One important thing to consider when building your first website– whether you’re a business, a freelancer, or anything and anyone, really– is that not everyone is adept in the language of code and software development. You could be, for instance, a chef who wants to publish his recipes online. You could also be a Fine Arts undergrad who needs a professional-looking portfolio, or a start-up business that needs a site of their own. Whether it’s one or the other or anything in between, the fact remains that while some of us may be familiar with the basics of code, we aren’t all full-time developers, and that not everyone who needs or wants a site knows how to make one from the bottom up. This is where WordPress might come in handy. Enter the question: “Why WordPress?”
WordPress is a Content Management System, Making It Totally User-Friendly.
The first thing you need to know is that WordPress is a Content Management System (or CMS). In simpler terms, this means that WordPress allows its users to create websites without having to build code from scratch. It has a systematic, organized interface that lets you constantly keep things in check without having to tinker with code every now and then.
Compared to building a website from scratch, which would typically start out like this:
You might ask yourself, though: “WordPress seems great, but what if it doesn’t have the features I want for my site?”, or “what if I want a map, a music player, or a caching engine, or a more reliable security system?”
…Technically speaking, WordPress probably does have that feature you want, and it will come in the form of a WordPress Plugin.
Plugins: The Cherry on Top of the WordPress Cake
If you’re worried that WordPress doesn’t include that particular feature you might want on your site, don’t worry: it probably does.
Plugins are “extension features” that exist to increase your WordPress site’s functionality. If you’re an entrepreneur who needs a contact form for your site, you might want to take note that WordPress in itself doesn’t have that feature, but there are tons of plugins that do. And since WordPress is open-source—meaning just about anyone can contribute to its development—new plugins are created regularly. You can get that contact form you want, and more. You get the freedom to add other plugins ranging from social sharing buttons, to maps, and even additional security measures for your site, among many, many other features and extensions. Now tell me that doesn’t sound neat.
As of now, WordPress has about thousands of these plugins—and some of them are even available for free and/or have free versions, including PBS.
Open Source: The WordPress Community
WordPress is Open Source. This means that anyone is free to contribute to its development, and anyone is open to study its backbone code to learn more about software development, and even WordPress itself. There are even businesses that are solely dedicated to creating and developing WordPress-related products, such as the plugins and themes (like us!)
Because WordPress is open source, there are tons of users, developers, and even designers that constantly collaborate and even help each other out with WordPress-related problems. This way, you get real help from real people, and at the same time, learn from each other. This is something that your typical customer relations services hardly ever get to do.
WordPress is Legit.
CNN, The Official Star Wars Blog, Time Magazine, and even (GASP!) Beyonce all have WordPress-run sites, among many others. These big names aren’t the only thing that backs up WordPress’ legitimacy, too– according to Treehouse.com, about 25% of all sites up on the web are run by WordPress. Considering how many millions and thousands of websites exist… well, 25% is a pretty big number.
WordPress has a ton of themes available for you and your site. You’re free to choose from free versions, premium ones, or even build one on your own (or hire someone to build it for you!).
Yep, you read that right. Through Local Development, WordPress is totally free, and you can install it in your computer with the click of a button. Likewise, instead of hiring a developer, you could use whatever knowledge you have about code to learn more about how WordPress works (and hey, learning is always good).
…not to mention that if there is a chance you don’t have time to get too deep into WordPress and site building, you could always get yourself a nifty page builder plugin and give ours a go.
Remember that there are endless possibilities with WordPress, and it doesn’t need to take a genius to figure out how it all works!
Using WordPress can save you a lot of time, money, and effort. And in a time when there’s very little of those resources, bear in mind that WordPress sites, their plugins (like PBS!), their themes, and its community especially, can totally help you out and make things much, much easier for you.