When it comes to creating blogs and websites, WordPress leads the pack as one of the most prominent content publishing platform out there. Since 2003, WordPress has powered more than 72 million websites worldwide, and there’s no sign of it ever slowing down.
WordPress is a free and open source web software that takes as little as five minutes or less to set up with a full access to thousands of free and paid plugins and themes to customise any website. Its versatility and ease-of-use has made it the top CMS of choice by almost anyone, beginners and professionals alike. Even big brands like Vogue, Forbes, eBay, Xerox, Time and Techcrunch rely on WordPress to publish different content on their websites.
To give you an idea of how WordPress has taken the world by storm, these graphs will show you some staggering stats that is nothing short of amazing.
As of June 2015, WordPress has more than 18 billion monthly page views across blogs hosted on WordPress.com and other self-hosted blogs that use the Jetpack plugin.
Active WordPress users published over 53 million new posts with more than 53 million legitimate comments posted each month.
Not bad for a content platform tool that started as an open source project developed by its founders, Matt Mullenweg and Mike Little, as a spin-off from the now-defunct blogging software called b2/cafelog.
Benefits of Using WordPress
Still not convinced that WordPress is the right CMS platform for your website? Take a look at these top 6 reasons why WordPress is better.
1. Do more than just blogging.
While WordPress is still used for blogging until today, they have long since transformed into a comprehensive Content Management System that can power all sorts of website needs, including sites for e-commerce, non-profit, business, product portfolio, classified ads, forums, social networking and many more. It is exceptionally versatile and user-friendly that virtually anyone can create their own WordPress site. If there are features that are not available for the user, there will always be a whole gamut of plugins and elegant themes to boost the WordPress site’s look and functionality. The only limitation is your imagination.
2. It is open source.
Since WordPress is 100% open source, it won’t cost you anything to download, install and customise the software. Its source code is available to anyone who wants to study and tweak it for their own website without having to pay anything.
3. Massive community.
Of all the popular blogging and CMS platforms, WordPress has, by far, the largest and most active community. This community is especially helpful if you need to do some custom development and you might have questions along the way. You can also search for answers in WordPress Codex, a handy online manual for anything WordPress or simply go to WordPress Development Stack Exchange, a forum site where WordPress developers and administrators can exchange questions and answers.
4. It is straightforward and easy to learn.
The main reason why millions of people are using WordPress is because it does an awesome job at making it simple and easy to understand even for non-technical users. It requires a low learning curve to quickly set up several websites without having to build all of them from scratch. Open source WordPress developers does all the heavy lifting by regularly updating the WordPress software and plugins without any charge. This is extremely useful if you don’t have the budget to hire a web developer to update your site.
5. It allows several users to contribute content.
WordPress enables site owners to add multiple users so they can post their content on the site. The administrator can also control the privileges given to each user by providing them the functionality to add content but not the access to the overall settings of the website.
6. It is SEO-friendly.
WordPress features high quality source codes and semantic markup that makes it search engine friendly. You can also optimise your site to boost its SEO power by installing a plugin like WordPress SEO Plugin by Yoast.
Downsides to Using WordPress
As much as WordPress has a lot going for it with all its great features and functionality that millions of users worldwide have exploited, it may not be the only solution for everyone. It is equally important to balance the positive aspects by understanding the downside to using WordPress that you might not have known before.
1. It is prone to security vulnerabilities.
Considering the fact that WordPress is the most widely-used CMS platform, it can be an easy target for serious security flaws. WordPress is an open source software that depends on its community of developers to create resources like plugins and themes to make websites more useful. These plugins and themes are written by different developers and there is no specific organization that moderates them which means that these resources are at risk to security bugs that might affect WordPress sites.
Granted that most of the major security issues have been fixed a few years ago, there could be some security vulnerabilities that might show up occasionally. The good thing is that the WordPress development team releases updates on a regular basis to ensure that possible issues are discovered and resolved quickly. Make sure to always stay updated and install stringent security measures for your site.
2. It needs to be constantly updated.
Software updates are required in order for WordPress to be up to speed with current browsers and remove any viruses or malwares. However, some plugins do not adjust to these updates which can leave them to not work properly as they should, if at all.
Frequent updates may also cost you thousands of dollars if you run into some issues with your website template. If you have the budget, you can hire a web developer to manage these updates. Otherwise, you can simply retrieve a backup copy of your website before updating to the newest WordPress version.
3. Customising your site can be expensive and time-consuming.
Sure, if you’re not that tech-savvy, you will find WordPress easy and simple to use. However, if you want your site to stand out and not look like everyone else, you would have to hire a web designer to build a website that you want. When done on your own, you might end up tweaking your site for months just to get your design and plugins right.
4. It has no customer support.
Developers working for WordPress do not provide support to its users; it is rendered by the community. You might find some forum threads with issues that remain unresolved or answers from inexperienced users that leaves much to be desired. If you’re not familiar with the technical aspects of WordPress, you might find it a bit overwhelming to wade through several forum threads and learn all the technical jargons.
5. It demands a lot of resources.
WordPress won’t work effectively unless you install a theme and several plugins. So the more plugins you install, the slower your website will be. In this case, it would be best to get a decent web hosting solution that scales according to your resource needs.
Ready to build your own WordPress website now? Check out our step-by-step guide where we’ll show how.
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