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Why WordPress?

     -     Nov 16th, 2015   -     Accounting Marketing, Accounting Websites, Web Design   -     0 Comments

untitledWhen submitting proposals for websites, we are often asked why FlashPoint designs and implements websites using WordPress. In fact, this question comes up so often that I have finally decided to write a blog post about it. The truth is, in terms of open content management systems, WordPress offers the most flexible and easy to use system for those who are not very technical. Some firms we work with are actually quite savvy at using WordPress and have become experts of sorts, but not everyone starts this way.

So here we go. Here are the top reasons why we choose to use WordPress:

  • Plugins – These are prebuilt pieces of code built by other developers that allow a WordPress user to quickly and easily implement new functionality. Generally, there is not a cost for plugins, although this is not always true. For example, clients who want to add a job board, career center or event registration feature can easily accomplish this at little expense. Most of the time the plugin requires minor adjustments and modifications. Even when some custom programming is required, it takes far less time to start by editing the plugin rather than having to create the functionality from scratch. Other content management systems have plugins, but they are very difficult to install and it’s often unclear how to activate and customize them.
  • Ongoing Updates – WordPress is continually updating the software to ensure that users have access to the latest and greatest version. These enhancements are free, as is the software itself, and it allows users to have a truly scalable and updated version of the software on demand. Other website platforms or content management systems (CMS) do offer such updates. However, it’s our experience that these are often difficult for the casual user to install OR there is a cost associated with updates. This is true of Sitefinity and other such CMS programs.
  •  Access – WordPress provides an unprecedented level of access to the core files, which means you can hire any WordPress programmer to make changes to the website. A common business model for many website companies is to create a website using their own proprietary system. This means that anytime a firm wants to make changes more complex than a content change, they are at the mercy of the website provider to do so. We work with one firm that was being charged $25 per quotation mark as it was needed to make certain functionality on the site work. They had no choice but to pay this amount because they didn’t have access to the source files. The client ended up dumping the vendor, but this situation is less than ideal and unfortunately all too common in the marketplace today.
  • SEO Friendly – WordPress offers the most convenient and easy to use SEO tools of any CMS we have worked on. A user can easily edit meta data, change URL structure, edit header tags and make other on-page SEO changes very quickly and all in one central location. I have worked in many other CMS programs where it’s difficult to find where to enter and access the information. This is especially true of Joomla, which has a very complex user interface, especially in the 1.5 and 2.0 versions of the software. WordPress was originally designed as a blogging platform. For this reason, it’s quite user friendly for both SEO purposes and other areas of website administration as well.
  • Responsive – The platform makes it easy to implement a responsive theme that is automatically mobile ready. Unlike other CMS applications, WordPress can be customized rather quickly (and at less expense) to be responsive. As most accounting marketers are aware, Google has recently stated that if a website is not responsive, it will not be well ranked for searches conducted on tablets or phones. This is really not an acceptable outcome, and it makes sense that a firm would want to leverage a platform that makes this process as painless as possible.

Key Concern – Security
The one drawback that I hear about more often than any other is the fact that WordPress has security issues. In a certain sense, this is true. When a company deploys WordPress, there are standard settings that are used “out of the box” as they say. For example, the common login URL for a WordPress site would be www.example.com/wp-admin. So if your programmer doesn’t change this setting to something custom, then, yes, it’s quite easy for someone with malicious intent to create a serious issue for the website. This can be a source of concern because it’s such a well-known product that almost any reasonably educated “hacker” could create havoc. However, most programmers are intelligent enough to know the common security concerns and are able to make the necessary adjustments without incurring any material expense to the project. Although this concern is one I hear about all the time and it is worthy of mentioning in this post, in the overall scheme of things, the security issue can easily be overcome.

Your Thoughts?
What are your reasons for preferring WordPress? Let me know as all comments are welcome!


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