The Lowdown on WordPress

DW Multimedia Web Design & Graphic Design

I've heard people talk about WordPress... What is it exactly?

Good Question, WordPress is and open source (free) website and blog creation tool. It's known as a CMS or Content Management System. Essentially, WordPress allows you to create a website or blog without really knowing the standard coding languages of the internet, namely HTML, CSS and Javascript.

Who uses WordPress?

WordPress supports building the simplest of websites with only one or two pages just as easily as it allows the biggest multinational companies to create world class mega-sites built and maintained by scores of administrators and designers - it's a universal web solution. Today, WordPress is by far the most popular CMS in the world. At the time of writing this, WordPress drives over 60 million websites worldwide with hundreds to thousands of new websites appearing daily.

Sounds great... If it's free and easy to use surely I can build my own website?

Absolutely! WordPress provides all the tools required to do this without the need for a web designer or developer.

Here's the 'but'

Although WordPress doesn't require any coding knowledge it does have a relatively steep learning curve for someone who has had no experience with using a CMS, working with databases and editing and optimising media files. There are some other considerations when developing with WordPress too.

As mentioned above, WordPress is incredibly popular for websites and blogs and with over 60 million users out there it's no wonder that WordPress website have become the most hacked, spammed and abused. It's important that your WordPress website is secure and invulnerable to monthly, daily and even hourly attacks by spambots or worse.

Building your own website requires an element of planning, the framework of the website needs to be imagined. How many pages do I need? what do I want to say? what do I need to say? What content is required? what's the best way to write the content? What images to I need? What should my logo be? ... and so on. If you feel you are able to deal with even half of the questions listed above then your are more than capable of building your own website using WordPress. You will need to learn a little about installing a CMS on your hosts server and a little about the MySQL database WordPress uses but it's all within your reach.

However, many small businesses simply don't have the time to dedicate to this task or the confidence in their abilities to construct a website that will produce the results they need. This is were a web development company who has years of experience constructing good looking, feature rich and secure WordPress websites can be useful.

Are WordPress websites quicker for you to build and therefore cheaper for us to commission?

In theory, yes... But it's a little more complex in reality. Actually build time for a WordPress Website can take the same time or longer than an 'old fashioned' hand coded website. This is due to a number of factors. WordPress administration runs at the speed of the hosting server. Making relatively simple changes can involve waiting time whilst the system catches up with itself. A hand coded website can be updated instantly, usually allowing for a developer to make 3-5 changes in the same time it takes to make one change on a remotely hosted WordPress website.

WordPress websites offer a wealth of rich, dynamic and interactive technologies via the huge library of add ons, known as plug-ins and graphical looks and styles, known as themes. Naturally one should exploit these feature benefits offered up by the WordPress platform. However, this all adds extra development time to the WordPress build. Such features may be difficult or impossible to implement on a hand codes website and are never considered from the beginning which reduces development time in the long run.

To summarise, WordPress web development can provide your business with a website that looks great, is usable, is optimised for SEO and has some great features and technologies simply not possible with a bespoke hand coded website. It can also provide this at a very competitive price due to reduced development time to hand coding. We price each commission on the size and scope of the project and choose, with your backing what we think is the best framework for your requirements.