I own and operate a number of websites and these sites are my pride and joy and they earn an income for me.
As such, it is imperative that I choose a web creation tool that is viable, versatile and allows for scalability.
Just in case I would need more functions added to the site as it grows.
My web creation tool of choice and content management system is WordPress.
WordPress has been in service since 2003 and it was founded by Mathew Charles “Matt” Mullenweg.
Now, who is Matt Mullenweg?
He is an online entrepreneur, a web Developer as well as a Musician from San Franciso and is the brains behind WordPress.
WordPress started as a blogging content management system and since its inception have gone on to become the most popular blogging software in the market. However, the last 5 years have seen WordPress develop into a content management system that goes beyond blogging sites and have gone on to power big major sites owned by Fortune 500 companies and celebrities.
One of the most famous blogs using WordPress includes Mashable and TechCrunch.
Giant news networks like The New York Times blogs also utilise WordPress to power their sites.
1. WordPress is free and it’s easy to use
Once you have installed WordPress on your hosting, you can log in to your WordPress admin panel. Inside you will see that all the main functions to operate your WordPress site can be found on the left hand side of the admin panel.
The various tools to help you manage your site like creating your posts or article, to create your page, etc can all be found on the left hand side of the admin panel. This intuitive aspect of WordPress makes it a very easy choice for me when it comes to the selection of a CMS to power my sites.
You do not need to be in front of the computer to publish a post or a page on your WordPress site. WordPress allows you to do the above from any mobile devices.
You can publish from your laptop and even your mobile phone. WordPress have created an app that allows you to not only create the post but also publish right there from your smart phone.
I have personally used the app and I can say that WordPress have done a great job at making the whole process of publishing so simple.
You don’t need to know any html in order to manage a WordPress site.
The post and page editor basically handles most of the hard work for you.
If you need an image in a post, you just need to click on the insert image button and the WordPress system will guide you along from either choosing an image that is already in your image gallery or you can just click on the upload image button to upload a new image that you might have just created.
Nevertheless, if you do know some html, it would definitely be an advantage for you as some areas on like the widget area might just benefit from some basic html.
This is something that you might have heard over and over again.
Yup, it is true.
When it comes to the search engines, content is king and WordPress for that matter is the king of content management.
Adding content to a WordPress site is super simple and the fact that you can speedily put up content on your WordPress site makes Google like your site more.
On top of that WordPress also allows you to customise your permalinks.
Change the theme of your WordPress site whenever you want.
There are thousands of wordpress themes that you can choose from. Some are free while others are known as premium themes which you have to purchase.
They are called premium by their creators and are offered for sale. Take note that anyone can create a WordPress theme and label it as premium. These themes are usually created by professional theme designers and are often perceived to be of a higher quality than the themes that are free.
These themes might have advanced features that a user might need and some are designed for specific use such as a property site of a site for Photographers in mind.
There are many quality WordPress theme Developers and if you decide to purchase a premium theme, do some research on the various theme developers and list down the advantages that each theme developer offers.
Choose a theme that meet your requirements.
A good thing about premium themes is that they are usually designed with the current web standards in mind. Furthermore, premium theme Developers will usually update their themes as web technology progresses.
In the past, most themes were not mobile friendly. When Google made it a requirement for all sites to be mobile friendly in order for it to be ranked well on the search engine rankings, most of the premium theme Developers responded quickly and made their themes mobile friendly.
You will also get support for the theme and if you happen to meet with an issue while using the premium theme, the support from the premium theme developer will definitely be of help to you.
WordPress was originally built for blogging but it has grown to a platform that is more than that at the moment and can even act as a portal and be used to build an authority site.
As such, if you need to have a blog on your site, WordPress in my opinion is more than able to help you have that function on your site.
You can create categories for your blog posts and WordPress is able to handle the blog aspect of your articles such as the time and date it was published and also the author behind that particular article.
Your article will also have permalinks that you can customise.
This will of course be a great benefit for your site as it makes it easier for the search engines to understand what your article is all about and hence be able to categorise it accordingly.
Plugins are software that have been created to extend the functionality if your WordPress site.
The use of plugins is also one of the benefits of having a self hosted WordPress site when compared to using sites hosted by WordPress.
There are thousands of WordPress plugins out there. Yes, there are many and the number of plugins being developed on a monthly basis and being put up in the WordPress.org plugin directory is increasing.
Like WordPress themes, some of the plugins are free while some are premium and you need to pay to have those plugins.
The advantage of using paid plugins is that they provide support for the plugin and will help you out if you encounter any issues or problems with the plugin.
Do take note that most of the time the plugins work seamlessly with the WordPress core but there are times when a plugin’s code conflict with another plugin’s code.
You might encounter these compatibility issues but if you paid for a premium plugin you might be able to get the support team of the premium plugin to provide you with the solution.
As WordPress becomes more popular over the years, more programmers with WordPress coding experience becomes available and you can get programmers with WordPress experience to help you customise your site and even to help you build your own custom plugin.
I have personally gotten programmers to customise WordPress plugins for me and I found them on the outsourcing site at upwork.
Learn to use upwork to get work done for you by experienced professionals. However, do spend some time to check out the background of the people who applied to take up your work.
Ask them questions and take a look at their portfolio.
Also, do spend some time to look at the reviews left by others who have engaged them. That will tell you a lot about the person that you are about to hire.
You can create a membership site using WordPress.
There are several plugins that you can use that can help you create the membership site that meets all your requirements.
Wishlist is one plugin that I use to create my membership site.
It handles the login aspects as well as handle the payment that you will get from the members of your community.
There are other membership scripts out there that you can use and as usual do your due diligence and take a look at the features that each plugin offers.
Some plugins only require you to make a one time payment and there are others that may charge you a monthly fee.
I personally prefer the one time payment option plugins as I feel that they are good enough in terms of the features that they offer and is good value for money.
Building an e-commerce store using WordPress is definitely a smart option.
Why do I say that?
It is actually for two very simple reasons.
First it is cost effective to use WordPress as an online store as you do not have to play any monthly fees except of course the payment you have to make for your hosting, domain and a premium template that allows for woo commerce integration.
Best of all, the woocommerce plugin that powers the shopping cart on your WordPress site is also free of charge.
You might need to pay for extensions to improve the existing woocommerce capabilities, but out of the box, woocommerce works fine allright.
Secondly, you own all the content that is on your WordPress site.
If you sign up with a service that allows you to setup shop on their hosted platform, in principle the data is owned by the company which provides that e-commerce platform.
I personally use WordPress sites to power my e-commerce sites and so far they have been working well for me.
If you plan to have multiple authors on your site, WordPress is able to handle that.
Each author can have his or her own profile and each author will also have his or her own username and password in order to access the admin panel of your WordPress site.
When an article has been written and posted, WordPress is able to recognise the author and publish the article or post as that of the author that wrote it.
If you are staring out with your first site, do give WordPress a serious consideration.
You will be surprised how easy it is to manage a WordPress site.
Wishing you a wonderful journey with WordPress!