One of the first things you have to decide when considering a website is if you want to hire a developer to build you software from scratch vs using a CMS like WordPress. Hiring a solid developer will most often get you the best result, but this can cost thousands or even tens of thousands of dollars.
Not everyone has the budget for that. The best thing about WordPress is that it is limitless, even for non-developers. It resides in a sweet spot between ease of use, control and flexibility. Below are 11 reasons why you should use WordPress for your business website. We had ten, but had to squeeze in one more, just to kick things up a notch.
Many business owners realize that they need a website sooner than later. This day and age (2016) there are many different platforms and tools to choose from. If you aren’t familiar with the finer points of modern web design/development, you may have a tough time wondering where to start. That’s where we can help.
Between all the technical terms and funny names for web development tools like:
Joomla, WooCommerce, JSON, MailChimp, Boilerplate, CMS, LAMP, LEMP, LESS, UNIX, GNU etc. – things can get confusing. When I first came upon these terms like these I couldn’t help think of musicians. Sometimes they come up with the most arbitrary names for things – like Limp Bizkit or Men’s Recovery Project. If you didn’t know any better you’d have no idea that these were band names.
WordPress is whatever you want it to be. In the hands of a developer, the sky is the limit. Want to build web apps? Blog? Portfolio? An online store? A business platform? Directory site? Community website? Innernet? Extranet? WordPress can do it.
Even if you aren’t a designer or web developer, it isn’t hard to change any aspect of your site. You don’t need to code to build pages and add elements with page builders like Visual Composer or Cornerstone. You can use an existing WordPress theme or create your own. The potential is limitless.
Just like the web itself, WordPress is modular. You can use plugins to extend functionality. Use free ones, purchase them or create your own. If there is a problem to be solved you can bet that there is already a plugin written for it. Plugins can do things like back up your site, send automated emails, help you build pages, collect credit card payments, create calendars, manage user accounts and automatically count all the calories you consume. Well maybe not the last one but I’m sure someone somewhere is working on a plugin for that.
Your website is an asset. That alone is good enough reason to want more control over it. This way you own your content, you aren’t marketing for other brands and you have less limitations when it comes to the design. Many people may not realize how much better WordPress can be for their project until it’s too late. There are countless stories of business owners switching to WordPress once they realize the limitations of their current website setup. Free yourself from the bondage of rigid templates.
Easy To Use
WordPress is easy to use, setup and maintain. If you can use a computer program or an app, then you can use WordPress. It doesn’t take any more skill than it takes to use applications like Photoshop, Word or Facebook to run your own website. WordPress has really leveled the playing field and eliminated the need for costly solutions from developers. There will come a time when you need help from an expert, but most everything can be done by anyone who is computer literate. Nowadays this includes most people who have access to a computer. With average computer skills you can create above average solutions.
The WordPress core is free to download and install. It’s open source, which means that the code is available for anybody to view and change. As we have seen in the past decade or so, open source has helped solved a lot of software issues, such as cross platform compatibility. The power of WordPress for many users lies in the plugins. Plugins are a cost effective way to get things done without having to hire a developer to code a solution from scratch.
At the low end of the market you will have to pay for things like web hosting, plugins or themes, services (backups, marketing) and perhaps someone to help you manage the site. These costs are minimal and can save you lots of time and money compared to other solutions.
The high end of the market deals with enterprise level business or other large scale projects. Hiring a team of WordPress developers can be much more affordable solution than .NET or Ruby developers. Why this is so is still a little confusing to me, since WordPress can handle any of the same tasks as a framework like Rails. But I am not a high end developer so I may not have all the information needed explore this subject. If you wanted to use a website builder like Wix, you’d be spending around the same amount, except with WordPress you get much more.
The platform really shines when it comes to eCommerce. You can sell products or services online and get much more control than you would from other options. It’s an affordable and robust eCommerce solution that is used by millions of happy customers.
Out of the box WordPress is great for SEO. It is preferred by marketers and webmasters alike. WordPress is ready for search engines by itself, but there are lots of well-written tools to take your SEO game to the next level. Add some premium or free tools like WordPress SEO for Yoast and the platform becomes an SEO strategists dream. With little to no work you can use a plugin to automate any SEO task and get great results. Check out our post on Free Must Have SEO Plugins for WordPress. The list has WordPress SEO plugins for optimizing images, page speed, text and more.
WordPress can be used for a wide range of websites. It’s perfect for anything from a small blog, to a large directory with tens of thousands of locations. If you need a website that can handle growth, WordPress is a very solid CMS to build with. The modular nature of it makes adding, modifying and maintaining your website very easy.
Right now WordPress is just a teenager. Not the confused, aimless type either. It’s more like one of those genius teenagers with too much time on their hands, with enough skill and experience to put seasoned experts to shame. The future looks bright for WordPress. As a blogging platform, web builder and CMS WordPress is firmly embedded in the industry. Although the web is finicky and trends seem to shift every few years, WordPress seems to be on top of every one of them.
Design is an integral part of a website’s success. WordPress enables anyone to build a site that incorporates the latest design trends and functionality. Checkout our post on Material Design Themes to see some beautiful themes that make use of current trends. Whether you are purchasing a WordPress theme or custom building your own, WordPress makes it easy to keep things fresh.
WordPress is stable, secure and it simply works. That’s why it has been the choice of some of the world’s most notable brands like TechCruch, New York Times, Mashable, Forbes, Download.com and cPanel. Their websites sites experience heavy traffic, are resource heavy and demand lots of attention.
The WordPress community is full of friendly, helpful people. Whether you are a blogger, designer, developer, site owner, prospective user or anything in between – you can bet that you have a wealth of information and resources available. There are over 70,000,000 websites running on WordPress! That figure suggests that you are not alone. Any problem you have has probably been solved. There are lots of support forums, tutorials and documentation available to help you online.
Situations Where WordPress Wouldn’t Be Best
While this is a WordPress website and I personally love the platform, there are times when it’s not the best option. I can’t honestly say that WordPress is the end all be all solution for everyone. It all depends on your needs and who will be in charge of the website.
If you can use Microsoft Word, you can use WordPress. Even with some WordPress experience you can run into trouble.There is a steeper learning curve with WordPress compared to some of web building tools. When I say steeper I mean like a few hours as opposed to instantly being able to use it.
If you or the person in charge of the site isn’t tech saavy in the least bit, like you don’t know the difference between a bit and a byte or you have trouble setting up your email – you may want to use a builder like Wix, Weebly or Squarespace. Everything will come in a single package. You can have a site that sells products up and running in less than a day and you shouldn’t run into much trouble. Support for builders like Wix is also very responsive.
Keep in mind what you are trading though. The prices are comparable for barebones business sites and eCommerce websites ($500-$1000), but you will get a lot less control. You will also have less flexibility and fewer options. That being said, for some people options are bad. For example, one time I asked my 9 year old cousin what she would eat for dinner everyday if she had the choice. She said, “ice cream and cookies.” While that sounds like a wise decision, it is certainly one of the quickest routes towards diabetes and a whole other mess of health problems.
There are lots more reasons why I like WordPress but I couldn’t fit them all into this post. Why do you prefer WordPress? If not, let us know why as well. If you have any experiences comparing WordPress to other CMS solutions please share in the comments section below. Thanks for reading.