One of the coolest things about the WordPress community is just how large and inclusive it is. From developers to designers, agencies to freelancers, and pros to beginners, the WordPress community includes a lot of people from all over the world.
And part of the reason the WordPress community has grown so big is that so many people are invested in helping it grow. Developers are constantly developing new themes and plugins, designers are creating beautiful sites, WordPress users helps each other in forums, and volunteers organize local meetups to help connect members of the community.
Honestly, it’s just a really great community to be a part of. And getting involved can help you in several different ways:
- You’ll make life-long connections with people who, one day, might just be your next business partner.
- Even if you’ve been using WordPress for years and consider yourself a pro, you just might learn something new.
- You’ll help the WordPress community continue to grow and improve. And as WordPress is something that you use (and I’m assuming love) it’ll be pretty rewarding to give back to it.
- And remember all of those pros you looked up to while you were still learning WordPress? You might just be that role model for someone.
So whether you’re looking to further your own skills or you’re ready to help new WordPress users, getting involved in the WordPress community will be an enjoyable, rewarding, and incredibly fun adventure.
Ready to get involved? Start here.
Join online WordPress groups
One of the easiest ways to get involved with the WordPress community is to connect with other WordPress users on social media. This is a great way to see new products that developers create, offer any wisdom you can share to WordPress beginners, and ask for help if you need it.
To start you off, here are a few groups I’ve found to be pretty active:
- Advanced WordPress: As it states, this group is intended for more advanced WordPress users (but anyone is welcome). Over 16,000 members.
- WordPress Designers: This group is intended specifically for WordPress designers; those of you who deal mostly with designing mockups, creating sites, and maybe developing a custom theme. Over 3,000 members.
- WordPress Help and Share: For the beginners out there, this group might be a little more your speed. WordPress Help is a community that’s ready to help you solve your problems. Over 6,000 members.
- WordPress Developers: This group is dedicated to WordPress developers and is a little more technical than the other groups. Over 17,000 members.
- WordPress Experts: Even though “expert” is in the name, you don’t have to be an expert just to join this group. Just a love for WordPress is all you really need. Over 38,000 members.
- WordPress Web Designers: Like the WordPress Designers Facebook group, this LinkedIn group is meant for WordPress users who design custom sites. Over 31,000 members.
- WordPress: This group is intended for the entire WordPress community; developers, designers, users, enthusiasts. Over 59,000 members.
Once you’ve joined some of these groups, join the conversations! Offer advice when you can or ask questions when you need some outside opinions. Share valuable resources that have helped you master WordPress and experiment with new tools that others suggest.
As you get to know other members of the groups, you can start connecting with them personally. Follow them on Twitter, connect with them on LinkedIn, or keep up with their Dribble feed. Remember that part about finding a potential future business partner? These social groups could help connect you to the right person.
When you join these groups, just be sure to abide by their individual rules and posting guidelines. There is usually a pinned post at the top of the group with the group rules, so you never have to scroll too far to find it.
Attend local meetups and conferences
Looking to get involved locally in your community instead of online? Try to find a WordPress meetup or conference to attend. This may not be applicable in all cities and might require some travel on your part, but that can also be part of the experience. To find out what’s going on in areas near your, just tap into your network or your new social media groups. You could also try websites like Meetup to see what WordPress events are near you.
While there are plenty of conferences you could attend that discuss design and development, WordCamp is entirely dedicated to all things WordPress. Plus, these conferences are located all over the world! They are locally organized and a fantastic way to meet other enthusiastic WordPress users. Plus, they’re just an overall good time (for proof, just check out how Flywheel does WordCamp).
To find a conference near you, just visit the official WordCamp website.
If you’re fortunate enough to live in an area where meetups or conferences are common, you could also consider volunteering your time to help organize those events. Talk to the people in charge and ask how you can get even more involved than just the average attendee.
While you’re at that conference, give a talk
For many people, standing up on a stage and giving a talk can be pretty overwhelming (if that’s you, don’t worry, you don’t have to!) But if you’re open to the idea, it’s a great way to put your name out there and share some expertise. Your fellow WordPress community members will begin to remember your name and you’ll likely find yourself in some pretty advanced WordPress discussions afterward. Plus, that’s a pretty professional thing to put on your resume.
