A Basic Guide to WordPress

Since WordPress came onto the scene in 2003 it has become the world’s most powerful and most widely-used content management system (CMS): a software suite that lets users create, manage and modify content on a website.

There are all sorts of website builders available online – some free, some expensive, some simple to use, some requiring coding knowledge. And then there’s WordPress!

What is WordPress?

Since WordPress came onto the scene in 2003 it has become the world’s most powerful and most widely-used content management system (CMS): a software suite that lets users create, manage and modify content on a website.

WordPress had humble beginnings. It started out as an open source tool developed by two bloggers to enable fellow bloggers to easily post their offerings on the world wide web.

It took off like a rocket, and quickly became a vast community project involving tens of thousands of talented contributors who all continuously put in their expertise to enhance its development.

Today WordPress powers more than 43% of all websites on the internet. It’s the “go-to” platform for everyone from individuals, sole traders, businesses and organisations of all sizes who want to establish and manage an online presence.

WordPress has evolved from a blogging platform into a comprehensive CMS that can power websites for all purposes, from simple brochure sites to complex e-commerce market places and everything in-between.

How does WordPress Work?

One of the reasons why WordPress is so popular is its flexibility, versatility and adaptability to suit various types of websites.

It runs on a database system, enabling users to add, modify and organise a host of elements like files, themes and plugins – all accessed via a dashboard from where a site can be managed.

The extensive WordPress theme library means users can change the look and feel of their website easily, ensuring a unique and personalised online presence. The platform’s plugin architecture allows for the seamless integration of additional features and functions, ranging from social media sharing to advanced SEO.

Creating and editing content on a WordPress website is as easy as A-B-C using the WordPress CMS, which is similar to using a word processor, making it the ideal platform for small business websites for companies who don’t run an IT department.

What is the WordPress Community?

As its scalability and vast ecosystem of themes and plugins has grown, WordPress has become embraced wholeheartedly by professional website designers and developers, who in turn are contributing their own expertise to the platform’s continuous improvement.

WordPress has become a vast web development community to be reckoned with on all fronts, from design standards to security requirements, reliability to SEO.

WordPress is committed to being open source, which means that the software’s source code is freely available to anyone to inspect, modify and distribute. This fosters an ongoing collaboration and innovation within the WordPress community, which means developers are continually improving and evolving the platform, while identifying and addressing any vulnerabilities.

In other words, WordPress is good, and just keeps getting better, fuelled by the input and support of the tens of thousands of web developers all over the world who use it, know and love it.

What are WordPress Plug-Ins and Themes?

Probably the most exciting thing about building a website with WordPress is the almost limitless possibilities for functionality that are offered by the vast range of plugins available for customising a website.

WordPress plugins are pieces of software that quite literally plug into the site, to make small tweaks or massive changes, depending on what features you want to include.

You can enhance your site with anything from WooCommerce (the WordPress dedicated e-commerce solution for managing online stores with ease) to a social media share button; a contact form to an email opt-in option; a beautiful slider to improving your on-page SEO.

Experienced web developers keep up to date with all the latest WordPress plugins and can use them to tailor a website to their clients’ specific needs without having to develop custom coded solutions from scratch.

WordPress themes are another important component in the platform’s customisation capability.

Themes dictate the visual appearance of a website, providing a template for its layout, colour scheme, and typography. The WordPress theme repository offers a huge variety of free and premium themes, catering to different industries, design preferences, and functional requirements. Users can choose a theme that aligns with their brand identity and easily switch between themes to give their website a fresh look without affecting the underlying content.

Is it Easy to Build a WordPress Website?

If you have the time, patience and inclination you can probably build a simple WordPress website from scratch for yourself, without any technical knowledge of skills, learning as you go.

If, however, you want a website that works on all levels for your small business you would be well advised to seek some professional help.

Digital agencies like Dentons Digital make it their business to produce excellent, affordable WordPress websites for clients, who can then go away and keep their sites maintained and updated themselves (with support available when needed).

Some of the most important things that make WordPress websites so eminently well-suited for businesses are that they are:

  • SEO-friendly – meaning top level exposure on the search engines.
  • Responsive – they work well on different electronic devices.
  • Secure – a strong security framework with regular updates.
  • Scalable – can expand and grow with the business.
  • Easy to Update – with a simple to use CMS.
  • E-Commerce ready – add in a plugin and seamlessly become an e-store.

Want to find out more about cost-effective, professionally built WordPress websites and how they can be tailored for your needs? Call 01373 482774 or email info@dentonsdigital.com.

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