Getting Started with Challenger
Ready to get started?
Follow along with this guide to get Challenger installed and fully customized on your site. Every step is explained in detail, so you'll have no trouble even if you're new to WordPress.
Table of Contents
If you don't have Challenger installed on your site already, this is the first step before you can begin customizing.
Follow this tutorial to learn how to install & activate Challenger on your site:
Tutorial: Install & Activate Challenger
Import the demo site data
Are you launching a brand new site?
Importing the content from the Challenger demo site is a great way to jumpstart your customizations. It can be much easier to customize and tweak the design of the site after you've got some content to work with.
Follow this tutorial to access the demo data download and learn how to import it into your site:
Tutorial: Import the Demo Site Data
Customize Your Menu
By default, the primary menu will contain all of the published Pages on your site, listed in alphabetical order.
As you publish new Pages, they will simply be added to the primary menu. However, you can create a custom menu to change this.
With a custom menu, you get full control over which Pages are included, and in what order. In fact, you can even add links to Categories, Posts, or anything else you'd like.
The tutorial below will show you how to:
- create a custom menu
- reorder menu items
- add submenus
- and more...
Tutorial: How to Customize Your Menu
Add Your Logo
When you installed WordPress, you were asked to provide a "site title". That same site title is displayed at the top of your site, in the header.
With Challenger, you can replace the site title with your logo instead. If you don't have a logo, you can skip to the next section. Otherwise, follow this tutorial to learn how to upload, position, and resize your logo:
Tutorial: How to Add Your Logo
Note: You can edit your site title any time from the General Settings menu, or in the "Site Identity" section in the Customizer
Add Your Social Icons
There are two types of social icons:
- Icons that link to your profile
- Icons/buttons that share your content
Most themes, including Challenger, have a way to add social icons that link to your social profiles. This provides a stylish way to link to your profiles, so your visitors can find and follow you on your social networks. These icons are usually included in the header or in a widget.
Social sharing icons/buttons are added to make it easier to share your content. They are typically added with plugins, like Simple Share Buttons Adder . These icons are usually included before and/or after Post content.
As mentioned, Challenger provides a simple way to add icons in the header linking to your social profiles. Follow this tutorial to add yours:
Tutorial: How to Add Your Social Icons
Customize the Header
Challenger includes a call-to-action for lead generation in the header.
You can customize every aspect including the:
- Title text
- Button text
- Button URL
- Background image
Tutorial: How to Customize the Header
Choose Posts Per Page
When customizing the blog, you may want to change how many posts are displayed per page on your blog. This option is set to 10 by default, but can be increased or decreased from the settings menu.
Follow this tutorial to learn how to change the post count per page on the blog:
Add Featured Images
In WordPress, every Post and Page can have a Featured Image. It's simply a way of assigning one image as the primary image for the Post/Page.
Challenger places Featured Images neatly above the Post titles on the Blog and Post pages.
If you'd like to add Featured Images to your Posts, follow this tutorial:
Tutorial: How to Add Featured Images
Change Featured Image Size
The Featured Images all have a 2.5:1 aspect ratio by default.
You can turn this off so all Featured Images uses their natural aspect ratio, or change the ratio all the images use.
Tutorial: How to Change the Featured Image Size
Customize Your Post Excerpts
When you first install WordPress, all of your Posts will show on the homepage. The page with your Posts can also be referred to as the Blog or Posts Page.
With Challenger, each Post on the Blog will include a 35 word excerpt using the first 35 words in the Post.
Challenger gives you a lot of control over what text you want shown in the excerpts. To learn how to fully customize your Post excerpts, check out this tutorial:
Tutorial: How to Customize Post Excerpts
Hide Unwanted Elements
Challenger has a lot of content and design elements included by default, but you can hide many of them via the Customizer. For instance, you can hide the post author name and dates, the category and tag links after posts, and more.
Tutorial: How to Show/Hide Elements
Customize the Author Box
Challenger displays a box after each post highlighting the author who wrote it:
If your're already using Gravatar, your avatar will display automatically. Otherwise, follow the tutorial below to upload a custom avatar, change your name, customize the bio, and add social icons.
Tutorial: How to Customize the Post Author Box
Widgets can be used to add any type of content you want to your site. WordPress includes a handful of default widgets, such as categories, most recent posts, and tags. However, there are thousands of other widgets available.
You can add any type of content imaginable with widgets, like Youtube videos, weather forecasts, product reviews, tweets, and more.
Note: widgets are added to your site as "plugins". You can add new widgets through the Plugins menu in your dashboard.
In order to add a widget to your site, it has to be placed into a "widgetized" area. Challenger has seven of these widget areas:
- Before Post Content
- Before Page Content
- After Post Content
- After Page Content
You're finished customizing Challenger!
If there's anything else you want to change about your site that wasn't covered, check for an article about it in the sidebar to the left.
Visit our WordPress Resources page to find awesome plugins and tools we recommend, and if you want to try using CSS to customize Challenger, we've got some pre-written snippets for you to get started with in the Challenger CSS Snippets Collection.
- Challenger WordPress Theme
Download a copy of the latest version of Challenger.
- Support forum
Ask questions and find existing solutions in the support forum.
Review recent and past updates to Challenger.
- Challenger on Github
Review Challenger's commit history and project files on Github.
- WordPress Resources
Check our recommended resources to find great plugins and solutions for your site.
We can help you with minor changes on your site, but if you need a highly customized version of Challenger, we recommend finding help through Codeable.
- WordPress Tutorials
We've published nearly 100 tutorials for using WordPress. Head over to the blog and search for any WP-related topic you need help with.
- Create Your Site
If you've never made a WordPress site before, follow along with our step-by-step guide for creating, customizing, and launching your first website.