And remember, you can always start small with your talks. Begin by sharing a snippet at a local meetup, or even just by bouncing some ideas off of your friends. The more you practice speaking, the more comfortable you’ll become with it.
Follow popular WordPress blogs
Looking for more of a passive approach to getting involved in the WordPress community? Simply follow along with some popular WordPress blogs. This will help you stay current in the WordPress world and help you learn a new trick or two. A few blogs you could follow include:
- WPKube: This is a resource site that focuses on themes, plugins, WordPress news, tutorials, and mor. There are simple articles for beginners, but also more advanced content for the pros out there.
- WPMU DEV: This blog has over 4,000 articles in their archives covering every topic imaginable with WordPress. If you have a question, they likely have an answer.
- WPLift: This is a great place to go for tutorials, theme roundups, plugin guides, and general WordPress news.
- The Layout: We cover topics concerning all aspect of WordPress designers lives, including best business practices, inspiration round-ups, and tutorials.
While they aren’t exclusive to WordPress, I’d also like to mention Designer News and Web Designer News. These two sites curate some of the best articles every day for designers and web designers, and can be a great way to find some thought-provoking reading for the day.
As you follow along with these blogs, be sure to comment if you have something to share. Just like with the social groups, joining the conversation on these blogs can be a great way to network and start connecting online with other members of the WordPress community.
Start your own WordPress blog
If you find yourself commenting often on other people’s blogs and realize that you have a lot to say about WordPress, consider starting your own blog about it. You can share tutorials that you find helpful, go into details about your projects, and dive into your process. A blog is great to include on your website and can often complement your portfolio when you’re looking for new work.
Need help getting your blog started? Here are a couple articles you might find useful:
- How to encourage people to comment on your blog
- How to add long-form content with Long Form Storybuilder
- Five WordPress SEO plugins to help your content get discovered
Build a plugin or theme
Are you more of a developer than a writer or speaker? Then building a WordPress product might be more your speed. Consider creating a new plugin to add to the WordPress directory or developing a theme to sell on a marketplace.
If you build WordPress sites for clients, you could always look for inspiration from them. Do they want any custom functionality for their site? How could a better product improve their experience?
I know sometimes it can be hard to find the time to build a product. But if you decide to make it a premium theme or plugin, try to think of it as some extra income once you’re able to sell it.
Get involved directly with WordPress.org
If you’re looking to get directly involved with WordPress, you’ll definitely want to check out the “Get Involved” page on WordPress.org. There are lots of options (14, to be exact!) and this site will lead you to the right place to get started.
The 14 areas of WordPress you can get involved in are:
- Core: Dying to touch the core, even though normally it’s discouraged? Join this group to write code, fix bugs, and help with development.
- Design: If you love working with user interfaces, offer your input on mockups and designs in this group.
- Mobile: Help build iOS, Android, Windows, and Blackberry apps by offering your knowledge of code, user experience, or design.
- Accessibility: Join this group to help make sure WordPress is accessible to everybody who needs it.
- Support: Start small by offering your knowledge in the support forums. “Everyone knows the answer to something!”
- Polygots: Join this group to help translate WordPress to other languages or build tools to improve translations.
- Documentation: Calling all writers; this team writes WordPress documentation and create resources for users to help themselves when they get stuck.
- Themes: Want to help review themes submitted to the WordPress theme repository? This is the place for you.
- Plugins: If plugins are more your style, join the plugin review team and keep up with the latest updates.
- Community: Remember those WordCamps from earlier? The community group helps organize events like those.
- Meta: This team helps make WordPress.org and builds tools for the rest of the groups.
- Training: Do you enjoy teaching people how to use WordPress? If so, this is the group for you.
- Flow: This group monitors the “flow” of WordPress on all devices to analyze what’s working, and what’s not.
- TV: Enjoy watching videos? This team reviews all videos submitted to WordPress.tv and also helps with post-WordCamp videos.
The WordPress community is a truly fantastic group of people. Together, we’re helping each other learn more about this open-source platform that we love, developing incredible new products to make each other’s lives easier, and building a greater online experience for everyone. In short: It’s a great community to get involved with.
What do you do for the WordPress community? I’d love to hear your stories below!