You’re likely here because you’re considering using WordPress for your business website, but you’re not sure. With all of the platforms, website builders, and other options out there, it’s better to do your research than hop in and end up with a site you can’t manage or keep secure.
According to Alignable’s SMB Index, WordPress is the most trusted software for small business. And while it does have a learning curve, its flexibility and versatility make this website platform a great choice for long-term projects.
Here are 9 reasons WordPress would be best for your business:
1. WordPress Is Free
With the low costs to start a blog, WordPress is hard to beat.
However, the trade-off here is the upfront cost.
Since WordPress is self-hosted…unless you use WordPress.com – you’ll need to find a hosting company and buy a domain name (both can be relatively inexpensive). You’ll also need to set up the site, which can cost you time.
When you use WordPress it takes time to learn and master the platform. Since it’s one of the most popular website software, there are plenty of people who can help you set up your WordPress website — but you’ll still need to spend time to vet them, which can be difficult if you don’t know how to vet someone for WordPress (which also takes time to learn).
It’s up to you to decide how much time you’re willing to invest and if it makes sense for your project. For long-term projects, like a larger website you want to grow and scale for years to come, the investment is probably worth the time spent due to WordPress’ flexibility, scalability, and versatility. For a quick eight-page website, the investment might not be worth it.
2. Widespread Use
WordPress owns 50-60% of the global CMS market share, making it the most popular CMS platform for the 7th year in a row. It powers 14.7% of the top 100 websites in the world.
Why does this matter beyond pure popularity?
WordPress is where the developers, designers, support, and professionals are at. A large market = deep support for your firm and your website.
There are thousands of designers and developers who know WordPress. There’s no risk of being stuck with an awful developer just because he’s the only guy that knows [insert random software] inside and out.
Again, the tradeoff here is time. Lots of people “know” WordPress — it’s your job to know enough to vet these support roles to make sure you’re getting the results you need at a reasonable price.
There is a huge WordPress community that can help you in all aspects of your website.
WordPress can do it all!
Have you ever seen a cool contact form, picture slider, or some other neat functionality and wished you could implement it on your own site?
WordPress software makes it easy to do so. It uses a system called Plugins — where you can download and plug in third-party pieces of software to make your site look, act, and feel exactly the way you want.
This is what makes WordPress so popular. WordPress can be turned into literally anything — a simple blog, a massive news site with advanced search and categorizing functionality, a social network, auction site, an eCommerce store, etc.
If you want the ability to plug and play with different site elements and scale, WordPress is the go-to choice. Again, it helps to have a bit of context on how plugins work. They are individual pieces of software that add specific functionality to your website.
This means that anyone can develop any functionality imaginable and “plug it in” to WordPress. You can make WordPress look and function to your exact needs. Check out my best WordPress themes & best WordPress plugins for a list of ones I recommend you use.
4. SEO Friendly
One of the reasons I choose WordPress over other website builders is WordPress is very SEO friendly. Out of the box, WordPress creates web pages that a search engine will like.
If you want organic search traffic for your website, then WordPress is hard to beat. Within WordPress it is easy to create menus, and interlink between articles within your website. Both are important factors with SEO and website structure.
Then to take WordPress to it’s full SEO potential then there are plugins and choice of WordPress that matters. I recommend using SEOPress. They add support for creating meta titles, descriptions and schema.
With WordPress themes, not all of them are SEO friendly. Some themes generate web pages that help with SEO. I’ve found from my testing StudioPress Genesis framework and their templates create the best SEO friendly web pages.
5. Full Control Of Your Website
WordPress is open source, which means it’s not proprietary. It’s not owned by any company, and its copyright is licensed under the GPL. As an open-source, self-hosted website, you have complete control over your site. You own everything — your files, content, data, customizations, and even where you decide to host your website. This means if you wanted to switch hosting providers, you can with realitve ease. No one can stop you from moving your website.
Other website builders you are effectively locked into that vendor. In most cases, if they lack a feature you are out of luck. You must either ask for that feature to be added or find a possible workaround.
This can also mean as you needs change, you may need to switch another website builder. This can cost many hours of work and money to do this transfer. Mirgations from one CMS to another isn’t always an easy and plainless experience.
From my experience as a blogger, I do not know one professional who uses an altnerative to WordPress. WordPress since I’vew been blogging has been the “gold standard” in website usage.
WordPress websites range from small blogs with a few followers to some of the biggest websites online (like New York Observer, New York Post, TED, Thought Catalog, USA Today, CNN, Fortune.com, TIME.com, etc.). How can one platform power such different website types?
WordPress’ design flexibility and customization makes it a great choice for long-term, scalable work. You can easily start with a simple, template-based site and add on new features through plugins (or new themes) as you grow — all without having to pay for plan upgrades that other website platforms might charge.
And since WordPress is so hugely popular – and so flexible – many of your favorite web services sync right up to it. Do you do email marketing with MailChimp? It syncs right up. Want to install tracking, social media, eCommerce abilities, etc.? There’s a plugin for that.
It’s *that* flexible. If you’re looking to start small, get data, and then grow, WordPress is worth the time investment.
WordPress has a millions-strong active community with regular scheduled, open-source updates. As an open source platform, the code is open to the public, which means any weaknesses and vulnerabilities can be seen and fixed very quickly. As such, WordPress improves constantly because of real input by its users and developers.
WordPress is constantly putting out updates because it isn’t limited by a company’s resources — it’s powered by its community.
The key here is to make sure you keep your site up-to-date. The WordPress community may be dedicated to providing upgrades to keep the platform cutting edge, but they’re not responsible for making sure you keep your software updated. That falls on you as a website owner.
8. Choice in Web Hosting
When you use WordPress, you have the freedom to choose whatever hosting provider you want. This flexibility allows you to balance budget, features, support, etc. to fit your needs.
For example, if you’re building a massive site that needs tons of storage space, a super-fast server, and a built in email platform, you can choose the hosting options that fits that specific need. But if you don’t need that level of hosting, you’re not tied to it.
9. WordPress Is Secure
Here’s the thing — every system is vulnerable to hacking, especially if you are going to have the freedom and ownership that comes with a self-hosted website. So WordPress, like its competitors (Drupal, Joomla, etc.) gets hacked.
WordPress security is a popular topic. The difference with WordPress is that there are entire companies and thousands of people dedicated to closing vulnerabilities and making WordPress secure.
That’s the security benefit of using popular software.
But aside from website security, what you as a business owner should be concerned with is business security. The more dependent your business is on a vendor — whether it’s a company providing a non-self hosted website or a complex, hard-coded website that only a single developer and/or platform can manage — the less secure it is.
The biggest takeaway here is that WordPress can be an extremely powerful tool for your business — if it fits into your overall needs. Before you dive into selecting a website platform, do your homework. What exactly are you looking for in a website? What tradeoffs are you willing to make (time, money, resources, etc.)?