While I’ve spoken about this before, I think it’s important to start an article about how WordPress works with a disclaimer highlighting the differences between WordPress.com and WordPress.org.
In all reality I don’t know why WordPress couldn’t come up with a catchier, easier way to differentiate between the two platforms. (Has anyone ever asked them? 🤔 )To learn how WordPress works you also need to learn the very specific differences between WordPress.com and WordPress.org — if you’re not already familiar this is a great article to get you started.
Awesome, now that that’s out of the way I can move on to the more pressing matter here: how WordPress works and what exactly that means for you and your business.
WordPress(.org) is a content management system that houses all the information needed to create your website, and helps translate it into the actual content that is seen when someone visits your URL. That’s a very, very basic description of what WordPress does, but it really captures the essence of the software.
WordPress is free and can be loaded to any hosting account as a starting point for the website you’re going to build. On top of it you’ll layer themes, page builders and plugins to achieve the final look and customization you’re going for.
Why is WordPress so great?
I’ll dive deeper into this question in a minute, but I like to point out one important statistic because listing all the reasons WordPress is so great. A whopping 42% of the web is built using WordPress. That statistic alone should give you pause because I know you can probably list 5 or more website platforms without batting an eye, but almost half the world’s web usage is on WordPress. How come? Read on to learn more about what makes WordPress so unique.
How WordPress Works: Three Reasons WordPress is the Only Choice For You
- WordPress is endlessly customizable.
No, really. If you can dream it, you (or your developer) can build it. From e-commerce, to membership portals, to courses, and everything in between, WordPress offers near limitless capabilities through the use of plugins, themes and page builders so that your final site will be exactly what you dreamed of.
- WordPress is easy to use.
Hear me out on this one. Sure, there are some hurdles to jump over prior to starting your first WordPress website. But once you’re in it’s intuitive and because so many of the world’s websites are built using the platform you can easily find answers to all your questions, join forums to learn more, and read documentation from WordPress and hosting providers to get it all done, right, the first time.
- WordPress is SEO friendly.
Search Engine Optimization (which I’ll get to in another blog post) is one important way that potential clients will find themselves on your website. WordPress uses standard compliance high-quality code and produces semantic markup which is a really fancy way of saying Google and other search engines love WordPress.
I could go on and on about the benefits of WordPress, but really if limitless customization doesn’t do it for you then there’s a small chance that another platform is right for you.
While I personally and professionally always choose to use WordPress for my own and client websites, there are other platforms out there. While I wouldn’t suggest using most of them, I will give a slight nod and honorable mention to the Squarespace website builder for a reason that’s in direct contention with why I love WordPress: Squarespace is *not* endlessly customizable and as such helps you produce well-designed websites without needing to know a whole lot about the actual *design* side of things. Their drag-and-drop modules make it easy to produce something that looks thoughtfully designed, without needing years of experience to achieve the look.
I would still highly caution against using Squarespace if you intend to have a dynamic website that grows as your business does (for that I recommend WordPress, duh!) but it’s an alternative that might help you get something up and out there on the web.
What can you build with WordPress?
In short, how WordPress works and how it can help you build the website you’ve been dreaming of can often seem complicated but in reality just require the right knowledge and know-how to really dive in.
If you like the way I explain things and know you need a helping hand to get your website and business off the ground don’t forget to sign up for the waitlist to Wandersoul Website Society – it’s a new membership launching for Q3 that is unlike anything you’ve been a part of before that breaks down the design and systems strategies I use with my own clients to help them streamline and scale WITHOUT working on the weekends. You in?