Are you thinking about building a website but not sure what platform to go with? Whether you’re building a blog or just a personal website, it’s wise to consider your options.
You hear a lot about WordPress these days, but is WordPress a good website builder? Is it portable? What are the advantages and disadvantages? We are going to answer these questions and much more. So sit tight, grab a cup of coffee, and let’s get started.
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The History Behind WordPress
WordPress was first released in 2003. Back in those days, most websites were being created by those who knew how to code HTML. Additionally, WordPress is open source and licensed under GPLv2+ or General Public License. So, that basically means it’s free.
It is a PHP based content management system. In layman’s terms that simply means it’s a pre-programmed website with a user-friendly dashboard. Originally designed as a blogging platform, in its 16-year history, it has become much more.
Today, WordPress supports everything from mailing lists to membership sites. The platform is based around website themes, which are the basic website layouts for which there are 1,000’s for free themes as well as paid ones and plugins. Plugins add additional functionality to WordPress and are typically one-click installs. There are once again, 1,000’s of plugins both free and paid, for just about everything you could imagine.
WordPress is now one of the most popular website builders out there. More than 27% of the top 10 million websites are WordPress. That is a huge chunk, my friends.
Why Is WordPress So Popular?
One of the biggest reasons WordPress has become so popular is that you don’t have to be a programmer to create a website. Most web hosting platforms now support it as a one-click installation. You can literally purchase a domain and have a basic website up and running within an hour (assuming your domain is online).
Next, it’s FREE. The only thing you need is a hosting plan and a domain (Bluehost is the officially recommended WordPress hosting provider). Since it’s open-source, anyone can create a theme or a plugin under GPL or a paid license. This has resulted in it being one of the most widely supported platforms out there today. WordPress can essentially be used to build just about any type of website.
WordPress’s architecture allows for extremely easy customization. If you don’t like your theme, just select a new one. Since your posts and pages all reside in a database behind the scenes, none of your web pages or posts are lost when switching themes. Need some additional functionality, browse the plugins directory and find a plugin that gives you what you need.
Also, when it comes to SEO (search engine optimization), an important factor for business websites, WordPress is extremely SEO friendly. With additional plugins like All-In-One SEO and Yoast, you have complete control over SEO on your website. In fact, WordPress websites actually rank higher in the search engines.
When it comes to managing a website, WordPress has to be one of the easiest. You are notified in your admin dashboard of all updates or themes, plugins, and even WordPress itself. These can be updated with the click of a button. Backups are also done with ease with many backup options available via plugins. You backup your website on a schedule or even clone your entire website.
What Kinds Of Website Can You Build With WordPress?
As we discussed earlier, WordPress can be used to build just about any type of website. In fact, I haven’t seen a website that couldn’t be built with WordPress
With all the advance features and available themes and plugins, you create any type of website you want or need. Here is just a short list of different types of sites you could build.
- A blog
- eCommerce website or online store
- An Affiliate Website
- A Personal blog
- Real Estate
- Customer feedback
- Portfolio website
- Membership website
- Online courses
- Q&A site
- Non-Profit site
- A Knowledgebase site
And many, many more. You can even build multilingual websites! All of these you can build with no programming skills or technical knowledge! So, is WordPress a good website builder? I couldn’t think of any easier way to build a website.
Advantages And Disadvantages of WordPress
We’ve talked a lot about what WordPress can do and what types of websites you can create. But, let’s be honest, everything has it’s plus’s and minus’s, right? Nothing is perfect. So, what are the real advantages and disadvantages when it comes to building your website with WordPress.
Here is the big list of the good and the bad.
- The platform is free: Some may argue there are additional costs, but only if you want to go beyond your basic website to a more advanced theme or plugin. The website you’re on here is WordPress and I’ve only paid $40 for a theme called GeneratePress Premium. So, yeah, I wanted something with more bells and whistles.
- Easy to use: You can’t get much easier than this. You can manage from any computer, heck I even manage it from my cell phone.
- You’re in control: You have complete control over your website. No worrying or waiting for a paid webmaster to something to your site. You have the keys.
- It’s Plug and Play: There’s no coding needed to add or change themes or plugins. Everything is truly plug and play.
- Versatility: What more can you ask for? This platform is so versatile you can do nearly anything. With Gutenberg blocks, it’s gotten even more versatile.
- Scalability: With WordPress, your website can be scaled as your business grows. Tens of thousands of pages and posts can be hosted without the worry of impacts to site speed.
- Customizable: Your site can be customized with ease. Switch themes, change colors, layouts, text, and more. Your site is totally customizable.
- SEO Friendly: As previously discussed. SEO is key to getting your website indexed. WordPress has in-built features and free plugins to make your website fully SEO’d.
- Security: WordPress can only be as secure as the person managing it and the hosting platform. This is true of any website though. If you follow security best practices with WordPress you should have no problem. This means strong passwords, disabling guest accounts, only using tested plugins, and keep all components up to date. As for hosting platforms, using providers such as SiteRubix and Bluehost that implement strong security measures is a must. STAY AWAY FROM CHEAP HOSTING PROVIDERS
- Updates: There does tend to be a lot of updates with themes, plugins, and WordPress itself. It’s not necessarily a bad thing though. Hackers will exploit any vulnerability. So, frequent updates mean more security and feature updates. Just look at how often Windows is updated. Anything that becomes popular becomes a target for hackers. It’s an unfortunate fact of life. So constant vigilance is required.
- Speed: With a lightweight theme WordPress is very efficient and fast. Where you run into problems is with having too many plugins and large images. Some people tend to install plugins for ‘everything’. This can slow down your site. Only use plugins that you really need. It’s not uncommon to have one or two dozen plugins but limit them to what’s really needed. The area that can slow down a WordPress site is not optimizing your images. Optimize your images with something like TinyPNG before you upload them and use an image optimizer plugin like EWWW Image Optimizer or Smush.
For me, the Pros outweigh the Cons when considering is WordPress a good website builder. Keeping in mind the recommendations above, the Cons be easily managed and minimized. Simply follow best practices for security and image optimization.
How To Start A WordPress Website
If you’ve decided to start a WordPress website, congratulations! You’ve made a wise choice and you’re for a great experience.
One of the best things about creating your own website is seeing the finished product. That sense of “Look what I’ve created!”. Reminds you of Tom Hanks in Castaway, huh. Seriously, you can’t go wrong.
There are a lot of places you can go to start your own website, but what if I told you a Free WordPress website? That would be cool, wouldn’t it? Well, you can at SiteRubix, a premier WordPress hosting platform. You can start right now, in the next few minutes, creating your own website for absolutely nothing. No need for even a credit card. Plus you can access free training to help you out.
Give it shot, you’ll have a great time creating your first WordPress website or two. Plus, no worry about messing anything up, just delete it and start all over with a new one.
Is WordPress a good website builder? I think that’s a resounding yes! WordPress has stood the test of time and now powers a very large percentage of websites on the internet. Current estimates are about 30% of all websites are using WordPress.
With the ability to easily create and customize your very own website, you are in total control. Thousands of themes and plugins give you the ability to create any type of website you need.
Don’t forget, get a Free SiteRubix website today.