Personally, I researched for two years for a solid content management system (CMS) to host my 2,000 page static HTML site. I put many to the test with great frustration and wasted time as they were bulky, too complex, had frustrating interfaces, and high learning curve language as none of them spoke the same language, both in semantics and code. In fall of 2003, I kept stumbling across mention of this WordPress thing changing the whole concept of CMS, but it wasn’t called a CMS. It was called a blogging platform.
I tried WordPress and fell madly in love. It made sense. The interface was clean and simple and it was built on a simple dynamically generated HTML and PHP framework that I could easily incorporate into my existing award-winning design. By November of 2003, my site was relaunched on the six month old WordPress web publishing platform and I never looked back.
There are many reasons to choose WordPress, as many reasons as there are different types of enthusiasts for web design, development, and code.
For Those Who Love to Write and Share
For those who just love to write, to share their thoughts, images, video, their words with their friends or the world, WordPress has an excellent writing interface and the program makes it easy to share and publish.
The user is greeted by a simple and easy-to-understand interface. On the post writing panel, with a click the interface can be turned into a blank slate with no distractions, allowing you to face that blank piece of virtual paper to express your thoughts and feelings.
Over the years the ease of uploading and embedding of multimedia has gotten easier and is expected to improve even more in the next versions of WordPress.
You don’t have to know code, web design, or anything more than the ability to read, the will to write, and the courage to publish.
For Those Who Love Web Design
If you are a web designer or creative spirit, you can have free range with WordPress. WordPress Themes are designed to be infinitely flexible and customizable, right down to the smallest element.
While there are thousands to choose from and fantastic frameworks to build upon across the web, especially in the official WordPress Theme Directory, you can build your own from the ground up or follow in the footsteps of those who have gone before you.
WordPress Themes are not just for designers but for programmers, allowing custom scripts, actions, and functionality to be added to your site.
For Those Who Love Code
You can dig into WordPress Theme to change their functionality and features, adding flexible customization options to the WordPress backend as well as the front.
You can create WordPress Plugins to add all kinds of functionality and features to a WordPress Theme, for yourself or for the world via the WordPress Plugin Directory.
If you want to go even further, the WordPress Community includes a lot of team effort with WordPress developers and contributors as well as with like-minded individuals and fellow developers.
For Those in Business
If you have a business of any kind and have or want a web presence, WordPress is the place to start.
As a simple, easy-to-use, and popular publishing platform with a huge supportive community. All the help, advice, tutorials, and tips you need are available for free on the web.
It’s free. Seriously. While many still think the adage that “it’s only worth what you paid,” WordPress breaks that rule. To download and install WordPress is easy and free. There are thousands of top quality WordPress Themes to choose from to make your site look beautiful. Like a particular Theme, then consider hiring its designer to customize it even more. Or if you would like to get premium support, then pay for a WordPress Theme.
Want to customize and add a variety of features like automatically generated emails, registration, membership options, ecommerce, directories, etc., it’s easy with a ton of free or paid support premium WordPress Plugins. Instant flexibility and features to make your business site easier to manage and work best for your customers.
While larger more complex websites may require a consultant, part-time, or full-time employee to manage, most small businesses don’t need such administration. Either way, both situations will work with WordPress.
It saves money, is fast, and easy-to-use, so why not choose WordPress?
For Those Who Like Name Dropping
If you need some peer influence to help you decide whether or not to choose WordPress as your web publishing platform, here are some name droppers using WordPress and WordPress.com.
- New York Times
- People Magazine
- Wall Street Journal
- LA Times
- Digital Photography School
- Robert Scoble
- Joy Behrer
- Perez Hilton
For more, see Automattic’s WordPress Publisher’s Blog.
Real Reasons to Use WordPress For Those Who Care About Real Reasons
Here is a list of the real reasons to use WordPress.
- It offers you a wide range of power and control features and options.
- It’s flexible in design and functionality.
- It has vast extensibility.
- It’s a time saver, easy to design, develop, and extend.
- WordPress is built on open source, a community dedicated to keeping it thriving and viable.
- There is a wide range of free support options and services including the WordPress Support Forums, WordPress Codex, the online manual for WordPress Users, and dozens and dozens of WordPress-centric websites and hundreds of WordPress-specific web developers, designers, and coders.
- It’s free, as in no cost, no update fees, free.
- It works out of the box, no special features, no Plugins, so additional Themes, just right out of the box works.
- It’s lightweight by default, with little strain on your hosting services such as the bandwidth, storage, and database.
- It’s clean, user-friendly, and has an easy-to-use interface.
- Out of the box, WordPress is extraordinarily SEO-friendly, no tweaking required.
- Maintained, it is exceptionally secure with security updates released often within minutes of a security vulnerability discovered.
- By default, it meets all web standards for compliance.
- It is a one size fits all web publishing platform serving as a content management system, website, blog, web app hosting site, and more.
- Installation manually takes about five minutes or less but most web hosts offer it free with one click installation, taking seconds to get your WordPress site running.
- WordPress is available in over 70 languages.
- It is used by major corporations and publishing companies and has been for many years.
- There are thousands of free WordPress Plugins to choose from in the WordPress Plugin Directory.
- There are thousands of free WordPress Themes to choose from in the WordPress Theme Directory.
- Over one quarter of all the websites in the world are on WordPress.
One of the limitations of WordPress is that it is tied to the MySQL database. Businesses may choose an alternate platform because they have licenses and support contracts for a different database system.
I would also look at alternatives to WordPress, such as Drupal and Joomla, which have a large user base as well. Drupal gives you the absolute basics in the core and needs some assembly to get working but Joomla works out of the box and provides more features than most people need.
You are right that companies are often bound by legacy software, but it’s amazing how fast they jump when Open Source and tight budgets change their minds. 😀
There are other alternatives, and I’ve worked with many of them. It took a lot of work to convince me to really throw my life and work behind WordPress in 2003-2004, and I’ve never doubted that decision.
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