30 Cheatsheets & Guides for WordPress Theme Development


While WordPress is known for making content management relatively simple, the depth of this CMS is surprisingly vast. There are multiple facets to discover, but you can learn about them on an as-needed basis.

For example, if your goal is to input and edit content, you probably won’t need to learn about theme development. And theme developers don’t necessarily need to know much about writing plugins.

We’ve compiled a collection of cheatsheets and reference guides to help you along your journey with WordPress. They should come in handy – regardless of how you use the software.

Introduction to WordPress

Are you looking to learn some of the basics? This is a great place to start! Here are some resources aimed at those who have little-to-no experience with WordPress.

What Exactly is WordPress? (Speckyboy) View
A Beginner’s Guide To Creating A WordPress Website (Smashing Magazine) View
How to Start a WordPress Blog (Step by Step) (WPBeginner) View
Intro to WordPress (WP101) View
WordPress For Dummies Cheat Sheet (Dummies) View

WordPress Theme Development

Theme development with WordPress is quite flexible. You are able to create a style all your own while taking advantage of powerful built-in functionality.

The WordPress Mega Cheat Sheet (Make a Website Hub) View
WordPress Developer Super Cheat Sheet (WPMU DEV) View
WordPress Functions Cheat sheet: The Quick & Handy Guide for Developers (TemplateToaster) View
Supercharge WordPress Theme Development (Speckyboy) View

WordPress Plugin Development

Whether you want to add functionality to your own site or share it with the world, building a WordPress plugin is a great way to get it done.

Beginner’s Guide To WordPress Plugin Development (Hongkiat) View
How to Build a WordPress Plugin (Scotch) View
How To Create A WordPress Plugin (Elegant Themes) View
Plugin API (WordPress Codex) View
WordPress Plugin Boilerplate Generator (wppb.me) View
WordPress Plugin Development for Beginners (SitePoint) View
WordPress Plugin Development – Best Practices (WooNinjas) View
Writing a Plugin (WordPress Codex) View

Advanced WordPress

Below are guides to topics that go beyond traditional themes and plugins.


How to Use the WordPress REST API (WPMU DEV) View
Introducing the WP REST API (Envato Tuts+) View
REST API Handbook (WordPress Developer Resources) View
WordPress Rest API Basics (Kinsta) View
WordPress REST API: The Next Generation CMS Feature (Toptal) View


Hardening WordPress (WordPress Codex) View
10 Plugins to Secure Your WordPress Website (Speckyboy) View
10 Free WordPress Backup Solutions (Speckyboy) View
Sucuri WordPress Security (Sucuri) View
Wordfence Blog (Wordfence) View
WordPress Security in a Few Easy Steps (Yoast) View
WordPress Security: The Ultimate Guide (WPMU DEV) View

SEO, Marketing & Promotion

Guide to Content Marketing in WordPress (CreativeMinds) View
The Definitive Guide to Higher Rankings for WordPress Sites (Yoast) View
Ultimate WordPress SEO Guide for Beginners (Step by Step) (WPBeginner) View

The Community that Spreads Knowledge

Not only does WordPress feature many subject areas worth studying, but there are also tons of free resources out there to help.

What’s remarkable here is that, while the official documentation is an outstanding reference, a dedicated community has created even more learning opportunities. They have written tutorials and guides that are easy to follow, and many will even take follow-up questions.

The sharing of knowledge is one of the tenants of the community at large.

Take advantage of the resources above to hone your skills or learn a new one. And, if there is something we’re missing, let us know!

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