What is WordPress? Put simply, WordPress is the simplest, most popular way to create your own website or blog. A more in-depth definition of WordPress is:
“WordPress is a free and open-source content management system based on PHP & MySQL. Features include a plugin architecture and a template system. It is most associated with blogging but supports other types of web content including more traditional mailing lists and forums, media galleries, and online stores”
Just how popular is WordPress? It is currently powering 26% of the web. This popularity is due to the fact that WordPress makes building websites available to all. Gone are the days of custom coded websites that require years of skill to create. While WordPress offers robust capabilities, it has a solution for all skill levels and requirements. So, what can you make with WordPress? The answer is almost anything you can think of.
What Can You Make with WordPress?
WordPress started as an easy and effective way to start a blog. While WordPress is still the most popular way to make a blog, it has evolved into much more than a blogging platform. Some of the other things you can make with WordPress are:
- eCommerce Store: WordPress is currently the most popular way to create an eCommerce store.
- eLearning Platform
WordPress’s evolution has been in large part due to changes to the core code, as well as WordPress’ massive ecosystem of plugins and themes. More on those shortly.
Who Uses WordPress?
WordPress isn’t just popular amongst bloggers and smaller businesses. It powers some of the largest websites in the world. In fact, nearly ¼ of the top 1,000 websites in the world are built using WordPress. Even companies with the expertise to create a website from scratch trust WordPress. Some well-known websites built on WordPress include:
This list makes one thing clear. WordPress can be used to create websites of all kinds and is more than capable of handling 100,000s of visitors day in and day out.
Why Should You Use WordPress?
We could create an exhausting list of reasons to use WordPress. Instead of doing so, we compiled a short list of the main reasons we love WordPress:
1. Small Learning Curve
Simplicity is the genius of WordPress. Developing websites used to be hard. Like, go to school for four years or more hard. While WordPress may not be as easy to use as drag and drop builders like Wix, most people can feel comfortable within the first day.
If you develop websites for clients, this small learning curve is a major asset. At Outspoke, we pride ourselves on creating beautiful websites that our clients can manage. Thanks to WordPress’s easy to use interface, we are able to give our clients full control over their website so they aren’t reliant on us to make even the simplest changes.
How much does WordPress cost? Pricing varies, but you can get started for free. While you will need to pay for hosting (all websites do), you can pick from a large library of free themes. Want more flexibility? WordPress also has premium themes that are far more robust. These premium themes usually cost between $30-$100.
We always advise our clients not to build a website based on where they are, but instead where they hope to be. Many business owners jump at the cheapest website builder when they are first getting started. They soon realize that they have outgrown the simple solution and then turn to WordPress.
WordPress is capable of supporting any sized business. Look no further than the list above. If WordPress can power the White House’s website, chances are it will be able to power yours for years to come.
There is a reason why some of the most visited websites in the world use WordPress. That reason is trust. WordPress is not only extremely secure thanks to built-in security measures, but it is also rarely sees outages. We rely heavily on WordPress because we know once the site is delivered to a client it will continue to work for years to come.
WordPress does require occasional updates, but they will notify you so all you have to do is click a button. Your website will be the main entity that people interact with. When you think of it this way, trust is key!
Since WordPress is open-source software, developers can create and offer plugins. WordPress plugins are pre-packaged solutions to all sorts of problems. Need to add a calendar to your website? There is a plugin for that. Want to optimize your website for search engines like Google? You guessed it, there is a WordPress plugin for that. If the theme you choose is lacking a certain feature or you don’t know how to implement it, chances are there is a solution in the WordPress plugin library. There are 50,000+ WordPress plugins in the official directory, with new ones being added daily.
Keep Reading: Top 10 Wordpress Plugins
What Is The Difference Between WordPress.com and WordPress.org?
As you begin the process of setting up a WordPress website, you may notice that there are actually two different WordPress options. Let’s discuss the differences:
WordPress.org, often called self-hosted WordPress, is the free, open-source WordPress software that you can install on your own web host to create a website that’s 100% your own.
WordPress.com is a for-profit, paid service that is powered by WordPress.org software. It’s simple to use, but you lose much of the flexibility of the self-hosted WordPress.
Which one should you choose? We recommend WordPress.org. While there are use-cases for both, choosing WordPress.org from the start will ensure you have a website that is unique, as well as scalable as your needs continue to evolve.
How To Get Started with WordPress
1. Find Hosting For Your Site
2. Choose A Domain Name
3. Choose Your Theme
4. Design Key Pages
5. Add Necessary Plugins
6. Launch Your Site