What is WordPress and why should I use it for my small business website?

Apr 12, 2022 | Business, Website Design

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WordPress is an amazing system! And if you’ve landed here, you’ve probably heard of it! Perhaps you’re a new business and you’re exploring your options for building your own website, or maybe you’re looking into what WordPress is because you’re working with a web designer who uses it. Perhaps you’ve already got a website on another platform and you know there must be something more user-friendly and customisable out there.

Whatever your reason for wondering ‘What is WordPress and why should I use it?’, read on to hear why the team at Bloom & Brave Creative adore it!

Before I move on… here’s a pretty impressive fact about WordPress.
WordPress powers a massive 40% of all websites! 40%!!!
Probably more since I wrote this!

First of all, what IS WordPress?

WordPress is a content management system. Put simply, it’s a tool that powers your website and makes it easy to edit and manage your website without needing to be a developer!

Originally created for blogging, it’s now evolved into an amazing system that can do almost anything with help from the thousands of plugins available.

So, why use it for your small business website?

WordPress is insanely flexible, not just for blogs, but for all websites

WordPress is not just for blogging. It did exist for blogging back in the day, but has now grown into a brilliant content management system that many websites are built with, even very popular ones you’ve probably heard of such as Forbes, LinkedIn, Samsung and Vogue.

You can build a membership site, ecommerce site, blog, a simple website, almost anything, with WordPress.

You can also expand easily as your business grows. You could start with just one page and in future add as many extra pages and functionalities as you like.

It’s free!

WordPress itself is free. Such a powerful tool, free for all!

There are plenty of themes and plugins available to buy to design and enhance your site, but the system itself is free and open source. If you’re on a tight budget, there are so many good quality themes and plugins available for free, too.

If you’re going for something free, I recommend using WordPress themes that are by WordPress themselves, otherwise go for a paid theme that’s regularly updated so you’re sure to get the latest security updates. Good places for themes include Elegant Themes (Divi is the one we use for all of our websites!*), Bluchic and Themeforest (however, check the reviews, demos and how recent the theme is).

If you’re using free plugins, download via your WordPress website itself and again check the ratings and how recently the plugin was updated.

WordPress.org or WordPress.com

Just because WordPress is free, doesn’t mean your WHOLE website is free. If you’re creating a self-hosted website with WordPress.org, you’ll need to pay for website hosting and a domain name. Self-hosted what? I’ll explain…

We like to explain hosting and domain name in this way – if your website is your home, your domain name is your address and your hosting is your rent or mortgage for the internet. You need all three to have a self-hosted website that you have full control of. In this case, you’d be using WordPress.org which is the WordPress software that you can install on your website hosting.

Website = Home

Domain = Address

Hosting = Rent

With WordPress.com, WordPress hosts the website for you and you get a domain name that ends in wordpress.com, unless you upgrade to use your own custom domain. It’s mostly suited to blogs and is a bit more restricted than WordPress.org, but it’s a great place to start if you have a small budget.

WordPress.org requires your own hosting and a domain name, but it’s completely flexible. You can use absolutely any theme or plugin and really customise the site to look unique and function in any way you’d like it to.

WordPress is easy to use

WordPress wasn’t made with tech gurus in mind. It’s made so that anyone can build and maintain a website. You don’t have to be a website developer to learn to use it or update it. Most website hosts even provide a one click installation option so it’s set up and ready to use within minutes.

We offer all of our clients videos and guides on how to update their website themselves, if they’d like to. When we receive web design enquiries, a question we’re often asked is ‘will I be able to update the website myself?’, with lots of people redoing an existing website that they have no clue how to use. It’s kind of annoying to have a website and not be able to update it yourself!

That’s why we teach our clients how to use their website. They can easily update text content, add new blog posts, change images, update prices, etc… It’s in everyone’s best interest to have an up to date website! And a website that you actually have control over.

WordPress is SEO friendly

Search engines love WordPress! It’s set up for SEO (search engine optimisation) out of the box but there are also great plugins available like Rank Math or Yoast to help improve SEO.

Rank Math is our current favourite SEO plugin and the one we’re using on all websites we create at Bloom & Brave Creative. It’s easy to set up, simple to use and gives great feedback on how to improve your blog posts and text content.

It’s also worth noting here that a key SEO improvement is making sure your website is mobile friendly. A HUGE percentage of websites are viewed on mobile devices, so your website needs to work well for those users. And websites that work well for users are websites that search engines want to show off more!

Most WordPress themes are mobile responsive (displays a usable website on any device). We use Divi for all of the websites we create and it gives a lot of flexibility for responsive design. You can adjust the design and layout or even hide entire sections on mobile and tablet using Divi’s responsive tools.

It’s easy to get out of a pickle!

If you ever get stuck or need help with your site, there’s a big community surrounding WordPress. There are plenty of people to help on the WordPress forums, a ton of Facebook groups dedicated to WordPress and specific themes or plugins, and there are endless articles all over the web from people who’ve had the same problem and can show you how they’ve fixed it.

If you go with a great host, like Siteground, you’ll also have the support of the team there too.

And of course, we’re available to help!

What’s next?

Read more about our favourite WordPress theme, Divi

Completely custom website design tailored to your business and your goals

Website Wonderland – A step-by-step course to help you build your own website

Hi, we’re Amber and Imy!

We’re sisters with a true passion for empowering small businesses to grow and succeed.

On our blog, you can catch up with the latest from Bloom & Brave Creative, including inspirational and informative posts helping you to bloom in your own way and show up bravely online.