Here is a curated list of the best resources for learning WordPress and taking your WordPress website to the next level. We only recommend products and services with which we’ve had personal experience, so we can vouch for the integrity, support, and “best of class” quality of the following WordPress tools.

WordPress Hosting Companies

You’ve got better things to do than keeping your WordPress site up to date, backed up, and secure! The hosting companies we recommend below specialize in hosting WordPress sites, and offer services you simply can’t get from regular web hosts. When you add up the benefits outlined below, managed WordPress hosting is worth every penny…

  • Automatic nightly backups for peace of mind!
  • Automatic WordPress updates, ensuring your site is always up to date!
  • 24/7 security monitoring for malware or attempts to hack your site.
  • Free repairs if your site is ever hacked!
  • Servers that are specifically built for hosting WordPress sites… fast!
  • Stellar support from people who know WordPress inside and out, not just reading from a book of scripts.

First, here’s “Why We Recommend Managed WordPress Hosting

  • WP Engine — We trust WP Engine to host this site. Here’s why.
  • GoDaddy — The most affordable managed WordPress hosting anywhere!
  • Media Temple — Premium WordPress hosting. Use coupon code: WP10125 to save 25%!
  • SiteGround — WordPress hosting for just $3.95/month.
  • Pagely — Premium WordPress hosting for larger sites.
  • DreamPress — The fastest managed WordPress hosting!

Premium WordPress Themes

Don’t get stuck with a poorly-coded theme and no support! WP101 recommends these talented, highly-reputable WordPress theme companies…

  • ThemeForest — The largest selection of premium WordPress themes!
  • The Genesis Framework — The first and most popular theme platform for WordPress.
  • WooThemes — One of the largest selections of professional WordPress themes.
  • Elegant Themes87 beautiful, premium WordPress themes for only $69!
  • Graph Paper Press — WordPress themes for photographers, artists, and more.
  • Headway Themes — Drag and drop theme builder for WordPress.
  • SoloStream — Premium Business WordPress Themes.
  • Array — Gorgeous, responsive WordPress themes!

Build a Membership Site Just Like This One

Over the years, I’ve had the opportunity to experiment with just about every membership plugin out there! Here are the ones I recommend…

WordPress Customizations, Maintenance, and Support

Need help fixing your WordPress site, or keeping it up to date? These folks can help!

  • Codeable — Need a minor customization? Get help from WordPress experts in the U.S. and Europe, satisfaction guaranteed!
  • Maintainn — 24/7 security monitoring, backups, updates and professional support services on any host.
  • WP Curve — 24/7 WordPress support from $69 per month.
  • — Unlimited WordPress website edits for $89 per month.
  • ManageWP — Manage all of your WordPress sites from one dashboard.
  • SucuriHacked? These guys can help! Web monitoring and malware clean up service.

The Two Easiest Ways to Back Up Your WordPress Site

  • BackupBuddy — The most popular choice for backing up (or moving) a WordPress site!
  • VaultPress — Backup and security monitoring for your WordPress site from the makers of

The Best Way to Add Custom Forms to Your Site

The one missing feature in WordPress, in my opinion, is an easy way to create custom forms. Let’s face it… every website needs at least a contact form! Thankfully, the creative folks at RocketGenius have stepped up to the plate and filled this much-needed void with an amazing plugin called Gravity Forms.

To put it simply, Gravity Forms is the easiest way to build gorgeous custom forms for your site in an easy-to-use interface, directly within the WordPress interface! It’s the only form plugin you’ll ever need!

  • Gravity Forms — The most flexible, powerful custom form plugin for WordPress.

Simple e-Commerce for WordPress. Sell anything!

Best-in-class video hosting!

  • Vimeo PRO — Vimeo’s PRO service goes far above YouTube or other services by offering fast priority video encoding, full HD quality on all popular devices, and powerful privacy options that enable you to share videos only with visitors to your site. We trust Vimeo PRO to power this site!

Add a Responsive WordPress Slider To Your Site in 60 Seconds!

  • Soliloquy — The best, most lightweight, responsive WordPress slider plugin!

Events Calendar Plugin

The Best “Coming Soon” and Maintenance Mode Plugin for WordPress

  • Coming Soon Pro — Work on your site behind the scenes while you collect valuable email addresses.

Take Your WordPress Learning to the Next Level…

WordPress for Web DevelopersWordPress for Web Developers: An Introduction for Web Professionals

WordPress for Web Developers is a complete guide for web designers and developers who want to begin building and administering sites with WordPress. This book is an update of Beginning WordPress 3, freshened and clarified for web developers who want to make the most of WordPress. You’ll start by learning WordPress basics, including how to publish content, add media, and manage users.

Then you’ll dig deeper into your WordPress server administration, including domain mapping, security, and importing and migrating. The book then steps up a gear with an introduction to developing for WordPress, perfect for developers and designers with some PHP experience, who want to learn to create custom themes and plugins.

This book will teach you how to make the most of WordPress’s built-in features, how to find the right themes and plugins for your projects, and how to build your own custom features.

Written by Stephanie Leary, a WordPress developer since 2005, and frequent guest speaker at WordPress workshops all around the country, this book is perfect for first-time users, designers, and developers of online content, blogs, and content management systems.

Check Out WordPress for Web Developers →

Professional WordPress: Design and DevelopmentProfessional WordPress: Design and Development

When you’re ready to move on to the next level, Professional WordPress: Design and Development should be your next investment! Loaded with real-world examples for intermediate and advanced users, this detailed resource contains the most current and proper methods for developing and designing in WordPress.

Co-written by Brad Williams, David Damstra, and Hal Stern, this book is perfect for beginning users, designers, and developers who are ready to unlock the potential of WordPress to create their own WordPress themes and more.

Professional WordPress: Design and Development →

Digging Into WordPressDigging Into WordPress

When you’re ready to take your WordPress skills to the next level, this 400-page book is jam-packed with everything you need to get the most out of WordPress. In clear, easy-to-read language, Digging Into WordPress shows you how to tap WordPress’ potential and take your site to the next level.

Check Out Digging Into WordPress →

WordPress Template Tag Reference Guide

Perfect for WordPress theme developers or designers, this online interactive guide contains all the most popular template tags, along with examples of use for each one:

View the Guide Now →

Note: We participate in affiliate programs with many of the companies listed above because we believe in them. We receive a small commission when products are purchased through the links on this website. You can rest assured that we only recommend products that we’ve used ourselves and where we have a personal relationship with the developer(s).