As the years roll by more and more websites are powered by WordPress. Depending on which sources you believe, this is any where between 25% to 40% of the internet. Regardless of which figure is correct it is still fair to say that WordPress is a pretty popular option for building a website. We’re also big fans of the platform, utilising it for most of the sites we create.
Unfortunately this popularity also prompts a lot of criticism. Some of these negative views are fair enough – no platform is perfect. But the bulk of these points are based on misunderstanding and common myths that simply aren’t true.
So if you’re considering building a website using WordPress but have been hesitant because you’ve heard something negative, hopefully we can debunk some of these misconceptions for you.
Here’s six common misconceptions about WordPress:
You don’t get anything more when you move from .com to .org
Just so we’re clear, you can currently use WordPress in two ways. WordPress.com provides a free platform that includes your hosting and domain name, meaning you have no costs when using it. WordPress.org is provided on a free basis too, but you’re responsible for installing it, paying for hosting and maintaining it.
WordPress.com is a great option for small bloggers but it’s lack of complete flexibility will mean you will outgrow it. It’s simplicity makes it popular, but if you are looking to customise what you website can do and the way it looks you’ll be disappointed.
Although you have to install, maintain and pay for hosting yourself, WordPress.org is a fantastic option to build your website with. Endless customisation with regards to design and functionality will mean you can accomplish anything by utilising it.
WordPress is just a blogging platform
Once upon a time in it’s infancy, WordPress was created specifically to be a blogging platform. This is something the framework still does really well. More recently, but still long ago, WordPress began to expand it’s capabilities.
Nowadays WordPress is a little more flexible. You’re able to set a static front page, additional pages for your about us section and services as well as publish all of your blog posts.
WordPress is only good for small, simple websites
This statement was probably true for the first couple years of WordPress’ existence but couldn’t be further from the truth. Since the platform is incredibly flexible and extremely developer friendly, many plugins now exist that can add most kinds of functionality that you may require.
You can utilise these free and paid plugins to turn your website into a fully functional e-commerce platform, learning management system, property booking system and so much more. What’s even better is that these are all designed to be easy to use and you only ever pay for what you actually need.
WordPress websites all look the same
Admittedly once you’ve seen quite a few WordPress websites you can generally identify them easily. This said, options for WordPress themes are many (5000 different themes on Themeforest alone!) so the opportunity is there to design something that is truly original.
If you have a basic understanding of HTML and CSS your options are even wider. You can create a mini version of any theme (called a child theme) and customise any aspect of any theme with relative ease.
With enough originality and creativity you can design a website using WordPress that looks entirely different from any you’ve seen before.
WordPress is insecure
This criticism is a common one that we hear all of the time. It’s true that WordPress attracts a lot of attention from malicious people but that’s only because it’s so popular.
We would argue that WordPress is just as, if not more secure than most other platforms. Yes, we acknowledge that security vulnerabilities are identified every so often but these are easily remedied as long as you keep WordPress core updated.
And that’s really the beauty of WordPress. You benefit from efforts of over a thousand developers around the world that are actively maintaining and protecting your website – all for free.
Besides, if you want extra peace of mind, there’s lots you can do to protect yourself even further. Read a little more about these steps by reading a previous blog post of ours here.
WordPress can’t scale/Big companies don’t use WordPress
By now you might be thinking that all of this is great for small businesses and startups, but how can WordPress scale up for use in bigger enterprises. It’s a common belief that WordPress is useful for when you start out but that you’ll quickly outgrow it as your business develops.
This might be true if you require bespoke couples functionality, but for most organisations this simply isn’t true. In fact you can see the proof that many major enterprises use WordPress too when you consider that Yahoo, Samsung, Usain Bolt and many other large businesses have built their websites using the framework.
WordPress is extremely versatile and with the right maintenance can handle anything from a small monthly audience to taking hundreds of thousands of orders per year.
We hope you’ve found this post useful in allaying any worries you had about using WordPress for your next website design project. If you have any questions or would like to contribute your own myths and misconceptions about WordPress, leave a comment or get in touch.
Liam is a website designer and digital marketer based in Leeds, West Yorkshire. He spent a decade working within the charity sector before moving into the marketing space a number of years ago. Liam always strives to do something slightly different with every project and always designs to deliver results, not just pretty websites.