Getting Started with Ignite

Not sure where to start? Follow this guide to discover Ignite's features and how to use each of them on your site.

If you need help installing Ignite, please follow this tutorial first: How to Install & Activate Ignite.

Table of Contents

Introduction

This guide will teach you how to customize your site with Ignite. Starting from the top, you’ll work your way down your site, customizing and tweaking as you go. The tutorials are newbie-friendly, so every step is explained in detail.

It's recommended that you follow along with your site as you read.

By default, the 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 menu. 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

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 Ignite, 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:

  1. Icons that link to your profile
  2. Icons/buttons that share your content

Most themes, including Ignite, 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, Ignite 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

Add Widgets to the Sidebar

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. That's exactly what Ignite's sidebar is - a widgetized area. You can add any widgets you want to the sidebar.

Follow this tutorial to learn how to add widgets to the primary sidebar in Ignite:

Tutorial: How to Customize Your Sidebar

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.

Ignite 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

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 Ignite, each Post on the Blog will include a 30 word excerpt using the first 30 words in the Post.

Ignite 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

Change Your Layout

By default, Ignite places your main content on the left, and your sidebar on the right. You can easily switch their positions in the Customizer. Follow this tutorial to learn how:

Tutorial: How to Change Layouts

Note: on mobile devices, Ignite uses a single-column layout, so the sidebar will always be included after the main content.

Change Your Background Color

Ignite uses a light gray color to distinguish the background from the main content and sidebar. You can change the background to whatever color you'd like.

If you want to change the background color, follow this tutorial:

Tutorial: How to Change Your Background Color

Change Your Font

Ignite uses the Lusitana font by default, and also gives you four other font choices.

Roboto and Lato are both sans-serif fonts which will give your site a more modern look, while Lusitana, Droid Serif, and Roboto Slab are serif fonts which have a more decorative and traditional look.

If you'd like to switch your font from Lusitana, follow this tutorial:

Tutorial: How to Change Your Font

Edit the Post Meta Display

Your Posts display some information besides the title, image, and excerpt. They also include the date they were published, the author who published them, the categories, and the tags.

This information is called the Post Meta because it tells you more about the Post.

With Ignite, you control what Post Meta to show, and what to hide. For instance, you can hide the author name and tags, but leave the date and categories displayed.

If you want to customize which Post Meta information shows, check out this tutorial:

Tutorial: Edit the Post Meta Display

Edit the Post Author Box

When viewing a post, you'll see a box after the content with some info about the post author. By default, it might look kind of empty, but here's what it can look like when completely filled out:

If you want to learn how to customize, or simply remove the author box, follow this tutorial:

Tutorial: How to Customize the Post Author Info

Change the Comment Display

Comments are shown on Posts, Pages, and Attachments (image pages) after the content.

The trouble is, the comment section is really tough to hide with WordPress' default options. This is why a feature was added to Ignite to hide comments by page type.

With Ignite's comment control feature, you can hide comments on all Posts, Pages, and/or Attachments. If you'd like to hide comments on one of those page types, follow this tutorial:

Tutorial: Change the Comment Display

The footer text is the text found way at the bottom of the site. By default, it reads, "Free WordPress Blog Theme by Compete Themes".

While we appreciate the link to our site, you are free to replace the footer text with whatever you'd like. Follow this tutorial to change the footer text:

Tutorial: How to Change the Footer Text

The breadcrumb trail is the list of links below the header and above the main content area.

The breadcrumbs exist to help your visitors find their way back to the homepage. If you would prefer to remove the breadcrumbs, this can be easily done with a feature in the Customizer.

Tutorial: How to Hide the Breadcrumbs

Conclusion

You're finished customizing Ignite!

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. Otherwise, there's probably a free plugin available for it on wordpress.org .

Check out our WordPress Resources page to find awesome plugins and tools we recommend, and if you want to try using CSS to customize Ignite, we've got some pre-written snippets for you to get started with in the Ignite CSS Snippets Collection.

Upgrade Today: Want even more features and flexibility for your site? Upgrade instantly with Ignite Plus.

Additional Resources

  • Ignite WordPress Theme

    Download a copy of the latest version of Ignite.

  • Support forum

    Ask questions and find existing solutions in the support forum.

  • Changelog

    Review recent and past updates to Ignite.

  • Ignite on Github

    Review Ignite's commit history and project files on Github.

  • WordPress Resources

    Check our recommended resources to find great plugins and solutions for your site.

  • Codeable.io

    We can help you with minor changes on your site, but if you need a highly customized version of Ignite, 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.