[This blog post is part of the Ultimate-Guide-to-Launching-a-Wordpress-Powered-Website-For-Your-Small-Business Series. Check out the rest here!]
So I’m a huge fan of WordPress, you could go as far as to say that I love WordPress. It is an awesome way to manage your website for your small business.
The History of WordPress
WordPress was started in 2003 by Matt Mullenweg and Mike Little as a fork of a blogging platform B2/café log, the name WordPress was suggested by one of Matt’ Mullenweg’s friends, Christine Selleck.
While WordPress started off as a platform strictly for Blogs it has now evolved into much for of that and can be used as a Content Management System (CMS) for Most Websites.
There are two versions of WordPress; WordPress.com and wordpress.org.
WordPress.com provides a hosted solution for those who are wanting to have a blog up and running quickly. However, there are quite a few limitations to using WordPress.com
WordPress.org is where you can download the self-hosted version of wordpress which will enable you to have wordpress hosted on your own webhost and you can use it to manage your content and start driving traffic to your website to increase the amount of business that you are getting.
I highly recommend that you use the Self Hosted WordPress Platform and here are my Top 5 Reasons Why You Should Use WordPress for your small business website.
1. WordPress is Free
Yep that’s right, you read that correctly, it is Free. WordPress has been developed under a license called a the General Public License or GPL which is an open source license for anyone in the world to not only use the code but also to modify the code so long as they maintain the boundaries within the GPL. Because WordPress is open source the advantages of this are that there are many developers around the World ensuring that WordPress is up to date and constant being improved. Its like having an entire team of Web Developers on your staff at no cost to you. How do you like the sound of that?
2. WordPress is Easy to Use.
I think this is worth repeating, WordPress is easy to use. When I first started in Web Design and Development I started off using another open source software platform called Joomla, which quite frankly is very hard to use for the average person. I even enrolled in a Joomla Boot camp from a well established Web Design Instruction Company but still found it very difficult to get websites up and running quickly. Hence I eventually started looking for another solution and eventually “stumbled” upon wordpress and quickly started learning everything I could about it.
WordPress is easy to use because it enables you to update and change content without have to know about html or css programming code. Basically if you know how to use Microsoft Word, than you will have no problem using wordpress.
3. WordPress is Highly Customizable.
WordPress uses a theme template system. Basically a theme is a “skin” that you put on WordPress to make it look different. Just as you and I put on different clothes everyday (well at least I hope you do) to look different so it is with WordPress that you can change the look of your WordPress website without drastically effecting the content. This allows you to have much more control over the look and presentation of the material on your website.
WordPress comes with a basic Twenty Ten Theme installed and also has a Theme Directory that at the time of this writing has over 1384 themes to choose from. There are also a multitude of premium wordpress themes to choose from, one of which is the Headway Theme, which is my personal favorite and the one that I recommend.
4. WordPress Has a Lot of Plugins Available to Customize Your Site
As stated previous WordPress is highly customizable, not only in the way it looks but also in the way it functions. There are a multitude of wordpress plugins for you to choose from depending on what needs you have for your small business. However, I have to advise a word of caution, not all plugins are created equal, some of them are poorly coded and may even have malicious code written into them. One way to keep your website safe is to only download plugins that are available in the WordPress Repository or that are from highly trusted third party sources with a large amount of verifiable testimonials. I’ll be suggesting various plugins in future posts that meet the criteria for you to use on your WordPress Website.
5. WordPress is SEO Friendly
Last but not least, WordPress is Search Engine Optimization Friendly. In other words, Google Loves WordPress. Many information internet marketers (including myself) using wordpress to quickly create and deploy websites for marketing purposes and can easily rank a website on the first page of Google and get traffic because of the way that wordpress is built and the fact that you can so easily publish content and on the internet content is king.
That being said, WordPress isn’t perfect for SEO out of the box. One of the SEO weakness of WordPress out of the box is the fact that you cannot add Custom Titles or Meta Tag Descriptions to your pages or posts plus the fact that because of the different taxonomies ( ways that wordpress uses to organize and display content) you can run into duplicate content issues. However, in upcoming posts I will show how to solve all of the WordPress SEO issues.
Are you using WordPress to Power Your Website? Or are you frustrated with what you are currently using? I’d love to hear your thoughts/feed back in the comments below.
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