There are plenty of reasons that WordPress powers over 30% of the world’s websites. As a web designer, it is a platform that I occasionally use myself if it fits with a particular project. In the post we’ll cover some of the pros & cons of WordPress.
History Of Web Design
I’ve been designing websites for many years. I have worked with the early HTML language and later PHP. I used to be the first to criticise anyone for using the old Microsoft Frontpage software or the countless “Design Your Own Site” websites that are still around today.
The first time that I used WordPress, I felt like I was cheating. But soon realised the huge potential in this platform.
Dynamic & Mobile Friendly Content
Zoom forward to present day and the world’s biggest search engine which is of course Google, will now penalise the site ranking of sites that aren’t optimised for mobile display.
That’s right.. if your website doesn’t look good and work well on a mobile device, Google will drop your page ranking. As around 50% of site visitors now access websites on their smart phones, it has never been more important to make sure your website works well on mobiles.
WordPress Handles Mobiles Brilliantly
WordPress takes the transition from desktop to iPad to mobile seamlessly. This makes websites look good on all types of screens and devices.
CMS (Content Management System) has been around for a while. CMS allows the website owner to make changes, add content and update information themselves with little or no experience in website design. Posting a change to opening times for example is as easy as logging in and sending an email.
The user-friendly interface of WordPress means that on completion of a new website, I am able to give my client the simple instructions as to how to log in and make changes.
WordPress is a global open source project with thousands of developers around the world working on addons (known as plugins). I actually wrote the code for a couple of plugins myself back in 2008. One of which was downloaded by over 20,000 users.
E Commerce (Online Shops)
Over the years I have tried out all different types of online shopping carts. Don’t get me wrong there are better, premium cart software packages out there. WordPress’s shopping cart is called Woocommerce. Stand alone, it’s quite basic but there are plenty of pro-plugins that will bring it up to the bar. If your online shop isn’t overly complicated, WooCommerce does a good job.
End users seem confident with purchasing goods on WooCommerce, because it is familiar to them due to the fact that so many websites around the world use it.
WordPress is blogging software. That’s what it started out as and that’s what it still does well. In another article I’ll cover the importance of writing blog posts to boost your site’s credibility and page ranking.
Covering the pros & cons of WordPress, it would be unfair to say that the security within WordPress is one of the cons. However it is very, very important that the software and plugins are kept up to date.
If you use WordPress you have to make sure that the version is the latest, your plugins are up to date and your themes have taken the latest updates.
Failing to keep the software up to date leaves the site vulnerable to attack. That said, in defence of WordPress, installing updates is incredibly easy. You just have to make a point of logging in regularly to carry them out.
If this is carried out correctly, WordPress is a very secure environment to run a website on.
Do WordPress Sites Look Good?
Sites designed on WordPress can look fantastic. They can also look naff and homemade. It depends who has built it. Just like any other method or CMS platform.
I can tell if a site is powered by WordPress. That’s only because I look at websites differently. (If I see a design technique being used for the first time I dig in to find out how they have achieved it).
Remember that WordPress is just the software that the website runs on. The site still has to be designed to look good and optimised to perform well.
Furthermore, to make a site look good you still need to know your way around Photoshop to get the images right.
How Many WordPress Websites Are There In 2020?
There are statistics that suggest that over 30% of all websites in the world are powered by WordPress.
The future looks good for this platform as the developers continue to improve it. The best example of this was the recent switch over to “Gutenberg” mode. This was a huge change in the way that articles and content is written and organised. An extremely bold move which could have gone so wrong.
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