If you ever asked yourself a question “How to create a website?”, you might have heard about content management systems (CMS). In my previous post, I wrote why every freelance translator shall have a website. Today I would like to talk about my favorite website CMS – WordPress.
Many webmasters from around the world use WordPress for their websites. Based on 2015 statistics WordPress powers 25% of all websites. WordPress is not just a blogging platform. Actually, there are two different resources – WordPress.com and WordPress.org. The first one is a commercial platform where you can host your site for free with some limitations. You may pay for addition features, but if you want to build a website to sell services online, it is better to launch a self-hosted site using WordPress engine.
WordPress.org is a place where you can download a free copy of CMS software. In this case, you will need to buy a domain name and hosting to run your website. Here you can also find a large repository of free extensions (plugins) to enhance performance and add some cool features to your website, as well as documentation and friendly community ready to help you with WordPress.
A website based on this CMS offers almost unlimited possibilities for personal use. That’s why WordPress is a perfect solution for freelance business. Moreover, WordPress setup takes about 5 minutes!
A new user with basic computer skills will easily create new pages and add posts with multimedia content. I launched my first website from scratch within and hour (taking into account the fact that I had no previous experience with website development).
Now you can launch a website in just several minutes due to one-click installation offered by many hosting providers. Well, let’s see why so many people love WordPress.
I have seen so many websites build on WordPress that I cannot even name an area where WordPress would be unsuitable.
Searching through ThemeForest (web store offering premium WordPress themes) you’ll find an enormous amount of themes that can turn your website into everything you need, starting from a corporate website, job board, online shop, ending with single page event website, personal portfolio or magazine.
Also, there are many free themes. And if you want to add some more features to your site – use powerful free or paid plugins to enhance its functionality.
Almost No Programming Required
After WordPress installation, the major customization and editing work can be done via a dashboard. You can add pages and posts, install plugins, monitor comments, customize menus and widgets, manage website users and much more.
However, to fine-tune your website design, I would recommend to start learning HTML and CSS. Anyway, on the initial setup stage, you don’t need to know any programming language.
According to Matt Cutts, the head of the webspam team at Google, WordPress prevents 90% of SEO problems the other website owners have.
I would recommend one of the most powerful plugins for search engine optimization WordPress SEO by Yoast. I switched to this plugin about a year ago and it is totally awesome! I will talk about how to set up Yoast in one of my future articles.
Simple Blog Management
Many people think that WordPress is just for blogging. In fact, you can build a full-fledged website with blog management system.
You can easily publish various types of posts with pictures, videos, and audio files either stored or you web hosting or embedded from third-party sources like YouTube, Instagram, Facebook, etc.
WordPress offers a free access to hundreds of plugins that will add functional features to your website. Just go to Plugin tab on your dashboard and find the right one for almost every purpose: security, analytics, contact forms, visual tweaks and many others.
WordPress is Used Everywhere
Choosing this CMS, you join millions of WordPress users and developers that will help you to resolve random issues. One day you will definitely need some help from the community and you will get it!
WordPress offers free support. Many questions are already answered at WordPress forums. In addition, theme developers have their own support forums where you can ask for help. You may also search through YouTube for video tutorials.
WordPress ensure basic security features as a default. However, you can always enhance security with plugins.
All In One WP Security & Firewall is a perfect solution to protect your website from intruders. It has intuitive interface and description of every security feature.
As you may know, the share of mobile friendly websites is gradually increasing and flexible layouts are becoming an industry standard. Mobile compatibility and content adjustment for various screen sizes is already important for search engine ranking.
Actually, WordPress native themes automatically adjust websites for mobile use. But before selecting a new theme for your website make sure that it is mobile friendly.
WordPress based website can be used for automation of marketing processes using FAQ pages, contact forms, and email marketing software to collect subscribers. You can also automate system updates, schedule database backup and prepare content publishing calendar.
The visual editor is another good reason to love WordPress and it is getting better with each new version. In addition to editing text, adding images and video, you also can embed content from popular social networks like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc. All embedded content seamlessly integrates with any site layout and design.
Do you still think that WordPress is not for you?
If you want to test awesome features of this free site engine just go to WordPress.com. Here you can register a free blog on a third level domain like johndoe.wordpress.com. This solution is good for testing WordPress functionality and running a blog.
But to launch a professional personal website for freelance business you will need a self-hosted site. To do that, you can buy a year of hosting with a domain name from HostGator and install WordPress using hosting admin panel.