites (And Why They’re So Useful)
Technology plays a key role in modern wedding planning. With Covid-19 forcing couples to reschedule their wedding date, this is true now more than ever. According to the 2021 WeddingWire Newlywed Report, 60% communicated the change with their guests via a wedding website and 45% streamed their wedding ceremony online through a dedicated website.
“Incorporating this technology into their wedding also gave couples a unique opportunity to invite more than just those guests who were physically invited to the wedding to watch their nuptials (41%).”
While the prevalence of the web certainly influences the growth of wedding websites, there are several other benefits to using a wedding site that makes having one desirable. For starters, a website keeps all your information in one easy-to-access place.
The traditional method of sending out separate save the dates, invitations, and RSVPs creates a lot of opportunities for important information to get lost. You, your guests, or the postal service could easily lose any of these pieces of mail, resulting in issues with the guest list.
A wedding website can contain all this information and more, such as hotel and travel information and your gift registry. Plus, you’ll cut back on your paper usage, and might even be able to save a little money on printing and delivering all that mail (depending on how much you spend on your site, and how many guests you have).
Finally, a wedding site makes it easy to share personal stories and photos with friends and family. You may have guests who have only met one half of the couple, and creating an About page that shares the story of how you met and got engaged can help them get to know the person who’s marrying their friend or family member.
Your website is also the perfect place for sharing engagement and wedding photos. Instead of trying to email photos to all your guests or using a photo-sharing site, you can simply upload all your photos to a gallery on your own site, where your guests can easily find and view them.
How to Use WordPress to Create Your Wedding Website (In 4 Steps)
There’s a lot you can accomplish with a wedding website, and choosing WordPress to create yours gives you complete control over its content. By following the steps below, you’ll be able to build a site that can accomplish just about any wedding-related tasks you need it to.
Step 1: Acquire a Hosting Provider and Domain Name
The first step to creating your WordPress site is also probably the most difficult. You’ll need to find a hosting provider to store your website on a server, and a domain registrar to create an address for your site. Since you’re only using this site for one event, you’ll likely want to keep costs for these necessities low.
DreamHost and Bluehost include free domains with their WordPress hosting plans. However, you can also acquire a domain name at a registrar such as NameCheap for less than $10 per year. If you want to keep your website live after the wedding is over, these will be ongoing costs.
The nice thing about choosing a hosting provider that offers specific WordPress hosting plans is that they usually make installing WordPress very easy. Most either install WordPress for you, or provide a one-click install option.
In the event you didn’t choose a WordPress hosting plan, you’ll need to complete the famous WordPress five-minute install. This can get a little technical and may be difficult for first-time users without much experience (hence why we recommend a WordPress hosting plan).
Step 2: Choose a WordPress Wedding Theme
Now that your website is all set up, you’re ready for the fun part – designing and customizing your wedding website. The first thing you’ll need is a WordPress theme for weddings. Themes control the way your website looks, and sometimes even add specific features or functions to your site.
There are tons of free themes you can use for your site in the WordPress Theme Directory. Some of them have been specially built with wedding websites in mind. Choosing one of these themes will minimize the amount of work and customization you need to do to get it ready.
For example, Elegant Pink is a theme designed to put images in the spotlight with its flexible masonry layout. This makes it perfect for displaying your engagement and wedding photos for all your friends and family to see. Its default color scheme is light and feminine, but easily customized to match your wedding’s:
Though promoted as a ‘blogging’ theme, Elegant Pink lists wedding websites as one of the many types of sites you can adapt it for. A multipurpose theme such as Zakra provides similar opportunities. While you can customize it to fit a number of purposes, it’s particularly easy to use as a wedding theme:
Zakra comes with a wedding website demo you can apply to add several pre-built wedding-related pages to your website. This will save you the trouble of creating them yourself later, which is quite handy. Once you’ve chosen a theme, you’ll need to install it on your website to start using it.
Step 3: Create Pages to Share Your Story and Your Day
Like most websites, WordPress sites are organized into pages. In order to make the most of your wedding website, there are a few key pages you should consider adding. These will help you and your guests immensely as your big day approaches.
Sometimes, your guests may not be familiar with either you or your future spouse. A short page sharing the story of how you met, as well as information about each of you as individuals, can help these guests get to know both halves of the couple:
It will also be helpful to share the addresses for the ceremony and reception venues, the event times, and information on where out-of-town guests should stay. This will be a valuable resource for guests the day of the wedding, and prevent them from bothering you for the details:
An RSVP page is pretty much an essential. This is the most convenient way to keep track of who’s coming to your wedding and any dietary restrictions they have. Plus, you can use it to make sure you don’t forget anyone when writing Thank You notes to all your guests later:
A gift registry page will centralize your wish list. Instead of having to jump from website to website to see all the different stores where you’ve registered, your guests can find everything on your site:
Finally, one of the best pages on your site will be the photo gallery. You can add engagement photos here before the wedding, then upload your wedding photos as well. You won’t have to be bombarded with people asking to see pictures because they’ll all be easily accessible:
With these key pages in place, you and your guests should have everything you need to make sure the wedding goes off without a hitch.
Step 4: Use Plugins to Add Key Wedding-Related Features
Finally, you can use WordPress plugins to easily add more complex features to your site. Some of the most useful plugins for wedding websites will help you with the creation of the pages mentioned in step four.
To make finding your venue as simple as possible, you might consider adding an interactive Google Map to your Locations and Travel Information page. With the WP Google Maps plugin, you can mark specific locations on the map for easy access:
A customizable RSVP form will enable you to figure out who’s coming to the wedding, as well information such as whether they’ll attend both the ceremony and the reception, or which meal option they’d prefer. RSVP and Event Management Plugin was created with weddings in mind, so it’s up for the task:
With Simple Wishlists, you can create your gift registry and add it anywhere on your website. You can include product links to help your guests easily find and purchase the items on your list:
Finally, don’t forget the photo gallery. While you can add images to WordPress and display them on your site without a plugin, Modula will help you display your photos in fancy custom gallery displays WordPress can’t make on its own:
All the plugins listed above are free. However, if you want to throw a little money at your site, you can purchase Spotlight PRO that costs $49/year. Spotlight is an Instagram feed plugin that displays your Instagram photos and videos on your WordPress website.
Instagram wedding hashtags have become somewhat of a trend nowadays. You can ask your guests to take images throughout your wedding and add your dedicated hashtag to their Instagram posts.
With Spotlight PRO, you can then display these images on your wedding website for everyone to enjoy!
With all your features in place, your wedding website will be ready for your guests!
Websites are quickly becoming a normal part of the wedding planning process. While creating a whole site for one event may seem challenging and time-consuming, with WordPress you can make a custom site without adding to the stress of planning your big day.
Here’s our step-by-step guide for creating your own wedding website with WordPress:
- Acquire a hosting provider and domain name and install WordPress.
- Choose a WordPress wedding theme.
- Create pages to share your story and your day.
- Use plugins to add key wedding-related features.
Do you have any questions about wedding websites or how to make one with WordPress? Let us know in the comments section below!