What is WordPress?
WordPress is a website content management system–it’s a platform for your website with a built in back-end admin page to edit content, configure the way your website looks, and add additional features with plug-ins rather than custom programming.
WordPress now runs 18.9% of the web — up 2.2% from last year. — WordCamp SF in August 2013
In 2014, WordPress now powers about 20% of the websites on the Internet. But this article is more than about what WordPress is. We’re interested in sharing why it is you will love WordPress.
Reason #1: Edit your own website any time you want
When you’ve set up your site on WordPress, you get to control all the content in your website. You can change it at anytime. No matter how experienced or comfortable you are up front, with some introductory training and a “How to” handbook – you’ll be able to update your pages, photos, menu and other content in no time. All kinds of clients have been surprised at just how easy it was to get up and running editing their own site. Why pay a web developer a hefty hourly rate for simply updating page text or product information? With the simple text editor that is built into WordPress you will be able to make your updates in minutes rather than needing to schedule and pay for them with a web developer. This saves you money and time so you can instead use your resources to bring customers to your website rather than just building it.
What if you could:
- Publish new promos, offers, and call to actions anytime you want?
- Create new landing pages for off-line or online marketing campaigns?
- Keep all your services and products totally up-to-date?
- Literally make updates to your website within a few minutes?
WordPress empowers you to directly respond and engage online more than ever before. Isn’t it about time? Exactly.
Reason #2: Leverage professional themes
So, what is a theme? A theme is the visual layer of the website–the design,colors, fonts, and layout of page content. In the past generally a company always had a web designer layout a custom design. This took a serious amount of time: anywhere from 30 to 70 hours by the time it is finished. Here are a few sample professional themes. There are thousands more in various styles.
WordPress has the ability to turn on themes. A theme is like a custom design except that it’s designed to be used over and over with customizable elements built within it. There are free themes and paid professional themes. Professional themes cost from $35 to $60 generally. In other words, themes do not break the bank. I’ve seen companies spend $30,000 on their new custom-built website which ended up looking just like a theme that could’ve been purchased for $50 while spending much less for developers to simply configure it.
Beyond that, themes can also be edited and customized to your needs. The truth is that most companies don’t get a large amount of value in investing into a totally custom design any more. So lightly customizing a theme to fit your brand by changing the colors, logo, font and a few other things can make a great looking website without going through the whole custom design process. And in case you’re wondering, if you like your site, sometimes it’s not all that complicated to convert an existing website to WordPress, and that has been a viable for option for several clients in the past.
Reason #3: Use WordPress plugins instead of custom programming
Plug-ins are bits of programming that add additional features to your WordPress website. Currently there are over 32,000 plug-ins available for WordPress–anything from photo galleries to e-commerce systems. By using plug-ins that accomplish what you want, you don’t need to pay a web developer to custom program these functionalities. So the cost is much lower. And if you ever want to customize a plug-in to be a little bit more specific to how you want to use it – you can edit an existing plug-in rather than creating it from scratch.
WordPress makes your website future-friendly
Building on WordPress is not only powerful in the present, but makes it easier than ever to stay fresh as online demands and features change. Regular software updates coming from WordPress and your theme and plug-in developers mean that your site will remain cutting edge even as time passes by. And in 5 or so years from now, when it’s time to refresh your website look – you may only need to update and change out the theme layer. No more rebuilding from scratch. No more recreating everything.
Partnering with a web developer like Effect on your WordPress site means those updates can take place with little fuss, and when you run into a problem, the extra insight on a new solution or customization is only a phone call away. You get the best of both worlds, using WordPress is like economy and customization holding hands. Convert your website to WordPress and take control of what can be one of your most valuable marketing tools.