Anyone can create a wiki on Wikia at anytime through the create a wiki form. Below we walk through what to do and how to go about creating a wiki.
Creating a wiki
Before you start
- Plan your wiki project and decide what it will be about.
- Check to see if a wiki already exists on the topic you want to cover by searching for it. It's better to work within a community of others than alone.
- Read Wikia's Wiki creation policy — wikis must be freely licensed, publicly editable, and free of abuse.
Create your wiki
- Click on the Start a wiki button in the toolbar at the top of the page. This button brings you to the the creation form.
- Decide on a name for the wiki. — To help users find you in search engines, it's best to use the most common keywords for your topic. (Hint: don't use -pedia, or obscure names). The word "Wiki" will be added to the end, because this is also important to help your rankings.
- Choose the URL or address for your site — Similar to the name, the URL or web address you choose for your site will affect how easy it is for people to find your site and understand what it is about.
- Describe your wiki's topic briefly.
- Choose a category that best describes the subject of your wiki.
- Choose a theme (you can skip this and choose or make a personalized one later)
- Congratulations! You've now created a wiki!
You can personalize the following now or later:
- Decide on a theme: (link, buttons, header, page colors)
- Choose a skin: see Help:ThemeDesigner.
- Upload a logo: take a look at Help:ThemeDesigner.
- Create a favicon: check out Help:Favicon.
All of these things can be changed later if you or your community decide upon it.
Your wiki's next steps
Create the main pageThe main page is just that; the page everyone sees. When you first create your wiki there is default text that will appear on the main page. All of this can be removed once you start to create your main page:
- Welcome to (wiki's name here): is the description you wrote when you described your wiki's topic.
- Describe your topic: Here you can write a more detailed description of what your wiki is about.
- Latest activity:All of the activity on your wiki will appear here.
A few things to do in the beginning:
First impressions count. Your main page is what nearly everyone will see when they visit. So there are a few things to do in the beginning that are important:
- Make sure your main page clearly communicates what your wiki is about. Write a short introduction to what the wiki is about.
- Link to new articles and categories on your front page as you create them so you can keep things organized and this will increase search engine optimization.
- Create a "to do" list so new visitors know how they can help and what to add. Be specific about what the wiki needs.
The most valuable thing you can do when you start a wiki is to write article pages. This is called "seeding". It will give visitors and potential editors an idea of what to start from. The articles don't have to be long or perfect from the start. Remember it's a wiki and others can help build on what you start.
You may need to add dozens of articles before people start to join in. Don't get discouraged. The more content you add, the sooner the search engines and potential editors will find your site, and the quicker your small project will start to grow.
Use the Wiki Progress Bar to get your wiki off and running by following the tasks listed in your admin dashboard.
Create your Profile and User page
Add a friendly face: your profile page is a chance to tell people about yourself. So is your user page. You can keep it as simple as you want or go all out, the important thing is to give people a way to see "who" is behind this wiki.
Keep an eye on your wiki
We suggest that you turn on email notifications for your talk page / message wall and wiki in your preferences. If any visitors leave you a message on your talk page/message wall while you're away from the wiki, you'll receive a reminder to come look at your talk page/message wall. You will also see a bubble on your toolbar next time you log in.
As the founder of your wiki you can also choose to receive emails about who edits, joins or views your wiki. You can choose which emails to receive in my preferences under 'my info'.
Invite editors and visitors
Once you have completed the above steps, you are ready to open your wiki to visitors and other editors. Invite your friends, family and other people you think would be interested in the subject. Reach out to communities you already belong to, or related wikis on Wikia. Special interest forums are also a great place to find people passionate and willing to contribute. Be careful not to spam, though!
Keep an eye on Recent changes, and when you see someone new edit the wiki, add a nice welcome message to their Talk page as soon as you can! Wikis work when there is a community of people editing; try to keep in contact with the other people who show up to edit, as it will encourage them to stick around.
If you have many newcomers you can use a template to welcome them. We've provided a nice basic one at Template:Welcome to get you started, but we encourage you to customize the text and links, change the picture to one that is important (or funny!) to your community.
Friendliness and humor can go a long way in making new visitors feel welcome.
Further help and advice
Don't be afraid to ask for help!
If you have problems at any time, are not sure how to make the changes you want to your wiki, or want help customizing your site, then check out Founder & Admin Central forums. These are forums specifically for founders and admins. No questions here are off limits!
If things get especially hard you can always contact staff through Special:Contact.
You would be stronger to start a wiki with a team and it won't look like a personal site. So launch a discussion on a forum and encourage your friends to contribute. Most important: gather people before you set up the wiki rather than after, otherwise they won't see the wiki as their own wiki.
Building a wiki is an art not a science!
Don't be overwhelmed or discouraged. Take risks, remember you can always delete later. But most important: remember to have fun!