It’s a juggernaut.
The Wordpress platform started off with such unassuming ambitions when it launched in 2004. It just wanted to make blogging a little easier. But in the time since then, Wordpress has exploded. Its versatility, simplicity of use, and ease of installation has turned what was built to be a blogging platform into one of the foundations on which the internet is built.
Almost a quarter of the world’s websites are built on the Wordpress software. As a result, it’s become the cornerstone of an industry of plug-in developers, security experts, theme designers, programming specialists, and more. That means that it’s easy for a small business to use it as their platform of choice; there is always support available.
But its very ubiquity is a significant weakness – and should make you think twice before you jump in with both feet. After all, it’s not the only CMS out there – just the biggest.
Wordpress’s popularity is easy to explain. It’s extremely simple to use, installation is essentially plug-and-play, it can be hosted by any number of providers, and the software itself is free. It’s also supremely flexible; because you have direct access to the source code, it can be modified to accommodate any custom functionality you may want, whether developed in house or brought in via the thousands of plugins and widgets available in the wild. That’s how what is a blogging platform at heart can be used to deliver all sorts of websites. Couple that with the immensity of the Wordpress developer community, and you’ve got a way to build websites easily, at low cost, to accomplish any task.
Unfortunately, as a direct result of the platform’s popularity, it’s low-hanging fruit for hackers, and why not? An exploit in Wordpress exposes one out of every four websites on earth to attack. Wordpress’s developers work hard to keep the software secure – but that means frequent updates you have to stay on top of, and which can break existing code. In other words, for all its ease of use, Wordpress can be just as cumbersome and difficult a software solution as any other; you simply pay the costs in the vulnerability that comes from using the most widespread platform in the world.
But you have options. Wordpress may be the default choice for modern websites, but it’s not your only one. And depending on what you need, it may not be your best one.
When Not to Pick Wordpress
The virtues of Wordpress are certainly many, and it’s a great choice when your primary concerns are cost, flexibility, and having access to the vast array of predesigned themes. But if you want anything more than that, it’s time to start shopping around.
Hudson Fusion’s preferred hosting platform is Adobe Business Catalyst (BC), an extremely powerful SaaS platform for business websites. BC is a comprehensive hosted service that requires very little effort to maintain; it’s essentially worry-free. As the name suggests, BC is optimized for business – it’s designed with commercial use in mind. As such, it includes features out-of-the-box which would require extensive work on the Wordpress platform to implement, including built-in eCommerce functionality, the ability to operate multiple blogs on one website, and password-protected pages, while offering extensive analytics. BC also enables you to easily create new page layouts without having to employ a developer every time. So while there’s a higher up-front cost, BC is a powerful tool for businesses looking to create a strong, functional web presence.
BC websites, however, tend to look generic without customization. They’re designed to be easy to implement and use, a simplicity that can cause them to blend together. But with a great design team backing you up, they can be thoroughly overhauled to meet your design needs.
We’re also big proponents of the Hubspot Content Optimization System, a CMS notable for its complete integration of your website with your marketing activities. Hubspot COS websites are built with inbound marketing in mind, so it’s built to let you appeal to multiple marketing personas, with smart content that adapts to the audience viewing it, and evolves with your customers. Hubspot COS is designed, above all, to help you optimize your content – and target the right people.
The interface is intuitive and easy to use, offering extensive options for designers while featuring informational hubs for markets. And every website is automatically optimized for mobile presentation.
Essentially, then, Hubspot offers a tightly integrated experience that enables you to effectively use inbound marketing to promote your services. The tools on Hubspot allow for effective interoperability with social media platforms, help you track your inbound traffic, build effective landing pages and calls to action, and more – all with remarkable ease.
In other words, there are reasons to use Wordpress – and reasons not to. Which CMS you should use depends on what it is you want to accomplish with your website, what you value, and how you work. So consider the above when choosing your platform, and make sure that you pick a CMS that meets your needs as much as it meets your budget.