WordPress is a very powerful CMS for building your site on, it’s actually the most common content management system used online to this day. For this reason it’s often a lot of people’s go-to application when they’re looking to launch a website. There’s lots of justification for this, it’s popular for a reason, but there’s a little more to it that not everyone understands or takes into account.
Suitability for task
If you’re looking to launch a simple website consisting of a few pages, using a fully featured CMS like wordpress can be huge overkill. If all your website consists of is a bit of intro text and some contact details this could be accomplished using static html files rather than a full content management system. Flat simple pages would load infinitely faster and require zero maintenance.
Plugins for wordpress allow it to meet the needs of lots of users, however you need to remember that by relying extensively on plugins from the outset means that you’re attempting to make the software do something it’s not originally designed to do. It’s a workaround for all intents and purposes. You can use plugins to turn wordpress into a full e-commerce platform, if that’s a wise decision or not is another question. As wordpress gets updated (and it DOES need to be updated), so do all the plugins you rely on. The more plugins your site uses the greater the risk of compatibility issues.
This is the big one. As wordpress is so popular, it’s one of the main targets for hackers who will seek to compromise your site. Any site using wordpress is many many times more likely to be attacked than a less popular platform. This is because the same techniques and exploits that apply to one wordpress site of a given version number will apply to all other wordpress sites of that version. As such it makes attacking wordpress sites much more worthwhile.
Any wordpress site will be attacked from time to time. Successful attacks are normally due to the site not being kept up to date with security updates. These need to be applied as soon as they’re released to keep the site safe.
Firstly, it’s possible to customise every single aspect of wordpress and present a website in basically any style or format you desire. However, the effort required to position a logo in a certain place, or create a new sidebar is often far greater than if the site was a bespoke creation. It can be easy to take on a basic theme and put your logo on it, but if you have any specific design intentions then the customisation work can often take many more hours than you might imagine as you’re working within the constraints of the wordpress CMS.
A system you used with the intention of saving time / money can actually cost you both of these in the long run unless you’re clear about your goals from the outset.
WordPress is a fantastic tool when used correctly. A competent agency (such as Dark Cherry Creative..) will keep their wordpress sites up to date, secure and be able to customise them for your requirements. Be wary about casually launching a homebrew wordpress site that won’t be monitored to kept up to date as it doesn’t take long for problems to arise for the uninitiated!
Looking to have a site built on the wordpress platform? Get in touch, we’re the experts!