What is WordPress and How Does It Work?January 15, 2014 Reading Time: 3 Minutes
This is a question that I get asked daily. In this article I’d like to help you understand exactly what WordPress is and how it works. All without your typical technical web jargon
WordPress is the worlds leading Content Management System (CMS) and publishing platform for the web. WordPress allows you to easily manage and publish content without the need to know a programming language.
It was originally created as a blogging platform in 2003 and has since then developed into a full featured CMS.
As of 2013, 18.9% of the web is powered by WordPress (an increase of 2.2% from 2012).
Of all websites on a CMS, 60% of those are using WordPress.
How It Works
With WordPress, managing your website can be extremely easy. Instead of combing through code to make a change to your website, you’re instead presented with a Word-like interface that’s as simple as editing a—you guessed it—Word document.
Powerful and Dynamic
With WordPress it’s quick and easy to add or manage content on your website. Gone are the days of finding a typo on your website and emailing your web developer about it. If you see something you would like changed, you can login and manage your WordPress website at any time. And with no software to install on your computer, your only requirement is an internet connection and browser. You can manage your website just about anywhere.
As you would expect, a CMS as popular as WordPress has a large community. This means that if you have a question, it’s most likely been answered for you. You can search “(your question) wordpress” online and you’re almost guaranteed to find the answer you’re looking for. Looking for a video tutorial on WordPress? No problem. You can search YouTube and find thousands. Check out our YouTube channel that includes our videos covering WordPress.
Another great thing about a popular open-source platform like WordPress, is the amount to which you can add on features (these features are called plugins in WordPress). Plugins allow WordPress to accomplish almost any task you can think of. For instance, if you need a contact form on a page, there are plugins that can do that for you. If you need to insert a Google Analytics code snippet, there’s a plugin that will insert it for you.
Two Versions of WordPress
To stir things up, you should know there are two versions of WordPress: WordPress.com, and WordPress.org.
WordPress.com is a complete hosted solution from WordPress. It lacks the ability to be fully customized, but it’s great for someone who wants to get their website or blog started right away. Plus, the interface is extremely similar to WordPress.org, so if you decided to move your website from WordPress.com to WordPress.org, the transition is seamless (although, you’ll likely need help in doing so).
WordPress.org is the do-it-yourself version and the reason you’ve heard about WordPress. It’s what we use for our clients. Unlike WordPress.com, you can customize this version of WordPress to your hearts content.
The Final Word
As you know, words like “easy” and “straightforward” are relative terms, all depending on your experiences and skill set. Although WordPress has pushed web publishing to another level, it’s still not as easy to use as it could be.
The clients we work for are business owners, consultants, lawyers, and marketing executives. And the one thing they have in common is not enough time in the day. Sure, they could set up their website or blog themselves, but it would take an extreme investment of time and work on their part. At the end of the day, they’d rather focus on their specialty and have someone else that specializes in WordPress website design do it for them.
If you’d like to hire us to design and develop your WordPress website, please give us a call at (360) 450-3711 or send us a request here.