Why WordPress is the Best CMS for your Project
By Harrison Rood
Within the last decade, content management systems (or CMS’s for short) have become the dominant method of creating, maintaining, and updating websites. Web development tasks that used to take hours to complete now take mere seconds. Sites that once required writing tens of thousands of lines of code by hand, now demand a fraction of the effort. Even more importantly, the CMS has allowed individuals with little to no programming or coding knowledge to create professional web presences relatively inexpensively-- this explains the growing popularity of companies like Wix, Squarespace, and Drupal.
However, there’s one CMS that stands far above the competition, and that’s WordPress. It may not be the flashiest, or the most advertised, but it is the best. Here’s why:
1. It’s Got History
WordPress has been around since 2003, which is ancient in web development years. Back then, the first iPhone didn’t even exist as a twinkle in Steve Jobs’ eye – it would be another four years before its release. What this means is that WordPress has had a lot of time to grow and change with the web, adding support for responsive design, server-side caching, and extremely advanced templates. While most younger CMS’s are still finding their footing, WordPress’s long development has allowed it to provide one of the most stable possible development experiences.
2. It’s Popular
According to W3Techs, an independent organization that collects web usage statistics, WordPress powers one-third of the Internet. While popularity doesn’t always equal quality (looking at you, Jersey Shore), WordPress’s widespread use has made it unbelievably well-documented and supported by developers and content creators.
Another benefit to WordPress’s popularity is the community that’s developed around it in the years following its launch. The WordPress forums are home to millions of users with years of experience under their collective belts. If you run into a problem while creating your site, chances are someone’s had the same problem, posted about in on a forum, and gotten help from the community that’s now readily available to you.
3. It’s Insanely Extendable
WordPress’s extreme popularity has also attracted the some of the best plugin developers and theme designers the web has to offer.
Plugins are packages of code that allow a user to extend the functionality of a website. Think of them as “apps” for your website. Need to add a contact form so visitors can get ahold of you? There’s a plugin for that. Want to add a visual editor to make designing your site easier? There’s a plugin for that. Want to turn your blog about graphic design into an e-commerce storefront to sell your merchandise? There’s a plugin for that! Currently, there are over half a million official plugins in the WordPress repository, with thousands more offered externally by third-party developers. This vast array of extensibility makes adding features (that you’d typically have to develop yourself) a snap.
But wait, there’s more
I could go on for days about how WordPress is open source, extremely fast, and so on, but this list is a good place to start for anyone having doubts about starting their web presence. WordPress’s relatively old age means that it’s gone through extensive testing, so bugs that may plague newer CMS’s have long been worked out. Its popularity has created a vast community-sourced knowledgebase that’s ready to help when you run into problems. Finally, its extensibility allows you to add features to your site as you go, letting your site grow with you. Whether you’re a programming guru or a coding newbie, WordPress is the perfect place for you to start building a web presence you can be proud of.