How I Setup My Personal Site on WordPress

For my first “real” post on this refreshed personal website, I thought it might be interesting to give a brief overview of how I set up this site—hosting company, theme, plugins etc. This isn’t a tutorial or guide—all the services and plugins I’m about to mention have excellent documentation—but rather a bit of insight into the decisions I’ve made. That being said, I’m happy to answer any questions about it, so please feel free to leave a comment or DM me on Twitter/X.


For hosting, I looked at a few different options. This is a very basic site with no dynamic content, so I don’t need much. My only real requirement is that it should be a hosting provider focused on developers, which rules out most of the traditional providers like GoDaddy, Bluehost, etc. I considered Cloudways, RunCloud and Closte but ultimately went with SpinupWP.

I had used SpinupWP before, and like their dashboard and extensive documentation. The personal plan costs $12/month (excluding server costs).

For the server, I went with a DigitalOcean droplet with 2GB a month, for another $12/month. I probably could get away with a 1GB server given the size and traffic of this site, but I want to make sure everything runs fast and smoothly.

There’s definitely cheaper options out there, but this setup allows me to easily add more sites to the same droplet, without any extra costs. Great for development sites and quick experiments.

I opted out of the DigitalOcean backups ($2.40/month) in favor of daily site backups to an AWS S3 bucket, which will cost just a couple pennies per month.

Total cost: $24/month + some change for AWS


The theme is something I built in a couple hours using the excellent Block Theme Generator. I added a build step, updated theme.json, added some custom CSS and some new fonts (IBM Plex Sans for the body copy and MADE Dillan for headings). I’ll probably make it public on Github in the near future when it’s cleaned up a bit more.


There’s a few plugins that I’m running on this website so far:

  • Limit Login Attempts Reloaded
    This plugin came preinstalled with SpinupWP. Nothing super exciting, but it seems to do the trick well.

  • WebP Express
    Serving webp images when possible seems like a no-brainer to me. I had to do some manual config work to get it to work with Nginx, but the plugin has clear instructions and SpinupWP makes it easy with SSH access and vi preinstalled.

  • WP Offload SES Lite
    A plugin by the same developers as SpinupWP. It offloads the transactional emails to Amazon SES. I don’t think I’ll be sending many emails from this site, but it was easy enough to set up and should only cost a couple of pennies per month.

  • The SEO Framework
    Out of all the SEO plugins I’ve tried I like this one the most. It does what it needs to do, doesn’t get in your way and the code quality seems very good.

That’s it for now! This configuration is bound to change at some point in the (near) future, but I’m quite happy with how everything is working and running right now.

Written by Daniel Post

Hi! I’m Daniel Post, a freelance full-stack WordPress developer from the Netherlands. This is my personal website, where I share articles and guides related to WordPress.

I am also available for hire, so if you’re looking for a developer for your next project feel free to get in touch!

3 responses to “How I Setup My Personal Site on WordPress”

  1. Joe Avatar

    Great site!

  2. Pierre LeBaux Avatar

    Pierre from TSF here! Fun fact, did you know The SEO Framework is made in the Netherlands as well? Thank you for picking us over other plugins, it is always nice to see developers recognize the value of our SEO plugin.

    Feel free to contact me personally if you have any issues down the line.
    Cheers, Pierre LeBaux.

    1. Daniel Post Avatar

      Hey Pierre, thanks for reaching out! Yeah, I know it’s made in The Netherlands 😄. I think we’ve discussed it on Twitter before, and I had reached out to check my implementation when I added TSF support to Social Image Generator.

      Keep up the great work!

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