Screen showing WordPress app listing

I have been building websites using WordPress since 2010. And in that time, my love for the platform and my belief in its capabilities has grown with each site I create.

What exactly is WordPress?

The straightforward answer – it is an easy way to create a website or blog.

The techy answer – WordPress is an open-source content management system for managing websites. There is no need to understand anything about programming!

WordPress logo

A few explanations for you…

Open-source – software where the source code is available to the public to change, edit and share as they wish.

Content management system – software that creates and manages website content.

Here are 7 reasons why WordPress is my go-to website creation tool.

1. It is free to use

This is a key reason why WordPress is developed as open-source software. The WordPress mission is…

“… software designed for everyone, emphasising accessibility, performance, security, and ease of use.”

Licensed under the General Public License, WordPress is built on “four core freedoms”.

The First Freedom – to run the program for any purpose

The Second Freedom – to study how the program works and change it to make it do what you wish.

The Third Freedom – to redistribute

The Fourth Freedom – To distribute copies of your modified versions to others.

2. It is always under development

Over the last 12 months alone, WordPress updated its core software 10 times. As well as improvements and new features, the updates have fixed bugs and increased security.

Because WordPress is so popular, it is a target for malicious attacks. The development team are serious about protecting websites from hackers. Hence, the regularity of updates. All equalling peace of mind for anyone who uses WordPress.

And yes, this is a reminder to make sure you are running the latest version of WordPress – 6.1.1 at time of writing. If you are using an older version, beware the more unsavoury elements of the internet!

How do you know when to update WordPress? You could rely on the automatic email sent from your website. In my experience, this often ends up in spam.

Or you could sign-up for my free notification service.

Whenever WordPress updates, you will receive an email notification. This will let you know what action to take. Plus, tips and advice on keeping your WordPress website protected.

3. It’s easy to customise

Thanks to WordPress’ system of themes and plugins, you can create any kind of website. Anything from a simple blog to an online shop. And all without the need to understand any code!

Themes are templates that guide how your website looks. There are thousands of free themes to choose from, plus plenty of premium, paid themes too. Somewhere there is the perfect one for your business.

Plugins are software packages that add extra functionality to a WordPress site. Use them to create a contact form, back up your site, and add extra layers of security. WordPress has more plugins available than any other content management system.

4. It’s user friendly

The WordPress Dashboard has an intuitive interface to manage your site.  A sidebar lists the different menu options with clear labels to avoid confusion. You can create pages and blog posts at the click of a button. Customising your site design happens alongside a real-time preview of the homepage. And you can manage navigation menus in a drag and drop interface.

Screenshot of the WordPress dashboard
The WordPress Dashboard

5. It’s search engine friendly

Google, Bing, and their alternatives love WordPress because of how it’s coded. Structured with search in mind, the code is easy for search engines to crawl through to analyse data.

This helps WordPress websites rank higher than those built on other platforms.

Some other search-related features to point out…

WordPress lets you create attractive permalinks.
This is the full URL you use for a website page or blog post. Known as pretty permalinks, they contain words relating to the content, making them readable by search engines. For example, the URL of this post is …

You can add alternative text to images when you upload them.
Alt text describes an image, and you can use it to include keywords which search engines will notice.

Screenshot of WordPress media library image details
Adding alternative text when uploading an image

Many WordPress themes are mobile friendly.
So you don’t have to do anything extra for your site to look good on small screens.

6. It supports different media types

WordPress allows you to upload images, documents, videos, and audio with ease.

A word of warning about video. Video files can be large. Uploading them straight to your website can put strain on resources such as memory. This is particularly true if you are on a shared hosting plan. To help avoid videos slowing down your site, upload them to YouTube or Vimeo. You can embed the video link into your website and let the video platform do the heavy lifting. Plus, your users get the added benefit of an interface they recognise.

7. Support for WordPress is everywhere

Got a problem with your WordPress website? Search for it and you will tap into an active community. There is a plethora of blogs, forums, courses, videos, and books dedicated to WordPress.

If your query is plugin related, I recommend starting with the WordPress plugin directory. Each plugin listed has an associated support forum. And chances are you will find an answer there.

Any theme worth its salt has documentation with how-to guides and common set-up scenarios, alongside support.

WordPress also offer their own tutorials on making the most of the platform.

For more general advice, I am a fan of WPBeginner, WPMU Dev, and Webdesigntuts.

Some fun facts about WordPress

  • The core software famously installs in less than 5 minutes.
  • It powers over 40% of active websites.
  • Each major version of WordPress since 1.0 is named after a jazz musician, starting with Davis after legendary trumpeter Miles Davis. Other names have included Duke, Thelonious, Basie, and Vaughn.
  • Every install of WordPress comes with a completely useless plugin, Hello Dolly. It displays random lyrics from the song of the same name, made famous by Louis Armstrong. WordPress’ very own Easter egg!
  • Well-known organisations that use WordPress – The White House, Sony Music, The New York Times, Walt Disney Company, and TechCrunch.
  • WordPress turns 20 this year.

There are many advantages of using WordPress for website creation, and these are why I continue to work with it.

If you would like to switch your website to WordPress, or are looking for help with an existing site, why not book a discovery call with me to discuss your options.

And remember to sign-up for updates if you manage your own WordPress site.

Image: Souvik Banerjee on Unsplash