WordPress Design and Development - John Wierenga

What is WordPress?

Screenshot from WordPress.org

WordPress is a content management system (CMS) that a website can be built with. There are many other types of websites, I used to build html websites from scratch. But WordPress has the largest market share of any type of website.

Why should you use WordPress?

Dahmari working under the computer

I think the #1 reason to use WordPress is the plugins. Plugins are add ons that you can add to your website.

For example if I took one of my old hand coded html websites and wanted to add a contact form, it would require me to create of find a code for sending email, likely split into multiple files and then code it into the website. With WordPress I install my choice of a ton of contact form plugins and have it up and running in a fraction of the time it would take me to create one.

There are currently over 50,000 FREE plugins on WordPress.org. Not to mention free ones hosted elsewhere like GitHub, and large libraries of cheap plugins out there as well.

This means that rather then needing a programmer for the smallest function on a website, you install something someone else created and gives away for free and are done in minutes!

Of course nothing in life is that simple… There are times when plugins don’t work right, you can’t find what you want, etc… But these thousands of plugins do give a head start to any project.

Is WordPress a bad choice in 2021?

Twenty Twenty One WordPress theme

A lot of people misuse WordPress. There are a lot of WordPress “developers” and “designers” who don’t understand development or design best practices and create poorly built and ugly websites. This is because they are poor at their craft, WordPress is just a tool. Like any tool it takes some skill to use. A skilled digital marketing team with good designers and developers can create a great WordPress website.

John Wierenga and WordPress

Dahmari working under th ecomputer

I started working with WordPress in 2013. I had been working as a web developer using Joomla websites prior to that.

Since 2013 I have gone on to create my own WordPress plugins along with working on over 1,000 WordPress websites.

My current focus is on helping improve site speed for WordPress websites and developing some tools to help with technical SEO on WordPress websites.

What is involved in a start to finish business WordPress website?

Determine website purpose?

Is it going to be an ecommerce website? Should visitors be able to book appointments? Is the websites purpose as simple as describing services and offering a phone number to call?

The purpose of the website has to be determined before you get too far into the project.

What should the website look like?

Find a few other websites online that the client likes or dislikes and find out what it is EXACTLY that they like or dislike about the site so you can design the new site accordingly.

Request content

When you know the purpose of the website you should be able to