“I like WordPress, but my boss hates it.”
“Isn’t WordPress just for blogs?”
“Why should I use WordPress to power my website?”
As a WordPress experts, we often hear concerns about the viability of WordPress. Is it more than just a blogging platform? Is WordPress secure? Will it be robust enough to power an entire business website?
The answer to all these questions is a resounding yes. And we’d like to tell you why you should be using WordPress to power your website right now. But first, a little history.
The history of WordPress
It’s true, WordPress began as a personal publishing system, powered by PHP and MySQL. In 2002, Matt Mullenweg released WordPress under the GPL open source license. The platform (and the enthusiastic developer community around it) implemented plugins in 2004, and a theme system in 2005.
By 2009, WordPress had a theme installer tool and image editing capabilities; by 2013, it featured native support for audio and video content and automatic security updates.
In 2016, WordPress reached a major milestone: the release of the REST API. Why is that special? The REST API elevates WordPress from a CMS and publishing platform into an application platform. That means WordPress is not only capable of true mobile integration, but no longer reliant on PHP as its core. That means new developers, including Android and iOS developers, can use WordPress for their mobile apps.
WordPress is Everywhere
As of now, WordPress already powers one-third of the Internet. REST API stands to vault WordPress’ numbers to 50% or more.
In other words, WordPress isn’t going anywhere. It’s one of the most powerful and popular web platforms in the world, and it’s only getting bigger.
But do major companies use WordPress to run their websites? All the time. Some people believe that because WordPress is open-source, it might be less reliable or secure than other platforms. Nothing could be further from the truth. These companies, and many others, trust their websites to WordPress: TechCrunch, Bloomberg, Sony Music, Disney, BBC America, AMC, The Chicago Sun-Times, Wired, TED, and Reuters, to name a few.
Even the White House switched to WordPress from Drupal in 2017. According to the Washington Examiner, the switch may save taxpayers up to $3 million a year. Imagine what it could do for your website.
Why WordPress Rocks
But just because it’s popular, does that mean it’s good? In fact, WordPress is better than good. It’s great. Here’s why.
WordPress is easy. WordPress has been in development for over fifteen years. It’s designed so a user can install it and be ready to go with a minimum of effort. Many web hosts feature a one-click install of WordPress. You can have your site up and running in under five minutes.
WordPress is customizable. Entire companies now make their living from WordPress development creating plugins and themes for WordPress. If you can dream up a functionality or feature for your website, chances are decent a plugin already exists to make it possible. WordPress is also one of the most flexible platforms in the world.
There are countless themes ready to make your website beautiful. If you want something custom-built by a web developer, good news! WordPress makes it simple to change the look and feel of a website without having to rebuild from the ground up. The aesthetics of a site exist apart from content, so you can change the appearance of your site completely without losing anything.
WordPress is responsive, optimized for SEO, and mobile-friendly. WordPress addresses many SEO issues right out of the box. SEO plugins make getting discovered easier still. The native WordPress theme is already mobile-friendly, as are most modern themes. That’s one less thing for you to worry about when making a website. WordPress just does it for you.
WordPress scales. Whether you’re running a small website with a team of one, or a major corporation employing hundreds, WordPress can handle the load. There’s a reason it’s trusted by high-volume sites all around the world. This is in part thanks to the extensible nature of WordPress. If your website should need a new feature or capability you didn’t know you wanted, there’s a plugin for that.
WordPress is well-supported and open-source. Because it’s been around so long, WordPress has built up a passionate community of users and developers who believe in the platform. It’s one of the best-supported platforms in the world, built with open-source ideals in mind. WordPress conferences, called WordCamps, are always volunteer run, inclusive, and inexpensive to attend, which speaks volumes about the community. The speakers aren’t compensated for speaking or traveling, so people are truly doing it for the love of the platform. That means you can use your WordPress install the way you see fit, host it where you choose, and change it when it suits you.
WordPress takes security seriously. No website is hack-proof. As one of the most popular platforms in the world, WordPress attracts its fair share of attacks. But the WordPress community takes security seriously and most vulnerabilities are fixed very quickly. WordPress receives regular security updates to patch outstanding issues, and its two-factor authentication feature makes it harder for the software to be compromised. If you’re looking to beef up security even more, you guessed it… there’s a wealth of plugins to help toughen WordPress’ already formidable defenses.
Gutenberg and the Future of WordPress
Sometime in 2018, WordPress will release Gutenberg, a new kind of content editing. Up to now, WordPress used the TinyMCE post editor for managing content. Gutenberg will revolutionize how people create content on WordPress. The new editor will use “blocks” that empower users to create, arrange, lay out, and edit content with ease… without having to know code or even use a plugin. It will let users bring their content to life with unprecedented flexibility and simplicity.
WordPress is one of the most mature, well-supported, powerful engines for content creation on the Internet, and its future only looks brighter. Why should you use WordPress to power your website? A better question might be: why aren’t you using it already?
Give us a shout to see how your website could benefit from WordPress! We’d be happy to give you our thoughts.
Here are links to some of the big players using WordPress already. Aren’t you itching to join their ranks?