Whether you are new to WordPress or a seasoned veteran, there is a good chance questions will arise while you are working with the platform. In this post we will show you some of the places on the internet where you can turn to for help with WordPress, where you can post your own questions and hopefully get a response from the community.
Most of these services are free, although there are a few premium membership sites available, where you can do more than just ask questions, and are able to learn from others who have gone before you. While your first port of call in most cases should be to perform an internet search using your favourite search engine, if an answer can’t be found to your specific question, then asking it on one of these websites could be your best bet.
How to Ask for Help
Before you dive in and start posting your questions, it’s a good idea to be aware of the following tips for asking for help effectively. As most of the contributors to these communities are volunteers, it’s extra important to remember to be courteous and respectful.
When checking out a forum or community, always ensure you perform a search to check you aren’t asking something that has already been solved on the site. If a similar question has been asked, it’s normally not good practice to add your own slightly different query to the existing question, but better to start your own thread or discussion.
If your problem is unique, then make sure you familiarise yourself with the posting guidelines on the site before asking. Provide as much information as possible such as which version of WordPress you are using, when the problem is occurring, and any other relevant information. The more information you can provide, the better chance you will have or receiving a helpful response.
Whenever someone responds to your WordPress question, always make sure you reply and thank them for their contribution. If it’s not the type of information you were looking for, don’t be rude, but instead clearly clarify your situation in more detail.
As these communities rely on the generosity of their members, make sure you take a look around and see if there are any questions from other members you can answer. Don’t just post and run, but see if you can help others and help the community become even more useful.
WordPress.org Support Forums
The support forums over at WordPress.org, the home of the platform, are an invaluable source of help for those working with WordPress. The busiest sub-forum has over a million posts, giving a good idea of how well-used this option is. Like WordPress itself, access to these forums is free and they are staffed by an enthusiastic community of volunteers.
The forums are divided up into various separate categories covering all the different aspects of WordPress including:
- Themes and Templates
- Plugins and Hacks
- Review of Plugins and Themes
If you’ve ever sought out help for a free plugin you’ve downloaded from the WordPrress.org repository then you should be familiar with the forums, as each plugin page includes a section of posts from the forums related to that particular plugin.
As the forums are very active, if you ask your question in the right way you should receive a response fairly quickly. Remember to search before asking your question to see if it’s been solved already, to avoid wasting your own time and that of others.
WPMUDEV Q&A Service
The leading WordPress blog at wpmudev offers a premium service that provides unlimited help for anything to do with WordPress, Multisite, or BuddyPress.
Once you’ve become a member over at wpmudev, not only do you get access to the unlimited Q&A, live and manual support service for any WordPress issue, but you also get access to a whole host of other goodies including:
- 140+ plugins and counting
- 160+ themes and counting
- The ability to submit feature requests
- Access to the community
- Manuals and videos
Access to all of the above can be yours for $40 a month, making this a great value service. If you see a theme or plugin you like amongst the selection then there is a good chance access to a similar product elsewhere will equal the same as one month of access. If you do cancel your membership, you can still use anything you downloaded while a member.
WordPress Facebook Groups
Now you’ve got an excuse to login to Facebook when you should be working on your latest WordPress project.
There are plenty of groups on Facebook dedicated to WordPress but perhaps the most useful is the Advanced WP. Here you will find close to 5,000 users willing to interact on the topic of WordPress. A quick look at the members should throw up some familiar names from the WordPress community, giving you an indication that you’ve come to the right place.
Other Facebook groups that might of interest include:
This service is 100% free and doesn’t even require registration. WordPress Answers is part of the Stack Exchange network of Q&A sites so you might already be familiar with the concept.
The scope of the WordPress Answers site is to allow users to ask questions to help them solve specific problems. Users can vote on answers, and as they received votes, an answer is moved up through the list of submissions, helping the best solutions rise to the top.
Stack Exchange isn’t the place to get opinions on your ideas or possible solutions to vague dilemmas. But if you are having trouble finding an answer to a specific problem then it’s a great place to turn to.
Reddit also uses the up vote system to help the best content rise to the top. While this site covers pretty much everything under the sun, it also has a WordPress community found on their WordPress subreddit.
It’s definitely a mixed bag in terms of what’s posted and the comments received, while the posting frequency isn’t as high as elsewhere, however if you do use Reddit then it might be worth checking in to see if you can find an answer to your problem.
Quora is another big question and answer site that also has a WordPress section. The WordPress topic has over 61,000 followers at the time of writing, making it one of the larger communities out there that is dedicated to answering your WordPress questions and queries.
If you want to find out which plugin can help you with a particular requirement, or how to do something fairly basic, then Quora might be a good option, but in most cases its probably best to try elsewhere.
If you are already using Google Plus then there are a good number of WordPress communities you could become a part of. The main one of interest is the WordPress community which has currently got over 21,000 members and provides a number of useful resources such as listings of upcoming events, a Hints, Tips & Tricks section, and a general discussion area.
The format of Google+ communities doesn’t make it very easy to follow what is going on, beyond the most recent activity, but due to the large user base it could be a good source of knowledge. There are a few other Google+ WordPress communities that might be a better match for your specific needs:
Matt Report Pro
Matt Medeiros is a WordPress entrepreneur who regularly publishes content across many channels and formats, including blogs, podcasts, and YouTube videos, and now through his membership site.
This is a premium subscription service so it’s probably not a good choice for someone with a one-off question about using WordPress. However those looking to start a WordPress business, whether as a freelancer offering their services, or by creating a product that fits into the WordPress eco-system, this mastermind group for WordPress start-ups could be just what is needed.
Membership of the Matt Report Pro gives access to the member’s only forum, monthly live webinars, and access to Matt himself. With a regular stream of guests from the WordPress community, there should be an expert on hand to answer your specific questions and queries.
ManageWP.org is a great place to see the latest posts that are published covering WordPress. However, the site also has an ‘Answers’ section where users can post questions and start discussions on topics related to WordPress.
As it’s a fairly new site, the discussion sub-section isn’t very busy but it has potential, mainly due to the relatively large selection of well-known faces from the WordPress community who are members of the site.
Rise Forums is a fairly new community but it is one that is well-populated by keen WordPress users, including many who make their living through use of the platform in some way. As well as covering WordPress, the site also features topics such as freelancing, internet marketing, blogging, design and development, and SEO.
Although it’s a premium service, the forums do put you in touch with some experienced WordPress users who are on hand to discuss ideas and answer questions.
In addition to producing WordPress themes and plugins, Design Wall also features a Question and Answer section where users can ask questions of the community.
Initially the service was only for questions related to the products created by the Design Wall team, but there has been a recent addition of an ‘Anything WordPress’ category. Although its early days for this new sub-section, the other Q&A sections are popular, so it should just be a matter of time before it takes off.
Paid WordPress Support Services
If you are in need of urgent help and don’t have the luxury of waiting for a response from a community-powered service, then one of the options featured in our post on WordPress Emergency Support Services might be a better option.
A further option is to subscribe to a WordPress maintenance service that will look after your site and deal with any problems as they arise. Some even include custom development jobs, allowing you to add extra functionality to your site. We recently took a look at some of the options for this type of service in our post on WordPress Maintenance Services.
As you can see there are plenty of free options to turn to when you need help with WordPress, as well as some premium channels. Whether its beginner issues, such as installing WordPress and configuring themes and plugins; right through to advanced development queries, there is a site waiting to publish your questions.
While no one option is perfect for all situations and some are certainly more popular than others, by checking out the different options available, you should be able to find the best place to ask your WordPress-related questions and get an answer to solve your problem.
Where do you turn to when you need help with WordPress?