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WordPress Development

sketch of Republic of Korea Wall of Honor website
Sketch of the Republic of Korea Wall of Honor website that we built with WordPress.

Why build with WordPress

Many of the sites we develop are based on WordPress. Why do we use WordPress so often? Here are a just a few of the many advantages to developing with WordPress.

WordPress is the most popular content management system (CMS)* on the web today. Nearly 40% of all sites on the internet are built with WordPress, and, if you look only at CMS’s, the percentage jumps to 64%. Even Google has recognized the importance of WordPress and partnered with them to improve the platform.

*Complex code underlies most websites, including WordPress. Editing this code directly can be challenging and confusing. Content management systems allow users to edit the content of their websites without ever needing to touch the code. 

This popularity and the fact it’s open-source mean loads of developers have spent countless hours testing and refining the platform. They’ve made improvements and edits based on feedback from millions of users. By utilizing WordPress, you can take advantage of the extensive time and effort already invested in WordPress, and, because it’s open-source, the base platform is free. (Some plugins do have license fees.) WordPress’ popularity also simplifies transferring maintenance of the finished site to other developers in the future, should you decide not to continue working with us after initial development wraps.

Extensibility through plugins

WordPress also has a large ecosystem of plugins** that can be leveraged to meet your needs if they stretch beyond WordPress’ default features. Using plugins where they make sense can lead to fewer development hours when compared to building a feature from scratch. Plugins also make it easier to add and remove features without redoing the entire site. 

**Plugins are add ons that allow users to extend WordPress' existing feature set. They often have free and pro (paid) versions. When a client asks for a feature that doesn't exist in WordPress, we first check for an existing plugin. If one exists, we'll use it. If not, we'll modify an existing plugin or build our own from scratch.  

Plugins serve a wide range of purposes. There are plugins for managing events, improving a site’s SEO, adding ecommerce functionality, creating contact forms, and much more. Adding plugins is surprisingly easy and straightforward. In an ideal situation, the plugin will work smoothly right after installation. However, sometimes various plugins will conflict with each other and cause issues. Often, a plugin’s default styles will need to be updated to match your website’s styles. When working with plugins, we test and adjust them as needed so that you don’t need to worry about plugin conflicts or styling issues.

wordpress.org vs. wordpress.com

If you’re new to WordPress, be aware that there are two versions. The wordpress.com and wordpress.org versions. WordPress.com is a hosted product with limited customization features. It’s good for small sites but will only take you so far. WordPress.org, is an open-source product that you need to host yourself or find someone to host for you. (We offer hosting services, so don’t worry if you’re not sure what’s involved — we can help you with everything needed to get your site up and running.) Using wordpress.org allows you to take full advantage of its features and utilize the wide-range of plugins available. It also allows for extensive customization. Although WordPress started as a blogging platform, it’s evolved significantly over they years, and you can now use wordpress.org to build a wide-range of websites. When we say “WordPress” on this site, we are referring to wordpress.org.

Making edits is easy with WordPress

Screenshot showing the admin side of this page. The page is broken up into preformatted “blocks” — headings, lists, paragraphs, etc. Within each block, you can bold and italicize text, add links, and make other styling adjustments.

WordPress has an intuitive admin interface and a good WYSIWYG editor that will allow you to add and update content on your website. The WYSIWYG includes key text formatting options, like bold, italic, underline, basic tables, bullet points, and so on. The WYSIWYG editor also allows you to place images within your text areas and embed YouTube videos. 

In 2018, WordPress released its Gutenberg editor. Gutenberg allows users to do more than just change the look of their text. It allows them to also add in new blocks of content, including buttons, image galleries, quotes, headings, and more. If you’re using an older version of WordPress it’s possible that you still have the classic editor. When we build a new site, we typically build for Gutenberg because it offers a wider range of features, but we can also focus on the classic editor if that is your preference.

Our WordPress development experience

We have been designing, developing, hosting, and maintaining WordPress websites for many years. For example, we built both VVMF’s main website and a site honoring Koreans who died in the Vietnam War using WordPress. Our experience allows us to work efficiently and to recognize where we can customize existing features to meet your needs.

Get in touch so we can start your
next web project!

Let us know what you’re looking for. We strive to respond in 48 hours, but, every now and then, life gets in the way, so be patient if there’s a delay.


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