WordPress Guide - In my several years of working with business owners to create websites, I’ve encountered two very typical scenarios.
WordPress Guide - The first scenario is the do-it-yourself business owner who learns just enough HTML to cobble together a website either from scratch or from some template or theme-based site. Typically, the website is just adequate, and maybe not quite as professional looking as expected. “But it’s just temporary until I get the time to really do it right,” says the owner. More often than not, the site is quickly neglected because additions and modifications are just too cumbersome for the busy owner.
The second scenario is the business owner who is willing to spend some money on a web developer to create a site. In this case, the website often ends up costing more than expected. Additionally, the business owner often becomes dependent on the web developer for any future additions or modifications, driving costs even higher.
Both of these scenarios are far from ideal.
If you find yourself in, or contemplating, either of these scenarios, then this guide is for you. Whether you do it yourself, or hire a developer, this guide will help you turn WordPress into an excellent platform for your business website.
Bloggers have long known of the benefits of WordPress’s feature-set for creating a blog. However, recent upgrades to WordPress have transformed it into an excellent tool for easily creating and maintaining a business website – whether or not a blog is involved.
WordPress has matured into a robust website development platform largely through its enhanced user-interface, built-in SEO capabilities, and excellent content management features. When you add to this a huge range of available themes and an impressive array of plugins that extend the features of WordPress, you have one of the most powerful yet easy to use website development platforms available. And all of this for free!
The benefits of a WordPress site:
large selection of free themes
easy interface, even for beginners
built-in SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
simple, quick additions or changes
extended feature-set from plugins
large and increasing support community
WordPress is an “open source” application; which means that it’s free. As a business owner, you know that “free” isn’t necessarily the best choice. Sometimes “free” isn’t really free when you factor in the time and effort needed to implement a solution. But consider this: WordPress has been developed since 2003, with well over 200 active developers working on improving performance and features (this is far more developers than work on most commercial platforms). Since then, it has grown to be the largest self-hosted blogging tool in the world, in use by millions of sites. WordPress.com is the 12th most visited site in the world.
What makes WordPress especially attractive to the business owner is the simplicity of site maintenance. The interface in WordPress is well-designed and easy to learn. If you are familiar with basic formatting in a text editor, you are well on your way to understanding the WordPress interface.
WordPress 3.0 and 3.1x introduced some major features that may be of particular interest to the business owner, such as:
Grand unifier updater
Custom background and header images
New menu navigation
Customizable post formats
At this point, you may not know what all of these new features mean to you. For now, trust me that these features go even further to help you design, build and maintain a successful business website.
Who Is This Guide For?
If you are a small to medium-sized business owner and are looking for a better way to create or re-design your website, then this guide is for you. Even if you’re an entrepreneur looking to test the waters with a website to market your latest idea, this guide will be invaluable for helping you develop and maintain a website.
If you are a web designer who has been creating static HTML websites for your clients and want to find a better, easier way to create and maintain your client’s sites, then this guide is for you too.
And lastly, if you are a dabbler in website design and have been hearing about WordPress and want to know more, this guide will give you a clear picture of the benefits of creating and maintaining a website with WordPress.
Whoever you are, I hope you find this guide helpful. Enjoy your exploration into the world of WordPress!