Thinking of getting a new website to promote your brand, name, products or services? If you answered yes, this article is for you. Before spending a single dime on the creation of your new web design, you should consider whether you will choose to produce a simple HTML/CSS or WordPress site as it will make all the difference when you will want to update the content of your website.
What is WordPress?
WordPress is a Content Management System (CMS) powered by PHP and MySQL. It’s an open source publishing platform that is also highly customizable. What does it mean for you, the client? It means you can have any website you want, from extra simple to very complex, and still be using WordPress. WordPress is a template processor that will let you edit and add new content on your website without any prior knowledge of HTML or CSS.
As you can see on the picture above, all you need to do is login, click on the page or article you wish to add or edit, then proceed. You may choose to select a category and to write tags (keywords) if you are adding a new post to your blog for instance, but it really doesn’t get more complicated than that. In other words, WordPress, for you the client, is a key to freedom.
What are the advantages of using WordPress?
WordPress has many advantages. Here’s a list of the most obvious ones:
- Easy to use: Perhaps the most obvious reason is this one. Unlike a static HTML/CSS page that you cannot update unless you know programming, WordPress allows you to simply login and edit your content in a few clicks. We’ve taught all our clients to use it and all of them were able to, even the ones who were initially a bit uncomfortable with computers.
- Thousands of plugins and widgets available: WordPress is not only the most popular Content Management System; it’s also the one that offers the most plugins, over 17 000 to be exact. On WordPress’ Plugin Directory, you can find add-ons for pretty much everything: SEO, galleries, social media, comment management, security and more. And if what you want doesn’t exist (unlikely but it happens sometimes), you can hire a good programmer or web agency to create it for you.
- Search-engine friendly: You want to rank higher in Google? You have more chances of achieving your goal with WordPress than without, especially if you have a blog. Every new article you’ll post on your website will automatically be “pinged” to Google and other search engines, indexing you within a few minutes, sometimes even seconds. Add to this tags, human readable URLs and hundreds of SEO plugins available and you’ve got a tool that could take you at the top of Google results if you use it well.
- Countless templates: If you do not wish to pay to build your own custom web design and don’t mind settling for a regular template, WordPress offers thousands of free and affordable templates. You won’t necessarily be the most original on the web but for a starting freelancer or low-budget project it can work. It should also be noted that besides being the CMS offering the most templates, WordPress is also the easiest to install.
- Strong support: Since it was created in 2003, WordPress offers online support on its forums. It also provides a thorough guide (The Codex) on its website that motivated freelancers can use to get a better understanding of the publishing platform. If you don’t want to get your hands dirty, you should know that since WordPress is the most popular CMS, it won’t be hard to find an agency or programmer to help you customize this powerful tool.
Are there disadvantages to using WordPress?
There are honestly no disadvantages to using WordPress over a regular HTML/CSS page. Although concern arises occasionally on the security part of WordPress, it is unlikely you will be hacked if you do frequent updates and choose a strong password. To be sure, there are also plugins that increase WordPress’ security. It is generally no easier for a hacker to break into a WordPress site than a regular website that has no CMS.
Of course, if you decide to use WordPress you will need hosting and a domain name, but then again you would have needed it anyway for your regular website.
WordPress is a wonderful and powerful tool for freelancers, business owners or project managers who want to get their products/services out there without the headache of having to learn HTML and CSS. It’s just incredibly user-friendly and customizable. WordPress can be shaped to look like anything. It’s that flexible.
Do you still have questions regarding the advantages of using WordPress? Leave a comment or contact us.