WordPress is for portfolio websites and blogging, right? Hmm, not quite!
A popular misconception is that WordPress isn’t suitable for larger projects such as ecommerce or enterprise builds. Perhaps this unfair label comes from its early days as a pioneer in the blogging space. But across its 17 year history, the product has evolved into what it is today – a powerful and open source content management system, and in our opinion, one with infinite potential.
Over 37% of all websites are currently powered by WordPress – that’s more than 60 million. With this widespread success, the platform has come on leaps and bounds not only in terms of polish and functionality, but security too.
So to kick off, what do we love about WordPress?
- It’s expandable via a generous and varied library of plugins
- It’s open source, meaning we can use custom code where necessary
- It works really well with mobile, and natively supports responsive layouts
- It’s SEO friendly and functions well here naturally, or with plugins
- It’s continuously improving with updates, whether around features or security
- It offers strong admin tools so that access management is easy
We could continue, but an important question looms… How do the above points make WordPress great for enterprise websites?
To answer this question, we need to look at the problem. Many businesses and their systems are built on years and years of legacy software (and hardware). And this problem is prevalent across many industries, including healthcare, banking and even space travel. It’s costly and disruptive to update this tech and it’s one of the core reasons why enterprise systems can get a bad rap for security, reliability and scalability.
Life in the fast lane
With digital transformation being a hot topic for many businesses, a scalable platform that can grow with a business is a must-have. The WordPress framework is nimble and allows developers to move fast when it comes to prototyping and deployment. The core technologies behind WordPress are well-understood and lend themselves well to database and server optimisation. And perhaps most importantly, it’s secure, with dedicated WordPress developers and researchers working around the clock to monitor the platform and release security updates that are rolled out when necessary, and in many cases, will automatically install themselves.
Content is king
Companies such as Mercedes-Benz, Sony Music, The New Yorker and even Time run their websites on WordPress. These are all ‘always on’ companies that can’t afford any downtime. Thankfully, WordPress’ iterative updates won’t break a website running an older version of the platform thanks to backwards compatibility. These are also very visual brands, who rely heavily on design to carry their respective identities. This is where WordPress really excels – allowing developers and designers to flex their skills and tailor the front-end to look exactly how they like. This is particularly important for content-led websites where content design is priority, and offers a brilliant user experience, whether someone is visiting the front page, searching, or are deep into a multi-page content piece.
So that’s our top-level lowdown on WordPress. But what does the team at AndAnotherDay think when it comes to using it for enterprise websites?
“I love the way that WordPress can use hooks and actions. We can trigger custom functionality at run-time alongside core functionality. This means we can easily extend an otherwise simple CMS to do pretty much anything we need it to do.”
“As well as a user-friendly CMS to run a public-facing website WordPress can be utilised as a headless CMS for web applications.”
“WordPress is a community-led tool, which is a great driving force behind new features and improvements. As a platform it means we can benefit from changes that are needed and wanted, not just what the owners think people want. This helps keep the platform modern. A great example of this is the work currently going on in the community for PWA support in WordPress. To build this functionality from scratch could take weeks to months. But with WordPress this is just a plugin.”
“Wordpress is one of the most intuitive and easy to use content management systems on the web. We have the ability to manipulate and alter the way a website displays to the user, at almost any degree of complexity in design and functionality due to its incredible infrastructure. WordPress gives us the ability to give an enterprise the site they need now, and the ability to build upon the site in the future, making it a solid choice for future thinking companies.”
“WordPress has great extensibility, which makes it perfect at scale, whilst keeping cost to maintain relatively low.”
Whilst blogs like these hopefully raise awareness of WordPress’ suitability as an enterprise-level website and CMS solution, it may still carry that ‘blogging site’ label for some time. But seeing is believing, so if you’re keen to understand the real power of WordPress and what it’s really capable of, get in touch. We’ve got some great projects that we’d love to show you.