Should i start with a theme? Plugin? MultiSite? How to do a multisite?... Where to start.

Good day, I'm a beginner so this is a beginner question. Maybe a whopper of a beginner question though... I'm developing a website with multiple sections all to be on one domain: . Here is a screenshot i took of a little flowchart i've started working on to give an idea of what i'm trying to do with it: . I think my question is going to largely be about multisites on WP. I just don't know where to start. Themes or plugins? How to set up a multisite if that's what you recommend? Are there any tutorials i should be watching or anything before contacting you?

  • Decura
    • The Bug Hunter


    Welcome to the forum!

    I think that a standard WordPress installation is enough. You can do the following:

    1. List
    - WPMU DEV has a plugin for this:

    2. Talk
    - Use BuddyPress with bbpress:

    3. Fund
    - The WPMU DEV Fundraiser plugin can help you with this:

    4. Resource
    - The Membership plugin can help you to separate paying members from other visitors. Other options are to use the Pay with a Like plugin or the MarketPress for single products.

    5. One profile
    - In any WordPress installation you will only have one profile.

    6. Social sharing
    - You can use something like the following plugins:

  • Vaughan
    • Support/SLS MockingJay


    welcome to wpmudev.

    i think @decura has pretty much covered all the bases here, i don't think multisite would be needed for the flowchart idea you posted. you only need multisite if you want to offer your members the ability to have their own sites.

    i'm not sure i could add anything else that Decura hasn't already said.

    you're likely to want to customise your theme, so unless you're hiring a developer to custom develop it for you, i would browse through the themes available on here or or and find 1 as close as possible to the design you want. more expensive doesn't always mean it's better. you should choose a theme that does what you want or is as close to what you need, too much functionality & features will be wasted and make it more difficult to customize. if you don't need a feature then there's no need to have it.

    hope this helps, and if you need any further assistance, don't hesitate to ask.

  • Richard
    • WPMU DEV Initiate

    Thank you verr verr verr verr verr much @Decura and @Vaughan! That was super helpful.

    A few more questions:

    MAMP? should i develop locally and then publish.

    Should i replace what is currently on with a clean install of WP?

    I was considering down the road allowing churches that wanted to have a one page site with directions and service times and contact info etc.. So, that's what i'd need MultiSite for, correct? If i go this route do i need to start things out with multisite or can i change over to multisite after a 1 up WP install? (hope that made since)

    Ok, so, there's parent themes and child themes. So, if i'm not mistaking, I would need to use a child theme so i can alter it and be able to have it updated without re-doing it each time. Is this correct? I'm not super clear as to what child and parent themes appropriate applications are. Do you have an elevator speech for child and parent themes?

    I would like to have different layouts in different sections (along with the graphic “skins” i will create custom). would i do this with a number of child themes? Or, is that what a template is for?

    If i to use multiple themes throughout my site, would i need to make a different directory for each section on the server and install each theme in the section directories i want them to apply to?

    Im a graphic designer, fairly well versed in html ... of 1994 because Im doing so much html email at my 9-5 job. I’m taking some courses to get familiar with CSS and HTML5. Is CSS and some moderner (that’s right, modernER) html adequate for “customizations to the theme” you mentioned i may want to do (because you’re right, i probably will wan to customize the layout some). To get this thing launched, i need to keep it simple i know. I must avoid analysis paralysis.

    I really really really want to get a section to put a youtube or vimeo video on the front page in the slider or the slider area. Is this something that can be done with a plugin? Or is this something that i’ll have to jump into the code and paste some html or css into?

    I very much appreciate both of your (@Decura and @Vaughan) comments, but Im not familiar with how the give points system works. If i were to click on the give points button link and give you both ? points, would that be a bad thing?

    I apologize if I'm seeming a bit needy with all these here questions. But, If i’m quacking like a duck...
    I’m learning like a FREAK and i’m loving all this. I’m super excited to learn all this stuff and to be able to apply it everywhere. Again, thank you so much for your help so far. I know soooo much more now than i did just a few day or even hours ago.


  • Decura
    • The Bug Hunter


    No problem. Glad to help :slight_smile:

    - the site doesn't appear to have any content or users yet so I would setup a coming soon page and just make the changes on the current installation.

    Clean install
    - You can simply install another theme, switch to it and delete the old one. This doesn't require a clean install.

    - This is exactly what multisite is useful for and you can change a single installation to a multisite.

    The style.css file controls the visual design and layout of the pages. You can create a child theme for each theme that you use. You can also use a visual page builder if this is what you are looking for:

    No. All themes are installed in a single folder.

    There is a guide available here:

    Video in slider
    I think some themes comes with a solution for this. In most cases there are also a plugin for a certain issue. You can for instance try this one: or take a look at this guide:

    You can give points for each post when you think it is appropriate. These are given to author. I really appreciate the help from the staff but personally only give points to other members as this is volunteer work. You can read more about the system here:

    Don't worry about it. I was new to WordPress a couple of months ago and still ask a fair amount of questions. This is the benefit of a community. Ask away.

Thank NAME, for their help.

Let NAME know exactly why they deserved these points.

Gift a custom amount of points.